Grad transfer Cullen Christian academically ineligible for Liberty Bowl

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two final-year West Virginia players were deemed academically ineligible for the Liberty Bowl game against Texas A&M.

Graduate transfer Cullen Christian, the backup to K.J. Dillon at Spur safety in 12 games this season, and seldom-used defensive lineman Brandon Jackson did not travel to Memphis.

“Their senior years ended one game earlier than we anticipated,” head coach Dana Holgorsen said.

Christian made five tackles this season after transferring from Pitt. His absence elevates Dayron Wilson to the No. 2 spot behind Dillon.

Jackson was a redshirt junior who told coaches last month he would not return for his final year of eligibility.

Jacky Marcellus update: Holgorsen said the redshirt freshman receiver is “in a good place” after being grazed by a bullet in a Christmas Eve shooting in Immokalee, Fla.

Marcellus’ brother Jackinson was shot in the face, police said.

After redshirting in 2013, Marcellus was sidelined for all of 2014 when he tore knee ligaments in preseason camp.

“Hopefully he’ll be joining us in a day or two,” Holgorsen.

Backup quarterback: With sophomore Skyler Howard pegged as the starter for WVU at the Liberty Bowl, who is the backup quarterback? That depends on the situation.

Clearly, senior Paul Millard becomes the best-available option, but he didn’t appear in the regular season and hopes to redshirt for a return in 2015.

Then there’s senior Logan Moore, a former Division II standout at Fairmont State who has split time at receiver since walking on at West Virginia.

“If a helmet pops off we’re probably going to put Logan in there,” Holgorsen said. “But if something (worse) happens to Skyler, we’re probably going to go with Paul to put our best foot forward to win the game.”

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