MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University’s newest Mountaineer is more than ready for current mascot Troy Clemons to pass the torch — or musket, rather.

Elkins native Trevor Kiess was named the 65th WVU Mountaineer during the WVU v. Iowa State basketball game Saturday, an honor that he says he’s dreamt of since childhood.

“I’ve been a diehard Mountaineer fan for my entire life,” Kiess said. “My dad likes to joke around and say that I wanted to be the Mountaineer before I could even grow a beard.”

Kiess is a senior at WVU and will graduate in May with a degree in accounting. He then will continue his education at WVU to pursue a Masters in Business Administration.

Throughout his undergraduate career, Kiess has been a part of numerous campus organizations, including the Chimes Junior Honorary and Beta Gamma Sigma Honorary, is a student-athlete tutor and is active in several community organizations. He currently serves as an accounting intern for the WVU Foundation.

“I’ll have to cut back a little bit, for sure, because the Mountaineer’s schedule is pretty busy,” he said. “But I’m ready to do that. I’ve been granted several opportunities during my time in college to do a bunch of different things, and I’m looking forward to the next chapter.”

The duties that come with the buckskins and musket are not new to Kiess. He has spent the last year as the alternate Mountaineer under Troy Clemons.

“I did just about every event that the Mountaineer does as an alternate — every type of sporting event, football, men’s basketball, several different community events,” he said.

But what Kiess looks most forward to visiting the state’s schools as the official Mountaineer and meeting with children throughout the Mountain State.

“That kind of sparked my interest because a former Mountaineer came to my school,” he said. “That’s where I think the true impact of the Mountaineer lies is with the children of West Virginia.”

Kiess will officially begin his reign as the 65th Mountaineer at the Gold-Blue spring football game on April 7, and he says he is excited to serve the state and the university.

“I’m starting to work out now, and by the time April 7 rolls around, we’ll be ready,” he said.

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