Jeff Casteel: "I Hope I'm Going to Be Back" - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Jeff Casteel: "I Hope I'm Going to Be Back"

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MIAMI, Fla. -

There were two Gatorade baths to be had on the field as West Virginia closed out its win over Clemson in the Discover Orange Bowl. The first was head coach Dana Holgorsen and the second defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel.

"That was good of the kids. It about gave me a heart attack," Casteel said after the game. "They got me at the Fiesta Bowl too, so I think they had doctored that up."

Casteel's future with the Mountaineers has been in doubt as speculation swirls around the possibility that he would take another job following the season – more specifically, the DC position at the University of Arizona.

In the postgame locker room, Casteel was asked point blank if he would return to coach at WVU for the 2012 season.
"I hope I'm going to be back next year," he said. "A lot of times I don't control that, but those are things that – speculation, I don't even know where it gets started. I mean, it gets thrown around, so I don't know what you want me to say."

Casteel remains under contract with West Virginia, so it would stand to reason that if he hopes so, then he'll have a place with the Mountaineers.

"I think the world of Jeff. I think he's done a marvelous job," WVU athletic director Oliver Luck said as the game was coming to a close. "We certainly hope he'll come back, he's under contract. But I'm a realist. I know coaches leave when they think they have a better opportunity. Jeff's handled this really professionally."

Luck recalls the conversation he had with Casteel following the 2010 season when he had been offered a job at Vanderbilt and the way that he had been forthcoming with information regarding the possibility. Luck bumped Casteel's salary in an effort to retain him.

"For the last four years, I've been offered positions," says Casteel, who adds that he doesn't know where speculation came from and would rather not focus on it. "We won a BCS game. Let's enjoy that and we'll go as we see."

With the season over, the door opens to things that were once considered distractions. Now they aren't distractions, but rather decisions on a man's future.

"Who knows what may happen," Luck said. "We love Jeff, we think he's a marvelous coach, we hope he stays, but I realize that folks can go and pursue their best interest. We'll see how it works out."

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