Dana Holgorsen confirmed Thursday night that Clint Trickett would be his starting quarterback for the second-straight week despite an injury that kept him quite familiar with the training room ever since stepping off the field after helping to beat Oklahoma State.
Trickett joined The Dana Holgorsen Show this week following his 309-yard passing performance in his first start with the team he grew up around as his father, former WVU offensive line coach Rick Trickett, worked to protect the position he now holds.
With his first full week to prepare knowing the job would be his on Saturday, Trickett took advantage not only of the snaps he would get in practice, but also perhaps the respect that comes along with being QB 1.
"It's a different feeling knowing you're the starter," said Trickett. "You have a lot of confidence in yourself, guys have confidence in you. You have the chance to step up and say something. When you're the back up, guys give you that look like oh, you're not even the guy. Now you have the chance to step into a leadership role."
The first step in that leadership process may have been Trickett's gesture Thursday night, when he tweeted a picture of himself and his offensive line, sitting down to enjoy a meal in Morgantown that he says was on him. That's a good way to get better protection from an offensive line – feed them.
A big part of the conversation following the win over the Cowboys and in the past week has been Trickett's ability to understand the signals and the communication aspect of the offense. Holgorsen says at times, his quarterback looked at him like he was speaking a different language from the sideline and it aggravated the head coached.
That has been the biggest point of emphasis throughout the week as Holgorsen and offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson work with the quarterback they feel gives them the best chance to win – as long as he can understand what he's being asked to do.
"I lost several years off of my life with the communication. He's a long way away from being able to operate our offense the way I want him to operate our offense. With that said, he reacted to the game well. I was glad he did. It put us in the position to win."
Trickett says he does feel like Holgorsen's offense is a simple one, but there are intricacies of it that he hasn't yet mastered. He echoes what his head coach says, though, that he is a gamer and his reaction to what occurs on the field on Saturday is likely his best attribute.
"I can't really showcase what I can do in practice because we aren't live, so once I got the chance in the game – I'm a game guy, I love games, I hype up for them, the bigger the stage, the better. I got to show what I can do," said the junior.
He understood the expectations that accompanied him when he made the decision to return to Morgantown. Many in the media and in the fan base assumed that his arrival signaled a clear frontrunner in the quarterback race with his experience at Florida State, and perhaps it did, but it took much longer to materialize than he hoped.
"In my mind, I also thought that, too," Trickett said of the notion that he'd be the starter. "But those guys were here first, they get their chance. My chance came, you've just got to take advantage of it."
Despite his injury, which had him doubled over behind the team bench when he tried throwing a few balls, Trickett remained in the game. When the result was final, he trotted over to the student section with his teammates and began to sing John Denver's "Country Roads." His mother and his brother were in the box just behind the student section.
His next opportunity to prove his worth will be Saturday night against a Baylor defense that has not yielded much in the way of yards or points. Trickett's work is cut out for him, but clearly there is confidence both from his staff and his teammates that he can get the job done.
Watch Trickett's interview above and catch the entire episode of The Dana Holgorsen Show this weekend.