The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

June 24, 2014

Holgorsen names Trickett starting QB 

MORGANTOWN — The battle for West Virginia’s starting quarterback job ended before it started Tuesday as coach Dana Holgorsen surprisingly named Clint Trickett the starter entering the 2014 season without a competition through August camp.

“Clint is 100 percent healthy and is ready to play,” Holgorsen said in a release put out by the school. “He worked hard last season and showed a lot of ability and leadership and deserves the chance to lead the team as a senior. He will be our starter.”

That Trickett will start is not really surprising. He was the best of WVU’s quarterbacks a year ago while playing with an injured throwing shoulder that would require post-season surgery.

The timing of the announcement, however, was out of character for Holgorsen.

He has been anything but open with his decisions on who would play, often last year making the announcement of his starting quarterback when he was playing the game of musical quarterbacks with Trickett, Paul Millard and Ford Childress on his radio show on Thursday night.

To announce Trickett a month before camp opens and two months before the Alabama game obviously is to put an end to all speculation and take any pressure off the veteran QB, who transferred from Florida State to play his final two years at home.

It also takes any pressure off incoming freshman William Crest to believe he has to get himself ready to start against Alabama as his collegiate debut. If Trickett plays well and remains healthy, it would be fair to expect Crest would redshirt this season.

Trickett missed spring practice as his shoulder healed, meaning he needs to get as many reps as possible during camp to not only strengthen the shoulder but also to get his timing down with a new group of receivers who are not used to him throwing the ball at his best.

The truth is Trickett was never really at his best last season.

The son of former WVU offensive line coach Rick Trickett, who is an assistant coach for Jimbo Fisher at national champion FSU, Trickett missed spring practice last season, along with summer work, not joining the Mountaineers until camp opened.

While Holgorsen had preached that it would not take any quarterback long to work their way into his system, Trickett never did catch on and when the season opened he wasn’t ready to take over the starting job.

That left it to Childress, a redshirt freshman who had never played college game, and Millard, neither of whom ever really showed a mastery of Holgorsen’s system.

Trickett finally was put into the starting spot against No. 11 Oklahoma State and led the Mountaineers to an upset victory, 30-24. If it wasn’t a “Geno Smithian” performance, going 24-of-50 for 309 yards with a touchdown was enough to offer hope.

However, Trickett also injured his shoulder in the game and never was right the rest of the way.

He did, however, show much of what they had been hoping for in the season’s final game against Iowa State, completing 21-of-37 for 356 yards and two TDs in another disappointing loss that ended a 4-8 season.

With Trickett out over the spring, the door was left ajar for Millard, California, junior college-transfer Skylar Howard or former Fairmont State quarterback Logan Moore to convince Holgorsen they could play well enough to compete for the job when the new season opened.

Moore, who had been moved to wide receiver last year, actually played better than either of the other two quarterbacks and, considering that he also offered a threat running the ball, it was thought he might get a shot.

It appears now that Moore can expect nothing more than a backup slot, maybe not even at No. 2 if they opt to use him running the scout team. That would truly disappoint him after the impression he made in the spring.

“With the work that I’ve put in and what I’ve done, I think they have to give me a shot. I’m looking forward to it,” Moore said after the spring game.

The problem is that there’s no guarantees with Trickett, as offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson noted this spring when he spoke about the situation.

“He’s a light kid,” Dawson said. “That’s really the evaluation of him I had when I talked to him after the season. When he’s healthy, he functions pretty good. Look at the games he was healthy in. But when you start getting banged up, you can’t function at a high level. When he got banged up, he struggled.”

Follow Bob Hertzel on Twitter @bhertzel

1
Text Only
WVU Sports
  • smallwood-wendell(1)-2.jpg Charges against Smallwood dropped

     West Virginia University running back Wendell Smallwood took to Twitter mid-afternoon Tuesday to express his feelings after charges of witness intimidation against him were dropped by the state of Delaware.
    It took him only three words to say what was on his mind: “God is Good.” Smallwood is now free to return to West Virginia and rejoin his Mountaineer teammates when they open camp for the 2014 season Thursday.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Charges against Smallwood dropped

    West Virginia University running back Wendell Smallwood took to Twitter mid-afternoon Tuesday to express his feelings after charges of witness intimidation against him were dropped by the state of Delaware.

    July 29, 2014

  • Were Bowlsby’s fears about college athletics’ future justified?

    I have never met or even talked to Bob Bowlsby, commissioner of the Big 12 Conference.
    But I did read a lengthy story on his 45-minute address to reporters last week on Media Day in Dallas, Texas. Among other things, Bowlsby forecast a startling change threatening the existence of intercollegiate athletics as we have known for these many, many years.

    July 28, 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

  • Seider's brother commits to WVU

    West Virginia University’s football team has received a commitment from one of its own.

    July 26, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Big 12 provides much optimism heading into 2014 season

    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.

    July 26, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU needs White to follow in former receivers’ footsteps

    A year ago Clint Trickett took a lot of grief as the once potent West Virginia offense came unraveled, but there is more that than meets the eye.
    The criticism was not unfounded, of course, although behind each incomplete pass there was the pain Trickett was suffering through to throw it, his rotator cuff in need of surgery.

    July 26, 2014

  • Forsey posts Top 10 finish at World Championships

    Freshman Jillian Forsey of the West Virginia University cross country team finished ninth at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
    Forsey, a native of Stephenville, Newfoundland and Labrador, was representing Team Canada. She was the first Canadian to cross the finish line in the women’s 5,000-meter run, finishing in ninth place overall in 16:02.55.

    July 26, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Wyant talks about ‘Pappy’ Lewis and other items of interest

    I saved some other interesting observations from the recent interview with Fred Wyant which you may find worth reading.
    He believes a college football coach ought to recruit a quarterback he wants, give him some help, then turn virtually everything over to him and let him go.

    July 26, 2014

  • Forsey posts Top 10 finish at World Championships

    Freshman Jillian Forsey of the West Virginia University cross country team finished ninth at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

    July 25, 2014

Featured Ads
WVU Sports Highlights
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos