We’ll Learn A Lot About the WVU Head Coaching Search Today

MORGANTOWN, West Virginia — According to multiple reports, it’s expected that West Virginia University is zeroing in on hiring their next head basketball coach. Wren Baker, who has been in Iowa for the women’s basketball NCAA Tournament run, has reportedly met with multiple candidates, either on Zoom or in person.

At this moment, on Sunday morning, it appears that the favorite to win the job is Drake’s current head coach Darian DeVries. DeVries, 48, has a 150-55 record in 6 seasons as the head coach at Drake, lost to Washington State in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament and has had discussions with West Virginia and perhaps other programs searching for its next head coach.

Many reports suggest that DeVries to West Virginia is a “done deal”, but nothing has been announced yet and making a move to West Virginia is a big move for a lifelong Midwesterner. DeVries was born and raised in Iowa, went to college at Northern Iowa, was an assistant at Creighton (Nebraska) for 17 years and has worked at Drake (Iowa) for the last 6 seasons. He’s lived and worked in the Midwest his entire career. Could he be getting cold feet about making such a huge leap?

In addition, the head coaching job at Iowa could be open soon, as their current head coach, Fran McCaffery, has been rumored to be retiring very soon. Could DeVries wait for what is likely his “dream job” rather than making the move to West Virginia?

With that said, DeVries is currently making $650,000 a year at Drake and West Virginia will pay him approximately $3 million a year, which would multiple his salary by about 5. That’s a lot of money and West Virginia, with all of its NIL money and outstanding facilities, is a really great job and promotion for DeVries.

If we don’t hear that DeVries is headed to West Virginia by the time that James Madison plays this evening, it’s very possible that Mark Byington is the pick. James Madison tips off against Duke today at 5:15PM. if James Madison wins tonight, Byington’s stock would go through the roof, and he instantly becomes one of the hottest young coaches in the nation.

West Virginia could then move on to Byington, who has long been considered a favorite of Wren Baker, rather than waiting on DeVries to make a decision. Again, there are a lot of moving parts, but both DeVries and Byington would be outstanding choices and fantastic leaders for the future of the West Virginia basketball program.

Today is a very big day for Mountaineers hoops! Stay tuned…