2017-06-21 / Sports

Chip Shots

by Jim Buzzerd

Another transfer quarterback

When Dana Holgorsen became the head football coach at West Virginia University most folks presumed he would be signing highly touted quarterbacks to run his air raid offense. Seemed like a no-brainer to most. Why wouldn’t a talented high school quarterback want to play in an offense that allows them to put up crazy passing numbers?

Well, for some reason Holgorsen and his staff have not been successful recruiting a high school quarterback who has made an impact as a college player. The storyline changes a bit when it comes to transfers. Clint Trickett had success as a transfer from Florida State. Junior college transfer Skyler Howard, who just finished his career at WVU, followed Trickett to Morgantown. Both players had good passing numbers despite not being acclaimed signal callers at previous stops and during their high school careers.

WVU will be relying on Florida transfer Will Grier to handle the quarterback duties this fall. Grier is a departure from Trickett and Howard as Grier was heavily recruited out of high school, was 6-0 as a starter for the Gators and is a legitimate NFL prospect. Expectations are off the charts for Grier this fall, and everything reported about the junior since he arrived on campus last fall has been glowing.

Defensive coordinator Tony Gibson said last fall that when Grier ran the scout team offense he was the best player on the field. Gibson also said Grier was as good as any other quarterback in the Big 12, which is very high praise indeed. WVU will be better at the quarterback position than they’ve been since Geno Smith. Of course if Grier is as good as advertised there is a chance he may look at the NFL as opposed to returning for his senior season.

If that were to come to fruition WVU signed yet another transfer last week in Miami’s Jack Allison. Allison is 6-5, 200 lb 2016 recruit who redshirted last season at Miami. Allison was also highly recruited out of high school at Palmetto High in Parrish, Florida. Allison will have three seasons of eligibility left after he sits out the 2017 season due to NCAA transfer rules.

The word on Allison is that he is not as mobile as many recent WVU starters, which shouldn’t matter that much if his ball distribution skills are as good as advertised. Allison also fills a roster spot created when redshirt freshman Cody Saunders was forced to retire due to a medical condition with his throwing arm. With Allison, who can practice in 2017, the Mountaineers will have four quarterbacks on scholarship: Allison, Grier, sophomore Chris Chugunov and junior college transfer David Isreal, who has not enrolled.

Allison stats

• Consensus four-star prospect by ESPN, 247Sports, Rivals and Scout

• Rated as eighth-best quarterback in country and 19th–best overall prospect in state of Florida in 247Sports’ Composite Rankings

• Ranked No. 68 in ESPN300 rankings

• Under Armour All-America Game selection

• Was selected to semifinals of Elite11 quarterback competition in Los Angeles, California

• Threw for over 1,400 yards and had 11 touchdown passes senior year, completing 62.1 percent of his passes

• Threw just five interceptions during his senior campaign

• Also offered by Alabama, Missouri, Tennessee, UCF and USF

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