by Jim Buzzerd
A couple more recruits
A few weeks ago I mentioned the commitment of four-star Spring Valley tackle Wyatt Milum to play football at West Virginia University. Since then the Mountaineers have received two more commitments from highly touted prospects. Ohio running back Jaylen Anderson has pledged to WVU as has Alabama quarterback Will Crowder. Both additions have earned head coach Neal Brown and his staff high praise from those who closely follow recruiting.
Anderson is a 6-foot-1, 210-pound four star running back who collected two dozen Division I offers, including the likes of Cincinnati, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Iowa State, Louisville, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota and Pittsburgh. Anderson is rated by Rivals as the 11th-best running back nationally in the Class of 2021, and is tabbed as the No. 9 overall player in talent-rich Ohio.
Crowder, who is nicknamed ‘Goose,’ was able to take a pair of visits to Morgantown prior to the NCAA-mandated shutdown in recruiting for all sports during the Coronavirus pandemic, including WVU’s junior day on March 7.
The 6-foot-3, 192-pound quarterback threw for 2,600 yards and 22 touchdowns at Birmingham’s Gardendale High School last season. Though he’s classified as a pro-style quarterback by Rivals and 247 Sports, Crowder does not appear to be immobile in the pocket. He also rushed for 500 yards in his junior season.
Before the Coronavirus outbreak cancelled spring football practice coaches and fans were anxious to see how 2020 quarterback recruit Garrett Greene, who enrolled early, was going to do in the quarterback battle with Jarrett Doege and Austin Kendall.
There was some speculation that Kendall may be looking to transfer after being replaced by Doege in the last four games of last season. He apparently decided to stick it out, at least for spring practice. It’s anyone’s guess how this will play out.
As time passes there is more and more uncertainty of having college football this fall. Other than the health issues we’re facing as a nation, losing the 2020 college football season would be the single worst loss for this writer.
Another recruiting target to keep an eye on is 6-foot-4, 190-pound Myrtle Beach wide receiver J.J. Jones. He is the son of former WVU running back Jon Jones, so the Mountaineers have that going for them. Jones is a hard read right now. West Virginia was the first to offer him, but he still has a list of schools 10 deep he’s considering and has not scheduled an official visit to WVU. He has visited unofficially.
Georgia, Penn State, North Carolina, Michigan, Tennessee, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Arkansas and Penn State are among the 30+ schools offering Jones.
On the Mountaineer basketball side of things everyone that is eligible to return next season are expected to do so with the exception of Brandon Knapper who has transferred. Oscar Tshiebwe is also expected to return even though he has declared for the NBA draft. That is almost certainly a decision made to receive an evaluation.