Welcome one and all to the HailWV.com All-Time WVU Fantasy Football Draft.
The staff of HailWV.com has devised an interesting way of passing the bye week, by conducting a fantasy football style draft of the West Virginia football greats. The draft is simple: 12 rounds, snake draft order with a minimum of 1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 WR/TE Flex, 1 K, and 1 DEF.
Since these teams could never feasibly play one another, we decided to not define any form of scoring system or playoff system involving automatic access, unlike some organizations we know. Quite simply, each writer drafts based on who would put up the best fantasy statistics.
Enough chit chat, onto the picks:
1. Ken Durbin Selects: QB Geno Smith (2009-Present)
I know that the immediate reaction to this pick is “boy this pick is really nearsighted.” However, if you look at stats, Geno has thrown 82 tds, 23 more than the next closest QB. He has easily outscored any other player in Mountaineers history, making him a slam dunk pick. Anybody who plays fantasy football will tell you that touchdowns are the most important stat.
2. Brandon Miller Selects: RB Ira Errett Rodgers (1915-1919)
I’m going old school with this pick and taking RB Ira Errett Rodgers, who played for the old Gold and Blue from 1915 – 1919.
He did it all for the Mountaineers, including rushing, passing, and kicking. He held single season records for touchdowns in a game (5), season (19), and career (42), all of which stood until recently. In 1919, Rodgers threw 11 touchdown passes, added 8 TDs on the ground, and converted 33 extra point kicks to lead the nation with 147 points. Rodgers was also WVU’s first consensus All-America selection in 1919. His number is one of only two retired by WVU. He is probably the best all around player in WVU history, and one of the greatest early era college football players in the whole country, making him an easy selection for me.
3. Alan Searles Selects: QB Major Harris (1987-1989)
Every sport has a legend that flies just under the radar because their time came too early. Their style did not quite fit the age of sport they were participating in. Major Harris is one of such men. While he is tenth in touchdowns and career yards, many of the quarterbacks who have outpaced him came after him. The Maj came a decade before the modern running quarterback became a trend; starting with Mike Vick. Sense then we have seen Brad Smith, Pat White, Seneca Wallace, Antwan Randle-el, Cam Newton, Vince Young and many others who have broken barrier after barrier. Major could have been the best of them all, but the world wasn’t ready for him. In today’s game, watch out; he’d have twice the arm of pat white, and make Geno look silly in the running game. I feel comfortable having him at my helm.
4. Patrick Pishko Selects: QB Marc Bulger (1996-1998)
Marc Bulger held at least 20 WVU passing records before Geno Smith began wittling away at some of them; he finished his WVU career with 8153 total passing yards with 54 touchdowns in three years of play in Morgantown.
5. Patrick Pishko Selects: RB Avon Cobourne (1999-2002)
Avon Cobourne made a name for himself immediately following the successful stint of his predecessor, Amos Zereoue. Cobourne started as a freshmen and went on to become the all-time leading rusher at WVU with 5,164 yards. He is also in possession of most 100 yard rushing games with 28 and all-time rushing attempts at WVU with 1,050.
Pretty stellar top picks if you ask me.
6. Alan Searles Selects: RB Amos Zereoue (1996-1998)
Famous Amos was possibly the most talented RB WVU ever had, backed up by his strong pro career. He has the third and fifth highest rushing yards in a season and racks 4th in career yards and touchdowns despite only playing three years. He was versatile enough of a back that his skills would shine in any type of offense.
7. Brandon Miller Selects: RB Steve Slaton (2005-2007)
I’ll take RB Steve Slaton with my second pick. Slaton had some great seasons for WVU and holds numerous WVU records. He’s a stat machine.
8. Ken Durbin Selects: RB Noel Devine (2007-2010)
With the run on top flight rushers in the first round, I needed to jump on one of the best running backs in school history. Devine, He is third on the school’s all-time rushing list and fifth on the all-time rushing touchdowns list. Those who have followed WVU lately know that Noel was a very effective pass catcher out of the backfield. Backs that can carry the rock and catch it out of the backfield are gold mines in fantasy football.
9. Ken Durbin Selects: WR Stedman Bailey (2010-Present)
I know, two current player pick ups within three rounds seems to be very foolish. Bear in mind though, that Stedman Bailey is atop the leader board for career touchdown receptions, sixth in career receptions, and fourth in career receiving yards. He is a sure-handed target that is able to run deep routes and slants. Bailey is a complete receiver, and one that will likely be remembered as one of the best, if not the best in program history. So, yeah, I think he’s the top pick for a WR.
10. Brandon Miller Selects: WR David Saunders (1995-1998)
With my third pick, I’ll take WR David Saunders, who played for the Mountaineers in the mid 1990s. Saunders is one of the most prolific WRs in Mountaineer history.
11. Alan Searles Selects: WR Tavon Austin (2009-Present)
Tavon’s numbers speak for themselves. He is one of the greatest wide receivers we have ever head. Besides from being littered across the record book, he has been perhaps one of the most dynamic play makers we have had with the ball in his hands, whether returning kicks or stretching yards after the catch. Not only will TA get his own in all purpose gameplay, he will free up others for big numbers through commanding the attention needed to contain his speed.
12. Patrick Pishko Selects: TE Anthony Becht (1996-1999)
Upon graduating, Becht was second all-time amongst WVU tight ends with 83 catches for 1173 yards; He also hauled in 10 touchdowns.