Dual-threat QB Chavas Rawlins signs with WVU

West Virginia recruit Chavas Rawlins already has one famous

alumnus buzzing about his prospects at quarterback.

The mobile Rawlins signed a national letter-of-intent on

Wednesday to play for the Mountaineers, who could use him right

away after the graduation of record-setting passer Geno Smith.

Former Mountaineer quarterback Pat White said on his Twitter

feed Wednesday that ”something tells me it’s going to be fun

watching” Rawlins.

The 6-foot-3 Rawlins threw for 1,382 yards and 13 touchdowns

while rushing for 613 yards and 12 more scores last season at

western Pennsylvania’s Monessen High School, about an hour north of


Rawlins arrived on campus last month to start taking classes and

could end up competing for playing time against 2012 backup Paul

Millard and redshirt freshman Ford Childress.

Rawlins was the only quarterback in West Virginia’s recruiting

class and could represent a change for Holgorsen, whose offenses

have included a 4,000-yard passer every season since 2005.

Whoever throws the ball next fall, West Virginia brought in

plenty of potential targets in the hopes of filling the void left

by Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey. The Mountaineers signed five

wide receivers, including Georgia junior college transfers Mario

Alford and Ronald Carswell, a former Alabama signee.

”Probably our biggest need on offense was to add playmakers,”

Holgorsen said.

Austin set several school records for rushing, receiving and

all-purpose yards, while Bailey, who is skipping his senior season,

owns numerous receiving marks, including 25 touchdown receptions

last season.

Among the 25 recruits signed by the Mountaineers were nine

junior college transfers – West Virginia signed one such recruit in

each of the past two years.

”One thing that I have seen change in college football is the

amount of guys from junior college that are being recruited,”

Holgorsen said. ”In my years at Texas Tech, Houston and Oklahoma

State, it wouldn’t be strange to have a class without any junior

college players. This year, a lot of schools are going after junior

college guys.”

Seven of the 25 recruits are already enrolled at WVU.

”It’s really good to put closure to it,” Holgorsen said. ”The

hardest 48 hours as a coach is Monday and Tuesday before signing

day. This staff did a heck of a job of identifying the guys that

wanted to be here. We put a list together of 18 people (Tuesday

night) that we thought we were going to sign, and all 18 of them


West Virginia’s defense gave up a school-record 495 points last

season. The recruiting class includes four linebackers, four

defensive backs and two linemen. The top find among them may be

linebacker Darrien Howard of Chaminade-Julienne High School in

Dayton, Ohio. He’s a two-time all-Ohio selection and amassed 75

tackles last season.

Holgorsen said the Mountaineers were in need of pass rushers and

he believes they landed several in junior college linebackers

Brandon Golson and d’Vante Henry, along with junior college lineman

Dontrill Hyman and Marvin Gross, who came from the same high school

in Baltimore as Austin.

West Virginia’s lack of depth at running back was a big issue in

2012, and Holgorsen hopes he solved that with the additions of

Dreamius Smith, Wendell Smallwood and Elijah Wellman.

The addition of four offensive linemen gives the Mountaineers 15


”You can never have enough of those guys,” Holgorsen said. ”I

like where we are from a depth standpoint. We just have to

establish some starters there.”

West Virginia pulled its recruiting class together after the

hiring of three assistant coaches in the past month. Safeties coach

Tony Gibson and receivers coach Lonnie Galloway are in their second

stints with the Mountaineers. Joining them as recent hires was

cornerbacks coach Brian Mitchell.

”You always take into consideration what guys bring to the

table from a recruiting standpoint, from a geography standpoint.

That’s half the job,” Holgorsen said. ”All these guys do a great

job of coaching and getting out there recruiting and identifying

what we needed to have happen. That was part of the reason why some

of these guys were hired.”