The reason stems from the leaked allegations forthcoming in a Sports Illustrated expose centering on Oklahoma State. Reports say DeForest is a central figure in the articles, which allege improprieties during his 11 years at OSU.
The series apparently lays out payments to players, a bonus program, academic impropriety and more, including hostesses providing sex to recruits.
Holgorsen will feel some of that heat as well. He was at OSU for 2010. He brought DeForest to West Virginia.
But DeForest is seriously under the magnifying glass. Before the game, WVU athletic director Oliver Luck was moved to issue a statement saying the school notified the NCAA and started an internal review.
Which has to be absolutely maddening for Luck. Remember, NCAA football probation was tossed on his desk when he first took over in Morgantown. That just expired in early July.
The NCAA accepted WVU's self-imposed sanctions for major rules violations under ex-football coaches Rich Rodriguez and the late Bill Stewart. There were failure-to-monitor violations involving out-of-season coaching, as well as the use of non-coaching staff to work with players. It was a two-year probation with two less scholarships for the 2010-11 season and one less for 2011-12. Practice hours were reduced by 23 percent. Two graduate assistant positions were eliminated.
Now the heat is back on. WVU says DeForest has denied the charges. Sports Illustrated, though, does not usually mess around.
The task for Luck is to not only determine if the SI charges are legitimate, but, if so, whether DeForest committed violations in Morgantown. The associate head coach is already on thin ice after spearheading last season's awful defensive play. He's chided for being a $500,000-a-year special teams coach. And on Saturday night, his special teams cost WVU a shot at an upset.
A roughing the kicker call on freshman Daryl Worley gave OU a first down at its 43 after what would have been a 3-and-out. It cost the Mountaineers a Sooner field goal. Punt returner Mario Alford muffed a punt and OU's Trey Franks recovered at the WVU 32. It cost the Mountaineers a touchdown. Later, Alford made a fair catch - at his team's 5-yard line.
In sum, it was a day of two distinct halves for WVU's Mountaineers. And both featured serious heat.
Reach Mitch Vingle at 304-348-4827, mitchvin...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/MitchVingle.