Saturday Morning, February 4th, 2017
TOPIC: Winning With Special Teams
Coach John “Doc” Holliday, who has returned Marshall University football to the national picture, has guided the Thundering Herd to three consecutive seasons of 10 or more victories. That run (2013-15, 33-8 record) stands alone among the 61 Group of Five conference programs. Only Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Florida State have longer current streaks of 10-win seasons than the Herd.
Marshall has won five consecutive bowls – the current long streak in the FBS – with four of those triumphs coming under Holliday in the last five seasons. Marshall’s three straight 10-win seasons also are a first in the 20-season history of Conference USA football. His 2015 Herd finished 10-3 with a win over Connecticut in the St. Petersburg Bowl. His 2014 and ’15 teams – with a combined mark of 23-4 –have the best record among the Group of Five programs in the two-year College Football Playoff era. Coach Holliday was named the 2014 Conference USA Coach of the Year in voting by his peers.
In Holliday’s six MU seasons – with a 50-28 record – he has built the Herd into a perennial Conference USA contender. His teams have sported 23 All-C-USA first team selections, 17 second-teamers, 32 honorable mention picks and 16 All-Freshman team selections. He has had nine players selected for C-USA’s top individual player-of-the-year awards. His last three teams have produced a 20-4 C-USA record.
Holliday, named as Herd coach on Dec. 17, 2009 in his first collegiate head coaching job, is widely regarded as one of the top recruiters in the nation. Since he has become a head coach, he has added a reputation for finding and hiring assistant coaches who have made a strong impact on his program. He has more than 30 years of collegiate coaching experience, including previous stops at Florida, North Carolina State and West Virginia, his alma mater. During his coaching career, Holliday has coached in 25 bowl games, three national championship games and coached 15 players who have gone on to the NFL. He also has coached five All-Americans.