Scott ready to take on challenge as ST coach

After spending three years as a defensive graduate assistant at West Virginia, Mark Scott went into last offseason with plenty of options when it came to the future of his coaching career.

He spent last season as WVU defensive coordinator Tony Gibson's "eye in the sky" from up in the booth during games and, shortly after the Mountaineers wrapped up last season, he told Gibson that there was no place he'd rather be. From there, Scott was planning to stay on as a graduate assistant for another season.

Of course, that was before Tom Bradley left for UCLA to free up a spot on the full-time coaching staff. After looking through some applicants and realizing there were several directions they could go in to fill a slot as an assistant special teams coach, head coach Dana Holgorsen made the move to stay in-house and promote Scott.

"Personally, this is huge for me. I don't want to be anywhere else. I love the fans, I love the environment, the coaches, the players," Scott said. "Over the last three years, West Virginia has meant a lot to me and to have this opportunity, I couldn't be happier.

"I firmly believe that we have one of the best coaching staffs in America here and I've learned a ton of football from everyone on this staff and I'll continue to learn more. But for them to show that confidence in me was a fantastic feeling."

In his new role, Scott will be overseeing the WVU special teams units along with Joe DeForest. The opportunity to work with DeForest and the rest of the Mountaineer staff to help continue to improve on that side of the ball will be a task that Scott is looking forward to.

"There's not a better coach with specialists than Coach DeForest. It's nice because everyone else who coached the other individual segments of the special teams are all coming back, so that will make it easier too," Scott said. "That helps me because I don't have to re-teach the coaches who will then go teach it to the players. We've got a lot of guys coming back on special teams, so I'll oversee that and install that and it should go smoothly mostly. It's a matter of getting it across to the new guys now and then going out to those other coaches who will keep helping them fine-tune what their individual jobs are."

As the season approaches for Scott, there aren't many wholesale changes he thinks West Virginia needs to implement. With the players returning with that knowledge and the promise of talented newcomers entering into the mix, the Mountaineers will mostly just have to make some tweaks.

"It's about the little things, those little techniques," he said. "The schemes we've used have put us in a position where we can be successful but we've just got to demand excellence from the players to do their job individually to help us have that success."

After spending so much time working his way up as a GA to get to this point where he has his first shot at an FBS job at a Power 5 school, Scott is ready to accept the challenge it will bring.

"It's not an increase in work as much, that's a nice thing from before was that they felt comfortable giving me some responsibilities in the past so I feel like I'm ready for this, but there's a different emphasis," Scott said. "I can focus solely on special teams for 99 percent of my day. It's the same mentality I had before (as a GA). There's more pressure, of course, but I'm perfectly fine with that."

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