The Houston Cougars have officially reached out for permission to interview West Virginia football coach Dana Holgorsen about their vacancy as momentum continues to build toward Holgorsen leaving Morgantown, a source confirmed to ESPN on Monday.
Holgorsen’s buyout with West Virginia drops from $2.5 million to $1 million on Tuesday.
Holgorsen was Houston’s offensive coordinator in 2008 and 2009.
Since the end of the season, West Virginia and Holgorsen had been negotiating an extension, pay raise and larger buyout on his contract, according to a source. Holgorsen, however, asked for more than West Virginia was willing to offer, leading to a stalemate.
Another source told ESPN that Holgorsen has not been in touch with his coaching staff since the Mountaineers’ 34-18 loss to Syracuse in the Camping World Bowl on Friday. Holgorsen stayed in Orlando, Florida, after the game instead of returning to the team.
On Sunday, the Cougars fired Major Applewhite, who went 15-11 in his two-plus seasons as head coach. Houston will owe Applewhite a $1.95 million buyout.
Yahoo Sports was the first to report that the Cougars had asked to interview Holgorsen.