Allison: “I came here to start, I came here to win games”

WVU Football

A lot has happened in Jack Allison’s football career.

A highly touted recruit in the class of 2016 (ranked nationally in the top 10 of quarterbacks, just ahead of Austin Kendall), Allison committed to the University of Miami to play with Al Golden.

Shortly after Allison showed up on campus, Coach Golden and his staff were sent on their way.

“I think it was, like, within a month span of the time when I enrolled, that’s when they got fired,” Allison recounted. “They brought Coach [Mark] Richt in, and I love Coach Richt, he’s a great human being, great coach, it just wasn’t the right fit for me.” Pretty soon, Allison started looking for a new place to call home. Looking to the north, Allison found Morgantown, and thought that it was a place he wanted to be a part of — but it would be a while before he saw the field.

Due to NCAA transfer requirements, Allison spent 2017, his first year in Morgantown, on the sidelines. He would get his first action in WVU’s first home game of 2018 against Youngstown State.

Throughout 2018, he saw action in 7 games, including a start in the Camping World Bowl loss against Syracuse.

“That was such a huge learning experience for me. I’m so grateful for that opportunity,” he said. “Just learning what it’s like to really be out there in the first quarter…to get in there and see live bullets from the first to the fourth quarter was such a great experience for me.”

Within the next few weeks, Dana Holgorsen shipped off to Houston, Neal Brown arrived in Morgantown, and transfer quarterback Austin Kendall joined the Mountaineers. Those are a lot of wild cards getting thrown at a quarterback hoping to establish himself as a regular starter.

“I can’t control those things,” Allison said. “All I can control is how hard I work every day when I come in here, so that’s all I really did, and just let God take care of all the rest.”

Luckily for him, he says this most recent coaching transition has been an easy one so far.

“It was kind of just me and him meeting each other like two friends would meet for the first time,” Allison said. “You know, just talking where I’m from, where he’s from, just things like that, and as our relationship grew, we started talking more about football.”

Right now, there is no clear-cut starting quarterback for the season opener against JMU. Allison did get considerable playing time at the Gold-Blue game, throwing the ball 24 times — the most out of all the quarterbacks — while racking up a touchdown and an interception.

In the fight for that coveted QB1 job, Allison says he relishes the competition.

“I’m an athlete. I’m here to compete,” he said of the quarterback battle. “That’s all I wanna do, and I think it brings the best out of everybody to compete.”

Now that the spring is over, Allison says he is getting ready for the summer. 

“It’s gonna be a big summer for me and the team,” he explained. “Individually, I’m just going to be working as hard as I can to get bigger, get faster, and really just hone in this offense to a master level.” 

All of this hard work in the summer, he hopes, will set him up for the two main reasons he plays Mountaineer football.

“I came here to start,” Allison said. “I came here to win games.”

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