MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - As JuJuan Seider begins his first season as West Virginia's running backs coach, he's naturally going to face some problems.
They might be matters of style or fitting into a new system, of familiarity with his players or his fellow coaches. It's a natural part of changing jobs.
One problem he's not likely to encounter, though, is a lack of talent or experience among the players he's charged with coaching. If there's one position on WVU's roster that is just bubbling over with both, it's running backs.
If that's a problem, boy is it a good one to have.
"I don't call it a problem. I call it a good thing,'' Seider said. "That's what you want. You want to have to make hard decisions.''
Even in a program that over the years has had little problem churning out top-flight running backs - between 1996 and 2008 the Mountaineers had at least one 1,000-yard rusher in 12 of 13 years - seldom has there been this kind of depth.
Consider that West Virginia's top rushers from 2011 (Dustin Garrison) and 2012 (Andrew Buie) are just juniors now. Dreamius Smith, another junior, arrived in the spring after tearing it up in junior college. And even with those three at the forefront, true freshman Wendell Smallwood managed to make his mark during the spring.
Now add to that Charles Sims, who almost immediately becomes the best of the bunch. The fifth-year senior, who transferred after graduating at Houston, would have been taken had he elected to enter the NFL draft. Now he's generally considered one of the five best running backs in next year's draft.
It all adds up to Seider hosting a meeting room just overflowing with talent, which in some ways could cause ego problems. Seider says it hasn't.
"I told those guys from the start of camp, 'All you guys with NFL aspirations, this will be the closest you get to being in the NFL without being in the NFL,' '' Seider said. "And that's what you want. You want competition.
"You want good competition where nobody's bickering behind each other's back, 'I can do this or that.' I haven't seen it. The guys have been really good in the room right now, helping each other out.''