The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

January 31, 2013

Bolen weighing options for future after UC-Beckley announcement

BECKLEY — Former Mountain State University head basketball coach Bob Bolen has been in an unusual situation this season.

The highly successful coach has been watching more games on TV since the demise of his program amid MSU’s closure.

And he is taking his kids to the gym every night - including his daughter Katie’s volleyball games and practices as a freshman at Woodrow Wilson High School.

He has been coaching his son Jaysen’s fifth grade hoops squad and traveling to watch his son Andrew’s third grade team.

And waiting.

A lot of waiting.

Reached Wednesday, Bolen was still processing his options.

Just about everything is on the table, regarding his career path...except coaching a JV basketball team.

Bolen, a Beckley native, became the West Virginia’s all-time leader in men’s college basketball career wins last season, tallying 487 victories from 1993 to 2012. The Cougars made the trip to the NAIA National Tournament 14 straight years from 1999-2012, including four national championship games. Last year’s team advanced to the NAIA Final Four. Over the last 12 years, MSU’s .865 winning percentage is the highest of any NCAA Division I, Division II or NAIA program.

With a resume like that and at a relatively young age of 49, Bolen should have some options.

And he does.

“I’m interested in what UC-Beckley is doing from an administrative standpoint,” he said. “I’d speak with them about a role like that. But I’m not interested in coaching a JV basketball team at all. The only reason that I’d accept an administrative role there is if I didn’t want to leave Beckley.

“I’m just not sure right now.”

UC announced Wednesday that its Beckley-based teams beginning this fall will initially be of junior varsity level, competing under NCAA Division II standards because it is a satellite campus of the University of Charleston.

Application for UC-Beckley to compete in the NAIA was denied.

Bolen’s name will likely be high on a lot of college athletic director’s list of candidates to fill coaching voids that pop up.

“I’ve had some calls from some (NCAA) Division I coaches that already know they have assistants that are leaving (following the current season),” Bolen said. “There are a couple of Division II (schools) that have called too, but they’re not local. I’m fairly certain there will be a job.

“I’m looking for a head coaching position at some level or to become a D-I assistant. It will come down to whether I want to pack up and leave Beckley or not.”

Bolen’s name had been tossed around about several vacant coaching positions down through the years.

“I had some opportunities — some really good — but I’ve always been happy in Beckley,” he said. “I’ve been waiting to see what would happen (in Beckley). Now I can only look forward.”

Although he is foremost a coach, his career could also take another path.

“There are some business opportunities in Beckley too, and that’s a possibility,” Bolen revealed. “Moving away from Beckley...I have some criteria that I’ll need to look at - it would have to be a great place to raise kids and would have to be a place that my family would be happy. Those are the main things.”

Bolen didn’t sound like someone ready to hang up his whistle just yet however.

“I still have a lot of coaching left in me,” he said. “I still love it and miss it. It’s been a blessing, having a year off. I’ve had a chance to spend time with my kids and re-charge my batteries. And I’ve enjoyed it. But I’m going to pursue coaching again.”

Text Only
College Sports
  • Trickett takes uncertainty away from WVU quarterback position

    Since the day Geno Smith was selected with the 39th pick of the 2013 NFL Draft, West Virginia’s football team has found itself in a rare position — searching for a starting quarterback.

    July 28, 2014

  • Fred Wyant talks about ‘Pappy’ Lewis and other items of interest

    I saved some other interesting observations from the recent interview with Fred Wyant which you may find worth reading.

    July 27, 2014

  • Herd featured prominently in website’s preseason honors

    Marshall received several nods in the preseason All-Conference USA awards released Saturday.

    July 27, 2014

  • Miners stop Lorain County 5-1

    The West Virginia Miners received a strong outing from starting pitcher Patrick LaGanke, and scored one run in each of the final five innings to defeat the Lorain County Ironmen 5-1 Thursday.

    July 25, 2014

  • Some topics of interest to area fans

    Tom Hart, a widely known retired Morgantown High School administrator and coach, continues to excel as one of the nation’s top bowlers

    July 25, 2014

  • 072514 WVU Replacing Sims a challenge for WVU

    Every year, almost every college football preview publication available lists one key statistic that most use to evaluate the prospects for any given football team — returning starters.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • WVU’s Worley clear starter at cornerback

    There were few bright spots in West Virginia University’s 4-8 football campaign last year, and even fewer on the defensive side of the football, where the Mountaineers gave up more than 455 yards and 33 points per game.

    July 24, 2014

  • Holgorsen to appear on ESPN special

    West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen will appear Wednesday on ESPN’s annual mid-summer college football coaches’ “car wash” — in which guests appear across multiple programs and platforms over one day.

    July 23, 2014

  • Holgorsen: WVU getting comfortable in new league

    Dana Holgorsen remembers the glory days of West Virginia University football — the ones that included conference championships and BCS bowl wins. In fact, he was part of one of those, leading the Mountaineers to a Big East championship and an Orange Bowl victory in his first season as head coach in 2011.

    July 23, 2014

  • 072314 miners Miners take series with Paints

    The way the West Virginia Miners see it, they don’t have the luxury of planning for tomorrow.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

Saints Training Camp