Standout Mountaineer wide receiver Stedman Bailey will be joining the Mountaineers coaching staff for the 2016 season. Bailey, who was playing for the Los Angeles Rams, was the victim of a shooting in Florida last fall. Bailey was waived by the Rams this summer, but the receiver was spending time with the team during their summer workouts, as well as time spent with the Rams coaching staff.
Bailey was one of West Virginia’s top receivers, playing for the Mountaineers during 2010-12 seasons. Bailey set numerous records and continues to hold them at West Virginia. Now, the receiver has been given the chance to join West Virginia’s coaching staff as a student assistant coach for the 2016 season. Bailey is returning to Morgantown and will now have the opportunity to complete his bachelor’s degree in mulitdisciplinary studies.
Bailey now has the chance to not only to complete his college degree, but he will be working with the Mountaineer receivers this upcoming season. This is an outstanding opportunity for both Stedman and the Mountaineer receivers, as he will be able to help young Mountaineers work on their skills while returning to Morgantown and completing his studies.
Official press release from WVU courtesy WVU Athletic Communications:
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – (July 17, 2016) – West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen has announced that former All-American and record-setting wide receiver Stedman Bailey will join the WVU coaching staff as a student assistant coach for the 2016 season.
“I know Stedman is very disappointed that he isn’t able to play football at this time. However, I am glad that he is going to turn an unfortunate situation into a positive one by coming back to WVU as a student assistant coach and more importantly finishing his degree,” Holgorsen said.
“He was an important part of our football program as a player, and I look forward to him being with us once again. Like we say here – once a Mountaineer, always a Mountaineer.”
Bailey will enroll full-time at WVU to complete his bachelor’s degree in multidisciplinary studies.
“First of all, I would like to thank the Los Angeles Rams organization, my teammates, coach Jeff Fisher, general manager Les Snead and the ownership for the way they have taken care of me and my family since they drafted me. They’re a first-class organization and made me feel like part of the family, especially during the past few months, which have been a tough time,” Bailey said.
“Moving forward, I would like to thank West Virginia University, especially coach Dana Holgorsen and athletic director Shane Lyons for making this opportunity available. Even though my playing career isn’t over yet, this gives me more time to heal so I can make a return. However, It is important to me to finish my degree. I loved my time as a Mountaineer football player and I look forward to working with coach Holgorsen and the Mountaineer football program.”
After being drafted in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the then-St. Louis and now Los Angeles Rams, Bailey played three years for the organization, before an incapacitating injury sidelined him at the end of the 2015 season.
“We couldn’t be happier for Stedman and this opportunity he has to complete his degree and join West Virginia’s coaching staff,” Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher said. “His presence during our offseason program meant a great deal to his teammates, and his mentorship was invaluable to our young rookies. Stedman’s ability to teach, and his remarkable drive and determination will serve him well at West Virginia, and we wish him and his family the best as they step into the next chapter of their lives.”
While playing for the Mountaineers from 2010-12, Bailey played in 39 career games and started 34. He compiled 3,218 receiving yards on 210 catches and scored 41 touchdowns. His receiving touchdowns were the most in school history, he has the most 100-yard receiving games, his receiving yards were second most and he was No. 6 in scoring with 246 points.
As a junior, he finished with a school-record tying 114 catches for a school-record 1,622 yards and 25 touchdowns. The receiving touchdowns tied for the second-most all-time in a season nationally. He was named first team All-American by the Football Writers Association of America, CBSSports.com, Phil Steele and SI.com and earned second-team accolades from the Associated Press, Walter Camp and FoxSports.com. The All-Big 12 first-team honoree was one of three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award, signifying the top receiver in college football.
He holds the school single-game receiving marks and three of the top five, including a school record 303 yards on 13 catches against Baylor. He is tied for the school record for most receptions in a game (14) and had four of the top seven marks.
As a sophomore, he finished with 1,279 yards on 72 catches and 12 touchdowns, earning All-Big East first team honors and setting the then-single-season receiving yards mark at WVU.
“West Virginia University is a class institution and I commend Head Coach Dana Holgorsen and the Mountaineers’ Athletic Director Shane Lyons and associate athletic director of football operation Alex Hammond for reaching out to Stedman and offering him the chance to return to school and contribute to their football program as a student assistant coach,” Rams General Manager Les Snead said. “Stedman has been working extremely hard to get back into football condition, and he has come a long way in a short period of time. This opportunity at West Virginia will allow him to be even more productive during this year of rehabilitation by finishing something that will pay dividends for a lifetime.”
Along with completing his degree, Bailey will be able to take part in on-field coaching and teaching of the Mountaineer receivers.