Dana Holgorsen lost a big chunk of his offense with the West Virginia Mountaineers following the 2012 season with his top two receivers Stedman Bailey and Tavon Austin both moving on the NFL. In all, the team lost 2,911 yards of production when the duo of Bailey and Austin left town and West Virginia’s returning wide receivers combined for just 22 catches last season. Despite all of that, there’s no reason to panic in Morgantown as WVU will be just fine at wide receiver in 2013.
While the Mountaineers are losing a ton of production and experience in 2012, they’ll be welcoming in plenty of ready-to-contribute talent for 2013. JUCO transfer Kevin White should provide an instant boost to the receiving corps with his big frame, sure hands and ability to break tackles in the open field to go along with his excellent top-end speed to stretch the field vertically. He is an instant playmaker ready to make a splash next fall.
Joining him will be four-star wide receiver Shelton Gibson out of Ohio. The incoming freshman was one of the more highly sought pass catchers in the 2013 class, but will bring his explosive playmaking abilities to West Virginia next season. He has excellent hands and the ability to create plays after the catch, making him a perfect candidate to step in right away and contribute to the offense.
They will be playing alongside former Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver and JUCO transfer Ronald Carswell, who announced his intention to transfer to WVU just this week. He has developed his game at the junior college level and combines nice speed with excellent route-running. He is sure-handed and physically ready make an impact from day one.
With those talents coming onto the roster and joining senior Ivan McCartney, returning healthy for 2013 after a disappointing nine-catch effort in 2012, West Virginia has a deep pool of talent catching the football next season. They may not have the track record of Bailey and Austin, but they have plenty of talent to pick up the slack.