Juco Improvement

Junior college offensive lineman Stone Underwood made his first-ever trip to Morgantown, W.Va. this weekend, but it was not his first visit to the Mountain State.

"I've actually been snowboarding in West Virginia before, but this was the first time I've been to the city and WVU," the Mississippi native said. "My visit went very well. I enjoyed meeting the coaches, and loved the atmosphere there. Quentin Spain was my host, and we got to see bout the town and the campus."

An offensive lineman who made the move to center this year, Underwood was contacted by West Virginia recently and set up a visit to campus. He liked everything he saw on the trip, which was capped by a scholarship offer. Having just returned home, he is still taking a bit of time to think it over, but said he was very interested in WVU and will probably make a decision very shortly.

"I didn't know a lot about West Virginia before they got in contact with me, but I an very interested in them now. I want to talk the offer over with my family before I make a decision."

The 6-4, 285-pounder also has received interest from Iowa State, Mississippi and Kentucky, and has three years to complete his final two seasons of eligibility. He will graduate in May.

Underwood has used his time at Copiah-Lincoln to great advantage. He believes he has improved greatly over his two seasons at the Mississippi school, and credits his coaching staff for much of that.

"Mississippi junior college football is known as the toughest in the country, and I don't think I could have had better coaches anywhere," he said. "I have developed a lot since I got here."

Underwood credits his natural quickness, in both his hands and feet, as the building blocks for his improvement, but the toughness factor is also evident.

"If I get my hands on a defensive lineman, they usually aren't going anywhere," he said.

That grit was also on display prior to this season, when he made the move to center for the first time in his career. He broke his hand early after making the switch, but didn't let that stop him. He simply changed from his natural right hand snap to the left, and learned to play a new position while snapping with his off hand, all the while performing at a high level. He wound up earning a spot on the NJCAA District 23 All-Star team.


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