Just a handful of high school players in West Virginia each year earn Division I football scholarships. This year, three of those players are coming from George Washington High School — Ryan Switzer (North Carolina), Dustin Crouser (UNC Charlotte) and Jordan Clay (Air Force).

“It says a lot about these kids and how hard they’ve worked,” said GW coach Steve Edwards, Jr. “Everything they’re getting ready to experience and everything they have coming their way right now they have earned and we’re really proud of them.”

The most highly pursued of the three was Switzer, who ultimately chose North Carolina. He had multiple other offers, including West Virginia, but the Mountaineers were late to offer and didn’t make him a priority.

“Real early he was very interested in the Mountaineers, but to be honest, they didn’t show much interest in Ryan,” Edwards said. “They probably showed the least amount of interest and the least amount of effort towards recruiting the young man of anybody. And that’s OK too, because they knew what they wanted and what they needed.”

By the time West Virginia eventually showed more attention, there was too much of a gap to make up. The backlash thrown Switzer’s way by fans on WVU message boards didn’t make his decision to stick with North Carolina any easier.

“I was real proud of the way he handled it, because there was some negativity thrown his way – especially with the Internet,” Edwards Jr. said. “But he handled it real well and he didn’t let it sway him one bit. He’s a strong individual and he’s comfortable in his skin. He’s a tough kid physically and mentally.

“He did take some criticism and certainly there were some people disappointed, but things happen for a reason and he’s really looking forward to getting down there to North Carolina to get his degree.”

Late in the recruiting process, there was a strong push from several programs other than WVU trying to convince Switzer to flip.

“There were some schools that jumped in there late and were coming at him pretty hard,” Edwards said. “He’s a normal kid and entertained a lot of ideas, but once you got down to the brass tacks and he really weighed everything in hand, he stuck with his word and the Tar Heels.”

“Real early he was very interested in the Mountaineers, but to be honest, they didn’t show much interest in Ryan. They probably showed the least amount of interest and the least amount of effort towards recruiting the young man of anybody.” — GW coach Steve Edwards Jr. on WVU’s early recruitment of Switzer

And as for those schools, specifically, making a late run at Switzer?

“Florida State was on him heavy, along with Kentucky and Stanford,” Edwards said. “They all made strong pushes at the end and they were really coming hard.”

Joining Switzer in the state of North Carolina next year will be his GW teammate Crouser, who is signing with UNCC as a linebacker. Crouser tore his ACL midway through his senior season.

“The injury was very unfortunate, but it’s going to give him some time and it will work out for him,” Edwards said. “He’s been working hard, the surgery went real well and he’s very anxious to start working on his college career. He’s such a fantastic young man – he and Ryan both have such a great work ethic.”

Clay, who played receiver/tight end for GW, is set to sign with Air Force after visiting Colorado Springs.

“As soon as Jordan got out there, it was a sold, done deal,” Edwards said. “He’s another guy that’s worked very hard and is a very talented young man. The one thing about all three of these kids is that they were great students.

“Everyone is getting a great catch and we’re really proud of them. Jordan has done a great job and he had a great career here. It’s just a fun time and we’re real happy with all three of their families.”

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  • c.d. damron

    First of all ,I am an avid WVU fan.I can't believe how immature some of you guys are acting over an 18 year old kid.
    He competed at combines against some of the best talent from around the country and was a stand out at every one he participated in.
    He chose not to go to WVU and you guys instantly question his ability?Very childish!!!

    • fballwife

      Thank you!

    • Alum

      I don't think the posters are question his ability as much as his motives.

  • Mike

    A lot of you are saying WVU messed up by not going after Switzer earlier. Not so.tThis kid wanted everyone to look at him like he would become the next Jerry Rice. What about the great Doc and the MU clown show. Why didn't they try to get this kid? He couldnt go to MU because he isn't a prop or a jailbird.No sorry to bust your bubble,Switzer .never see the field at NC. Unless he is helping carry the water

    • monte.

      What do think now mikey. Doing more than toting the water huh!!

    • fballwife

      Lol your hilarious! Ryan is 100% starting at UNC

  • Bob Arrington

    Well, Switzer did well in the summer camps and in the HS all-star games against good competition. He will play in the slot at North Carolina, a position for which he is suited. He will have strong competition. But he would get that at the other schools who recruited him, like Florida State, Stanford, and Kentucky.

    • David

      I think he had one catch in the all star game. It was for a TD, but one catch is hardly "doing well."

      • fballwife

        Not to mention it was the GAME WINNING TD

      • fballwife


  • dmg

    Let's be honest here: Holgreson & Co. missed the boat with Switzer, Clay and Dustin Crouser, and they have admitted they screwed up- starting with Holgreson himself,
    Why would you ever want to marginalize these exceptional young men?
    Sad commentary on "WVU supporters" ,some of which can't even spell correctly.

    • Stan

      It's funny that you comment on the WVU supporters' spelling when I count at least five misspelled words in your posts above. Your punctuation is also pretty atrocious, even for a message board.

  • graywv

    Why all the anger against this kid(Swisher), he's a West Virginian, He is a very good football player, I would have loved to seen him in a Mountaineer uniform, but it didn't happen! So we are happy for him and WVU, it just wasen't meant to happen! I hope all the WV recruits that went elsewhere, have "GREAT" careers and make the state proud! I also hope that WVU-recruits exceed expectations and we do really well and I hope in the future Holgerson gives WV kids a long early look, and remember a home state kid is more likely to play his "heart-out" for the Mountaineers than outsiders!

    • RCS

      No one has anger towards a teenager, people are merely giving their views on the situation.
      I wish him all the best, but I don't believe the choice he made was the best given the class UNC was able to put together after his commitment, and the reasons he gave (i.e. the type of offense UNC runs).

      • fballwife

        Nahh your hating

  • sater, James

    I dont see how he can say that WVU was to late when he chose UNC early (Mar 28, 2012 ). I think this young man just wanted the attention!!!!

  • Uncle Fester

    Switzer not that good?? Holy jumping catfish. He was a Parade All-American. UNC signed one Parade All-American and three honorable mention Parade All-Americans. How many did Holgorsen sign?? ZERO!!!!!!
    Looks to me like WVU could use a head coach like UNC's Larry Fedora , not the clown we have in Holgorsen.

    • cutty77

      Now we are letting Parade recruit for WVU.Uncle Fester Stay down in Cabell Country,please don't even come into Kanawha Country.

    • lyncofta


      That's WVU at 24th and if you scroll on down you'll find UNC at 40th. Forget Parade All-Americans how many skill players is UNC going to have in the 1st RD of the NFL draft this year? WVU will be fine without this Ryan kid, hope his fine without the Mountaineers.

    • RCS

      He is good, very good, don't get me wrong, but he's playing in a state that doesn't have the kids with speed like he does, and the teams that do have the speed like he does (i.e. Capital, and MHS) he put up numbers because he was all GW had but they lost the games pretty bad...
      He will rattle off a couple of good games with in the next 4 (or 5) years but not like he did in HS.

    • David

      No, he's not that good. Look at how he did against teams with some speed. That being Capital and Martinsburg.

      He is good by WV standards, but he's not going to light it up at the next level. He wouldn't even be noticed if he were in Texas or California.

      Dana signed MUCH better receivers this class and can do without the drama.

      • fballwife

        Lol wait you don't even know what position ryan plays... he's not a WR & wasn't recruited as one either

  • David

    Oh, and while we're at it, go ask the GW basketball program why Ryan isn't playing this year.

    • fballwife

      Lol please tell me the reason I would love to know why! ... the reason ryan didnt come out for the basketball team is because basketball has never been the sport that he loved... he rather be working hard on his football skills during the basketball season

    • dmg

      You have no idea what you are talking about. None.
      The WVU coaching staff blew it with Ryahn and even moreso with Dustin Crouser,
      They will both play from day 1.

      • Ted Damion

        Sounds like Switzer's Daddy is commenting on here.

  • David

    I saw Ryan play several times and he really isn't that good. Dana and WVU can do much better.

    Watch and see. You won't hear anything about Switzer now that he is playing against legitimate talent.

  • Mike

    its not too late "IF" he wanted to play for WVU...

  • Hailey

    Sounds like someone got their feelings hurt, I think WVU will survive...big day for WVU and those recruits who WANT to be here!

  • Mike

    Switzer will not see the field for NC this year or ever. Over hyped. WV didn't need to waste a scholie on this young man. With White,Campbell,Myers,Johnson,Clay,Thompson,Robinson,Mathis,New commers if they all sign,Shorts,Smallwood Carswell, Marcellus,where would he fit in. The players I would have liked see WVU gone after were Crouser and Clay.

    • dmg

      Wrong again. He will play in the first UNC game
      this fall. Be readt to eat you words- I have learned not to underestimate him.

  • cutty77

    The entire process Reminds me of JR House.I myself don't think he is tuff enough to take the hits he is going to get in College.He had a hard time taking them in High School.Some one tell me of a Kid That WVU didn't get that hurt them in Football.I can name some that we got that Killed Us.One was a OL from up North,and a Kicker that lost 4 games for WV this year.Go look up Tyler's Stats.THE WOREST IN WVU HISTORY

  • RCS

    Holgerson came in with his first class and let the media know how they handle Jrs and Sr's in High School.
    I could care less that Switzer went with UNC, but his reasons as to the type of Offense, and competing for Championships are crap...
    What WR wouldn;t want to be in a offense that produced WRs like Blackmon, Crabtree, Bailey, Austin....
    Switzer committed to UNC early on when they didn't have that good of a class, and now they have Howard (6'4 WR), Fieulleteau (6'3 WR), and Logan... All top ATHs from power states.
    He is likely to red shirt, or be the PR/KR but the playing time he thought he was going to get at first will not happen. Where as I believe with the lack of WRs at WVU he could have seen the field early and often....

    • dmg

      Hey DA, Per Steve Edwards, WVU did not even recruit him. Why not just wish him goog luck at UNC?
      BTW: He won't red shirt- he will play in the first game and score. I have learned not to underestimate him.

      • Mac

        WVU never recruits players from within the state. They are EXPECTED to come. It's been that way for as long as I can remember.

        • fballwife

          Lol you don't just come out to play football as a walk on when your that good. You deserve scholarships

  • Chris

    It's a shame he could have been another Wes Welker in this offense Don't think he will be that at UNC good luck to him.

    • joeep

      The Bulldogs exposed him pretty well and he couldn't do anything against a superior team like that. Eastern panhandle is where all the talent is!

    • dmg

      Why not at UNC and why at WVU.

    • dave

      Who really cares? Switzer never wanted to be a Mountaineer but whined that the coaches weren't gushing all over him... We just signed the best on paper recruiting class since anyone paid attention, no need to waste anymore time discussing this kid...