Veteran defensive line coach Bruce Tall laid out his offseason expectations for his unit. Tall, who is entering his 34th year of coaching, spoke about the importance of players meeting their physical development goals in the summer conditioning program. Tall also said he was encouraged by where the younger defensive lineman are strength-wise and praised veterans Noble Nwachukwu and Christian Brown for setting a high standard. When asked about the possibility of Reese Donahue avoiding a redshirt, Tall did not give a timetable on when a decision would be made, but did say that Donahue is ahead of the curve physically.
Senior defensive end Noble Nwachukwu discussed his offseason to this point and said he has specifically focused on improving his pass rushing. Nwachukwu posted a team-high 8.5 sacks a year ago, is poised for a big senior season and has been receiving attention from several preseason publications as a potential All Big 12 defender. When asked about the preseason attention he has received Nwachukwu says he hasn't paid any attention to it and is just focusing on the upcoming season.
Safety Jeremy Tyler talked about the chemistry that the defensive unit is developing this summer. Tyler also specifically pointed to redshirt-freshman David Long as a player who could make a big impact for the Mountaineers in the upcoming season. Long was buried on the depth chart a year ago but could potentially crack the starting lineup with the departures of three senior linebackers.