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Ex-coach Bill Stewart to get $1.65M from WVU

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CHARLESTON, W.VA. (AP) - Former West Virginia coach Bill Stewart will receive $1.65 million as part of a settlement agreement, the university said Monday.

WVU released the agreement to The Associated Press under a West Virginia Freedom of Information Act request.

The agreement is dated June 10, the same day Stewart resigned. Coach-in-waiting Dana Holgorsen was introduced as head coach that night.

The structure of the payment wasn't immediately set. WVU said the payment was for "general and liquidated damages" but didn't indicate whether any of it was for salary owed for the 2011 season.

As a condition of the settlement, the university and Stewart agreed not to pursue future action and refrain from engaging in disparaging conduct or communications against the other.

WVU said Stewart, whose ties to the university were severed after 11 years, will be entitled to other benefits, including accrued vacation time and sick leave.

When Holgorsen was hired as offensive coordinator in December, Stewart was supposed to take an undetermined administrative position after the 2011 season. But things started to change after police escorted Holgorsen from the Mardi Gras Casino in Cross Lanes on May 18. No charges were filed, and police said he committed no crime.

Two weeks ago a former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter said Stewart called him shortly after Holgorsen's hiring and asked him to find something negative on the new hire.

WVU athletic director Oliver Luck has said the university was unable to substantiate unspecified rumors that had dogged the program in recent weeks.

Stewart went 28-12 in three seasons after taking over for Rich Rodriguez but failed to earn a Bowl Championship Series berth. Stewart signed a six-year contract in September 2008 and that agreement was amended last year when Luck decided to replace him.

When he resigned this month, Stewart gave a statement through Luck that he was "doing what I believe to be in the best interest of the Mountaineer Nation."

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