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Morgantown, West Virginia – The West Virginia University football program has not improved on the field in any way since Neal Brown has been the coach.  The team is not more fundamentally sound, it is not more explosive or more consistent or more of anything.  

Not only that, but there isn’t really a light at the end of the tunnel.  While Brown has the top recruiting class in the history of the program, he has been hesitant to play young, inexperienced skilled players.  When will we actually see these players contribute on the field?  

While Brown and the university preach patience, he’s had nearly three full years and no progress has been made.  There are many reasons for the lack of improvement, but the blame begins and ends with the man running the program.

 

Neal Brown only hires his friends as assistants and can’t fire them

Look, it’s typical for head coaches to hire friends and people they trust as assistants.  But in what alternate reality does Matt Moore still deserve to be the offensive line coach of the West Virginia Mountaineers?

West Virginia’s offensive line has been a critical concern for the entire three seasons that Neal Brown has been the head coach and Matt Moore has been in charge of that very line for all three seasons.

Moore worked with Brown at Texas Tech and Troy, and they have undoubtedly become very close friends in their personal lives.  The issue here is that despite Moore’s offensive line playing extremely poorly for three consecutive seasons, Moore still has a job.

Brown being unable to fire an assistant that certainly should have been fired already is a real concern.  Although it would be an awkward, uncomfortable thing for Brown to do, firing Matt Moore and other assistant coaches who are his friends is necessary for the success of the program.

So does Neal Brown care more about Neal Brown and his friends or does Neal Brown care more about the West Virginia football program?  His actions suggest it’s the former.

The 2022 recruiting class could fall apart 

West Virginia has managed to secure an incredibly gifted 2022 recruiting class, but will the committed players ultimately end up in Morgantown?  The ultra-talented 2022 running back, Justin Williams, a West Virginia commit, visited Tennessee this past weekend and seemed to really enjoy himself.

A player like Williams will be courted by some of the top programs in the country and those programs and coaches will certainly point out the flaws and weaknesses of the Mountaineers’ program, and they will have a lot of material to work with.

A coach could make a very reasonable argument about Brown not trusting young players, about the team’s lack of excitement on offense, the team’s poor record and could highlight the numerous former players who have transferred.  Remember, West Virginia leads the Big 12 Conference in transfers this year by a large margin.

Let’s hope Brown can somehow manage to keep this recruiting class together.  Brown’s supporters frequently bring up his ability to recruit, but what does he have to fall back on if this recruiting class implodes?

There’s nothing exciting about West Virginia’s football program right now

Brown’s ability to sell his program to high level recruits is fascinating and impressive.  Unfortunately, the product he is selling can’t match the product on the field.  West Virginia’s brand of football is neither exciting nor fun.

There are infinite options for student athletes to choose from and it’s difficult to see why a top prospect would choose West Virginia University right now.  Brown must find a way to make West Virginia football not only a winner, he has to make it fun and exciting again.

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