West Virginia football had an up-and-down 2019 season under first-year head coach Neal Brown. Here are the studs and duds from his inaugural campaign.
Very few things went right for the Mountaineers in Neal Brown’s first season as head coach, but the potential on the 5-7 squad this season makes the future brighter than ever. Is the quarterback of the future on the current roster? How many NFL prospects are on the defensive line? Is Neal Brown finally the coach who’s going to deliver something exceptional to West Virginia? Those questions can only be answered with time, but the studs and duds from 2019? Well, we’ve got those coming right up.
Prior to the season starting, expectations were all over the place — not just for the record, either. Nobody knew who would be starting at quarterback until late August. The rushing attack was expected to carry the team to a handful of victories, or at least keep them competitive; neither happened. And the defense, littered with upperclassmen and veterans, was expected to lead both on and off the field.
We all know what happened, though. Austin Kendall eventually got benched for Bowling Green State-transfer Jarret Doege who showed promise at quarterback, the rushing attack was non-existent, and the defense lost experienced players to injury and the transfer portal, ultimately playing more freshman than anticipated.
All of those likely contributed to the ‘Eers losing five straight in October and November, but the experiences will help the young guys in the future. We even saw flashes of brilliance from a handful of them. And that’s where we’re going to start — the studs.