Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Quarterback Ford Childress, who made two starts for West Virginia last season as a redshirt freshman, has reportedly left school.


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Saturday’s revelation that Ford Childress has left school further clouds West Virginia’s offseason quarterback situation.

A two-game starter in 2013 before a torn pectoral muscle shelved him for the season’s final eight weeks, the 6-foot-5 Childress possesses a big-time arm that made him one of the nation’s top-rated pro style quarterbacks coming out of high school. The rising sophomore could have made his case for the Mountaineers starting job during spring drills, especially with incumbent Clint Trickett slated to undergo surgery this week to remedy a torn labrum.

With Trickett reportedly facing up to a six-month rehab, West Virginia could begin spring drills with only two healthy quarterbacks—senior Paul Millard and junior college signee Skyler Howard. (In a curious connection, both hail from the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex and neither held an FBS offer coming out of high school.)

One player who holds numerous major-college offers, four-star freshman recruit William Crest of Baltimore,  has been committed to WVU since last April. He is expected to sign with West Virginia next month but won’t arrive until summer.

Millard underwhelmed in three starts last season, though his extended relief appearance against Texas featured some noteworthy moments in what became a 47-40 overtime loss. Howard began last season as a virtual unknown at Riverside (Calif.) City College, before piling up 3,151 passing yards and 33 touchdowns. After receiving a late-November scholarship offer from West Virginia, he signed in December and enrolled last week.

Childress’ totals were 36-of-63 passing for 421 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions. Though he won his first start 41-7 over Georgia State, the following week saw Maryland whitewash WVU 37-0 in Baltimore, a blowout jump-started by a Childress pick-six. Only after the game did head coach Dana Holgorsen and offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson say they learned Childress had played through the pectoral injury.

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  • tw eagle

    good luck to the Ford . . . if he can find a program that gives him 5 minutes to set up & throw he'll flourish as a QB . . . otherwise this 'posterboy' of a QB will have to accelerate his feet and thought process to become a competent player . . .

    • jeff

      bring John Pennington and Garin Justice up from Concord you'll get Rich Rod,Bill Stewart,Bobby Bowden,Rick Tricket,Jimbo Fisher, style coaching just look at Concords web site

  • Magic Mike

    DH reminds me of the coach where I work at. JMU. No wait he is worse. Good team and always bad QBs.

    • jeff

      Bring John Pennington and Garin Justice up from Concord University, you'll get experence plus added tutoring from having team meetings and coaching from Don Nehlen, Rich Rod,Bill Stewart,Bobby Bowden,Rick Tricket, and Jimbo Fisher, and take a look at Concords web site and read their good coaching profile

  • richard

    i never saw where childress was all that great. his ball had no zip (even before he injured it) , he made bad decisions, and he couldn't escape from a fat boy with a sucker in his hand. no lose here.

    • scott

      0 zip...nada

    • wow

      What, he injured the ball. No wonder we lost so many games, we were playing with an injured ball. Good luck Ford, hope where you are going works out.

    • TNAP

      Hey man, I'm with you!!! In Maryland game he moved in pocket like a fawn just born! I'm happy he is gone too!!!

      • Aaron

        Would that be the game in which he played with a torn pectoral muscle?

        • Larry

          That he reportedly tore while out partying?

          • Aaron

            Regardless, it was torn and had an effect on his ability to throw the ball.

  • Rich

    Not good news for 2014. I was really hoping Childress/Trickett/Howard could serve as a bridge next year before the Crest era, enabling us to RS Crest as a FR. Now we are down to an unknown JUCO and a rehabbing Trickett. I wasn't expecting anymore than 5-6 wins from next year's team anyway. We have a pretty impressive stable of RBs. It's time the OL steps up and earns their scholarships. Dana has to "coach to his team's strengths" (not a strong suit of his). Play ball control by running the ball and winning time of possession, that also keeps our defense off of the field and rested to keep up with the high powered offenses in the Big 12. By 2015 our defense should be more confident and experienced and we will still have good RBs and (hopefully) a dual threat QB (Crest) ready to play Big 12 football

    • joe

      Now there is this BS rumor that Cato is transferring to WVU.I seriously doubt that.But if it were true mark it down as another win over marshall.

    • Ole Sasquatch

      Yes, it all starts with the offensive line, that cannot be overstated enough in our case - good observation Rich. If I am correct about Skylar Howard his elf like coordination will make the offensive line look better than what it really is.

  • steve

    im missing rich rod more and more...................

    • wvrefugee

      Me too my friend! This Luck-Holgerson thingy ain't working out so hot!

    • Rock Solid

      @steve: Good for you, go ahead and move to Arizona, nobody will miss you. You and Rich Rod can wonder the desert for 40 years together.

    • The Wisetalker

      Sorry Steve but Rich is married to Rita...

    • JM

      many of us are missing rich, he'll be back

      • Marcus

        We'll have Doc as our next Head Coach. Why would you want someone who didn't want to be here? Heck at this rate Rich will know about every school fight song in the country from running out in the middle of the night to yet another program.

        • Ms Horsewoman

          No way will Mogantown CC pay Doc's ransom.

    • Magic Mike

      Your the only one.

      • scott

        why? a thing for back stabbing liars do ya?

        Perhaps you are Louisville fan at heart.

      • Paul

        You're ...not .... your

  • frank

    If DH could put away the pansy's on the schedule maybe the backup QB's could get experience and playing time which would help in getting QB's ready and maybe help keep the backups happy and motivated. DH's failure to put the William Mary away in the 1st half causes other problems. Need new coach if things do not improve soon.

  • Indian Boy

    So I guess this will be another player that will leave, turn into a star and of course torch WVU in the future. He has the talent just needs someone to teach him. Don't see that person on DH 's staff

  • Jeremy

    Relax People!
    We have two great QBs coming. One is already there. We don't need Childress! He sucks

  • Master of One

    And so it begins...

  • Boookman

    This is just terrible , I won't sleep tonight !!!

    • The Wisetalker

      He was too young for you anyway. In time, you will feel better...

  • Ole Sasquatch

    Skylar Howard - Doug Flutie? We will see.

  • Floss Rancher

    If Mr. Childress played through an injury without telling his coaches, I am glad to see him gone. That type of player is sometimes labeled gutty and determined, but it's actually the move of a glory hound willing to hurt his team rather than give up his time in the spotlight. He's a young kid, and I hope he gets his head together, but I'm glad he will be making that effort somewhere else.

    • Will

      Pretty sure Trickett did the same thing with his injury that now requires surgery. Want him to leave too?

      • madhatter


  • WVU1

    More proof of Dana's inability to identify talent.

    • Aaron

      Ford Childress was a four star recruit out of the house. He is a prototypical pocket quarterback with a big time arm that gives him the ability to make all the throws.

      If he goes to another division one institution he will have to set for a year, leaving him with three years eligibility. In addition, he can petition the NCAA for a medical redshirt for this year.

      If granted that would give him more years of eligibility. I'm sure there are numerous Schools out there that would take a chance on a player with his upside.

      How anyone could watch him play and come to the conclusion that he has no talent is beyond me but hey takes all kinds.

      • scott

        my ability to go make a freakin samich while his ball was in the air...and get back just before the interception...good luck truley does take all people with eyes.

      • Allan Taylor

        @Aaron: Because Ford already redshirted one season, if he transfers to a Division I school he must sit out a year and would only have two seasons remaining.

        • Aaron

          You are correct about the redshirt costing him one season of elegibility but he can apply for a 6th year of elegbility due to a medical hardship waiver from his injury-it meets the requirements for a medical hardship waiver-and regain one year of elegibility.

          Of course that would be a decision made by NCAA.

      • Ron

        He would only have 2 years of eligibility, if he would go to another Division1 school. He was red shirted his first year at WVU and played this past year.

    • Steve

      Please explain that comment ????

      • WVU1

        3 recruiting periods and no quality qb talent on the team with a self proclaimed 3 day offense. This was his horse, like Millard andTrickett. Won't matter to DH though - he won't make it to see the fruits of his "efforts". Clear enough?

        • Steve

          I guess Florida St. and Texas can't identify talent either as they both had offered him a scholly. He was a 4 star recruit.

          • WVU1

            Lets take your side. Then it's more of an indictment of DH's ability to develop talent.

  • Robin

    Looks like we need a few good running backs.

    Here is what I don't understand Allan. We have always had pretty decent college quarterbacks. Now suddenly we got nothing. Hope maybe, but nothing we can depend on. How have we fallen so quickly in this vital position?

    I guess the saving grace here is the DH offense is so simple it only takes three days to install and then it is repetition from then forward.

    • Aaron

      WV's history of good QB's should come with an asterisk. From transfers like Jeff Hofstettler, Jake Kelchner and Clint Trickett to the QB's who chose WV primarily because it was their only option to play the position, Major Harris and Pat White, seldom has WV been the final choice of a top tier QB.

      Geno would be the exception and he was brought to Morgantown by Doc. The truly sad part is that we're it not for the wasted year in 2009 when Geno sat behind Jarrett Brown, he could have been a senior on this years team.

      • wvu09

        ummm what about Marc Bulger?

        • Aaron

          At 6 feet tall and very skinny, Johnny Majors at Pitt passed on him. While he did have D-1 offers (namely due to who his father was) he wasn't sure fire recruit. One labeled him 3 star recruit, another a 2 star recruit.

          • Tom

            @Aaron, how could Marc Bulger get recruited by Johnny Majors at Pitt when Marc Bulger was BORN four months after Johnny Majors took the job at University of Tennessee? Bulger was born 4/5/1977. Majors took the Tennessee job January 1977.

          • cutty77

            @ Aaron,
            Your way off on 2 comments. Bill Stewart got Geno after Boyd opted to go to Clemson,and Johnny Majors hadn't been at Pitt for 15 years when Mark Bulger was around that area,maybe Mark's Dad.Jim Bulger,but he backed up Joe Theismann at Notre Dame

    • leroy j gibbs

      If dh offense is easy to learn then that explains why opposing defenses have had no trouble figuring out our offense

    • jeepster

      Robin, imho it's this.... we had three quarterbacks with little or no college game experience last year. To develop them,it takes a patient coach. Something holgy does not have. He changed qbs last year more than some people change their underwear. I don't know why Childress is leaving, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Millard leave also.

  • rekterx

    I guess I'm the first to respond.

    Gloom. Agony. Despair.


      You need to revive HeeHaw; get a life !

    • Hailey

      Enough about your life, this is an article about WVU football

      • Greg

        LOL. Best post yet.

        • The Wisetalker

          rexterx will someone else to love I am sure...

          • The Wisetalker

            find someone else