MORGANTOWN W.Va- Perhaps West Virginia’s most consistent running back over the years, Kennedy Mckoy has been a stalwart in the backfield for the Mountaineers since he came in as a freshman. Now as a senior, head coach Neal Brown is looking at McKoy to take the next step in his development and believes he might be “sitting on a big year.”
“He’s gotten stronger over the past six, seven months. He’s patient, he has very few negative runs, he catches out of the backfield, and he’s got a toughness about him that I like. Yesterday we did a couple blitz pickup periods in practice, and he stuck his nose right in there. He has courage and I think that if he can stay healthy, he’s sitting on a big year,” said Brown.
With a generally young receiver room, McKoy and the other running backs are going to be leaned on more heavily this season than in years past. But judging by Brown’s words, he expects McKoy to step up and be a leader for the Mountaineers this season.
“He’s played at a high level in this conference before, and I think his confidence is higher than it ever has been. When you get into coaching, you can sense when guys are sitting on big years, and I’m hopeful, and I believe that he is sitting on a big year,” said Brown.
Although McKoy considers himself more of a “let my work do the talking guy”, he has worked on forcing himself to become more of a vocal leader on the offense with some of the younger players.
“Me taking more of a leadership role this year, it’s kind of my job to get guys going and make sure we’re starting fast, and just keeping guys focused. It’s more of a different role for me,” said McKoy.
The senior out of Lexington, North Carolina has seemingly gotten stronger every season for the Mountaineers, and coming into his senior campaign has rushed for 1,870 yards with 18 touchdowns to go along with it. Last season McKoy had many breakout performances, including a 148-yard game against Oklahoma State, and a 94-yard game against Texas. At many times McKoy has shown his ability to be a violent finisher at the end of his runs, so the thought of his becoming even stronger should excite Mountaineer fans for what’s to come this season.