WVU football owning in-state recruiting under Neal Brown

Gold and Blue Nation

For three straight years, Neal Brown has kept West Virginia's top talent at home

It is very conceivable that the right side of West Virginia’s offensive line will be made up entirely of Spring Valley High School products.

Tight end Corbin Page, the top prospect in the Mountain State this season, made that possible when he signed his National Letter of Intent to join the Mountaineers next season. He follows one of his old high school teammates, tackle Wyatt Milum, who joined WVU as the top recruit in the 2021 class from West Virginia.

RELATED: Our live tracker of the 2022 signing class

Two might be a coincidence, but three is a trend — and Neal Brown has made a trend of snatching the top prospects in the state. Bluefield defensive end Sean Martin started it off as the top guy in the 2020 class, and he was joined by Zach Frazier, who only slightly trailed him in the national rankings.

This is a calculated plan from Brown and his staff, who believe that there is plenty of talent close to home to bolster the program.

“If you look at what we’ve done in the state…our recruiting process always starts right here in West Virginia,” Brown said on the Mountaineer GameDay National Signing Day Special. “It’s a huge point of emphasis for us to add the best players and we’ve been able to do that.”

Of course, the Mountaineers have established some major pipelines across the Mountain State. In recent years, Fairmont Senior has pumped plenty of players up I-79 to Morgantown, ranging from Frazier to the Stills brothers, Darius and Dante, although they joined the team before Brown’s time. Spring Valley, however, has emerged as WVU’s new feeder, and that’s solidified with the addition of Page.

2020-21 was a huge year for Spring Valley additions, starting with Milum. He wasn’t even the only offensive lineman to join WVU from that team, as he signed along with fellow offensive tackle Bryce Biggs.

A few months later, West Virginia was proud to announce the transfer of Spring Valley alumnus Doug Nester from Virginia Tech, and by week two, Frazier, Nester and Milum were starting alongside one another in the trenches.

“Without a doubt, Spring Valley has been a good place for us,” Brown said.

To boot, the Mountaineers gained the second-highest rated recruit from the 2021 class as a transfer in Zeiqui Lawton. That means WVU has taken five of the top six in-state prospects of the last three classes.

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