WVU Pre-Season Recruiting Update

wvu pre-spring transfer portal update
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WVU Pre-Season Recruiting Update

As we predicted early this Summer, Head Coach Neal Brown capitalized on recruiting momentum with big early returns for the Class of 2022. We now provide our final WVU pre-season recruiting update.

Who’s Who Among the Class of 2022

As usual, we begin our update with a breakdown of each player in the class. We provide their most likely position at the next level. We follow with the state in which they most recently played high school football. Finally, we provide their star rating, following in parentheses by their site-specific score, for each of the three major recruiting services. For 247Sports, we use that service’s own ranking, not their composite rating.

Player Position State Rivals 247Sports ESPN
Jacolby Spells* CB FL 3 (5.6) 4 (91) 4 (83)
Nicco Marchiol* QB AZ 4 (5.8) 3 (88) 4 (81)
Justin Williams* RB GA 4 (5.8) 3 (87) 4 (80)
Kevin Thomas WR PA 4 (5.8) 3 (86) 4 (80)
Travious Lathan* LB FL 3 (5.7) 4 (90) 4 (81)
Jarel Williams WR AL 3 (5.7) 3 (85) 4 (80)
Corbin Page TE/OL WV 3 (5.7) 3 (89) 3 (78)
Aric Burton DE FL 3 (5.7) 3 (86) 3 (77)
Christion Stokes S MI 3 (5.7) 3 (89) 3 (78)
Landen Livingston OL IN 3 (5.6) 3 (87) 3 (78)
Raleigh Collins CB PA 3 (5.7) 3 (87) 3 (76)
Mumu Bin-Wahad CB/S GA 3 (5.6) 3 (85) 3 (78)
Maurice Hamilton OL OH 3 (5.6) 3 (86) 3 (77)
Zion Young DE GA 3 (5.5) 3 (85) 3 (73)
Tyrin Woody S MD 3 (5.5) 3 (86) 3 (79)
Sullivan Weidman OL MA 3 (5.7) 3 (85) 3 (77)
Charlie Katarincic OL CT 3 (5.5) 3 (83) 3 (70)

Each player with an asterisk by his name fits into two categories. First, the player has a blue-chip designation by at least one of the major recruiting services. Second, the player has been identified by at least one of those services as a Top 300 recruit. Italicized players represent new additions since our last update. Woody remains included in this class, though the staff still expects him to enroll this Fall.

Measuring the Class

Simply, the current composition of the Class of 2022 looks groundbreaking for West Virginia as of the time of the printing of our WVU pre-season recruiting update. With 17 recruits, Rivals ranks the class 18th overall and third in the Big 12. 247Sports ranks the class 21st overall (and also third in the Big 12). The average player rating using the 247Sports composite system is 0.8725. As such, we can say this definitively. As of today, Coach Brown has assembled the highest-rated class in West Virginia’s modern recruiting era (beginning with the 2002 class). He has also assembled the highest-ranked class in that era. Indeed, the Mountaineers have only finished top 25 in two other seasons (both riding the success of the Pat White/Steve Slaton era).

Moreover, West Virginia has signed five four-star players on only two occasions since 2002. It has never signed six during that time. As a result, Brown has, thus far, concentrated the greatest number of blue-chip recruits in the last twenty years. It is safe to say the momentum has been realized. And, as Last Word on Sports wrote this Summer, as much as we like to think they do not, those recruiting stars do matter.

That said, class composition and “fit” also matter. This year, West Virginia has done a great job so far meeting its needs. The team loses several players in the secondary after the season, and they targeted the position with versatile athletes very well. The team needs depth on the defensive line, and they focused efforts on guys that fit their game plan.

What Comes Next?

Of course, signing day has not happened yet. Things can change. So far, though, Brown has held serve remarkably well with his classes. It remains rare for a committed player to back out during Brown’s early tenure. That is not to say it could not happen. But things look good.

The staff is not done with the class either. There are still a few more highly rated recruits who have the Mountaineers in their top schools. Brown and staff lost only a few battles over the Summer, and we expect that they will continue to stay in touch with those recruits, hoping for a late-cycle flip or two.

Brown likely adds a total of 21 or 22 recruits this cycle, saving the remaining scholarships for transfers. We expect them to focus on adding another wide receiver, another offensive lineman, one to two more defensive lineman, another body for the secondary, and, if the right player comes their way, another linebacker.