But the Mountaineers also lose tailback Shawn Alston, receiver J.D. Woods and the middle of the offensive line - center Joe Madsen and guards Jeff Braun and Josh Jenkins. In all, there are 11 seniors on offensive two-deep, plus Bailey, a junior who will leave early for the NFL draft.
It's a group that was recruited by Bill Stewart's staff and endured that coaching change and the philosophical shifts that went with them.
"This group's been through a lot,'' Dawson said. "They've been through scheme changes, coaching changes, stuff like that. It's really just the nature of college football today. You have to be able to adjust.
"Kids are resilient and the one thing I give these kids credit for is they've bought in. They've bought into our philosophy offensively and, minus a couple of them, we haven't had a lot of problems. For a majority of the guys that have done a bulk of the work, I'm very appreciative of those guys.''
None have been with Holgorsen, Dawson and the rest of the offensive coaches long, but they adapted well, obviously. The same players who were young parts of an offense that ranked 61st and 67th their first two seasons were crucial in an offense that was 15th last year and eighth this season.
"They've set a really good foundation for younger guys to grow on,'' Dawson said. "And that was really the point. Whenever you take over at a place you've got to win with the guys that are there. And then winning with the guys that are there, hopefully you can set a foundation for those young guys to come in and build off of it. And hopefully they've done that.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.