There’s a lot of recent news for West Virginia football so I’ll continue my 2023 class recap next time as I unpack the latest in this edition of the Farrell Files West Virginia.
So the good news and bad news regarding the internal promotion of Chad Scott to offensive coordinator. I’ll go with the bad first. From what I know, Neal Brown targeted some guys outside the program and whiffed. No, these were not big names to fans like Ryan Switzer and the other stuff floated around, but some guys with ties to program like the Trickett brothers and others. It’s not like they were turned down for jobs like Coastal Carolina and Marshall. But trying to lure someone from outside the program to a coach in a pivotal year isn’t easy and Brown is also picky. Graham Harrell was the big hire last year but that didn’t work out and Brown wanted someone loyal. Enter Scott who was co-OC for a few seasons under Brown and has been with him for a decade. And let’s be real, Brown is the play caller. So it’s not great to promote a running backs coach internally from an outside perspective. But the good news is this — the running game is the strength of the offense, Scott is well respected and liked and a bigger role in the program will help the continuity in a do or die year for Brown. If this is going to work beyond one more season it will be the guys who have been around Brown the longest that will be the key. Scott is that guy.
Now onto player news. The corner has finally turned a bit in the transfer portal, especially flipping WR Devin Carter from Penn State. Carter is a big and physical 50/50 ball receiver who will help the offensive quite a bit. He can win physical battles and you don’t need to throw a perfect pass for him to make a play with his catch radius. Penn State loved him so pulling him away was a big deal and he’s the top impact guy in this portal class overall. The defensive line also got a boost with Penn State transfer Fatorma Mulbah and Tennessee State DL Davoan Hawkins. These aren’t big names, but very good players especially Hawkins. Hawkins dropped from SEC ball at Kentucky to FCS with Tennessee State and found his confidence. He’s a chaser and a big playmaker in the backfield. He’s quick off the ball and anticipates the snap very well. He was an All-American for a reason and a big edge defender. As for Mulbah, he’s a 300 pounder with bounce and athleticism in the middle although he hasn’t show a ton at the college level. He came to the U.S. in 2015 and is still kind of new to football in some ways, so he’s a project. But his size is key as a rotational player at worst.
Keyshawn Cobb from Buffalo is another key addition as he will play the SPEAR position and he’s a very active tackler in run support. He’s a physical kid and fans will like him.
And K Michael Hayes from Georgia State will be a welcome addition as he’s accurate and has a big leg.
I’ve already gone over Ja’Shaun Polk, Montre Miller and Kole Taylor. I’d put this portal class in the middle of the Big 12.
West Virginia isn’t done either as they hope to land at least a linebacker, another receiver and an offensive lineman. At least that’s what I’m hearing.