Today is a very sad day.
Bill Stewart, a man who loved West Virginia, the Mountaineers and college football, died at the age of 59 of a heart attack while playing golf in Morgantown. The news was simply shocking.
While he departed WVU in some disgrace, in the end he will be remembered as a good man, good father and the right man at the right time for WVU football.
West Virginia AD Oliver Luck, who helped escort Stewart out of Mountaineer Field, remembered the former coach fondly.
“Coach Stewart was a rock-solid West Virginian and a true Mountaineer. His enthusiasm and passion for his state’s flagship University was infectious. We join all Mountaineers in mourning his passing,” Luck said.
Even West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen, who had every reason to avoid commenting on Stewart, showed a lot of class.
"Like all of us in the West Virginia community, I am shocked and saddened by the passing of Coach Stewart. The State of West Virginia, our University and our football program has lost a true Mountaineer who gave his native state university a decade of coaching service and a lifetime of guidance and inspiration to thousands of young men over a 33-year career," Holgorsen said. "Though Coach Stewart achieved many great milestones on the field, we will most remember his kindness and compassion. Our football family expresses our deepest sympathy to Karen, Blaine and the extended Stewart family."
I was very critical of Stewart during his three years as head coach of my alma mater. I thought it was a mistake to hire him after the win in the Fiesta Bowl, and he showed he was not the right guy to take WVU to the next level.
Still, he was a good man and his players loved him like he was family. Just watch him in the video and you can feel his passion.
Bill Stewart was too young. He will be dearly missed.