IT'S A GLORIOUS day in America.
The election is over. Freedom rings. Freedom, that is, from exposure to political advertisements.
Still, there's one issue lingering in the Mountain State. And West Virginia University fans continue to vote on that.
It has to do with that Mountaineer football team. Specifically, what the dickens is wrong with it?
Almost all with a computer or microphone have chimed in. Every fan seems to have an opinion.
Some vote that head coach Dana Holgorsen might be too inexperienced or ill-equipped to handle the job. Others cast their vote for defensive coordinator Joe DeForest. Or there's young, ex-staffer for Sen. Joseph Lieberman and cornerbacks coach Daron Roberts.
A new target has been quarterbacks coach Jake Spavital. Geno Smith has obviously regressed and many are wondering if Spavital has the knowledge to right him. Before hitting Morgantown, Spavital was but a graduate assistant. Was he given the keys to the Jag and did he run it into the ditch?
Some, most nationally, are voting for the bump in competition. WVU, many believe, has simply been a program able to get up for one big game in the past. It's now a Big East team trying to handle Big 12 rigors.
There are rumors of friction in Morgantown. There are always rumors of friction in such a downturn.
However, many are voting for a more simplistic mandate: WVU doesn't have enough quality athletes. The Mountaineers, you might know, have a starting safety in Cecil Level who signed with and played for WVU Tech. The Golden Bears, you might remember, were so bad the program doesn't even exist anymore.
Of course, ex-WVU coach Don Nehlen fared well with three-star recruits. Ex-Mountaineer coach Rich Rodriguez flourished with them.
Let's, however, go back four years and take a look at the WVU recruiting classes.
2009 - At first glance, this was a fine year. Smith and buddy Stedman Bailey were signed from Miramar (Fla.) High. Ditto receiver Tavon Austin, a five-star signee, according to recruiting service Scout.
According to the aforementioned service, WVU actually had the one five-star and six other four-star signees. But only Smith and Austin panned out. (Bailey was a three-star guy.)
Remember Tevita Finau? (I know... how can you forget?) Somehow he couldn't qualify at WVU, but did play for Utah and flirted with the NFL. The other four-star players to disappear: Dominik Davenport, Deon Long (twice), Chris Snook and Logan Heastie.
From that year, 13 signed are currently not on the West Virginia roster. (One was junior college transfer Terrance Moore.) Thirteen players signed are still on the roster. Just five - Smith, Austin, Will Clarke, Pat Miller and Terence Garvin - are currently listed as starters. (Make that six if you include Bailey, who, oddly, is not listed as a starter for the Oklahoma State game.)
Seven more, however, are on WVU's current depth chart. (Six if you count Bailey as a starter.) Only Taige Redman remains on the team and not on the depth chart.