The Mountaineers, currently 3-5 overall and 1-4 in the Big 12 Conference, have one of the worst offenses in the country statistically this season and are in need of a spark. West Virginia is ranked 122 out of 130 teams nationally in yards per game (a dismal 302.3 yards per game) and Austin Kendall has struggled to throw the ball downfield consistently.
Moments ago, on The New Brown Show, the West Virginia Head Coach announced that Jarret Doege is the new backup quarterback. Austin Kendall will get the start but will likely be on a short leash with Doege backing him up.
According to WVU quarterbacks coach Sean Reagan two weeks, “In a perfect world you’d save him for the last three games and the bowl game. He’s getting a lot of reps and is preparing to be the #2 quarterback.”
The plan is likely to have start Kendall this weekend against Texas Tech and give Doege snaps, particularly if (when) Kendall struggles. Kendall struggling, of course, is an inevitability.
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Doege clearly has the most experience of all of the West Virginia quarterbacks and was one of the best passers in the MAC last year, throwing for 2,660 yards and 27 touchdowns with a 62% completion percentage as a Sophomore. Doege is a seasoned starter and a capable downfield passer, something that Neal Brown’s offense has lacked in the first eight games of the season.
Although he has redshirted for this season, new NCAA rules allow him to play in up to four games without losing eligibility for upcoming seasons. Doege getting Big 12 Conference experience in meaningful games this season to prepare him for his Junior and Senior seasons only makes sense at this point in the season.
Not only does Doege give the Mountaineers the best chance of winning the final four games of the season against Texas Tech, Kansas State, Oklahoma State and TCU (all difficult games but certainly winnable), it gives Doege time to become familiar with the offense and the 4-game NCAA Redshirt ruling should absolutely be taken advantage of by Neal Brown.