Football, Sports, WVU Sports

Color Splash: Greene, White pop during Gold-Blue game

The overcast sky was as gray as the empty seats inside Milan Puskar Stadium, but a pair of Mountaineers were thankfully able to add some color to WVU football’s annual Gold-Blue spring game on Saturday.

It was the aptly-named Garrett Greene and Jahiem White who added color to the otherwise bland palette on a cold and rainy afternoon in Morgantown.

The expectantly-vanilla offensive playcalling was given a jolt early when Greene, a junior quarterback, scored the game’s first touchdown on a double-reverse pass from wide receiver Preston Fox. Greene caught the pass and out-ran defenders 40 yards to the endzone.

“I told (offensive coordinator) Chad (Scott) and (quarterbacks coach) Sean (Reagan) make sure you have some fun,” head coach Neal Brown said. “Guys like practicing trick plays and so that’s one they’ve been working on for a few days.”

Brown joked that the trick play will give Penn State something to think about before the teams open the season on Sept. 2 in State College, Pa.

“We wanted to show them, they’ll practice that now,” Brown said with a laugh. “They’ll get some practice reps on that.”

Greene, who is battling to be the team’s starting quarterback with redshirt-freshman Nicco Marchiol, was one of the biggest offensive standouts in the spring game, completing 8-of-11 passes for 156 yards and a 40-yard touchdown pass to receiver Cortez Braham. 

Greene appeared to get a leg up on Marchiol (6-of-12, 58 yards) although Brown maintained that the quarterback competition will not be decided until fall camp.

If Green was the offensive standout early, White stole the show late. The freshman running back started the fourth quarter with a 53-yard touchdown run where he broke away from the pile and out-ran everyone to the endzone up the right sideline.

“He’s explosive, we’ve seen that in practice,” Brown said. “Jahiem’s a fan favorite already.”

While Greene is battling for a starting spot, White’s path to playing time is not as clear. The freshman is sitting fifth on the running back depth chart and he could reasonably be expected to redhisrt this year. Ahead of him are returners CJ Donaldson, Tony Mathis, Jaylen Anderson and Justin Johnson.

“We’re going to have a spot for all of those guys,” Brown said. “CJ had some nice runs, I thought Tony saw it really well today. Justin and Jaylen both had some nice yardage after contact and then Jahiem had the big run.”

Following his long touchdown, White later had an 18-yard run and finished with a team-high 91 rushing yards on seven carries.

“He’s just hungry, he wants to get out there on the field and be ready to play,” Donaldson said of White. “As the season goes on, he’s going to put on some muscle, build confidence to where he’s going to play his game and I think he’s going to be a great addition to this team.”

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