Brendan Ferns grew up as a huge WVU football fan and is living out his dream as a member of the team.
However, Brendan Ferns will have to wait at least another full season before he can have a strong impact with the Mountaineers. Ferns has served as a backup middle linebacker this season in the first four games.
But against Kansas, he played his last game of the season. It came out on Monday that Ferns will undergo season-ending shoulder surgery, reported on WVUsports.com.
This hurts the depth of the defense that has already been gassed on multiple occasions this season. The Mountaineers are struggling to stop the run, so losing Ferns puts Tony Gibson’s defensive charges in a deeper bind than before.
In the games Ferns did play this season, he had 10 total tackles. Ferns was injured in the first half of Saturday’s win at Kansas and was seen on the sidelines in a sling, according to WVIllustrated.com.
WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen all but ruled out any return for Brendan Ferns this season on the Big 12 weekly teleconference.
"“Unfortunately, he’s going to have to have shoulder surgery. This is two years in a row,” West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen said. “That’s football. There’s risk involved in it. Obviously we don’t want to lose anybody, but people are going to. He was one of our most valuable special teams guys, playing as much or more snaps as anybody.”"
Brendan Ferns could have played as a true freshman in 2016. He was one of the best recruits in West Virginia’s class that season and his track record of being one of the best athletes to come out of the Ohio Valley gave an excellent prognosis.
He suffered a season-ending knee injury at the end of fall camp which kept him off the field last season. By the way things were looking with his progression on the field and his work in the training room, he could have seen early playing time as a true freshman.
At St. Clairsville High School, Ferns had 118 tackles as a senior. His older brother, Michael, played at West Virginia in 2015 and 2016. He also was a standout at St. Clairsville, but is now off the team and pursuing his degree at WVU.
There is still time for Ferns to salvage his football playing career and become a great leader for the Mountaineers, if he chooses to stick with it. This is a trying time for any athlete, so Ferns has to stick with the strong mentality that has helped him this far in the first place.
In a couple of years, Ferns may be among the greatest linebackers to play at West Virginia. He just has to get through this small hurdle en route to the desired end result.