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For Trickett, Morgantown has always been home

AP Photo
Former Florida State QB Clint Trickett is expected to be in the mix to start for the Mountaineers this season after transferring to West Virginia Wednesday. Trickett, a junior expected to graduate this month, will have two years of eligibility remaining.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- IF YOU WANT to know why former Florida State quarterback Clint Trickett chose to finish his career at West Virginia University, simply check out his Twitter page.

In his profile picture, he's dressed in hunting camo. His profile simply says he's a "duck hunter who happens to play football."

And on Wednesday, he tweeted the following:

"It's official. I will finish my academic/athletic career at WVU. This is a dream come true to be playin for the state I love. #CountryRoads."

It might be a dream come true for Mountaineer coach Dana Holgorsen. See, neither Paul Millard nor Ford Childress exactly set Morgantown on fire this past spring as the search continues to replace QB Geno Smith.

Enter Trickett, a junior on target to graduate from FSU this month and be eligible to play this fall. He chose the Mountaineers after also visiting Auburn and South Florida. He'll have two years of eligibility remaining.

"Coach Holgorsen has the best offense in the country," Trickett said in a phone interview Wednesday. "I think they might need a leader and I'm hoping to be in the mix and compete."

He'll definitely compete. In fact, after the recent spring games at WVU and Florida State, one should consider Trickett the odds-on-favorite to start this fall. Had it not been for standout redshirt freshman Jameis Winston, Trickett would have been the man next season in Tallahassee.

In FSU's spring game, Trickett completed 22 of 32 passes for 259 yards. Last season, he played eight games as EJ Manuel's backup and completed 22 of 34 passes for 272 yards. In 2011, he started games against Wake Forest and Clemson.

"I am excited that [Trickett] has decided to finish his career as a Mountaineer," Holgorsen said via a release.

Trickett is a 6-foot-3, 185-pound quarterback with a very sharp mind. He was graduated a year early from North Florida Christian High with a 3.8 grade point average. He's earning his undergraduate degree as a junior.

And football smart? His father, Rick, is the current Florida State assistant head coach and one of the most accomplished offensive line coaches in WVU history. What helped land the quarterback was the fact that Dad grew up in Preston County and the son lived at Cheat Lake in Morgantown from 2001-06.

"I've been a lot of places," Clint Trickett said. "But whenever people ask what's home, I say Morgantown."

The quarterback said he's expecting to move to Morgantown next week and begin learning Holgorsen's offense as soon as possible.

"There's not much [in common] between Coach [Jimbo] Fisher's offense and Dana Holgorsen's offense," Trickett said. "Dana Holgorsen's offense has phenomenal numbers that speak for themselves.

"It's fast-paced. It's up-tempo. It's a match for me."

Coming out of high school, the younger Trickett had multiple offers, including from Arkansas and Stanford, before choosing Florida State.

"I'd like to say I'm a leader," Trickett said. "I'm football smart and guys seem to follow me.

"I'm a slimmer guy and probably some people say I can't throw it, but I think I can. I'll take chances downfield."

Trickett can also run when necessary.

"I'm not Pat White," said the quarterback, "but I'm not stationary either. Coach Holgorsen harped on that being a huge plus."

Obviously, there's a mutual respect between the coach and player.

"There aren't many offenses like his," Trickett said of Holgorsen. "I fell in love with it when I visited [the weekend of WVU's spring game]."

While he recently fell in love with that, though, Trickett has always loved West Virginia - and one of the state's favorite pastimes.

"I'm a big hunter," Trickett said. "I'm a big duck hunter. When [Holgorsen] and I were in the car, we saw some ducks. I said, 'You don't know how much I love to see that.'"

Fortunately for Holgorsen, the hunter also plays a little football.

Reach Mitch Vingle at 304-348-4827, mitchvingle@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/MitchVingle.


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