By Keenan Cummings
The quarterback picture is starting to take shape for WVU in this class, and one familiar prospect emerged to the forefront with other developments across the landscape.
Ocala (Fla.) West Port quarterback Brian Maurer was the first player to receive a scholarship offer in the 2019 class and remained a priority throughout the process.
The Mountaineers initially extended a scholarship offer to the 6-foot-4, 185-pounder last May, during the spring evaluation period, on the heels of an impressive throwing performance in front of offensive coordinator Jake Spavital. The offensive assistant remained in close contact with Maurer since then with WVU holding the top spot in his recruitment for some time.
That was only further cemented this past weekend. Maurer made his first trek up to Morgantown in order to get a look at the campus, and things impressed, to say the least.
“It was amazing,” Maurer said of the visit.
Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that Maurer drove the distance.
The Mountaineers are ahead of South Florida in the race for Maurer’s services while he also holds scholarship offers from Indiana, Boston College and Central Florida.
Rated as a Rivals.com three-star prospect, Maurer is a pro-style quarterback who has the ability to use his legs to extend plays or pick up chunks of yards. Last season, Maurer threw for over 2,800 yards and 22 touchdowns while adding over 400 yards and six more scores on the ground.
While Maurer has been a top target since the beginning, his importance to the class was magnified even further with two other scholarship options electing to go elsewhere.
First Charlotte (N.C.) Christian signal caller Garrett Shrader elected to pledge to Mississippi State, while Monroe, N.C., quarterback Sam Howell announced his intentions to sign with Florida State.
That’s two of the top four quarterbacks that the Mountaineers offered now off the board, with Maurer the only one who has taken a visit to campus at this stage.
While Maurer has been relatively quiet since returning from the trip, there is no reason to believe it wasn’t anything but a success. Now comes the hard part: Waiting as the Mountaineers look to land their quarterback for the 2019 recruiting cycle.
But because decisions are often made much earlier at that position, it could come sooner than later.
Keenan Cummings is the Senior Writer for WVSports.com with the Rivals.com/Yahoo Network.