Nobody recognizes the importance of playing football for West Virginia University as much as Tony Gibson. Even though he never suited up for the Mountaineers, Tony Gibson grew up in a tiny town in Southern West Virginia, so beyond the Mountaineers, he is truly ingrained in the Mountain State mentality.
He uses that edge in his recruiting style. By stressing the importance of the team to the state of West Virginia, Gibson instills great pride and passion in recruits from the moment they arrive on campus for an official visit.
Because of his ace recruiting skills and developing one of the best defenses in the Big 12, Gibson was offered a 3-year, $2.7 million contract extension in 2016. Even though he bolted from West Virginia in 2007 to follow former head coach Rich Rodriguez to Michigan and then Arizona, Gibson found his way back home. Heck, Gibson was even on staff for Pitt before rejoining the Mountaineers.
He knows how special this place is and WVU fans need to realize that Tony Gibson is a great representative of our state and university.
"Gibson has made a case to be the best defensive coordinator in the Big 12 and one of the most underrated in college football. After entering 2016 with only two returning starters following the loss of the Mountaineers’ best defensive player Dravon Askew-Henry on the eve of the season, Gibson’s unit was tops in the conference in total defense, scoring defense and fewest opponent first downs, and second in rushing defense during Big 12 play. No one gets more out of his defense than Gibson. This year, he again opens the season with only two starters back while standout linebacker David Long comes back from a meniscus injury (he probably will not return until October). Gibson would be a logical option at Appalachian State, Toledo, Marshall or Northern Illinois should any of those come open."
As much as it hurts Mountaineer fans, Gibson very well could end up at Marshall. Doc Holliday was a WVU assistant before taking the Marshall job in 2013. Gibson could follow suit, especially if the rumors of Gov. Jim Justice wanting Holliday out are true.