With the lull in the football season, HailWV takes a look at where the Mountaineers are on the recruiting trail.
December 1, 2012; Morgantown, WV, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers head coach Dana Holgorsen (left) observes the game along side Mountaineers offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson (center) and running backs coach Robert Gillespie (right) during the third quarter against the Kansas Jayhawks at Milan Puskar Stadium. The West Virginia Mountaineers won 59-10. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
To date, the Mountaineers have gotten verbal commitments from 4 junior college players, 2 post graduate players, and 17 high school seniors. The ratings of those players (according to espn.com) include 8 4-start players, 13 3-star players, and 2 2-star players.
Coach Holgorsen and the Mountaineers coaching staff has been hard at work, recruiting the top talent from around the country, especially on the defensive side of the football. The Mountaineers have received commitments from 6 linebacker prospects, 2 defensive linemen, and 2 safeties.
Of WVU’s 8 4-star players, 6 of them play on the defensive side of the football. The defensive class is headlined by standout linebacker Darrien Howard, star defensive tackle De’Asian Richardson, and stud safety Malik Greaves.
Given the struggles the Mountaineers faced on defense this year, it is important that the Mountaineers work to restock their depth on that side of the ball.
With the switch from Joe DeForest to Keith Patterson, the Mountaineers will need to bring in the appropriate athletes to execute the 3-4 defensive scheme. An infusion of talented linebackers and secondary certainly will give the Mountaineers the right mix of talent to make the 2013 defense a markedly improved unit over the 2012 unit.
On the offensive side of things, coach Holgorsen has put an emphasis on finding junior college players to fill in at the wide receiver positions that will be vacated by Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey, and J.D. Woods. Holgorsen got commitments from JUCO players Ronald Carswell and Kevin White, two experienced receivers that promise to bring the Mountaineers receiving corps some much needed veteran leadership next season.
West Virginia is also bringing in a slew of running backs that could play both the A back and inside receiver positions for the Mountaineers next season. The top rated running back coming in is JUCO stud Dreamius Smith, a 4-star talent. The infusion of offensive talent will be much needed to give the 2013 quarterback the talent needed to keep the Mountaineers a competitive force in the Big XII. Who that quarterback is to be, is yet to be determined (Millard or Childress).
While it cannot be said with certainty that the Mountaineers will be better in 2013 than they were in 2012, the recruiting is certainly improved over the past few years. The 2013 class promises to be the finest recruiting class in the past decade.