MORGANTOWN - West Virginia on Monday was standing at 17 committed players ready to sign letters of intent when the NCAA's national signing period begins Wednesday.
Add to that six who are already enrolled in school, and the Mountaineers' group of newcomers is, if nothing else, a large one. There are a handful of others who could also join the fold.
As far as the scouting services are concerned, the two highest-rated players are a pair who only recently committed - running back Andrew Buie of Jacksonville, Fla., and defensive back Terrell Chestnut of Pottstown, Pa. Both are given four stars by Rivals and three by Scout. One of the six players already enrolled, running back Vance Roberts of Washington, D.C., is also listed with four starts by Rivals and three by Scout.
The rest of the class consists mainly of two- and three-star players as ranked by both services.
The list of verbal commitments, including those already enrolled, is made up of four linebackers, four running backs and four defensive backs. There are three offensive linemen committed, along with two quarterbacks, two wide receivers, two defensive tackles, a defensive end and a tight end.
There are two West Virginians expected to sign - tight end Cody Clay of George Washington and offensive lineman Justin Johnson of Parkersburg.
Among those already enrolled are the two quarterbacks - Brian Athey of Eden Prairie, Minn., and Paul Millard of Flower Mound, Texas.
In addition to those two and Roberts, the others already in class and working out with the team during winter conditioning is Roberts' brother Vernard, a running back, along with junior college linebacker Josh Francis and defensive back Avery Williams. Williams signed last February but did not qualify academically.
The other players committed to the class include linebackers Jared Barber, Isaiah Bruce and Shaquille Petteway; running backs Dustin Garrison and Jermichael Selders, defensive back Nick Kwiatkoski, defensive tackles Ben Bradley and Shaq Rowell, receivers Dante Campbell and Kenneth Myers, defensive end Kyle Rose and offensive linemen Russell Haughton-James and Brandon Jackson.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com.