Vic Koenning Situation Now Affecting Recruiting

Morgantown, West Virginia – When Liberty defensive back transfer Kei’Trel Clark chose Louisville over West Virginia recently, it was shocking.  Clark all but committed to the Mountaineers a few days earlier, posting, “Almost like heaven” on his social media accounts.  West Virginia Head Coach Neal Brown “liked” the post and Mountaineer wide receiver Ali Jennings, a close friend of his, posted “Let’s Go” after that.  Clark’s commitment to the Mountaineers seemed inevitable, but it never happened.

Clark entered the transfer portal and left Liberty over what was later described as “racial insensitivity” at the university.  In his announcement that he was leaving Liberty, Clark said the following: “However due to the cultural incompetent within multiple levels of leadership, it does not line up with my code of ethics. So therefore I had to do what I felt like was right in my heart and I pray that you support me and pray for me as I find a new home to further my education and football career.”

Clark, a talented former 3 star cornerback from Midlothian, Virginia, naturally wanted to go somewhere he felt welcomed.  West Virginia University – in the middle of a race scandal – does not fit that profile right now for young, black student-athletes who are considering joining the Mountaineers.

If a black recruit is torn between West Virginia University and another university that does not have a coach on staff that has been accused by players of being insensitive, which do you think players will choose?

This was certainly the case with Kei’Trel Clark.  Without the Vic Koenning situation, there is a very good chance that he would now be a Mountaineer.  However, his potential position coach at West Virginia is Vic Koenning, and Koenning’s future is still undecided.  Although it’s difficult to lose recruits to other schools, his decision to go to Louisville makes sense for him.

West Virginia University – now 20 days into their investigation – needs to resolve this situation and they need to resolve it now before they lose more recruits.

In addition, West Virginia’s top commitment for the upcoming season, David Vincent-Okoli, a four star cornerback from Gaithersburg, Maryland, posted on social media that he “was unsure that he made the right decision” and questioned whether “he was pressured to make this choice.”  Granted, Vincent-Okoli could have been talking about anything…maybe he is simply a homesick freshman, but you have to wonder if this has anything to do with Koenning, his position coach, and the uncertainty of the situation.

The investigation has taken far too long.  This is not something that needs to take longer than a week and the absurdity of it lasting nearly a month is frightening.  West Virginia University, Shane Lyons, Neal Brown, get this resolved before we lose more players.