Heading into spring ball, the biggest area of competition for WVU was at quarterback. Head coach Neal Brown wanted to give Garrett Greene, Will Crowder, and Nicco Marchiol all an opportunity to win the job or at least separate themselves from the rest of the pack heading into the summer months.
Brown was very complimentary of all three, but knew that adding a veteran, game-ready quarterback would truly put the Mountaineers in the best position to succeed this fall. Just days before the annual Gold-Blue spring game, former Georgia quarterback JT Daniels announced that he would be transferring into the program.
The former five-star recruit won the starting job at USC as a true freshman, becoming the first to do so since Matt Barkley in 2009. After dealing with some injuries, Daniels hopped into the transfer portal and landed at Georgia. There, the injuries would continue but when he did start, the Bulldogs won. He was 5-0 as the team's starter.
Although Brown will say that it's an "open competition", it's really JT's job to lose. He has the experience and the difference-maker ability which is something Brown has yet to have at the most important position since arriving at WVU.
Tuesday morning, Brown hopped on a Twitter Space with Anthony Treash of Pro Football Focus and talked about the process of targeting a veteran QB in the portal and how Daniels settled on WVU.
"We were looking for a guy that was at the end of his career. We wanted somebody who we felt could fit in our locker room and we really wanted somebody with experience and had really established himself. When you look at JT, when he's been healthy, he's played at a high level. He was looking for a spot where he could come in and compete to be the starter and an opportunity to win. And I think the pieces we have here on offense were very appealing to him. All five offensive linemen return. We've had two years in a row where we've had a freshman All-American on the offensive line. We've got a group of running backs that by committee is very strong. We've got two established receivers in Bryce Ford-Wheaton and Sam James with a guy that's up and coming that has tremendous upside in Kaden Prather. I think those things were really appealing to him and then, we've played defense at a high level. I think the fact that Graham was here and he spent a full spring and a full fall with Graham at USC, knew the system, so I think there was a level of comfort with Graham. So things worked where it was a really good fit for him and JT was a good fit for us."
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