Welcome back home from South Florida @DamonCogdell
— Dana Holgorsen (@Holgorsendana) January 8, 2014
Damon Cogdell in, Erik Slaughter out at WVU. Expect Cogdell, a former WVU linebacker and now the former head football coach and athletic director at Miramar High, to be named a defensive assistant. He’ll become the defensive line coach and hit the ground running recruiting South Florida. Literally.
Slaughter, the defensive line coach who’d recruited southern Ohio, will not be brought back for a third season with the Mountaineers. Word is Shannon Dawson will take over Slaughter’s recruiting territory.
Today happens to be the first day of the spring semester at WVU. Andrew Buie is back on the roster and I’m told indefinitely suspended receiver Ronald Carswell and also cornerback Avery Williams will not be back next season. (Update: Confirmed. Here’s the updated roster.)
Four junior college transfers — quarterback Skyler Howard, cornerback Keishawn Richardson, linebacker Edward Muldrow III and offensive lineman Sylvester Townes — and high school early graduates Ricky Rodgers and Davonte James are to be enrolled this semester, as well. (Update: James and Rodgers are in, but the jucos are now — yet. They have until Friday and WVU expects that to happen.) (Update: Howard, Richardson and Townes are in, as well.)
(Update: Here’s WVU’s announcement of the addition of Cogdell as an “assistant coach on the defensive side” — and that makes you wonder if all the moves have been made, doesn’t it? The annual coaches’ convention starts Monday. Cogdell, who has never coached in college, has a two-year contract for $200,000 a year. I need a new gig.
The Slaughter thing does seem interesting on some level, and let’s get this out of the way first. He was really fun to watch and to talk to and I think he was an assistant people on the outside liked. And no wonder …
If you need a Slaughter fix, this is for you.
Anyhow, I’d talked to people who’d run into WVU or WVU targets on the recruiting trail and what they’d heard was WVU wasn’t making any changes, though, sure, I might have been talking to people involved solely with offensive targets. And maybe WVU was telling people what they wanted to hear. I’d be lying if I told you I thought Slaughter would be gone.
WVU looked like it had a pretty good defensive line in 2013. I thought that group was much better this past season than it was in the one before it … but then I looked at some things that deserved more our attention, namely that the Mountaineers didn’t make many plays on the defensive line. In a results based business, you can understand this because the lack of sacks, TFLs and pressure are now two-season problems.
Slaughter also recruited southern Ohio, which had to have been a tall task for someone with his relative lack of experience. WVU wasn’t doing really well there and adding Cogdell a year after adding JaJuan Seider (and losing Robert Gillespie) gives you the idea WVU would rather double up in South Florida.)