West Virginia defensive coordinator Vic Koenning is looking for future pass rush specialists to add to his defensive unit and over the weekend the Mountaineers offered a player that fits that description.
2021 defensive end Hammond Russell (6’3″, 235) from Coffman High School in Dublin, Ohio received an offer from Neil Brown and West Virginia. The 3-star recruit now holds offers from West Virginia, Kentucky, Iowa State, Indiana, Cincinnati, Toledo, Bowling Green and Akron.
“I’ve been in contact with the West Virginia staff for a while,” Russell told West Virginia Sports Now. “I’ve been talking with Coach Trickett so the offer wasn’t surprising but I’m just happy that the coaching staff believed in me.”
“They told me that they like how I play hard and that I’m always about winning. They believe that I can be a real asset to the team. I also talked with the defensive line coach (Jordan Lesley) and he was like, if you want to play as a freshman then you should keep working hard and come here. They are currently playing five guys up front but they want to play nine and coach told me if you want to play as a freshman then come here.”
Russell is a developing player that is learning to use his length, size and athletic ability to his advantage. He tells WVSN that his first step off the snap is one of his biggest strengths.
“Once the ball is gone, I’m already in the lineman’s face and I already have the advantage on him and I like to also use a power move off the edge,” said Russell.
In regards to unofficial visits, Russell has already visited Pitt and was in East Lansing this weekend to see Michigan State as they hosted Penn State. As far as coming to Morgantown, Russell wants to attend an upcoming home game and then return in December for an unofficial visit.
Russell plans on enjoying this entire recruiting process and knows that he’s blessed to be in this position.
“I’m really excited about all of this but I’m really excited and appreciate the support I’ve gotten from all the people here in my school that have already gotten academically ready and prepared. I’ve put the work in to get there and know that something like that doesn’t happen overnight.”