Don't let the door hit you where the good Lord split you, coach.
Rich Rodriguez may be the most hated man in West Virginia right now. A Huntington resident I ran into today mentioned that he definitely replaced Baldwin and Felts as the most despised figure in state history. That is pretty notable since Baldwin and Felts Detective Agency went out of existence in the 1930s.
Why the hatred? We took special pride in Rodriguez because he was one of our own. When he returned to the state, it seemed a natural progression. Many folks left West Virginia to find opportunity then took less pay than they could have gotten elsewhere to return. Rodriguez talked the talk of pride, love of home, and family. He told us what we always believed in our hearts was true. That's why it's worse with Rodriguez than Belein. We knew he wasn't from here, that he was probably just passing through.
Then came last year's dalliance with Alabama. We consoled ourselves by saying he just used them for leverage. That was just us deluding ourselves. He had every intention of leaving regardless of his words to the contrary. It was not even to a better situation, except in terms of his pay. Rodriguez had a golden opportunity to win a title at West Virginia and cement his name as a hero.
Uncounted people dipped into their savings and donated money to keep him here because they took him at his word. Not all of them could afford it. That's why West Virginians from the governor on down are angry.
Now apparently we have Terry Bowden, another West Virginian. He has been to the big time as a head coach and wants to come back here. Objectively this could work out better for West Virginia. Like Belein, Big East opponents had figured out the system. When Wannstedt stifles a running game, it is a huge red flag. Bowden will be less conservative of a play caller, hopefully opening up some room for Slaton and Devine to run while allowing White to finally showcase his arm. This is one time where being conservative can be counter-productive!
Anyway, we will be fine as a state and a football team.