As the Mountaineers headed into the locker room during the 2020 Liberty Bowl against Army, WVU head coach Neal Brown made a risky decision benching Jarret Doege for backup Austin Kendall. Now, Brown notes Doege as one of the most improved on the football team during the spring practices.
“He [Doege] had one bad period on Thursday night in some of our situational work but other than that he’s really done a nice job,” Brown said. “He’s one of our most improved players which is a positive for him.”
Doege in his first full season starting for West Virginia had a respectable year. The once Bowling Green Falcon threw for the third-most passing yards in the Big 12, with 2,587. Doege threw for 14 touchdowns while committing four interceptions.
During the Iowa State game and the first half of the Army game, Doege’s impact decreased. There weren’t many times where the quarterback from Lubbock, Texas, could make a big play when it was needed. The decision-making skills just weren’t there. Brown commented on how Doege has worked on his discipline in making the right play.
“It’s really about just buying some time like today [Saturday],” Brown said. “We had a little fourth and short play and he did a really good job just buying about a second extra time by backing up and getting the ball off for a first down.”
There’s a great mass of trust and reliability that the coaching staff has had with Doege controlling the offense ever since he took over Kendall’s spot in the 2019 season. Even when the touchdown numbers aren’t high for Doege, he’s going to get you completions and passing yards. But for Brown and his coaching staff, it’s just more than the numbers that Doege does for the team.
“That’s what we’re talking about for the untrained eye, I’m not sure that the person is just watching it as a fan, I’m not sure they notice that but those little minute things will make a difference for him,” Brown said.
With the rise of Garrett Greene, the fans are looking for the next high-impact quarterback at West Virginia. Brown praised Greene’s spring so far, but it looks like the third-year WVU coach will hand the keys to Doege once again.
(Top Photo: Caten Hyde)