Taking The Lead

West Virginia continues to hold a high position of interest for Osbourn High School quarterback/athlete Brandon Hogan, and the reasons for WVU's pursuit of the multi-talented star were evident at the Mountaineers' football camp on Sunday.

Hogan, who wants to compete at quarterback in college, had a good afternoon throwing the ball during one-on-one and seven-on-seven drills. During the latter, he checked down to secondary receivers on more than one occasion, and displayed good accuracy once he settled in to the camp environment. He also had no trouble with the sprintouts and rollouts taught during the camp, as his excellent quickness allowed him to get out of the simulated pocket and get to the optimal spot for releasing the ball.

Even more impressively, Hogan ran a number of reps at wide receiver, and immediately made a mark there as well. He had a pair of leaping grabs during skeleton passing work, and had no trouble with some of the footwork drills that were demonstrated by wide receivers coach Butch Jones.

"I haven't played wide receiver at all," Hogan said after the camp. "I played running back growing up, but I can catch the ball."

Hogan noted that playing quarterback helped him when he ran some routes at receiver, as he was able to visualize being on the other end of the play. His ability to get open and make himself available to the other passers in camp was evident, and makes him an even more attractive target for the WVU coaching staff.

Hogan, however, hasn't given up on his pursuit of his quarterbacking dream. He isn't scared by competition, and said the number of quarterbacks a school takes won't affect his decision. To that end, he made the most of his time with the QBs during the individual instruction session at camp.

"I got a lot out of it," he said of the tutoring sessions conducted by assistant coach Bill Stewart with an occasional assist by the head man, Rich Rodriguez. "I learned a lot of new techniques at quarterback, and a lot of fundamental stuff I can use."

While Hogan has been to WVU before, the camp session was a new experience for him.

"I have been here three other times, but this is the first time I've gotten to play on the field. The other times I was just able to look around. That makes a difference," he said. "I can imagine coming out of that tunnel. Every time I see that [WVU] highlight tape, I think ‘Man, I want to play here.' West Virginia has been at the top of my list for a while, and this just put them an extra notch up. West Virginia is my favorite school so far."

While the Mountaineers are the leaders in the clubhouse, the battle for Hogan's commitment is far from over. Although his feelings for WVU are plain to see, he still isn't ready to pull the trigger for the Mountaineers just yet.

"I just don't want to worry about it too much," he said of the recruiting process. "As the year goes on and I come to the games, I will probably make my decision, but I don't think I am ready to do that just yet."


There's not much doubt that Hogan could help WVU at one of several positions. However, West Virginia's current coaching staff has always been very open with players that want to play a certain position, in that they will allow the player to compete at his chosen spot. That could be a vital factor that looms large in the recruiting fight for Hogan – and one that might end up tipping him toward the Mountaineers.

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