Rawlins will transfer to Duquesne

| Tuesday, July 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Former Monessen standout Chavas Rawlins apparently has found a new college home – Duquesne University.

Rawlins, an all-state quarterback for the Greyhounds, wrote on his Facebook page “Just committed to Duquesne University” late Sunday night. Monessen football coach Andy Pacak confirmed the move Monday.

Rawlins announced he was transferring from West Virginia University in May —­­ five months after graduating early from Monessen and enrolling at the Morgantown, W.Va. college. In a private message via Facebook, Rawlins declined comment and referred questions to Pacak.

“As far as leaving West Virginia, he did everything they wanted him to do and they did everything he wanted them to do,” Pacak said. “That comfort level just wasn't there for him. In looking to transfer, he listened to what everyone had to say and everything just kind of fit together for him (to choose Duquesne).”

Pacak reiterated Monday one reason Rawlins left the Mountaineers is because the quarterbacks coach who recruited him, Jake Spavital, left in January to coach at Texas A&M.

Other reasons included Rawlins' desire to be nearer to Monessen and the fact he was expected to redshirt the 2013-2014 season with WVU.

“I think, hopefully, it's a great fit for everybody. He was very comfortable when he went down there,” Pacak said of Duquesne. “It's not overwhelming there and he'll be a lot closer to home. He had good grades at West Virginia and everything will transfer over, so (academics) won't be an issue.”

Duquesne head coach Jerry Schmitt said Monday evening he was unable to comment until the signing became official. The program had Rawlins in for a campus visit earlier this summer.

Pacak said Rawlins would be on some type of scholarship – possibly full tuition – and that the freshman was in the process of filling out the necessary paperwork.

Rawlins passed for 1,382 yards and rushed for 613 yards last season for the Greyhounds. As for remaining at his high school position, Duquesne currently has four other quarterbacks on roster. However, Dukes' third-year signal caller Sean Patterson graduated this past spring.

Marty Mitchell, who completed one pass for 25 yards for the Dukes last season, returns for his senior season. He, along with redshirt freshman and Montour graduate Dillon Buechel, were considered the frontrunners to start under center. Duquesne also returns three starters at wide receiver.

“I can't say anything for certain, but I believe he's going there to play quarterback,” Pacak said, when asked if Rawlins was planning to remain at the position. “We'll see how all of that plays out. I'm sure he'll be somewhere on the field this season.”

Rick Bruni Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at rbruni@tribweb.com or 724-684-2635.

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