Late To The Scene

One of West Virginia's recent defensive line verbal commitments was "kind of shocked" to get an offer from the Mountaineers, so it was a quick and easy decision for him to accept the chance to play for a team that he believes has a shot at a national title.

"I wasn't expecting West Virginia to come into the picture," said Shaw, who is one of a parade of defensive line commitments for the Mountaineers in the Class of 2008. "I was kind of shocked to get that offer, but now that I have, I am committed. I am done visiting."

Shaw's trip to WVU, which proved to be his last one, had all the hallmarks of a visit that results in a commitment. "It made my decision easy," said Shaw. "The town was similar to my home, and I got along really well with the players and the coaches. All that made it feel like home to me. I was really glad that I visited, because I got to see everything there.

High on the list of reasons that put West Virginia into Shaw's comfort zone were defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel and defensive line coach Bill Kirelawich, the two mentors that will have the most influence on Shaw during his WVU career.

"There was just something about Coach Casteel that felt right," said Shaw. "He reminded me of some of my high school coaches. And I like Coach Kirlav. He's a high intensity guy, and I like that in a coach."

Shaw, who checks in a 6-2 and 285 pounds, hasn't always been a nose guard, although he is nicely proportioned for the position. He played linebacker and fullback in high school, where his excellent quickness came into play. He noted that his high school team had "a huge defensive line", and that his coaches need players to man other positions and run the ball on offense. Shaw filled that role, and in the process continued to develop his footwork, which will certainly benefit him as he attempts to win early playing time in college.

Shaw doesn't depend on that one attribute alone, however. He notes that his strength has improved greatly during his time in junior college, and that the combination of that factor, along with his quickness, should help him challenge for playing time at West Virginia in the fall of 2008.

"I have a lot of experience playing on the line now, and I am going to work hard to get to where I need to be," Shaw summed up. "I am ready for that challenge. I play on working out during the spring and concentrating on my classwork so I am ready to go."

Shaw noted that he is on track to graduate and report to WVU for the summer session.

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