National Signing Day has grown exponentially over the past decade and Wednesday was the biggest yet. You know what that calls for? A special edition of the Mountaineer Retweet. Let's do this!
While many of us slaved the morning away in our cubicles of choice, we snuck glances at our iPhones and hid windows in the corner of our monitors, all the while hoping to get that shiny new piece of news about that shiny new recruit who's going to take our team over the top faxing in his national letter of intent.
Actually that's not entirely accurate, because the fax machines were buzzing early and many of the letters were in by 8:30 or so. In fact if you live in God's time zone like me (central time, baby) you woke up to a phone full of text messages and tweets about what had transpired.
By 8:30 Eastern it looked like this:
And that was nice. Especially this guy:
Mountaineer nation welcome 2014 commitment Dravon Henry to the football team pic.twitter.com/dmv68wNMBG— Dana Holgorsen (@Holgorsendana) February 5, 2014
Which reminds me of a point I've been meaning to make for awhile. Whoever is in charge of graphics for the Mountaineer Athletic Department deserves a raise. They are informative and look very sharp. The stuff we saw all day, from the signing day logo to the individual profiles was top notch. Well done nameless person slaving over a computer screen. Well damn done.
Funderburk is a big-time hitter across the middle but has the speed to play in coverage. Quality pickup for #WVU.— Keenan Cummings (@rivalskeenan) February 5, 2014
With the need for playmakers in the defensive backfield, reading things like this give me the type of optimism that will make the harsh return to reality of playing Alabama all the more painful. And I don't care. Bring it on. #WeWantBama
It's 9AM, the expected commitment times of both WR CJ Worton and DB D'Cota Dixon. #WVU— Chris Anderson (@CMAnderson247) February 5, 2014
(refreshes phone every 10 seconds)
DB D'Cota Dixon has committed to Wisconsin.— Chris Anderson (@CMAnderson247) February 5, 2014
South Dade receiver C.J. Worton ends up picking Florida over WVU.— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) February 5, 2014
Disappointed we couldn't land CJ Worton, but when a kid is from all accounts 50/50, you figure he stays close to home.— Matt Kirchner (@MKirchner12) February 5, 2014
Fair point. But a guy can hope.....
And just like that, a majority of the drama WVU fans dealt with on Wednesday was done before breakfast had even digested.
And here's the one that got away. Sucked to see Krok flip so close to signing day, but WVU still did pretty well on the o line. Best of luck to the kid.
Let's get things rolling on the positive side again....
Mountaineer nation welcome 2014 commitment Jaylon Myers to the football team pic.twitter.com/KtqHAdJ5Yx— Dana Holgorsen (@Holgorsendana) February 5, 2014
Myers was a JUCO All-American a year ago and is a versatile defensive back with the ability to play corner or safety for #WVU.— Keenan Cummings (@rivalskeenan) February 5, 2014
Solid pickup. Can't wait to see him on the field.
This was the big one WVU fans were watching all day. The feeling was good, but you never know until the kid puts pen to paper.
I encourage kids to commit early and stick with those commitments so I can have a year to learn to properly spell their names.— Mark Ennis (@Mengus22) February 5, 2014
As someone who just started a weekly feature on recruiting in the past couple months, I concur wholeheartedly.
Listen, I love Tony, Culhane and Wolfman as much as the next guy - they do great work. But all I'm saying is Tennessee had the #5 ranked class in America (per Rivals). Was it because they had a set populated exclusively with hot chicks? Maybe, maybe not - but why take chances?
Good Morning Guys...Today will be a good day! !— William Crest (@GRIND16) February 5, 2014
Thanks what I like to hear!
WE RAN OUT OF PAPER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!— Not Dana Holgorsen (@FauxCoachHolgs) February 5, 2014
@TonyGibsonWVU Damn it, Tony, I told you TWICE to get paper for the fax machine.— Not Dana Holgorsen (@FauxCoachHolgs) February 5, 2014
You lay off Gibby, Fake Holgs. That man killed it this recruiting season. You go get HIM some damn paper!
I would say work productivity across the country is at an all-time low right now ...— John Antonik (@JohnAntonik) February 5, 2014
And now all Mountaineer fans had their attention turned to the Durham press conference where Donte Thomas-Williams would announce his choice. So we waited.
Durham is still in the Eastern Time Zone, right?— Chris Anderson (@CMAnderson247) February 5, 2014
RB Donte Thomas-Williams has selected #WVU at Hillside HS signing day ceremony.— Geoff Coyle (@GFCoyle) February 5, 2014
Hell Yeah.....— JaJuan Seider (@coachseider) February 5, 2014
The 4-star tailback was a huge get for the Mountaineers and Coach Seider's now quite-crowded backfield. Be interesting to see how things shake out in the spring.
Dude rocked a leopard-print bow tie and a three-piece suit. Pulled his WVU cap out of a bag, just to extend the suspense a little longer.— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) February 5, 2014
But not the strongest wardrobe game of the day. That honor goes to:
Now.......with no known quantities under center for the Mountaineers, who will be the signal caller for 2014?
How about this guy!
Very excited to see what WVU can do with him. I think Clint Trickett is a great kid, but I'm not convinced he can physically withstand the rigors of a Big 12 season. I wonder what Coach Holgorsen thinks.
DH-I've told William Crest that you're going to have a lot of opportunities. With new rules we'll be able to work with him more. #WVUNSD— WVU IMG Sports (@WVUIMGSports) February 5, 2014
I plugged that into my Holgo translator and this came out: "WE NEED HIM TO BE THE GUY. YOU SAW THE FLAMING PILE OF POO OUT THERE LAST SEASON, NOTHING ABOUT THIS OFFENSE WORKS WITHOUT A RELIABLE QUARTERBACK AND I AM QUITE LIKELY COACHING FOR MY JOB. DID I MENTION WE NEED HIM TO BE THE GUY?"
Jihad Ward has sent his LOI to Illinois he posts on twitter. Informed me that he wasn't picking #WVU prior but worth note.— Keenan Cummings (@rivalskeenan) February 5, 2014
One last downer note. Sure it was a bit of a longshot, but I'll admit I was pretty excited about the prospect of writing about a guy named 'Jihad.'
But on to better things, like this:
Fantastic. And if Rafiki wasn't there to hoist that letter of intent into the sky as it came off the fax machine, someone has failed miserably.
Signing of Texas commits now complete with only addition of Chris Nelson as surprise with NLI from Kevin Shorter, who may not play.— Wescott Eberts (@SBN_Wescott) February 5, 2014
Texas did not have a good day - they finished #20 in the Rivals rankings. Texas A&M is killing them in-state having raked in a top 5 class and Charlie Strong seems to have struggled a bit to put the pieces together on short notice. And that's nothing but a good thing if you're a middling Big 12 team looking to move up. So thanks for being average, Texas. Keep it up.
Not to get too ahead of ourselves. I mean we just landed the 2014 class, but if you haven't been checking in with us on The Signing Musket, you should. This upcoming 2015 class has the chance to be an absolute monster.
But before you get to 2015 you have to get through 2014, but in the last couple months I've become convinced more than ever that this staff can get it done. If you haven't read @WVUIE97's excellent examination of WVU recruiting over the past decade you should do it now. The simple fact is Morgantown is a challenging place to recruit and this team needs depth. The current staff is bringing in talent as well as anyone has before, but they need time to build that depth. If these 2014 and 15 classes are any indication, it's happening - but it's not an overnight process.
OK the class is (mostly) in. Let's sit back, relax and have a little fun.....
You aren't old until you start thinking the recruits' moms are hot— Bobby Big Wheel (@BobbyBigWheel) February 5, 2014
BUT HOW MANY DAMN STARS!!! WE NEED STARS TO KNOW THE TRUE WORTH OF A 17 YEAR OLD!!!!!
kids today. no fauna game. smh "@davidubben: A stark absence of live animals in today's commitment announcements. Step it up, recruits."— Holly Anderson (@HollyAnderson) February 5, 2014
Things were pretty tame today. No puppies, no baby gimmicks. Just a kid who cut down a tree to say he was going to Stanford. The whole thing was a little anticlimactic. But still fun.
And there we go. All done. The only missing piece was offensive lineman Jamie Herr, and the chatter wasn't positive. The reasons seemed unclear, but the unanimous opinion was that he won't be a part of this class.
@Svenslavski Scott signed and sent his letter. Don't expect to see Herr in this class.— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) February 5, 2014
All in all a good day, though and a very solid class. The addition of Thomas Williams vaulted them to 36th nationally by the 247Sports rankings and 38th in the Rivals rankings. Not spectacular, but the type of good, reliable class they needed that could possibly set the stage for a transformative 2015.
Hope you enjoyed checking in with a special Signing Day Retweet and maybe we'll see you again at the spring game. The opener against Alabama in Atlanta is less than 7 months away......Let's GOOOOOO!!!!!
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