Coach Holgorsen, West Virginia show off recruiting class
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia football coach Dana Holgorsen said he wanted to land 30 recruits for 2012.
He didn't quite get there, but he came close.
West Virginia received letters of intent from 26 high school seniors — 14 on offense, 12 on defense — Holgorsen announced Wednesday.
Of the 26 commitments, five enrolled in early January, allowing them to count toward last year's class. West Virginia signed 17 recruits last February.
Holgorsen's first class is balanced, as West Virginia wanted to create depth at several positions. The Mountaineers specifically stockpiled four positions — receiver (7), secondary (6), offensive line (4) and defensive line (4) — but the class still addressed every position.
"We felt like we needed a little bit of everything and were able to get a little bit of everything," Holgorsen said. "I don't think it's one specific area we wanted to get. We just wanted to hit all areas."
West Virginia continued its pipeline from the South, signing 11 recruits from Florida. The staff also increased efforts in Texas, securing four players. It's a trend Holgorsen said he would like to continue, considering the school's impending move to the Big 12.
"It's a priority," Holgorsen said. "We're going to go there. We get guys from Houston and Dallas and surrounding those two metropolitan areas all the time, but it has to be a good fit."
The Mountaineers struggled locally. They signed just one Pennsylvania prospect, junior college offensive lineman Mark Glowinski, and none from West Virginia.
The 6-foot-5, 290-pound Glowinski is the only junior college transfer West Virginia signed. Offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh expects him to contribute immediately.
"That kid understands that he's got two years to play, and we're not looking to redshirt him," Bedenbaugh said. "He's coming in here to play, and he's got to earn it."
The highest-ranked recruit in the class is Deontay McManus of Dunbar High School in Baltimore, the same high school that produced receiver Tavon Austin. McManus, rated a four-star prospect by Rivals.com and Scout.com, caught 40 passes for 590 yards and six touchdowns this season.
Offensive lineman Tyler Orlosky from St. Edwards (Ohio) and linebacker Sam Lebbie from DeMatha (Md.) were also four-star prospects, according to Scout.com.
West Virginia will have 61 scholarship players entering spring practice, a number that could drop by attrition, plus the 21 recruits that will arrive on campus June 10th. Still, that leaves room for the Mountaineers to add late-bloomers or transfers, something Holgorsen said could happen.
"We've still got a couple open spots for 2012," he said, "so we'll continue to look if something comes available."
West Virginia's class
Player, Position, High School, Height, weight, Rivals ranking
Deontay McManus, WR, Baltimore Dunbar (Md.), 6-1, 209, 4-star
*Imarjaye Albury, DT, Miami Northwestern (Fla.), 6-1, 280, 3-star
*Ford Childress, QB, Houston Kinkaid (Texas), 6-4, 210, 3-star
*Karl Joseph, DB, Orlando (Fla.) Edgewater, 5-11, 190, 3-star
*Sean Walters, DB, Hallandale (Fla.), 6-2, 195, 3-star
Christian Brown, DT, Bridgeton (N.J.), 6-3, 290, 3-star
Roshard Burney, RB, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.), 5-10, 205, 3-star
Torry Clayton, RB, South Dade (Fla.), 5-9, 195, 3-star
Kimlon Dillon, DB, Apopka (Fla.), 6-2, 185, 3-star
Mark Glowinski, OL, Scranton Lackawanna C.C., 6-5, 290, 3-star
Korey Harris, DE, Bartram Trail (Fla.), 6-4, 230, 3-star
Garrett Hope, LB, The Woodlands (Texas), 6-3, 225, 3-star
Will Johnson, TE, Osseo (Minn.), 6-6, 245, 3-star
Darreall Joyner, WR, Miami Central, 5-11, 180, 3-star
Nana Kyeremeh, DB, Thomas Worthington (Ohio), 5-11, 170, 3-star
Sam Lebbie, LB, Hyattsville (Md.), DeMatha, 6-2, 215, 3-star
Devonte Mathis, WR, Miramar (Fla.), 6-2, 210, 3-star
Tony Matteo, OL, Akron (Ohio), Manchester, 6-5, 280, 3-star
Brandon Napolean, CB, St. Peter's Prep (N.J.), 6-0, 175, 3-star
Noble Nwachukwu, DE, Wylie (Texas), 6-2, 240, 3-star
Tyler Orlosky, OL, Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward, 6-4, 290, 3-star
Devonte Robinson, WR, Delray Beach (Fla.), Village Academy, 6-1, 170, 3-star
*Jordan Thompson, WR, Katy (Texas), 5-9, 163, 2-star
Jarrod Harper, DB, Frostburg, (Md.) Mountain Ridge, 5-11, 200, 2-star
The five January enrollees bolster this class — an important first try for coach Dana Holgorsen, who needs to replace two starters each on both lines and the secondary and improve depth at wide receiver. Childress, the son of former Houston Oiler Ray Childress, threw for 3,100 yards and 41 TDs last season.
Where do they rank?
Here's how the 2012 recruiting classes at Pitt, Penn State and West Virginia compare to the nation's best, according to Rivals.com and Scout.com:
4. Ohio State
6. Florida State
9. Miami (Fla.)
14. Texas A&M
18. South Carolina
20. Virginia Tech
21. Notre Dame
25. Texas Tech
Local schools: 46. West Virginia, 48. Pitt, 50. Penn State
3. Ohio State
8. Miami (Fla.)
10. Florida State
12. South Carolina
17. Texas A&M
18. Notre Dame
21. Mississippi State
23. Texas Tech
25. Virginia Tech
Local schools: 26. West Virginia, 39. Pitt, 48. Penn State