Remember West Virginia?

CLEMSON - The roller coaster ride that was Tajh Boyd's recruitment started with a commitment to West Virginia.

A junior at Phoebus High School at the time of his first commitment, Boyd made a pledge to then head coach Bill Stewart while on campus for a visit in March of 2008.

Then he de-committed from West Virginia the following October.

"It wasn't a pleasant de-commit," he told on Monday. "It was just one of those things that happened."

Uncertain of how comfortable he would be in Morgantown, Boyd opted to weigh his other options.

"I kind of wanted to make sure it was the right decision. Also, I just felt like it wasn't the right school for me," he said.

Boyd hoped on board with Tennessee a month later and was committed to join the Volunteers' class of 2009. Even after Phillip Fulmer was fired, Boyd still planned to head to Knoxville after Lane Kiffin was hired.

But days after Kiffin's arrived to his new job that December, Boyd got word that the former Oakland Raiders' head coach wanted to go in another direction for a quarterback.

In the meantime, four-star Geno Smith had committed to West Virginia.

"I was actually thinking about going back to West Virginia," Boyd said. "I talked to one of the coaches...if was going to come back, I was going to have to greyshirt."

So went that idea.

For nearly a month, he was down to Ohio State, Oregon and Boston College. It was long before Clemson was firmly in the mix.

Boyd, of course, eventually committed and signed with Clemson.

But now, in less than a month, he will square off with Smith when Clemson takes on West Virginia in the Orange Bowl.

The two met in the 2008 Elite 11.

"He's a cool guy, a really good quarterback," Boyd said. "It's going to be fun to compete against each other."

And the former five-star signal caller will have a chance to match up against a school that he once thought would be his.

"I don't think I'm too much well liked up there," Boyd said. "There's some irony in it, but I'm excited about it." Top Stories