Ben Queen/WVMetroNews

Senior Clint Trickett, named West Virginia’s starting quarterback by Dana Holgorsen in June, delivers a pass during preseason camp.


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — It didn’t take a village to make Clint Trickett whole again, just three wise men: Dr. James Andrews, Chris Weinke and Dana Holgorsen. Each had a balancing stake in the mind-body-soul reboot that returned the West Virginia quarterback to the field so that he could be, well, West Virginia’s quarterback.

Andrews, now 41 years and approximately 48,000 surgeries into reassembling athletes, repaired Trickett’s AC joint, labrum and rotator cuff on Jan. 13—injuries that dated back to Sept. 28 and rendered Trickett spaghetti-armed throughout his final six starts.

The rehab, so cautious and maddeningly measured, required weeks before Trickett was allowed to lift even a light weight above his shoulder, much less resume throwing. After sitting out spring practice, he was cleared in May to begin soft-tossing 20 to 25 passes a day.

“It was a long offseason,” Trickett recalled Tuesday. “You’re thinking, ‘Man, am I going to play? Am I going to be normal again?'”

His first month of throwing wasn’t normal or encouraging. The shoulder was functioning but his mechanics were unraveling. So off went Trickett to Bradenton, Fla., to work under Weinke’s watch at the IMG Academy. It only took a few hours for the two ex-Florida State quarterbacks to spot a flaw.

“There was one major thing Chris saw,” Trickett said. “My back foot was so far outside the framework of my body that I had no leg power. It was all shoulder and all arm. And the ball was all over the place.”

With his footwork rectified, Trickett’s arm angle improved. Almost instantly he noticed his passes gaining steam: “There was so much more velocity and zip on the ball and less pressure on my arm.”

WVU’s 2013 preseason quarterback competition “kind of ate me up from the inside,” Trickett admitted. He lost his appetite and found sleeping difficult as he wondered, ‘Well, crap, did I screw it up today?'”

Once back in Morgantown for 7-on-7 sessions, the receivers saw new life on Trickett’s throws and the senior saw himself becoming physically sound. “For me to go out there and actually have positive results was just a huge relief.”

On June 24, Holgorsen provided even more relief—naming Trickett the starter.

In the six weeks since, Trickett has seized Holgorsen’s mandate and blossomed. No longer concerned about winning the job, he has focused on winning over teammates. Coaches can harp on the benefits of camp competition, but in no way does Trickett miss the preseason quarterback duel he endured in 2013.

“Absolutely not,” he said. “I care so much about it that it kind of ate me up from the inside, literally, especially with my celiac disease and everything. It took a toll on me.”

Returning last year to the town where he spent much of his youth, and welcomed by expectations that he immediately would become Air Raid’s next 4,000-yard passer, Trickett tormented himself with worry. He struggled to sleep, lost his appetite and began dropping weight from his already-spindly 175-pound frame.

“You’re just worrying, ‘Well, crap, did I screw it up today?'” he said. “Now, not to have that in the back of your mind is definitely helping me. I’m actually gaining weight.”

While Trickett said he still needs “to shake off” a twinge after deep throws, he no longer relies on the pain medication that he needed to tolerate the second half of last season.

“Now, I’m just playing without anything,” he said. “(The shoulder) feels fine. It’s awesome.”

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  • Aaron

    It's nice to see positive comments regarding Trickett. I for one believe he will be successful this year but I understand that even if he throws for 4000 yards and 30 TD's, if the defense gives up more points than WVU scores, the wins simply will not be there.

  • any major dude

    Anybody who wants to get better and works hard to get better, regardless of the circumstances, is going to get better. I've done my job for 31 years now and still work to get better. Im honest enough to admit i was atrocious when I was starting my career but wasnt satisfied with that. It would be easy to kick back and just go through the motions after all these years but that's not going to help me or my colleagues. Every day brings a new challenge. You go Clint!

    • uncle phil


      When did this suddenly become all about you? The subject at hand is Trickett and whether he'll be improved from last year. Take your personal issues to the Oprah Winfrey message board.


  • william

    I'm so far behind that I think I'm ahead.

    • william


    • the flying dutchman

      the most accurate statement to date...william, there is hope for you yet. repeat after me...."my name is william and i'm clueless"...this is the first step in recovery.

  • WV Grad

    Trickett's got the ability and the grit. Go Clint!

  • william

    Trickett didn't get the job done last year, looks like it will be a repeat 4-8 again!
    Just look at the picture -
    He's not even holding the football correct. WOW!
    How many difference quarterbacks will WVU play this year?
    over/under number is 4.

    • mannadam59

      @ William. I guess since William played second string qb back in midget league he knows how to play qb in college. Just to prevent you from continuing to be ill- informed, laces don't matter on quick bubble and rocket screens to the receivers. The main thing is to catch the snap & get the ball out there as quickly as possible, not make sure you have the ball by the laces first. Watch a lil more college ball willy.

    • Vincent M

      William. It is "different" not "difference." That Marshall edumacation is not meeting the rigors of this website

    • Sick'em

      Welcome back William. We Mountaineer fans have no problems with homosexuals. We will treat u just like a sister.

    • Steve

      wow looks like your ready to move into the quarterback coaching ranks, NFL or NCAA. GET A LIFE!!!!!!

    • Jim

      Wow, Bill, are you some mechanics coach / analyst? LOL

  • spiralninja

    Silver and Gold have I none, but such as I have, give I thee, rise up and be ye made whole. Now, go play ye some football, and win!

    These articles are beginning to adopt a seasoning of savory flavor. I like. Keep them coming, good man.

    • wow

      I hope this was an attempt at.hymot and you aren't that bug of a loser

  • North Central WV Lady

    The headline should have read : "Trickett Meets the Magi" - I love it. I wish him nothing but the best - go 'EERS !

  • FungoJoe

    There ought to be an abundance of single game tickets this year. Season ticket sales are down 12% this year and down 25% from Coach Stew's last season. Ollie cannot be happy about that. Looks like many fans will be dressed up as empty seats for that epic battle with Towson State. Or is it with Northeast Maine State? Or Vermont Tech?

    • J the C

      bs was a crap coach. cut me a break!

    • don

      Hey fungojoe; don't knock it. Beamer at vt has made a career out of scheduling d2& d3 teams in the first half of every season, yet his friends in the rating dept point at those lopsided wins and give him a top 20 ranking year after year.3 or 4 wins certainly look better on paper than 3 or 4 humiliating losses.

    • Mister Man

      Those teams are in C-USA, right?

    • Aaron

      While it is true that WVU is playing the little sisters of the poor in some nonconference games, that comes with being a member of a big boy league.

    • steve

      Strength of scheudle is rated 12th in the country-look it up

      • WV Common Tater

        Everybody wants a good season, so team up with an easy win. No Brainer.

    • wait

      I think Oklahoma, Baylor, and Kansas state cancel out our one weak non conference game. Check yourself and.have fun with Rhode island and old fan

      • WVUness

        OU yes. Baylor ranked somehow baffles the rest of the college football world. KSU may be a little better however. WVU has better recruiting than KSU and Baylor combined.

  • Uncle Phil

    WHAT??? You're telling me a few seasons at almighty FSU and one season with QB guru Dana Holgorsen, and not ONE coach told him his stance was incorrect????????


    • Mister Man

      As is your comment.

    • Real Man Of Genius

      You know that Michael Vick played all high school, college, pro, yard ball at jail, then pro again before Chip Kelly finally told him last year that he was holding the ball wrong, right?

    • Tomgone12

      If you listened to Clint's interview with Tony Caridi last night you would have learned that his mechanics went haywire as a result of his injury and overcompensation. It is not as if his legs ahve been out from under his shoulders his entire career. What is most important here is the kid figured it out for himself. He was aware something was not right and sought help from Chris Wienke.

    • DWM

      Uncle, Clearly you haven't played a sport or you would know that mechanics always need tweaking. That's why mlb hitters and pitchers are always looking at tape, and why there are qb gurus all over the place.

      Add in the fact that Trickett went months without throwing and it is to be expected that his mechanics were all over the place when he got back at it.

      • Uncle Phil

        Poor excuse! You gotta come up with something better.

        • Jim

          Here's something better: You're an idiot!

        • Adubyavufan

          The report doesn't say his stance had been wrong for,yrs. maybe to compensate for his arm insecurities he widened his stance after the surgery. FSU wouldn't have known and since Dana can't work with him in off season maybe he didn't know either . I don't know for sure just speculating.

          • An actual athlete

            Throwing mechanics whether in baseball or football are in a constant state of change. Any injury to any body part can effect them. Sometimes your body tells you to adjust in a way that is counterproductive to your throwing motion. Kicking your plant foot back in order to gain more zip on the ball isn't stupid it just isn't biomechanically correct. Same as a pitcher dropping his release point because his ribs or oblique hurt. It ends up hurting you more in the end but it feels better temporarily. If you haven't pitched or qb'd at a high level you wouldn't understand that. As for holding the laces there have been many a qb who prefer to throw without them. Typically guys with large hands. Since your prolly a turd fan Byron leftwich comes to mind.

          • uncle phil

            So, I guess what you're saying is that ole'Trick isn't the sharpest knife in the drawer.

            "Golly gee, my shoulder hurts. Let me just spread stance and see if that helps."

            If you listened to what he said, tightening his stance makes it easier and takes the load OFF of his shoulder! Therefore, your argument makes NO SENSE.

  • the flying dutchman

    tip of the hat allan...loved the insight to tricketts rehab....i remember the flutter balls last season and now understand.

    to jay gloom and doctor on call...may i suggest a long walk off a short pier. of course knowing neither of you can stay on point for any length of will be a short walk.

  • jay zoom

    Allan -- where did you come up with the Idea Dana was a wise man. (were you in the sauce) the only wise thing he could do is pack his bags and get the hell out of Morgantown. 3-8 THANKS OLLIE

    • Troll

      No, thank you jay zoom for your wonderful insight and same old meaningless post. Just maybe you and William could together sometime for a play date, it appears your a perfect couple.

  • James L. Burns

    I am very optimistic and comfortable with him at quarterback. We will give Alabama fits and will have a very good season.

    • Jason

      give Bama fits?? Come on man. Bama is contending for the national championship this year and probably the best team in the SEC. IF WVU can play with Bama for a QTR or so, eventually the depth and athleticism and coaching (Yes, Saban is a better coach) will run its course during the game....this game will be a blow out in favor of the tide.

      • J the C

        May I remind you gentlemen of a game a few years ago when App. State went to Ann Arbor. Just sayin'...

      • roger markos

        We will beat the crap out of Alabama my ars

      • steve

        I agree Jason, Bama is no Miami Oh, ODU, UTSA or any other alphabetic cream puff on the 122 ranked schedule out of 128 teams. Enjoy your 13-0 and your 21,000 attendance.

      • Billly

        Yeah Saban is so good ....did you see how he managed the end of that Auburn game. I mean that was some great he had his team prepared for the return. Pure genius on his part.

      • Kevin

        Not sure how everyone just comes to the conclusion that Saban is a better coach. I understand he has championships and all, but let's swap coaches and see what happens. BAMA recruits for itself. WVU has to dig deep for more hidden gems. Most coaches in America, able to get that kind of talent, would have turned bama into the power that it is today. Saban did it (dont get me wrong here, i love Saban), Rod could have done it, Holgs could do it......95% of NCAA coaches out there could have done it; with that talent base coming in....Saban is a better recruiter than he is coach......

        • Tshot

          You are correct on one thing, Saban is a great recruiter, actually the best in the land just ask Spurrier! As for any coach doing what Saban has that is ridiculous! Before Saban got there Bama was a shell of its old self! So without Saban's ability to recruit then Bama is still a has been. Now do I think Saban is the best coach, not even close! I think there are a dozen coaches who with THAT talent (credit to Saban on recruiting) would have won many more titles that Saban has!

          • WVUness

            When you start playing teams for the NC that beat you in the season and get credit for winning a NC? Thats countable? LOL @ Saban best coach. Recruiter great yes.

    • Al Koholik

      I'll have what he's drinkin.

      • FungoJoe

        What flavor is the Holgorsen Kool-Aid this year?

        • D

          Red Bull-flavored

  • Loyal Mountaineer

    If Trickett can stay healthy, I think he will have a big year. His build reminds me of Marc Bulger, who was a very slight fella. It would be great to have a hometown boy do good and lead the team well beyond their expectations.

    • cutty77

      Compare Trickett to Marc Bulger. You have got to be kidding me.I really don't have any other comment on that statement,which is a first coming from me. lol

  • Doctor on Call?

    Better have doc ready on the sidelines against Bama. I doubt Noodle Arm will make it through the 1st quarter.

    • FNP

      Learn about football and come back later.

    • i know

      thanks for the dumb a-- remarks williamer, i mean doctor.

  • Rimfire

    Allan,You do a great job in getting us info. Keep up the good work and have a great day.