Jarret Doege does not need to learn how to be a college quarterback, he has been one for more than four years. Doege also does not need to learn how to be a quarterback at West Virginia, he has been at that for more than two years. For Doege, the Mountaineers’ senior signal-caller, this spring was all about learning the minutiae of the quarterback position.
“He’s going into what will be his third fall here, but his fifth in college football,” WVU coach Neal Brown said earlier this spring. “He’s experienced, he’s handled himself well, he’s taking the things that we thought were really important for him to get better at and he’s showing improvement.”
With four years of playing experience, Doege will be one of the most seasoned quarterbacks in college football this fall. Between his two years at Bowling Green and two at WVU, Doege has played in 33 games – making 30 starts – and has thrown for more than 7,400 passing yards and 60 touchdowns.
Doege started all 10 games for WVU last season, throwing for 2,587 yards and 14 touchdowns with only four interceptions. He also had a mid-season stretch of 223 pass attempts without being intercepted.
Heading into this offseason, Brown knew that the best way for Doege to continue improving would be focusing on the finer details of playing quarterback.
“That’s pocket movement, that’s being able to break the pocket when necessary and being able to make throws on the run,” Brown explained. “From the untrained eye, the person just watching as a fan, I’m not sure they notice that. But those little, minute things will make a difference for him.”
After 15 spring practices, culminating with WVU’s annual Gold-Blue Spring Game, Brown thinks Doege was able to achieve what the coaching staff laid out for him.
“He’s really done a nice job, he’s one of our most improved players, which is a positive for him,” Brown said.
In the spring game, Doege completed 10 of 14 passes for 79 yards and scored a rushing touchdown on a zone-read play at the goal line.
“I thought Jarret was really solid,” Brown said following the game. “I was excited that he pulled the ball on the zone-read down at the goal line and scored, that’s been a point of emphasis. Not that he’s ever going to be a guy that we call run plays for, but he’s got to be able to pull the ball when the defense gives you a pull-read and he’s got to continue to improve in the pocket. … He threw a couple of nice deep balls. In the 1-on-1 period, the ball he threw to [Isaiah] Esdale was a perfect pass. Something we really focused on this spring was his ability to be accurate on deep balls. I feel much better about that after 15 practices.”
Behind Doege on WVU’s depth chart in 2021 will be a pair of unproven underclassmen. Second-year player Garrett Greene appeared in two games last season, completing 3 of 4 passes for 24 yards and running six times for 40 yards. Greene was 8 for 16 in the spring game with one interception and 20 rushing yards. He completed a 51-yard pass to true freshman receiver Kaden Prather.
True freshman quarterback Will “Goose” Crowder enrolled early at WVU and was with the team this spring. He played sparingly in the spring game but had a nice moment when after throwing a pick-six on the play before, he came back and threw a 65-yard touchdown to sophomore Sam Brown.