Spring Practice Notebook 4/12

If the grind of almost a month's worth of spring practice has begun to wear on the Mountaineers' players and coaches, they sure have an odd way of showing it. All involved seemed to be in jovial spirits in the early portion of Thursday's practice.

There was plenty of enthusiasm on all sides for the "Oklahoma" drill which again highlighted the beginning stages of practice, as West Virginia's offensive and defensive players rooted each other on, cracked jokes about one another and talked plenty of trash towards their opponents.

Here are some videos from the drill:

In action not pictured in the above videos, wide receiver Dante Campbell dominated a blocker-versus-tackler matchup with Cecil Level so badly that teammates Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey and others ran out onto the playing area to show their appreciation.

A bit of pushing and shoving followed, as the blue-clad defensive players, quite predictably, did not appreciate the showmanship.

Indeed, the defenders got one back not long after, as Campbell took another turn. This time, however, Karl Joseph bulldozed his way through the lanky receiver and took down the ballcarrier. Joseph's teammates mobbed him and mocked Campbell a bit, drawing more pushes and shoves -- and smiles from coaches Dana Holgorsen, Daron Roberts, Jake Spavital and director of football operations Alex Hammond.

Holgorsen was similarly pleased when he watched offensive lineman Jeff Braun muscle his way through an opponent.

As Braun returned to the sideline, teammate Joey Madsen showed his appreciation for the move, saying Braun had started to fare better since he started to "get some anger in him." Holgorsen heard the comment and agreed, saying whatever was keeping Braun angry needed to continue moving forward.


  • Running back Ryan Clarke was in a red jersey and spent time pedaling a stationary bike.

    He had a sizable boot on his right foot and was out of action due to what head trainer Dave Kerns described as a "lower extremity issue." According to Kerns, Clarke is officially considered day-to-day.

  • Quarterback Geno Smith was not in attendance for the open portion of practice on Thursday.

    Staffers emphasized that the rising senior was not injured and was expected to arrive soon after reporters were kicked out at 5:00 p.m. local time. An explanation was not immediately offered as to the reason for Smith's tardiness.

  • Mountaineer assistant coaches are slated to meet with reporters later Thursday evening. Check back with BlueGoldNews.com for videos from those interviews.

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