QB Pat White

2006 Statistics

Coach: Rich Rodriguez
50-24, 6 years
2006 Record: 11-2
at East Carolina WON 27-10
at Mississippi State WON 42-14
at Connecticut WON 37-11
at Louisville LOST 34-44
at Pittsburgh WON 45-27
Georgia Tech WON 38-35

2006 Final Rankings
AP-10, Coaches-10, BCS-13

2007 Outlook

The good news: Rich Rodriguez is still the head coach after a bizarre off-season coaching carousel. Rodriguez shunned the University of Alabama in favor of his Alma matter back in January…the same cannot be said for his assistants. Three new offensive coaches will take over - Tony Dews comes over from UNLV to coach the WRs, while Greg Frey and Rod Smith both come from South Florida to take over the OL and QB coaching duties, respectively. How the coaching evolves in Rodriguez’ crazy system is almost as important as how the players operate the show. Still, don't expect much to change in terms of schematics. Pat White will keep defenses frozen with his scrambling and running while Steve Slaton continues to put up huge numbers as he dashes through gaps. This will still be the staple, much as the successful previous two years have proven. The difference with this WVU team, and ergo why they garner a top five preseason ranking, is the amount of depth. Every position, in particular at the skill sets, is as deep as Rodriguez has ever had. The exception is the front walls as the OL and DL may not be quite as stacked, but both are formidable.

What’s that we hear? Expect more passing in 2007?! Pat White has failed to be mentioned in the past as worthy for national honors simply because his number of throwing attempts has been kept in check - running is in vogue here and it does the needed damage. But make no mistake - the former MLB draftee out of high school has an arm, which makes this team extremely, unpredictably dangerous. The keys to success and a BCS National Championship bid lay in improvements being seen amongst the defensive backfield. WVU has a stable of quality athletes, but how healthy the DL remains when bodies here are hard to find will tell much, too. The offense will put up points; thus, the defense will have to win any championships.

The schedule once again is extremely conducive to an undefeated run just like a season ago. The non-conference games are laughable (save Maryland). But just like last season, the resurrection of quality football in the newly constructed Big East will put this team to the test. A huge home game versus new rival Louisville, led by All-American Brian Brohm at QB, in the first week of November should be circled. The biggest road tests are at Rutgers and South Florida. The year changes, but the path to glory apparently has not. This team has reached the 11-game win plateau in each of the past two years under the leadership White/Slaton/Rodriguez. Simply put, this trio returns to treat college fans to their best showing yet. The recruiting is starting to reap the benefits, and, consequently, so are the victory totals. For fans who have seen the recent genesis, anything short of a National Championship Game appearance will be a disappointment. This is how far West Virginia Football has climbed.

Projected 2007 record: 12-0
QB - 4.5 DL - 4
RB - 5 LB - 3.5
WR - 3 DB - 3.5
OL - 3.5 ..

Passing: Pat White, 118-179-7, 1655 yds., 13 TD

Rushing: Steve Slaton, 248 att., 1744 yds., 16 TD

Receiving: Darius Reynaud, 39 rec., 520 yds., 2 TD

Scoring: Pat McAfee, 17-21 FG, 62-62 PAT, 113 pts.

Punting: Pat McAfee, 18 punts, 43.2 avg.

Kicking: Pat McAfee, 17-21 FG, 62-62 PAT, 113 pts.

Tackles: Quinton Andrews, 80 tot., 46 solo

Sacks: Eric Wicks, 7 sacks

Interceptions: Quinton Andrews, 5 for 67 yds.

Kickoff Returns: Darius Reynaud, 30 ret., 27.1 avg., 1 TD

Punt Returns: Vaughn Rivers, 18 ret., 10.8 avg., 1 TD


DB Eric Wicks
OFFENSE: Rayshawn Bolden-WR, Brandon Myles-WR, Jason Colson-RB/WR, Brad Palmer-TE, Jeremy Sheffey-OG, Dan Mozes-C
DEFENSE: Craig Wilson-NT, Warren Young-DT, Pat Liebig-NT, Jay Henry-MLB, Kevin McLee-WLB

This offense is under the full guidance of QB Pat White, the first of two offensive players (along with RB Steve Slaton) in Morgantown considered a top rated Heisman Candidate. That distinction is important given the vast array of talent at the QB position, three of whom have previous starting experience. The back up is Jarrett Brown, the hero of last fall's important Rutgers triple-OT victory as he admirably filled in for an injured White. Former starting QB Adam Bednarik, who sat out last season recovering from shoulder surgery, was the leading passer in the spring game. Given the depth at QB, Bednarik will move to WR by August in an effort to put him on the field (4.55 sec in the 40). The same holds true for former West Virginia prep Player of the Year Nate Sowers, as he now becomes a full-time receiver. In regards to the people catching the passes, upwards of 13 different players have the possibility of seeing substantial playing time. Coaches have stated as much by declaring that a true depth chart may not take shape until mid-September. Senior Darius Reynaud, last year's leading receiver, is a proven commodity. 6’8 youngster Wes Lyons is making some serious noise with his height advantage. He has some fundamentals to work on, but keep an eye on Wes. This is a proven rushing offense (No.2 last year) based on spreading defenses out and exploiting the defensive matchups, and no one understands how to exploit this better than All-American RB Steve Slaton. His 1,744 rushing yards and 16 ground scores, when combined with White’s 1,219 rushing yards and 25 rushing TDs, are what made this offense so feared as they ranked third in the land for scoring. WVU won't likely mess with what has gotten them this far until opponents show an ability to stop the attack. Big Owen Schmitt is back in the fold to carry the load at either FB or the TB spot. His bones crushing blocks and carries have now become things of legend in Morgantown (has lost only two yards rushing his entire collegiate career). The Mountaineers success is also attributed to a solid offensive line built around smaller, quicker, yet less heralded recruits. This could be one area that demands a special scouting notice since highly regarded OL coach Rick Trickett has moved on to Florida State. Filling his shoes, ironically, will be former FSU center Greg Frey…the Morgantown/Tallahassee coaching merry-go-round continues to circle. Frey comes from South Florida where he successfully served as the OL coach since 2000. Even with the graduation of Rimington Trophy winner (Nation's Best Center) Dan Moses and All-Big East guard Jeremy Sheffey, this group is just as worthy as any other to bunker the Blue and Gold front wall. OT Ryan Stanchek is one of the best anywhere and 2005 Freshman All-American Mike Dent will help ease some of the transition. With so many WRs, this spring saw most of the emphasis being placed on the passing game. Is this a move by head coach Rich Rodriguez to develop the passing ability of White so as to match his running prowess, or is it an attempt to find a set of starting WRs? Probably both, so look for White's passing numbers to increase. This system, built on a unique ground game which opens up lanes for throwing, will finally start to be utilized for its true aerial potential. But if you still see a low number of pass attempts, how could one argue the reasons?


RB Steve Slaton


Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Pat White-Jr (6-2, 185) Jarrett Brown-So (6-4, 220)
FB Owen Schmitt-Sr (6-3, 260) Maxwell Anderson-So (6-1, 240)
TB Steve Slaton-Jr (5-10, 190) Ed Collington-Jr (6-0, 205)
WR Tito Gonzalez-Jr (6-2, 210) Wes Lyons-So (6-8, 220)
WR Darius Reynaud-Sr (5-10, 200) Dorrell Jalloh-Jr (6-0, 195)
WR Nate Sowers-So (6-2, 215) Carmen Connolly-So (6-1, 190)
TE Mike Villagrana-Sr (6-4, 260) ..
OT Ryan Stanchek-Jr (6-4, 300) Selvish Capers-Jr (6-6, 285)
OG John Bradshaw-Jr (6-6, 290) ..
C Mike Dent-Jr (6-4, 285) Eric Jobe-Fr (6-4, 300)
OG Greg Isdaner-So (6-4, 315) Eric Rodemoyer-Fr (6-4, 300)
OT Jake Figner-Jr (6-5, 305) Jon Walko-So (6-7, 280)
K Pat McAfee-Jr (6-1, 220) Scott Kozlowski-So (6-1, 185)


One year ago, the big question was how a completely new set of players would perform in the secondary; the losses were heavy. The results of having such great run stoppers (ranked 13th) were a 109th-ranked pass defense. The entire DB group returns, led by two-time All-Big East selection Eric Wicks. Through the spring, Wicks has been playing all three-safety positions in their unique 3-3-5 alignment. Oft-injured starting spur Ridwan Malik had the best spring according to coaches. 2006 Freshman All-American Quinton Andrews has certainly raised eyebrows from his free safety position - he led the team in tackles. Senior corners Lewis and Rivers have proven their quickness and athletic ability by being top-rated return men. As stated, the results up to this point have been poor, but the pedigree of athletes in this backfield should eventually force drastic improvements. The biggest changes on defense are the moves of John Holmes and J.T. Thomas into the starting outside LB spots since the first day of spring, giving the LB corps a huge boost in depth. Although the changes have been duly noted, experience can be counted on as well with veterans such as Magro, Hathaway and Williams garnering extended playing time. Also keep an eye on rising sophomore Zac Cooper, former West Virginia prep Defensive Player of The Year from three seasons ago. His play earned praise from defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel and was named as having one of the most surprising springs from a back-up role. The Mountaineers can sport early optimism from the fact that senior Keilen Dykes leads this DL. He will be worthy of some post-season accolades. The key will be finding depth, as this unit appears paper-thin. Guys such as Scooter Berry and Doug Slavonic have provided some surprise this spring, but none has proven to be an every down player. This is an area to be concerned about, especially in terms of the injury front. Although, many of these problems are offset by the fact that their hybrid safeties/linebackers provide much of the run support, swarming around the ball. That’s how/why this system works. This will be imperative as the DL struggles to locate those on the roster who can pressure opposing QBs. If some of the newcomers were to find surprise playing time, the DL would provide that opportunity. This unit did pretty well until they ran into some real offenses, and the lessons from how much Louisville exploited them need to hit home if WVU is to take any next steps.


DT Keilen Dykes


Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Johnny Dingle-Sr (6-3, 270) Scooter Berry-Fr (6-2, 285)
NT Doug Slavonic-Jr (6-8, 260) Chris Neild-Fr (6-3, 305)
DT Keilen Dykes-Sr (6-5, 295) James Ingram-So (6-2, 265)
SLB John Holmes-Jr (6-3, 230) Bobby Hathaway-Sr (6-1, 230)
MLB Reed Williams-Jr (6-2, 225) Marc Magro-Sr (6-3, 240)
WLB J.T. Thomas-Fr (6-2, 220) Mortty Ivy-Jr (6-3, 225)
CB Antonio Lewis-Sr (5-10, 185) Guesly Dervil-So (6-0, 180)
CB Vaughn Rivers-Sr (5-9, 170) Larry Williams-Sr (6-1, 190)
SPUR Charles Pugh-Jr (6-0, 200) Greg Davis-Fr (6-3, 195)
BAN Eric Wicks-Sr (6-1, 205) Ridwan Malik-Sr (6-1, 205)
FS Quinton Andrews-So (6-0, 210) Trippe Hale-Fr (5-11, 195)
P Pat McAfee-Jr (6-1, 220) Scott Kozlowski-So (6-1, 185)




When it comes to putting the foot in football, look no further than now junior Pat McAfee…the WVU punter and kicker. He was the nation’s No. 1 high school kicker (Scout.com) and won the 2003 national Punt, Pass and Kick contest. Entering his third season, McAfee has already positioned himself among the most productive kickers in school history in career field goals and points scored. After the Louisville loss, he assumed the punting role and managed to average 44.2 yards per boot. The return game is blessed with star-studded experience. KR Darius Reynaud and PR Vaughn Rivers represent some of the best the country has to offer. Also, Antonio Lewis has proven to be more than legitimate when called upon to return punts. The WVU offense will win field position battles due to these efforts.