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Heisman Trophy campaign heating up for West Virginia’s Will Grier

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Will Grier’s Heisman Trophy campaign is continuing to pick up momentum in front of a nationwide audience.

The West Virginia quarterback appeared as a phone-in guest on Jim Rome’s national radio and television program on Wednesday afternoon, discussing a variety of topics ranging from his close relationship with Mountaineers head coach Dana Holgorsen and offensive coordinator Jake Spavital to his love for the “Despicable Me” movie franchise.

Rome, who is not one to beat around the bush as an interviewer, asked directly about the Heisman hype surrounding the quarterback. Grier was as prepared as he is against opposing defenses.

“I try to represent my family and my football family — really the whole state of West Virginia and this program – as well as I can,” Grier said.

Grier heads into Saturday’s homecoming game against Kansas among the nation’s leaders in most major passing categories. He is second in yards per game (371.8), third in quarterback rating (200.75), third in touchdown passes (17) and fourth in completion percentage (72.1).

His relationship with his coaches, particularly Spavital, was credited as a major reason for that surgical precision.

“Jake Spavital does such a good job of coaching football,” Grier said. “I’ve learned so much about the game, how to scheme, how to prepare, just from him.”

As far as each game’s preparation goes, Grier is essentially treated as another member of the coaching staff.

“I’ve learned what Jake’s looking for and building the game plan, and we do it together,” Grier said. “By the time game time comes around, I’m very well-prepared in the run game and pass game. I learn how an offensive coordinator puts together a game plan. He’s done an outstanding job of bringing me along.”

The interview did not just center around football, which only figures to help Grier’s cause. Heisman voters have become increasingly interested in assessing a player’s character in the wake of the off-field antics and allegations that followed trophy winners Johnny Manziel in 2012, Jameis Winston in 2013 and Baker Mayfield a year ago.

Grier was borderline giddy to tell Rome about his love for the  “Despicable Me” movie trilogy, which he watches with his nearly 2-year-old daughter, Eloise.

“‘Despicable Me’ is great. That’s one of her favorites,” said Grier, who sounded like even more of a fan than his daughter. “We watch all three. The Minions are great. Steve Carrell does an outstanding job as Gru. I’m a big fan of Gru. You’ve got to watch it.”

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