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WVU Ranked In Still Way-Too-Early Top 25

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Despite some losses, one ESPN writer still believes in the ‘Eers.

West Virginia v TCU Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

ESPN just released their post-spring football way-too-early Top 25 and the Mountaineers climbed two spots to number 20 on the list.

20. West Virginia

2016 record: 10-3, 7-2 Big 12

Last Way-Too-Early ranking: 22

Returning starters: 4 offense, 3 defense, 2 special teams

Key losses: WR Shelton Gibson, WR Daikiel Shorts, OT Adam Pankey, G Tony Matteo, C Tyler Orlosky, QB Skyler Howard, RB Rushel Shell III, DE Noble Nwachukwu, NT Darrien Howard, LB Justin Arndt, S Jarrod Harper, CB Rasul Douglas

Outlook: There has been quite a bit of hype surrounding former Florida quarterback Will Grier, who transferred to West Virginia in April 2016. He looked as good as advertised in the Mountaineers' spring game, completing 12 of 18 passes for 202 yards, and drawing praise from coach Dana Holgorsen for his command of the offense and huddle. The Mountaineers still have some uncertainty on both lines of scrimmage. Only one returning offensive lineman -- guard Kyle Bosch -- has more than 10 career starts, and each of the three starting defensive linemen must be replaced. Adam Shuler, Xavier Pegues and Reese Donahue emerged as potential starters on the defensive line this spring.

The biggest losses of the group will be the two players who were selected in the NFL Draft: Rasul Douglas, who was selected in the third round by the Philadelphia Eagles and Shelton Gibson, who was selected in the fifth round by the Eagles.