Twitterless Trickett looks robust in preseason debut

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Clint Trickett enjoyed a splendid summer by most accounts.

Excluding his Twitter account, of course.

The quarterback’s recent social media misstep—a gone-viral Tweet that was equal parts sarcastic and sexist—generated more discussion during Thursday’s post-practice news conference when Dana Holgorsen revealed that he banned Trickett from tweeting.

“He made a mistake. He released a statement. Then I told him to get rid of all his social media,” the coach said. “If you abuse it, then it’s going to be gone.”

And gone it is. Trickett’s Twitter account, which had swelled to more than 13,000 followers, has been sacked.

Holgorsen said he wasn’t fretting any flare-ups over freedom-of-speech from his players.

“They chose to play at West Virginia University—we can do what we want to with (their) social media,” he said. “Our guys are pretty good about it. We try to keep our eye on it. If guys aren’t representing West Virginia University, West Virginia football and West Virginia athletics the way that they’re supposed to, then there will be repercussions with it.”

Holgorsen sounds a little like his offensive mentor Mike Leach, who barred all of Washington State’s players from Twitter in October 2012—a ban that lasted eight months. Leach previously squashed tweeting at Texas Tech in 2009.

Trickett didn’t need 140 characters to send a strong message Thursday. Though he’ll always look somewhat frail by FBS standards, the fifth-year-senior appeared more muscular than the version we saw last fall, or even last spring. And his arm looked robust and accurate, albeit throwing to a passing net and uncovered receivers.

Holgorsen said Trickett’s development stretches beyond the physical.

“His sense of urgency, the way he’s reading signals and getting the ball snapped, is night and day compared to what it was at any point last year,” Holgorsen said. “It’s just nice to be able to not have to coach a guy every single play. You can call it, and he does it, and you just move on to the next one.

“He’s in a good place, and we will continue to develop his leadership skills and his continuity with the rest of the receivers. There’s a real comfort level right now with him and (center) Tyler Orlosky and the receivers. That didn’t exist at any point last season.”

Beginning his apprenticeship behind Trickett was four-star freshman William Crest, the Baltimore product who arrived on campus less than two months ago.

During passing sessions Crest gravitated toward offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson, seeking feedback after seemingly every throw.

“His head is spinning,” Holgorsen said. “He’s going to make a ton of mistakes, and it’s our job to keep him up and keep coaching him.”

A key figure in Dunbar winning two Class 1A state championships in Maryland, Crest figures to battle Paul Millard for the backup job this fall before emerging as the frontrunner in 2015. At 6-2 and 210 pounds, he

“He just looks different than anyone else out there,” Holgorsen said. “He’s big, he’s fast, he’s strong, and he’s got a good arm. There’s a reason why we recruited him for three years.”

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