Source: Bill Stewart close to resigning

Updated: June 10, 2011, 7:56 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The resignation of West Virginia football coach Bill Stewart is "imminent," a university source told ESPN.com's Ivan Maisel on Friday.

Offensive coordinator and head-coach-in-waiting Dana Holgorsen will be promoted, a source tells ESPN's Joe Schad. Holgorsen will make an additional $2 million over six years because of his accelerated promotion. West Virginia reached a settlement agreement with Stewart, a source told Schad.

West Virginia has called a 9 p.m. ET news conference to discuss the moves.

Earlier Friday, Schad reported that WVU leaders were pondering whether terminating the coach-in-waiting scenario it created this year with offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen would be in the best interests of the program. Holgorsen is scheduled to succeed Stewart after the coming season.

Oliver Luck, West Virginia's athletic director, continued to steadfastly refuse comment on what was going to happen with Stewart, but did admit to the Charleston Gazette that "no one wants this to drag out any longer than it needs to."

According to the Gazette, neither Stewart nor his attorney, David Hendrickson of Charleston, was in the loop.

"There have been no negotiations," Hendrickson told the Gazette Thursday while awaiting a delayed flight in New York. "I haven't heard from the athletic department today."

Stewart since has hired a new attorney, Michael Benninger, the Gazette reported Friday. WVU officials are in talks with Stewart and Benninger about the coach's future with the program, the newspaper said.

"We are now engaged in a meaningful process," Benninger said, according to the Gazette. "Bill is interested in doing what is best for his family and the university ... We plan to listen to the university and develop a response."

People close to the program say the relationship between Stewart and Holgorsen can be described as strained at best and that the staff dynamic -- including holdover coaches and coaches brought on by Holgorsen -- is unhealthy.

"I don't care, we could have no coaching staff next year," junior offensive lineman Jeff Braun told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette earlier this week. "We're still going to field a team, and I'm still going to go out there and play."

Earlier this week a former reporter for the Post-Gazette told radio station 93.7 The Fan that Stewart had asked him and "at least one other reporter" to dig up "dirt" on Holgorsen.

Ivan Maisel is a senior college football writer for ESPN.com. Joe Schad covers college football reporter for ESPN.

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