Holgorsen Prepped for WVU Spring Game Showcase - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Holgorsen Prepped for WVU Spring Game Showcase

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MORGANTOWN -

Saturday's Gold-Blue Game is the culmination of weeks of hard work as the West Virginia University football team puts on a show for the fans at Mountaineer Field.

WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen joined the WVU Coaches Show this week to talk about the progress his bunch has made since opening camp in the beginning of March and what is still left to accomplish before the put the helmets on for real and get after Alabama in August.

"I've been very proud of how they've done," Holgorsen said. "Just the overall energy as far as showing up every day and being motivated and eager about getting out there and getting better at something."

The biggest difference between this spring and those Holgorsen has gone through in the past is the sheer numbers that he and his staff have at their disposal. He points out that the team has been working each day with about 75 to 80 percent of the personnel that will actually take the field in the fall, which is far different than even just a year ago.

"Last year during spring, we had a great spring. We took a lot of snaps, but we only took them with 50 percent of our team," Holgorsen said. "When you start back over in August, you're repping guys for the first time. When we go back to work [this] August, we're not going to be teaching people what to do. That process has already been done."

True freshmen like quarterback William Crest and defensive back Dravon Henry will join the team in the coming months and Holgorsen believes there will be some who emerge ready to help the team, but they won't be relied on like newcomers have been in previous seasons.

The other major benefit is that these early practices can include full first and second team lineups. Rather than giving certain players more reps than they can handle, there is a healthier rotation, allowing starters and primary backups to get the rest they need.

"There's been a lot of times where you just rep young kids knowing let's get them better and it doesn't really matter how it looks because we're not going to be playing with that guy in the fall," Holgorsen said of other springs he has spent in Morgantown.

Holgorsen said in his interview that he has been very pleased by the work new defensive coordinator Tony Gibson has done in implementing his scheme and getting the players up to speed in a timely manner.

The addition of new assistant coaches Tom Bradley and Damon Cogdell have only served to bolster a staff that includes three former defensive coordinators in addition to Gibson.

"I'll tell you where that's really going to pay off is in the fall when you're starting to game plan people and what kind of call we make in this kind of situation," he said. "All of those guys have been there and they've done there. They're going to be able to give Coach Gibson a bunch of good advice."

For now, the focus is on one last day of spring camp.

Unlike previous years, Saturday's scrimmage is not the first chance for fans to see the Mountaineers since they opened select practices throughout the spring. Still, there is an excitement about putting on the actual uniforms and treating the showcase as a game that has Holgorsen's players ready.

"We've talked about who wins the day and wins the drill and all of that, but this one is a little different. For 14 practices, as coaches, our job is to motivate the guys to get as much out of them as we possibly can," Holgorsen said. "The kids get excited about playing in this. They like when there are people in the stands and they're cheering for them and there's action." 

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Have a question about WVU football that you would like answered during the Spring Game television broadcast? Send us a tweet using the hashtag #WVUFootballSG and tune in to your local West Virginia Media station on Saturday to see if we answer it live on air. The pregame show gets going at noon with kickoff scheduled for 1 p.m.

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