MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — What stung Clint Trickett worse than even a pulverized throwing shoulder was the agony of losing.
He was back in Morgantown and back on the West Virginia campus where he spent his adolescence as a coach’s son. Comforted by a familiar past and presented with an opportunistic future, he hoped to begin Chapter 2 of his college career by making the Mountaineers winners.
But 4-8 wasn’t that.
It wasn’t something West Virginia fans or their quarterback could stomach. After all, the program hadn’t endured a losing record since 2001, when Trickett’s dad Rick first joined Rich Rodriguez’s staff. That 3-8 season, which proved an anomaly after WVU bounced back for three top-10 finishes under Rich Rod, orientated the young Trickett to the impact of the Mountaineers on this state.
“I’ve been the kid who had to go the school the next day and hear, ‘Your dad sucks!’ And I understood it because, well, we lost, so yeah,” Trickett said.
“Us and the basketball team are what everybody looks at. We are the quote/unquote pro teams in West Virginia.”
He embraces that responsibility, and has since the day he returned to campus last summer, beginning what was a frustrating, painful and wholly unsatisfying debut season. His designs on delivering in Year 2 are based on making quicker decisions and synching up with the talented skill players around him. He felt the state’s pain in 2013 just like he did in 2001, only this time he’s in a position to do something about it.
Watch a “Cheers & Jeers” recap of Trickett’s first season above.