MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia’s accepting band hasn’t absolutely accomplished its absolute form, as acutely anybody has dealt with a balmy case of the drops at some point this season. But the assemblage is proving abysmal abundant to affected those alone lapses.
In every game, a altered receiver manages to appearance himself as the guy quarterback Will Grier can assurance the most.
Against Tennessee, David Sills and Gary Jennings were those guys. Each had added than 100 accepting yards. Adjoin Youngstown State, Marcus Simms was Grier’s admired ambition with eight catches while Jennings denticulate three touchdowns. Sills was the man adjoin Kansas State with a leash of touchdowns, and Simms took over as top ambition at Texas Tech.
A fourth accompaniment stepped up adjoin Kansas. T.J. Simmons, the green alteration from Alabama, was Grier’s top ambition until a backward 26-yard touchdown canyon to Sills. Simmons accomplished the d with a career-high six catches for 53 yards, authoritative concrete moves afterwards the catch.
“T.J. apparently played the best out of all of those guys aftermost week,” said West Virginia drillmaster Dana Holgorsen. “He was appealing constant and fabricated some plays.”
Simmons was a one-hit admiration adjoin Tennessee, communicable a 59-yard touchdown on his alone target. He has 14 catches for 227 yards through bristles games.
With Grier already able to do things best Big 12 quarterbacks don’t accept in their arsenal, the development of addition able weapon alone makes affairs worse for opposing defenses.
“We accept a lot of weapons,” Grier said. “All of these guys can accomplish plays, and it’s my job to accomplish the appropriate reads and advance the brawl about to get it in their hands.”
Last season, Grier broadcast the brawl into the easily of a advantageous few. His top three targets – Jennings, Sills and Ka’Raun White – bent 74.1 percent of West Virginia’s absolute completions. White and Sills additionally accounted for 81 percent of the team’s accepting touchdowns.
This year, Grier’s top three targets accept a lower allotment of catches. Jennings, Sills and Simms accept 82 of the Mountaineers’ 127 catches (64.5 percent). Whereas alone bristles players bent touchdowns aftermost year, 10 accept beyond the ambition band this season.
Much of that has to do with added administration to active backs and bound ends. But it’s additionally added than that. West Virginia’s fifth and sixth accepting options, Tevin Bush and Dominique Maiden, are additionally guys Grier trusts.
“They’ve developed a lot from aftermost year to this year,” Grier said. “Dom had a abundant d [against Kansas]. He blocked absolutely able-bodied and had an important catch. He’ll abide to accept a role in this offense. Tevin is absolutely abundant in space. All of these guys apperceive area to be.”
Holgorsen is as adequate as he’s anytime been about abyss at the position.
“I’ve been admiring with the backups. There accept been affluence of years back I’ve been sitting actuality affairs what beard I accept larboard out over [depth],” he said. “I feel bigger about those guys in general. The bound ends booty one of those guys off the acreage a lot, so we don’t accept to comedy four all the time. It makes it harder for us to d plan adjoin back all of those guys are able of authoritative a play.”
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