West Virginia has picked up the two best players to come out of Dunbar (MD) the past few season in Tavon Austin and Deontay McManus, and they hope to do the same with Marvin Gross in 2013. A couple weeks back, they made the first step in doing that by offering the 6-foot-4, 225 pound rush end.
“After school one day my coach told me he had something really important to tell me,” said Gross. “We called my mom and met in the conference room and that’s when he told me that West Virginia was offering me.”
And how did the nation’s No. 25 strong-side defensive end react to the news?
“I was stunned,” he said. “I had only talked to them one time at that point, but I was really happy. My mom, she was really excited.”
“I headed up there for spring practice and it was really intense. It was my first college practice and it really opened my eyes. No one was standing around. Everyone was active, even the managers. The coaches, the players, everyone going to different stations and doing something at all times. Not like a high school practice at all,” said Gross, who plans to head up to Rutgers and Wake Forest in the coming weeks.
More importantly than that, however, was what he saw in new defensive line coach Erik Slaughter.
“I talked to Coach Slaughter some. I like the way he coached,” said the three-star, 87 rated prospect. “He was real head on about what he wanted and the players really understood him in the film room and on the field. What I really liked was that what he said he wanted in the film room is exactly what he was looking for on the field.”
With “everyone equal” and offers from Rutgers, Wake Forest and UTEP plus interest from Washington, and many others, the Mountaineers are hoping another connection can help sway the talented pass rusher to Morgantown.
“I talked to Tavon, obviously,” said Gross, speaking of former Dunbar (MD) Poet Tavon Austin. “He told me that I would like it up there and that I should come back up for the spring game.”
And is he taking the All-American receiver/return man’s advice?
“Oh yea, I’m definitely coming back. I’ll be there for the Spring Game.”