MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — While it remains unannounced who’ll take the first snap Saturday, West Virginia knows who’ll make the first snap.
Enter redshirt freshman center Tyler Orlosky, equal parts anxious and agog about playing in his first real football game in one year, 10 months and 13 days.
“It’s going to be interesting,” said the 6-foot-4 recruit from Cleveland’s St. Edward High, who weighs within a pepperoni roll of 300 pounds. One of three potential new starters in the middle of WVU’s offensive line, Orlosky has the most challenging task—making pre-snap line calls and then, of course, making the shotgun snaps that start each play.
The previous Mountaineers center, Joe Madsen, also was an Ohio kid who wound up making 50 starts over four seasons. That could prove to be Orlosky’s legacy as well, though he isn’t looking beyond Saturday’s game against William & Mary. While players are allotted four tickets each, Orlosky plans on having six family members in the stands, thanks to borrowing two tickets from right tackle Curtis Feigt.
“I haven’t played an actual game in over a year, since high school football,” he said. “And obviously high school football is a lot different than college.
“Yeah, I dressed for a few games (in 2012), but when you’re actually on the field, making the calls and making sure that ball gets back to the quarterback, it’s a lot different.”
And which quarterback would that be?
“I already know, but you’ll have to find out on Saturday,” he said.
STICKING WITH SHOTGUN
Geno Smith went under center a few times last season, and Orlosky doesn’t foresee that becoming more frequent this fall, even though WVU is stocked at running back and expecting to be more balanced.
“We’ll do it a lot on goal-line situations and when we’re coming out of our own end zone, because that’s where we’re more comfortable under center,” Orlosky said. “Otherwise, when we’re driving down the field, we’ll be in the usual shotgun.”