The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

January 12, 2013

QB coach Spavital bolts for Texas A&M

MORGANTOWN — West Virginia University needs a quarterback to replace Geno Smith.

And now the Mountaineers need someone to coach him.

Early Thursday morning, WVU quarterback coach Jake Spavital confirmed to CBSSports.com in Dallas that he had accepted the job of quarterback coach and co-offensive coordinator at Texas A&M.

He is the third coach to depart WVU coach Dana Holgorsen’s staff this year, following cornerbacks coach Daron Roberts and outside linebacker Steve Dunlap, both of whom were asked to leave.

It’s expected that very shortly the school will make it official that former WVU assistant Tony Gibson is returning from Rich Rodriguez’s staff in Arizona to coach the safeties and former East Carolina defensive coordinator and NFL cornerback Brian Mitchell will be named to coach the cornerbacks.

Those moves reportedly are just being held up in human resources and that everything has been agreed upon.

Spavital, 27, is one of the most highly regarded young quarterback coaches in the country, and this is further evidence of it.

He spent the last two years working with Smith, who became the all-time passing leader at West Virginia in every important category and even helped him work through a mid-season slump — during which one of his top receivers, Stedman Bailey, was hobbled with an ankle injury — and come on to have a huge season.

Before coming to WVU he worked under Holgorsen at Oklahoma State as a graduate assistant preparing Brandon Weeden for the NFL.

In two seasons with Spavital, Smith threw 73 touchdowns against 13 interceptions while completing over 68 percent of his passes for over 8,500 yards.

Now he moves on to take over as the quarterback coach of last year’s Heisman Trophy winner, then-freshman Johnny Manziel.

“It was a fun couple years,” Spavital told the Charleston Daily Mail. “I wasn’t looking for a job and I was happy with where I was at, but I believe it’s the right career move to do.”

Spavital replaces Kliff Kingsbury, who was named the head coach at Texas Tech last month. Spavital also worked under Kingsbury when he was on the Houston Cougars staff.

Texas A&M running backs coach Clarence McKinney is expected to be promoted to offensive coordinator. He called plays for the Aggies in their 41-13 victory over Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl, a game in which they set a Cotton Bowl record with 633 yards of total offense, 513 of them accounted for by Manziel.

Holgorsen will begin a search immediately for a replacement for Spavital, although the timing is not opportune with recruiting in its final phases for the year.

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

1
Text Only
WVU Sports
  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Summer, Alabama will be used to get WVU’s mind right

    The ink had barely dried on the final reports out of West Virginia’s spring practice when thoughts turned forward toward the lazy, hazy days of late summer, days that will bring us into football season with a game that can either change the entire image of WVU football or sour it even further.

    April 21, 2014

  • Arrest warrant out for WVU recruit

    West Virginia University’s newest men’s basketball recruit, Tarik Phillip, has an order out for his arrest in North Carolina, according to a story in The Dominion-Post, which said three Gaston County Magistrate office spokespersons confirmed.

    April 20, 2014

  • WVU baseball powers past Oklahoma, 9-5

    The WVU baseball team tied a season high with 18 hits to defeat Oklahoma, 9-5, on Saturday afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
    The win gives the Mountaineers their second Big 12 series win of the season and improves the overall record to 19-16 and 4-7 in conference play. Oklahoma drops to 25-16 overall and 5-7 in Big 12 play.

    April 20, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Under pressure, NCAA decides to change rules

    At first glance, it appears that they do not go hand-in-hand, a pair of rules changes the NCAA’s Legislative Council approved this week, sending them off for what seems to be smooth sailing toward becoming rules.

    April 18, 2014

  • Means, WVU baseball shut out Oklahoma

    Junior left-hander John Means of the WVU baseball team threw eight shutout innings and the Mountaineers had a five-run first inning en route to a 7-0 victory over Oklahoma on Thursday evening at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
    The Mountaineers (18-15, 3-6 Big 12) broke a six-game Big 12 losing streak after being swept by TCU and Oklahoma State in back-to-back weekends. WVU had 16 hits and did not make an error for the second-straight game.

    April 18, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Dr. Graber disagrees with Gee’s stance on Turnbull firing

    Dr. Stephen Graber, an associate professor at the West Virginia University School of Medicine, is among the latest WVU teachers to deplore Oliver Luck’s firing of veteran wrestling coach Craig Turnbull.
    He raised some significant questions about that issue last Monday in a meeting of the WVU Faculty Senate.

    April 18, 2014

  • Huggins signs junior college guard

    Coach Bob Huggins completed his 2014-15 West Virginia University recruiting class on Wednesday and deemed it a success after receiving a signed letter of intent from junior college guard Tarik Phillip.
    Phillip joins Jevon Carter of Maywood, Ill., and Daxter Miles of Baltimore’s Dunbar High and out of Notre Dame Prep in Massachusetts in the 2014-15 recruiting class.

    April 17, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU gymnast hopes to stick her final landing

    The reaction, one suspects, was the same as most people who see either a picture of West Virginia University gymnast Hope Sloanhoffer or meet her for the first time in person — a quick double take, maybe even stumbling over the first few words of an introduction.

    April 17, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Comparing pay of coaches and professors

    Stringing together some odds and ends which may be of interest to you:
    • A beautiful lady came up to my table last Sunday at brunch in the Village of Heritage Point’s main dining room with a message.

    April 17, 2014

  • Bussie looks forward to WNBA

    On Tuesday, the weather turned cold, the wind blew and amongst the raindrops that fell a few snowflakes fluttered quietly to Earth.
    It was as if it was a celebration of Asya Bussie being drafted on Monday night by the Minnesota Lynx, champions of the WNBA, with the third selection of the second round, the 15th overall pick of the draft.

    April 16, 2014

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