MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Curtis Feigt wanted his senior season to be special, even if it meant giving up sweets.
West Virginia’s right tackle, hoping to improve his mobility against edge rushers and become more effective on screens, dropped 15 pounds since January. And, yes, Feigt said the weight loss is noticeable, even on his 6-foot-7, 310-pound frame.
Now he’s working with the first-string offensive line, competing to retain the starting spot he held for the final six games last season. Though he’ll never be as athletic as left tackle Quinton Spain, Feigt figured he could become more nimble without sacrificing strength. So this offseason he became more committed to his cardio and more disciplined in the cafeteria.
“I kind of have a sweet tooth, so losing that sucked,” he said. “It was hard at first.”
Because Feigt couldn’t swear off sugar completely, he bargained with himself. After a day with no desserts, he could have chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast. He also became increasingly familiar with various yogurts.
“That was kind of like a substitute for sweets, and after a while you learn to get the hang of it.”
Feigt is being pushed by fellow senior Nick Kindler, who’s also backing up Spain on the opposite side.
“Spain and Feigt have both gotten their bodies in phenomenal shape, but Kindler is not going to concede the battle to them,” Mountaineers coach Dana Holgorsen said Monday.
At right guard, junior Mark Glowinski is the man to beat after redshirting last season, and third-year sophomore Marquis Lucas sits atop the depth chart at left guard, though Holgorsen stressed that senior Pat Eger “is practicing like a starter.”
Before injuring his ankle, Eger practiced at center during the spring, an experiment that appears to be finished. Two redshirt freshmen—Tyler Orloski and Tony Matteo—and junior college transfer Stone Underwood are competing now to win the position Joey Madsen held for the past four seasons (excluding two bowl games).
“We have three centers that have not played a lot of ball here,” Holgorsen said. “Stone is learning and has a long way to go. We just need to keep working to see who is going to win that job.”
First-year offensive line coach Ron Crook emphasized the depth chart “is still fluid” and suggested various players may change positions before the season opener against William & Mary in 25 days.
With WVU practicing in full pads for the first time Tuesday, the competition could soon reach maximum fluidity.
Said Feigt: “It’s more competitive than I’ve ever seen it. There are a lot of people wanting to play.”