Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Houston tailback Charles Sims, an All-Conference USA performer, reportedly is transferring to West Virginia for his senior season.

HOUSTON, Texas — The West Virginia backfield is gaining a productive transfer with immediate eligibility after former University of Houston star Charles Sims chose to spend his final college season at WVU over Cal and UCLA, according to Fox 26 television.

“I’m familiar with the offense and I just felt comfortable at West Virginia,” Sims told the Houston station.

“I’m familiar with their schemes and what they have going.”

Though he’ll be a one-and-done player, Sims represents quite a summer catch for WVU, whose good-not-great backfield features junior college recruit Dreamius Smith, freshman signee Wendell Smallwood and junior returnees Andrew Buie and Dustin Garrison.

While dealing with injuries each of the past two seasons, WVU coach Dana Holgorsen has repeatedly said he prefers to have a minimum of five running backs in stock.

Sims ran for more than 2,300 yards and caught 158 passes in three seasons at Houston, where he graduated with a degree in health education, making him eligible at another school. He initially expressed an interest in transferring to Texas Tech, but Houston coach Tony Levine blocked that move. (The school also restricted him from transferring to any school in Texas, or any member of the reconfigured American Athletic Conference, or any opponent on the Cougars’ 2013 schedule.)

Levine’s restrictions were somewhat understandable considering Sims surprisingly announced plans to transfer less than four months after reassuring Levine he would not enter the NFL draft because he wanted to finish his stellar career with the Cougars.

The 6-foot, 205-pound Sims averaged 6.2 yards per carry over his three seasons in Houston. He ran for 29 touchdowns and caught eight more.

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  • tony

    you guys should know by now that the days of having one guy tote the ball 35 times a game is over. with the openess of the offense, 25 is a ton of carries for any one back. i would think, all other things equal, this guy would have the inside edge with dustin and andrew also in the mix. this is a nice pick up, i hate to say it buts its pretty much a given that one of em will be injured and out this year...great pickup!

  • RamblingMan

    My bad, two years of holding a clipboard instead of one.

    • hailey

      I guess you Junior College degree is not wokring out to well for you. You need a to be holding a sign that says I will post inaccurrate statements for a bottle of scotch. You are getting crucified on a regular basis when you post

  • polarbear

    The Trickett has 2 years left. Show how much you know

  • hailey

    Great pick-up, time will tell if it is home run I like his chances with Dana. If we can now land Tee Shepherd the 5* ND transfer CB (it is between WVU and Oklahoma) it could be a great summer.

  • RamblingMan

    The Future of WVU athletics:
    The AD: will be known as federal inmate #2357986. Bid rigging is a serious felony.
    The football coach: Will resign after the 2013 season for a head coaching position at a more stable program. Kansas.
    The basketball coach: was seen at a busy intersection in Morgantown holding a sign that read, Will coach B-ball for a bottle of scotch.
    Enjoy these golden years of WVU athletics while they are upon us.

  • RamblingMan

    Two one-and-doners for the QB and RB positions. Junior college nimrods who barely know what a text book is manning the defense.
    Wow, the future is so bright I gotta wear..., wait, wait a minute. I got to find the light switch.

    • Kevin

      "I got to find the light switch." Are you seriously talking about people that "barely know what a text book is" when your grammar is so pathetic? Pot, meet kettle.

    • hailey

      keep on rambling man... Trickett has 2 yrs left, but hey who cares about facts. So what JC did you attend?

  • Phil M.

    I love Monday Morning Quarterbacks. Not a single one of you has any idea of what's going to happen.
    That's why they play the game to quote Herm Edwards.

    But I love reading the opinions.

    Go EERS !!!

    • chad

      Thats not what Herm Edwards said. Herm famously said 'You plaaaay to WIN the game". Your quote is much older, probably from Lombardi or Rockne or Pop Warner or somebody along those lines

  • Joe


    A bit off-topic so I apologize, but wanted to ask....have there been any specific events announced to recognize/celebrate the 25th anniversary of the 1988 Mountaineers? Thanks in advance for any intel.


  • jwg66

    Wow.... not too much left to say after that.... except I'd bet there are few starting positions actually decided at this point.

  • 1BigWVUFan

    The most noteable weakest area on WVU's 2013 team is the OL. Quinton Spain is the best on the OL. Pat Edger is slow. This has to be a huge area of concern for the Offensive Coaching Staff. Thus, WVU's OL will have to prove itself all season, though they should be much better coached under Crook. The other area I have concerns with are the kickers for 2013. WVU used to have some of the best kickers in the nation, but have been heavily lacking in this area for the past two seasons. The last good kicker to play for WVU was Pat McAfee, who now punts for the Indianapolis Colts. DeForest needs to prove he can coach this season and greatly improve WVU's kicking game.

    However, the rest of WVU's football team comes in with a much higher grade and is less questionable. The offensive back definitely not as talented as last seasons, but it is much more rounded than it has been in the past 2 seasons. WVU will have a much better running game and be a greater running threat than it has been since Holg became Head Coach. The passing game won't have the deep threat it has had the pass 2 seasons, but the underneath passing game will be much improved.

    Defensively, fans and foes will be greatly surprised, for under Mitchell the deep passes won't be there as they were last season. Teams will have to shorten up their passing game, and running the ball against WVU won't be an easy task. You won't see QBs making huge runs against the EERs either. Look for a lot more pressure to be put on opposing QBs.

    Overall, WVU's football team receives a solid "B". Don't expect WVU to score 50, 60 or more points in a game, nor will any opponent score these points against them. WVU will win and lose games based more on how well they play in the trenches. Thus, it is going to be the play of the OL, DL, LBs, and the kicking game that will make or break this team and determine their wins and loses.

    Offensively, WV has a few things working for it: Speed and Talent in the offensive backfield. In 2012, WVU had one big power running back in Shawn Austin. In 2013, there are 4: Simms, Wellman, Clay, and Smith. They also have 3 big guys who can catch in the middle and who will be tough to tackle: Wellman, Clay and Johnson, and Clay and Wellman love to hit people. Then there is the receiving core: White and Gibson should anchor this, with Gibson being the speedster. McCartney will need to prove he can catch the easy passes, for he and J.D. Woods both made the tough catches look easy last year, and both dropped the easy catches. The play of these players will allow Garrison, Buie, Smallwood, and Smith to highlight their skills. And with Trickett at QB the potential for WVU to have an offense that can play trench football is there. My only issue is that I don't think Crook has the talent or size on the OL to make the offense as efficient as it should be or could be.

    My concern over the 2013 kicking game comes from 2 areas: If Josh Lambert is the scholarship kicker some say he is, they why wasn't he kicking last season, and 2: DeForest flopped as DC last season, so can he even coach the Special Teams to make this a competitive unit, and more especially can he produce a kicking game that surpasses the what we have seen the past 2 seasons?

    And I'll be greatly surprised if Pat Eger wins the Center position. I don't see Eger winning a starting OL position, but he will be in the rotation. I look for either Orlosky or Underwood to be at Center.

    • matt

      you are putting a lot of faith into freshmen. Elijah Wellman? This guy is borderline D1 material based on his offer sheet.

      Gibson should be good, but lets let him develop a bit. Will Johnson hasn't proved anything, and LOL at calling Clay a "power back"

      • No1WVUFan

        The biggest reason Will Johnson didn't play in 2012 was that he couldn't block. All the coaches as well as teammates talked about how well he could catch and how hard he was to tackle. In his HS videos he made some tough catches.

        Elijah Wellman, can catch and from the reports he is a good blocker. His HS Videos show is can run the ball. He is a power back and runs straight ahead. He doesn't do well making or trying to make cuts.

        Mario Alford from his tape at GA Military looks a little like Tevon Austin. He is quick, makes great cuts, and if can get a step on you, you won't catch him. This kid is fast, and he can not only run with the ball, but catch passes. If anyone could come close to playing like Tevon it most likely will be Mario.

      • Michael Walker

        Matt, at 6'3" and 250 lbs, Cody clay is the best blocking back from last year. That's from Holgs.

        Expect to see him carry the ball in some short yardage plays. That's from JaJuan Seider.

  • tw eagle

    i'm beginning to smell 'desperation' in Motown . . .sims must be having some personal problems in Houston. . .why leave a program where you have excelled ? WVU will not add to his resume , WVU is a pass first offense . . .and rivals will list your grandmother as a top 5 QB in the ncaa if the right kind of incentive is involved . . .

    • Shawn

      It's rumored he wants to play against bigger teams with players who will be playing in the NFL. Thats what the rumor is.

    • Kevin

      And Rivals incentive would be????????

  • Shawn

    I see a 8 - 4 record if we get a few bounces our way. I feel like this team is flying under the radar and the coaches know what they have.

    Geno was a big talent but not quite what Holgs wanted running his team. We are building for a run in 2014. Let's go EERS!

    • Barry

      I think one big problem from last year for Geno was the lack of a consistant running game. These additions will certainly help. It is good to see some pieces coming together, maybe this won't be such a bad season after all.

  • Helen5844

    I am thrilled with this new Mountaineer. I am not going to sell this season short. We have never been able to do well when everyone tells us one or two are great and leave the rest of the team out.
    Karl Joseph was extraordinary last season but no one gave him any credit. Geno got it all. Stedman and Tavon were great but I never did see why so much to do about Geno. Makes the other guys give up. This year I hope to have a no name offense and defense. One where everyone of the members does their very best.

    • No1WVUFan

      Helen, I too like your comment.

      The 1972 Miami Dolphins had a "No Name" Defense. While WVU may be a year or two from this, due to the coaching changes and the talent brought in, as well as the experience some of the player have from last season, I think the D-Fense will play well.

      While I'm concerned about the lack of talent on the OL, I think Coach Crook will have them playing at their best. My biggest concern is the Kicking Game and that is being Coached by DeForest. There is only 1-Scholarship Kicker on the team this season, Josh Lambert, and he struggled during the Gold-Blue Game, and he was redshirted last season. WVU needs to find a kicker for 2014.

    • Joe

      "This year I hope to have a no name offense and defense. One where everyone of the members does their very best".

      Helen - liked your comment. Although I think we are a couple years from even approaching this, on the 25 anniversary season, you just described who the '88 Mountaineers were!

  • richard

    this has to help. i was looking at 6 or 7 wins this year, but this could help push us to 8 or 9 wins. but we still need the defense to improve dramatically to get 8 or 9 wins. wait, reality just hit me---i'm back to 6 or 7 wins. WE NEED SOME RECRUITING HELP ON THE DEFENSIVE SIDE. NOW!!!

    • chad

      I'm sticking with 6 or 7 until I see our QB play.

      • big tom

        how can anyone expect more than 5 wins this yr.... i see us falling to Maryland, and that will be a disaster.

      • Art in Ohio

        I'm with you Chad on the QB play. It is the key to the season. Defense will be better due to the fact WVU has no where else to go but up. If they find a solid QB...not great... but solid which means few mistakes then it can be a 7 or 8 win season.

  • Matt

    This is a big time back adding to our already loaded backfield, nothing but good happening here.

    • Pruntytown

      Breaking news. WV R C has just filed a lawsuit to keep Sims from transferring to WVU. They site collusion from Luck and Holgerson because of their ties to Houston and the fact that Sims might actually help WVU.

      • Michael Walker

        Pruntytown! Now THATS funny, I don't care who you are.

    • Protechcpa

      WVU now has one acceptable back and one maybe (Dreamius). This addition makes an above .500 season a possibility, although still highly unlikely. Without Smith and Sims, WVU has a backfield more on par with Fairmont State or Wesleyan. Loaded........for disaster maybe. Buie and Garrison, say hello to the bench.

      • mauldawg

        Protechcpa, Spoken like a true Herd fan. I guess when all you have is the Herd its ok to post like an idiot. You have no idea about the RBs at WVU. We are not the Herd. We play real football,not C-USA football.

        • Protechcpa

          Sorry. Hate Marshall. I am a WVU grad. Sit in Section 106 every home game. Go to as many away games as I can. Been a die hard since my dad started taking me to Old Mountaineer Field as a small fry. Attended all the home games even when I lived out of state for 5 years. But I am a realist and I speak my mind.

          • hailey

            Sure you are

          • Barry

            I am glad you speak your mind. Some people can't stand an opposing view. If they don't agree with you then they label you a Marshall fan. It is really getting old.

      • Michael Walker

        Protechcpa! You've got a pretty tough standard for anyone to meet. Rivals ranks Sims as the #5 RB in the nation for the upcoming season. Then there's Smith, Buie, Garrison and incoming freshman Smallwood. Did you see Clint Trickett's numbers for the game he played against Clemson? 344 yards and 3 TDs as a freshman. WVU will be pretty good.

    • chad

      Loaded backfield? Am I missing something here?

      • Tom

        Do you follow WVU football?

        • chad

          Our backfield hasn't been "loaded" since 2007. Do you follow WVU football

          • No1WVUFan

            Chad, WVU really hasn't a diverse backfield with both quality receivers and running backs that could be outlet receivers since Don Nehlen was Head Coach, and one of the best Big RBs in recent years, who could run as well as catch, and who was hard to tackle was Owen Schmitt.

            I think the 2013 offensive backfield could be one of the most well rounded, most diverse and over-all most talented WVU has had in sometime. I also agree I need to see the QB play.

        • Michael Walker

          Tom, I think Chad does follow WVU football....from Huntington or Pittsburgh I would guess. With now 5 quality backs those who doubt the QB situation should simply go to YouTube and watch the games Clint Trickett played when he was a freshman. FSU vs Clemson and FSU vs Wake Forest. It's good to see Allan writing about sports again. His court reporting is lacking.