Gibson has also been on the staff for just a year, but was also on Rich Rodriguez's staff here from 2001 through 2007. He has never been a coordinator, but if Holgorsen wants to promote from within the staff Gibson would seem to be the only choice.
Whether Holgorsen promotes from within or goes outside, he still has to hire a defensive coach for the staff. Gibson and Mitchell seem likely to remain as the two secondary coaches, but Cogdell's position has not yet been defined. Holgorsen would seem to be in a position of having to hire someone who can coach linebackers or the defensive line, and what he does with that hire will determine where Cogdell coaches.
Much of Cogdell's experience is with linebackers, but he could also be assigned to the defensive line. He was a standout linebacker at WVU as a player.
No matter where Holgorsen turns, though, the new coach is likely to be the fourth coordinator in four years, following Jeff Casteel, DeForest and Patterson.
There has been no official announcement from Arizona State regarding Patterson, but several sources confirmed that is his destination. Patterson was the defensive coordinator under Graham at Pitt in 2011, but did not follow Graham to Arizona when he left following the regular season, instead remaining as the interim coach for the Panthers' bowl game.
When Pitt hired Paul Chryst as the head coach, Graham eventually wound up at West Virginia.
The relationship between Graham - a former defensive co-coordinator at WVU under Rodriguez - and Patterson, though, goes much deeper than just the one season at Pitt. They were together at both Tulsa and even as far back as when they were high school coaches in Texas. Before that they were roommates in college.
It isn't clear exactly what Patterson's duties will entail at Arizona State, where another former WVU assistant, Paul Randolph, is the defensive coordinator. But there is an opening on the staff because secondary coach and special teams coordinator Joe Lorig is moving to Utah State.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.