After Big 12 move, WVU won't be shy about recruiting in Texas
College Football Videos
In Big 12 football, most teams fill their rosters with Texas high school talent. West Virginia's philosophy will be non-traditional.
The Mountaineers, who have eight Texas players on their 2012 roster — the fewest among Big 12 schools, are taking a national approach in recruiting: Three or more players hail from eight different states. But that doesn't mean they won't be targeting Texas talent.
“The subject of recruiting came up a bunch because of the move,” said coach Dana Holgorsen, an assistant at Big 12 schools Oklahoma State and Texas Tech. “When I first got the job 18 months ago, we had already started recruiting Texas a little bit. Got a great boss in (athletic director) Oliver Luck. Understands college football, understands geography. He had already expressed some interest in wanting to recruit some in Texas because everybody recruits in Texas. And Texas is obviously a huge college football hotbed.
“Yes, we will recruit Houston. We will recruit Dallas. I think we've got to be careful about how much manpower we put (there) because it's so competitive. Like I said, everybody's recruiting this.”
The University of Texas leads the Big 12 with 103 Texas natives on this year's roster. Baylor is second with 102, followed by TCU with 82. Oklahoma State (65), Texas Tech (54), Oklahoma (45), Kansas (35), Kansas State (21) and Iowa State (19) round out the list.
All eight of West Virginia's Texans arrived in the past two recruiting classes. Freshman quarterback Ford Childress, son of former Pro Bowl lineman Ray Childress, threw for more than 3,000 yards and 41 touchdowns at Houston's Kinkaid High School last year. Freshman receiver Jordan Thompson had 66 receptions for more than 1,100 yards and 17 touchdowns at Katy High, located in a Houston suburb.
Sophomore running back Dustin Garrison, who set a WVU freshman record with 291 rushing yards against Bowling Green last year, hails from Pearland, another Houston suburb. Sophomore quarterback Paul Millard, who saw action in four games as Geno Smith's backup, attended Flower Mound High in Dallas' suburbs.
“That's our approach with Texas — to make sure that we're getting good quality players that really have great senior years,” Holgorsen said. “I don't want to take away from what's made West Virginia West Virginia. Our surrounding states of Ohio and Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia all have pretty good football. So we'll continue to get the majority of kids from that area.”
This year's roster features seven players from Pennsylvania, 11 from Ohio, three from New Jersey, eight from Virginia, 10 from Maryland and 14 from West Virginia.
It's a roster that includes Florida natives Smith, junior receivers Stedman Bailey and Ivan McCartney and sophomore receiver Terrence Gourdine, who all attended Miramar High in suburban Miami.
John Harris is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- West Virginia’s Riddick looking to build on Baylor performance
- WVU offense evolving on the run
- West Virginia notebook: Reserve RBs step up after injury to Shell
- West Virginia notebook: Mountaineers pressure key to Baylor upset
- West Virginia football notebook: Trickett wins game amid difficult day
- WVU’s diminutive ‘Squirt’ coming up big