The Times West Virginian

Sports

April 30, 2013

Manuel one-ups Smith once again

(Continued)

MORGANTOWN — oooooo

In truth, both Manuel and Smith were part of two of the great quarterback recruiting classes of the modern recruiting era, neither at the top.

Athlon Magazine ranked the best classes of the past 10 years and put the 2006 class at the top with Manuel’s 2008 class second and Smith’s 2009 class third.

The 2006 class produced two Heisman Trophy winners and six first-round draft picks, three national championships and seven BCS bowl wins.

It included Tim Tebow — how’s that for irony? — Matthew Stafford, Sam Bradford — who will be throwing this year to Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey — Andy Dalton, Colin Kaepernick, Jack Locker and Case Keenum at the top, to say nothing of the aforementioned Christian Ponder, Josh Freeman, Greg McElroy, Todd Reesing, Nate Davis, Juice Williams, TJ Yates, Ricky Stanzi, Thaddeus Lewis, John Skelton, Scott Tolzien and Nathan Enderle.

Before it’s all over, the 2008 class might prove to be better, its superstars being Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Collin Klein, Landry Jones and Blaine Gabbert, along with Manuel, Terrelle Pryor, Dane Christ, Darron Thomas, Mike Glennon, Seth Doege, Tyler Wilson, Colby Cameron, Sean Renfree, Ryan Nassib, Matt Scott, Nick Florence, Zac Dysert, Alex Carder and Jacory Harris.

And Smith’s class wasn’t exactly a slouch, either, with him, AJ McCarron, Aaron Murray, Matt Barkley, Tajh Boyd, Taylor Martinez, Denard Robinson and Jordan Lynch included.

In fact, strange as it may seem, Boyd almost was WVU’s quarterback and not Geno Smith.

Boyd, out of Virginia Beach, committed to West Virginia during the spring of his junior year in high school, only to eventually change his mind and commit to Clemson.

It wasn’t until Boyd dropped his commitment that WVU went hard after Smith, who was being recruited by Alabama. Doc Holiday, then on Bill Stewart’s staff, went down and put the sell on Smith, who was playing for former Mountaineer linebacker Damon Cogdell.

“I have no idea about Tajh’s situation,” Smith a couple of years ago. “It was a situation where Doc came down, and he really started talking to me right after my Alabama visit and I just felt like West Virginia was the place for me. I had no idea what Tajh did or anything, nor was I trying to shy away from any competition.

“Tajh is a really good quarterback,” said Smith. “I’ve watched him play a couple of games and he’s done a great job. I want to be better than all of those guys, so I look at their game to try and elevate my game.”

It would appear that it worked out well for everyone, but best for Manuel and Smith, who have jump-started what could become big-time NFL careers.

Email Bob Hertzel at bhertzel@hotmail.com or follow him on Twitter @bhertzel.

Text Only
Sports
  • Post 17 #7 Post 2 #12 mw.JPG Post 17 falls short in Area II championship

    Sometimes getting a bad game out of your system is what a team needs.
    Post 17 Fairmont is hoping that they’ve now gotten all of its bad games out of the way, falling to Post 2 Morgantown, 10-0, via a 7th inning mercy rule, crowning Morgantown Area II American Legion champions.
    After playing 18 innings the night before, Fairmont couldn’t seem to get anything going at East Fairmont High School Sunday afternoon.
    As rain clouds loomed over the field, so, too, did one settle in over Post 17’s offense, Fairmont collecting just four hits the entire game.
    “Definitely not one of our better games as a team,” Fairmont’s Austin Norman said of his team’s performance. “We’ll come up tomorrow, hit and get on the same page.”

    July 28, 2014 7 Photos

  • Harrison’s 4 hits leads Pirates past Rockies, 7-5

    Josh Harrison had four hits, including a tiebreaking homer, to help the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Colorado Rockies 7-5 on Sunday.

    July 27, 2014

  • MLB inducts newest members into Hall of Fame

    Frank Thomas choked back tears, Joe Torre apologized for leaving people out of his speech and Tony La Russa said he felt uneasy.

    July 27, 2014

  • Post 17 falls short of Area II championship

    Sometimes getting a bad game out of your system is what a team needs.

    July 27, 2014

  • Italy’s Nibali wins Tour de France

    Vincenzo Nibali won the Tour de France on Sunday, becoming the first Italian in 16 years to triumph in cycling’s greatest race by chiseling a lead over his main rivals a few seconds at a time and dominating them in the mountains.

    July 27, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: La Russa gives old pal Leyland a taste of Hall of Fame

    Jim Leyland didn’t expect it, at least not yet, but there he was in Cooperstown, New York for this week’s induction ceremony.

    July 27, 2014

  • JAMES UNDER RAINBOW -TS.jpg Post 17 plays itself into Area II championship game: PHOTOS

    The goal was simple for Post 17 Fairmont: Beat Bridgeport and advance to the state American Legion Tournament. But it left with more than a state tournament berth Saturday night at East Fairmont High School.
    After beating Bridgeport, 11-8, Fairmont secured a spot in next week’s state tournament. But with one challenge down, Fairmont moved on to the next: Playing itself into an area championship game.

    July 27, 2014 14 Photos

  • Knowing facts key to preventing sports injuries

    Youth sports injuries have been on the rise in recent years, leading parents, players and coaches asking one thing: How can we prevent these things from happening?
    A recent poll on the Times West Virginian website revealed that 41.8 percent of readers believe that there is no way to prevent injuries, while 26.47 percent said the best way to prevent injuries was to not play at all and 20.59 percent said that working hard was the best way to limit injuries.

    July 27, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Big 12 provides plenty of optimism

    This past week the Big 12 held its annual media gathering in Dallas and served up a heaping portion of optimism for the 2014 season that is now upon us, West Virginia University opening its preseason practices on Thursday.
    This is a time of year when no one has lost a game, not even Charlie Weis at Kansas, and it’s a time of year when opinions are more plentiful than tattoos in an NFL locker room.

    July 27, 2014

  • Pirates fall victim to Rockies, 8-1

    Nolan Arenado bounced back from a benching with three hits, including a home run, and the Colorado Rockies beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-1 on Saturday night.
    Tyler Matzek pitched three-hit ball over seven scoreless innings. Drew Stubbs and Corey Dickerson also homered for the Rockies, who have won three straight.

    July 27, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos