Success Looms in Future for West Virginia Mountaineers Football

By Mike Atkinson
Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports

The West Virginia Mountaineers have compiled a top 25 recruiting class for 2013, and it can only get better on signing day.

WVU finished 2012 ranked eighth in the Big 12 with a mediocre record of 7-6 (4-5 in Big 12). The Mountaineers struggled mightily on defense and special teams, but were held together by the offensive trio of Geno Smith, Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey. All three are now leaving for the NFL draft.

Do not worry though, Mountaineer fans – brighter days are ahead for the Mountaineers.

Currently, West Virginia owns the 24th best recruiting class for 2013. This does not include verbal commits such as highly touted wide receiver prospect Shelton Gibson. If Gibson commits, that will be another four-star commit for the Mountaineers, raising their ranking even more.

Also, news out of Morgantown today is that WVU has landed Nicholas O’Toole, a JUCO punter who is the seventh best punter in his class. O’Toole has been described as a “big time talent”, and it has been said he has the frame to develop into an NFL punter. This marks the Mountaineers 24th commit this season.

In addition to that, there is the very slight possibility WVU could land receiver Tyler Boyd, who has given a solid verbal to the Pittsburgh Panthers but has been heavily recruited to WVU by Shelton Gibson.

There are also rumors out there that four-star defensive back Mackensie Alexander took a surprise visit to WVU. Alexander is the seventh best defensive back in the 2013 recruiting class and is ranked 42nd overall, eighth in the state of Florida.

If the Mountaineers could find a way to land Alexander, expect big things in years to come. It’s no secret the ‘eers need help at that position. It’s a fat chance and only a rumor, but I’ve seen crazier things happen.

So the point is, WVU has already locked up a very strong recruiting class. It cannot lose the recruits that have already committed. It can only get better once it locks up its verbal commits. WVU fans will be holding their breath waiting on the Letters of Intent from Gibson and maybe even Tyler Boyd.

There would be nothing greater for Mountaineer fans than to steal a star recruit from long-time rival Pitt.

Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeAtkinsonRS or visit his Rant Sports Author Page. Mike will be covering WVU’s signing day all day on Wednesday, February, 6.

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