From the time signing day is over until the start of spring practice every good recruiter is doing the same thing, texting the next class more than a gaggle of 13-year old girls at the mall. We try not to get too involved in the seedy aspects of recruiting as you always feel like you need a shower afterwards and we Bastards simply don't like to bathe all that much. However, there is an interesting prospect from West Virginia that we will be keeping an eye on for our cadre of 6 readers. Josh Jenkins will serve as a case study in WVU and West Virginia athletes.
The state of West Virginia only serves up a handful of Division I football players per year. It is also not a secret that WVU seems to have the ability to pick and choose the players within the state that it wants to keep. The others either leave the state or perform the walk of shame to some other school in the southern part of the state (if West Virginia Tech doesn't offer). This past class was actually an exceptional West Virginia class with the top 3 in state players going to WVU, then 1 to Marshall and 1 to Ohio. 2008 could be another good year in state with a few players expecting offers soon as reviewed in this article from the Charleston Gazette.
Jenkins will be the one to follow because he may end up as a top 5 lineman in the country when the rankings come out. Jenkins committed to WVU as a Junior, but as recently reopened his recruiting when Florida, Ohio State, Alabama, and Notre Dame
started sending hookers and money came calling. Vingle's article states that Jenkins is still committed to WVU, however, it appears from Rivals that Jenkins has WVU as the favorite, but has not accepted any offers.
West Virginia produces very few D-I football players compared to other states. In fact, Rivals only lists the top 5 from the state whereas most states have at least a top 15. Therefore, since WVU recruiting is a vagabond process, carpetbagging from state to state it is imperative that WVU keep any in state talent it can. This past year WVU had 17 West Virginia natives on roster including Max Anderson, Nate Sowers, Marc Magro, and Reed Williams. WVU shocked a lot of people with the signing of in-state WR Brandon Barrrett a few years ago and with his success Josh Jenkins would be a fool not to follow in his footsteps (this sentence may need some re-phrasing if it turns out Barrett is dead).