Doege Could Be The Last Member Of WVU’s Class Of 2019 Or The First Of 2020
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–The rumor began drifting through the ether earlier in the week.
The buzz grew stronger over the days before exploding into fact – West Virginia’s football program was adding another transfer quarterback.
Jarret Doege, who had started 17 games at Bowling Green as a true freshman and sophomore, announced via social media on Thursday that he was transferring to WVU.
It’s understandable why Doege wanted to leave BG. After all the previous Falcon coaching staff, which included not only head coach Mike Jinks but also Jarret’s older brother Seth, had been fired last season, which ended with a 3-9 record.
A native of Lubbock, Jarret had made the move from West Texas to northcenteral Ohio in large part to be with brother.
With Seth gone, so was Jarret.
Though the younger Doege QB went through spring practice at Bowling Green with the Falcons’ new head coach Scot Loeffler, the 6-foot-3, 205-pound second-year sophomore decided to put his name into the transfer portal on May 8.
Nine days later he announced that he had found a new home.
Doege started five games for BG in 2017, the first Falcon true freshman in 25 years to start a game at quarterback. As a rookie, he completed 120-of-188 passes for 1,381 yards with 12 touchdowns and three interceptions. This past year as a sophomore, he started all 12 games for BG, completing 242-of-389 passes (62.2 percent) for 2,660 yards (221.7 per game) with 27 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
The connection between the Doege family and WVU’s current coaching staff quickly opened the communication pipeline when Jarret decided to leave Bowling Green. West Virginia’s first-year head coach Neal Brown was the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach at Texas Tech from 2010-12 when Seth was the Red Raiders’ record-setting quarterback. In addition, current Mountaineer assistant coaches Sean Reagan, Matt Moore and Chad Scott were also on Tech’s offensive staff at that time.
So, those ties brought the interest, but what does the future hold for the younger Doege at West Virginia?
First of all, his eligibility status must be determined. Doege (pronounced DAY-ghee) will reportedly apply for an NCAA waiver to become immediately eligible this fall. Based on the fact his previous coaching staff, which included his brother, was fired, Jarret may have a claim for immediate eligibility. Other student-athletes who had made similar claims recently have been granted their appeal.
But the fact that Jarret remained at Bowling Green through the spring may complicate his application for waiver. He’s not yet a graduate, so unless he is granted his appeal for immediate eligibility by the NCAA, he will have to sit out the 2019. He does have a redshirt available, and he would have two years of college eligibility remaining in starting in 2020.
WVU would like the NCAA to make a quick decision on Doege. If his appeal is granted and he’s immediately eligible this fall, the Mountaineers want to get him on campus and start him competing for the 2019 quarterback job right away, where he would battle Austin Kendall, Jack Allison and Trey Lowe for the starting job.
If he has to sit out the upcoming season, then West Virginia’s plan is for him to be a “blue shirt.” That will allow the Mountaineers to push Doege’s scholarship back so he is technically part of the class of 2020.
The distinction is important because WVU has just one scholarship left available for the class of 2019, and it still has other needs, particularly at wide receiver and defensive line.
West Virginia would be willing to use that final ’19 scholarship on Doege, if he can compete for the starting QB job this fall. But if not, WVU wants to push his enrollment back so he would be part of the class of 2020.
If he’s a blue shirt that will not keep Doege from enrolling at West Virginia for the fall semester, but it will keep him off scholarship, out of school and from participating in team activities until after preseason practice starts in August. The Mountaineers used the blue shirt status last year on Alabama transfer linebacker VanDarius Cowan and junior college wide receiver Isaiah Esdale. Both joined the team shortly after the start of preseason camp. Cowan had to sit out as a transfer, but Esdale did wind up participating in one regular season game.
So, whether Doege enrolls at WVU in the coming weeks or has to wait until August will be determined by how the NCAA rules on his appeal. Indications from Mountaineer officials are they’re not sure which way this will go, so they are keeping their options open as to whether he’ll be the last member of the class of 2019 or the first member of the class of 2020.