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MAILBAG: Success in Transfer Portal, Right Tackle Battle, 1958 Title Game + More

Answering this week's questions from the fans.

From @OLDSCHOOL58

Would WVU have won the 1958 National Championship if "King" Kelly Coleman had been allowed to play with Jerry West?

Answer: This is a very interesting question! Love the history with this one. Hard to think they still would have fell short with Coleman on board, but it's anyone's guess. If only his grades were just a tad higher...

From @WVHNIC

What's been the difference in approach to the portal last off-season versus this off-season for basketball? Looking back, Huggs had really good success with transfers before last season. Think this transfer class puts him back in that positive trend?

Answer: Recruiting transfer pre-portal was a lot different. It was mainly based off of prior connections. Now, a coach can hop in the portal and see a kid's name, look up his stats, and give the kid a call. It was an adjustment for Huggins and his staff. I don't know how this portal class will turn out, but I do think it will be significantly better than last year's. 

From @mgtnquasar

What should we truly expect from this year's football team? Will the offense be much improved from last year, or will it take a couple years to see a truly electrifying offense?

Answer: Graham Harrell leans on efficiency over the big, explosive play. However, they will still take several shots downfield with JT Daniels. It will be a much smoother operation than it has been at any point over the past three years, but it won't reach Will Grier or Geno Smith levels. Think of that Clint Trickett offense in 2014. A lot of pieces returning, but there's still a lot of room for that unit to grow. 

From @PaulMountaineer

Scouting report on Rashad Ajayi- the new Colorado State transfer. And does he slot right in and start?

Answer: Old-school corner. Loves to play up in press coverage, very physical with his hands, and is not shy in helping in run support. He seeks it. His technique could be cleaned up a little, but nothing alarming. Reminds me a lot of Josh Norwood. I wouldn't say he's a guaranteed starter, but he will certainly play a ton of snaps. 

From @jclar35

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How big of a battle is there at right tackle, if any?

Answer: If Brandon Yates is healthy, I don't think it will be much of one. They really like his ability, even after flipping over from the left side. Ja'Quay Hubbard has impressed the staff two years running, so if Yates does continue to be plagued with injuries, they'll feel comfortable throwing Hubbard out there. 

From @NickYore

What’s been the biggest difference in recruiting since the move from the Big East in your opinion? Football and basketball specific. Seems like we have lost NY/NJ and DMV areas for hoops.

Answer: For basketball, it's really hard to recruit New York and New Jersey without the Big East pitch. Those kids don't want to go halfway across the country to play their conference games. A move to the ACC would re-open that market for WVU. As for football, that area hasn't had strong ties to WVU for quite some time. Really since the Don Nehlen days if we're being honest. 

From @joedaboys

How good is this WVU baseball team? Can they make some noise in the Big 12 tournament? Will they make the NCAA tournament?

Answer: It's a young team with a lot of talent. This will be a great experience for them as they continue to grow together. Oklahoma handled them in two of the three games a week ago, so it won't be an easy start to the tournament. That said, WVU has played extremely well in this tournament over the years, even when they are in a "down season." Pitching is going to be the biggest question mark. If Watters and Hampton can eat up innings, they have a chance. Right now, they're projected as a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and I don't see that changing unless they win the tournament or get knocked out early and look really bad in doing so. 

From @bugpimpin

Any updates on Saint McLeod? Last I remember was from Neal’s presser about a month ago.

Answer: That's the last update we have heard. He was set to begin increasing his workouts right after spring ball and the expectation was that he would be ready for fall camp. I can't imagine that much has changed.

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