Preseason lists exist to get people talking and make people angry. I accept that, and with that knowledge I am going to attempt a preseason list that isn’t so much a list as it is a look behind the curtain at my process.
Here is the idea: When it started to look like I was going to get back into covering West Virginia high school football this season, I hit the books and went to work on research. I have covered a lot of prep football in the Mountain State but I have also been on the WVU beat for the last two seasons, so I am still playing catch up. I have searched all over the internet, read a lot of stories, watched a lot of news clips, watched Hudl films, talked to coaches — I dove in with both feet.
In that process, I have taken lots of notes. From those notes, I have pulled out a lot of names for this list — not every name, but a lot of them for sure. This is not an all-state team and it isn’t really a list of the best players but more a peek inside my notebook to see who I have an eye on going into the 2020 season. If a player you think should be here isn’t, either he slipped through the cracks or I couldn’t find much on him. You will also notice there are more players from Class AAA and AA schools than Class A, and that’s because digging up detailed info on the small schools is a lot harder than it is for the bigger schools (usually).
If I made this list every week (and I won’t, at least not to this extent), it would probably change a lot so keep that in mind as you read on. I will split the list by class and group the players by school alphabetically. If there are any errors (example: someone on my list is injured, has graduated or transferred) or misspellings feel free to chirp at me in the comments or on Twitter.
CLASS AAA PLAYERS TO WATCH
Bridgeport: Devin Hill Cabell Midland: Isaiah Vaughn, Jakob Caudill, Jackson Fetty, Nemo Roberts Capital: Chris Hudson, KJ Taylor George Washington: De’Anthony Wright, R.T. Alexander, Michael Hughes Greenbrier East: Nate Baker Huntington: Eli Archer, Devon Jackson Hurricane: Ismael Borrero Martinsburg: Naieem Kearney, Kevon Warren, Anthony Smith Morgantown: Caden Biser, John McConnell, Gunner Lattimore Musselman: Blake Hartman, Ethan Northcraft, Justin Rhinehart Parkersburg: Jacob Waybright, Bryson Singer Parkersburg South: Devin Gaines Princeton: Grant Cochran, Ethan Parsons South Charleston: Zeiqui Lawton, Mondrell Dean, Trey Dunn Spring Mills: Jacob Barrick Spring Valley: Wyatt Milum, Jack Roy, Bryce Biggs University: Corbin Turney, Chase Edwards Wheeling Park: Caleb Bryan, Sincere Sinclair, Shaheed Jackson
CLASS AA PLAYERS TO WATCH
Bluefield: Carson Deeb, Bradon Wiley, Sean Mitchell, Derick Flack Elkins: T.J. Guire Fairmont Senior: Gage Michael, Kayson Nealy Independence: Atticus Goodson Keyser: Gavin Root, Zion Powell, Drae Allen Mingo Central: Daylin Goad Nitro: Trevor Lowe North Marion: Garrett Conaway, Tariq Miller Oak Glen: Hunter Patterson, Kyler O’Connor Poca: Jay Cook, Ethan Payne, Toby Payne Point Pleasant: Hunter Bush Robert C. Byrd: Jeremiah King, Xavier Lopez Shady Spring: Isaiah Valentine Sissonville: Dylan Griffin Wayne: Ethan Bowens Winfield: John Covert Wyoming East: Caleb Bower
CLASS A PLAYERS TO WATCH
Buffalo: Drew Clendenin, Jackson England, Dalton Jones Gilmer County: Avery Chapman Greenbrier West: Noah Brown, Kaiden Pack Man: Josh Moody, Cameran Frye Meadow Bridge: Ty Roles Pendleton County: Isaiah Gardiner, Josh Alt Summers County: Keandre Sarver Tolsia: Tanner Copley, Jesse Muncy Tug Valley: Caleb May Tygarts Valley: Caden Boggs Wheeling Central Catholic: Payton Marling
Also, while you’re here don’t forget to check out our preseason West Virginia high school football preview series from this week: