Video Review A Legacy Project for WVU’s Grant Lingafelter
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – By the time senior year rolls around, most college students feel like they have a handle on things, and can ease up a bit on the daily grind. For those that truly want to excel, though, the final year isn’t one that they coast through. Thus it is with redshirt senior offensive lineman Grant Lingafelter, who continues to burn the midnight oil at West Virginia‘s Milan Puskar Center.
“Sometimes we don’t leave the building until 11 at night,” Lingafelter admitted, speaking of a group of linemen that he leads, including Colton McKivitz, Yodny Cajuste, Josh Sills and Chase Behrndt. “We sit there and watch every practice, every play with the ones and twos. Anyone is welcome, and we make that known.”
The flickering film projector of the old days has been replaced by keyboards and monitors that show the action from all angles, and sliced and diced by down, distance, play call and about any other criteria imaginable, but there’s something decidedly old-school about a bunch of linemen huddling up to review performances. The goal of such work also goes back to the basics of the sport — practice, review, identify mistakes and improve.
Lingafelter was tutored in this process by Tyler Orlosky, with whom he spent a great deal of time.
“I was lucky enough to play with Orlosky, who’s an NFL talent,” Lingafelter explained. “He and I watched film every night together the four years I played with him. I took his coaching the same way I take the coaches coaching, and Wick [offensive line coach Joe Wickline] now. He was on the ones and I was on the twos, but he’d watch every play of the twos and tell us what we did wrong. Now that he’s gone I’ve taken it over.”
Lingafelter has moved into his own starting slot this year, and credits those long video sessions for helping him break from a backup role into what he hopes is a breakout season. Like many of the more out-front leaders on West Virginia’s team, he’s passing along the lessons that he has learned along the way. Those video study sessions, with several youngsters along with Cajuste, are one of the best ways he has of teaching and helping those potential starters of the future.
“We need to build that as a unit,” the Chagrin Falls, Oh., native said. “We have new guys stepping in, and it’s good. Those late night [sessions] just help. So when the game rolls around, we are ready to rock and roll. That’s how the OLine gets good and how you build camaraderie and how you start trusting each other.”
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Like several other players and coaches, Lingafelter admits to having gotten in some earlier-than scheduled work for the opener.
“We dove into Virginia Tech film back in May,” he said of his group. “Obviously we had to focus on our stuff first, and we had some new plays that [offensive coordinator] Jake Spavital put in to learn, but it’s never too early to look at that stuff. Yod and I are both huge film guys, and we looked at it when we came back on Jan. 4.”
And what has Lingafelter seen of the swarming defense he and the Mountaineers will have to block on Labor Day weekend?
“They are a really good defense, they have a really good front seven, but it’s a great opportunity for us to go out and show we can compete with the rest of the country.”