WVU dips into western PA again

West Virginia beat a familiar foe for its sixth verbal of the 2007 football recruiting class.

Offensive lineman Donny Barclay committed Saturday after considering offers from Akron, North Carolina State and Pitt. It is the fifth western Pennsylvania player in the last two classes West Virginia has gotten a commit from after Pitt head coach Dave Wannstedt claimed to have built a wall around the city so that no other team could recruit there.

"I just felt that they were the best fit in my mind," Barclay said. "The coaches really been recruiting me hard, for a decent amount of time. I think they had a good bond on the staff and with me. It was the family atmosphere."

Barclay, a 6-5, 280-pounder, is a nearly perfect fit for WVU's spread offense. Light on his feet, the Seneca Valley (Harmony, Pa.) junior has an excellent upside and shows good footwork and pass blocking skills. The first offensive line verbal for this class, Barclay projects to a tackle at the collegiate level.

"I really liked (offensive line coach Rick) Trickett," Barclay said. "My mom did, too. They (yell) at us a lot in high school, too, so my mom is used to it. I was glad to just get it done. It was the right fit and the right school."

Barclay, who plans to major in business, has a 3.6 GPA and scored a 960 on his SAT (minus the writing portion), so he is fully qualified. He joins running backs Victor Anderson and Terence Kerns, quarterbacks Charlie Russell and Bradley Starks and defensive end Junius Lewis. Barclay is the first offensive lineman, but certainly will not be the last before the Feb. 7 signing day.

Another selling point was WVU's offensive scheme. Seneca Valley has begun inserting more zone reads and options out of its pro set, so Barclay will get that practice in next season. He notes that his technique is not totally honed of yet, and says that he wants to work on pulling and downfield blocking. It also helps that Barclay, whose uncle Al Pisula played defensive tackle at WVU (1976-79, 6-3, 240 pounds), moves well even with his size. He ran a 4.5 shuttle and a 5.1 40-yard dash.

"The coaching staff really liked my times," Barclay said. "I can still move well. I was about the fastest linemen anywhere that I have ran. And I have been coming down here for years to see games. My parents come down and tailgate, and with my uncle playing here, I have family ties. It was just right for me."

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