Kwantel Raines, one of the stars of the 2018 signing class and a tailor made spur safety in Tony Gibson’s 3-3-5 defense is now leaving the West Virginia Mountaineers. The news is not wholly unexpected as Raines has seen his playing time reduced throughout the season and did not dress at all in the last home game of the season against the Oklahoma State Cowboys.
Raines, who is a cousin of former Mountaineer Dravon Askew-Henry, unfortunately finds himself without a true position in defensive coordinator Vic Koenning’s scheme and unfortunately Raines was brought in for a position that doesn’t really exist now. So Raines now is forced to try and fit his square skills in a round position hole. He’s a bit too big for the safeties that Koenning likes and the staff has asked him to bulk up to become a linebacker.
Raines was the second highest rated player in that 2018 class that featured Dante Stills, Josh Norwood, Leddie Brown, Mike O’Laughlin among other players who are currently contributing in Neal Brown’s first season.
The loss continues a season of attrition for West Virginia that has seen a number of players leave the program as they no longer fit with the current coaching staff.