MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The running backs rotation at West Virginia currently includes senior Charles Sims and three juniors, making the position crucial as Mountaineers coaches continue stocking up for the Class of 2014.
MetroNews continues its recruiting series today with a look at running backs atop WVU’s board. And once again, Rivals.com writer Keenan Cummings of WVSports.com graces us with scouting reports.
RB • Durham (N.C.) Hillside
Earlier this month, the Rivals.com four-star running back narrowed his top three finalists to Clemson, Florida State and West Virginia, with Notre Dame in fourth. He’s a 6-foot, 218-pounder and the high school teammate of another WVU target, receiver Trevion Thompson.
“He has the size that college coaches crave, and West Virginia is currently in the top four after he visited Morgantown over the summer,” Cummings said.
“He plans to return on an unofficial visit for the July 27 camp, but isn’t expected to make a quick decision. Still, having two unofficial visits this early is never a bad thing.”
RB • Palmdale (Calif.) High
“West Virginia doesn’t typically recruit the state of California, but this is an exception to the rule,” Cummings said.
Running backs coach JaJuan Seider is WVU’s lead recruiter for this three-star recruit, who ran for 24 touchdowns and most 1,900 yards as a junior. Richard holds offers from a number of Pac-12 programs, including Oregon, UCLA, Cal, Washington and Arizona, so bringing him east will be a challenge.
“He plans to officially visit West Virginia this fall, and the Mountaineers’ offense is attractive to the do-it-all running back,” Cummings said.
RB • Buford (Ga.) High
At three-star prospect at 5-10, 175 pounds, Wilson is being pursued by the likes of Tennessee, Mississippi State, Missouri, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Kansas State and Michigan State.
“Wilson has the ability to play several positions, including running back, and the Mountaineers recently made the cut for the talented athlete,” Cummins said. “He had originally planned to visit over the summer, but now it appears that won’t occur until an official visit this fall.
“Pulling him out of SEC country will be the biggest challenge, but if the Mountaineers are able to get him on campus, the chances of that will increase.”
RB • Bethlehem (Ga.) George Walton Academy
At 5-8, 196 pounds, Williams is a four-star prospect who pledged to Kentucky on June 13, a primary reason the Wildcats are assembling—somewhat astonishingly—one of the nation’s premier recruiting classes. Rivals.com lists Williams as the top-rated all-purpose back in the country and the No. 9 overall recruit in Georgia.
“While he is currently committed to Kentucky, that hasn’t stopped the Mountaineers’ pursuit,” Cummings said. “He could excel out of the backfield or as a wide receiver at the next level and has track speed. Kentucky is obviously the team to beat, but the challenge will be attempting to bring him in for a visit.”
Williams also holds offers from 13 name programs including LSU, South Carolina, Georgia, Auburn, Tennessee and Wisconsin.