Morgantown, West Virginia — From 1976-1979, Frank Cignetti Sr. was the head coach of the West Virginia Mountaineers. His tenure was between the two legendary coaches of Bobby Bowden (who left WVU to take the job at Florida State).
Neal Brown seems to be repeating history as WVU has only had ONE winning season at West Virginia (2020 in a shortened football season due to COVID-19). Cignetti compiled an average record of 5-7 in his tenure, with NO winning records in the four seasons that he was here. After FOUR seasons with the Mountaineers, and having no success, he decided on his own accord to step down as head coach. After this, WVU hired legendary coach Don Nehlen, who spent 20 seasons with the Mountaineers and competing for a National Championship and a share of a second.
So, will Neal Brown resign?
In his introductory press conference for the Mountaineers, he said that he would step down if he wasn’t the right man for the job. Do I see that happening? Of course not! Money is the biggest factor, and if Brown leaves now, he will not get the money that he is supposed to earn.
If he doesn’t resign this season, what will happen?
Despite what people are thinking about his buyout, signs are pointing to him being fired this offseason. This decision should have happened last year, but with big names starting to appear like Hugh Freeze, West Virginia might FINALLY make the right decision to fire Brown.
Will history repeat itself?
If WVU hires someone like Freeze, then maybe! As soon as Cignetti left WVU, the program took a complete 180 and started competing for bowl games, was a top 25 program almost annually, and EVEN competed for a National Championship. From what we are seeing now, a bad head coach leaving this program is one of the keys to success in the near future.