William Crest Back At West Virginia; Other Players Depart Mountaineer Roster
By Greg Hunter
There are some additions and deletions to the latest Mountaineer football roster.
William Crest, who announced after the 2016 season that he was going to transfer to another school, instead has had a change of heart and decided to return to WVU. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound junior came to West Virginia as a highly rated quarterback but moved around to other positions in his time with the Mountaineers, also seeing action at running back, wide receiver and safety. Crest, who did not participate in spring practice at WVU this year though he remained enrolled, is currently listed as a receiver.
Crest may be back with the Mountaineers, but two other scholarship players are no longer part of the squad. Junior offensive linemen Dontae Angus and redshirt freshman Steven Smothers are no longer listed on the roster and reportedly neither will be part of the team moving forward. Smothers was held out of spring drills for what WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen indicated was an academic shortcoming. Angus also did not participate in spring practice, though a specific reason was never given for his absence. It now appears they will miss more than just the spring, as both are gone from the team. Marcell Lazard, a senior-to-be offensive tackle, is the only other scholarship player with eligibility remaining who is not returning, as he announced a couple months ago that he is headed to Boston College as a graduate transfer.
Four walk-ons who participated in spring drills are also no longer on the roster – redshirt freshman receiver Seth Aungst, sophomore running back Jashawn Banks, sophomore linebacker Max Chefren and junior safety Branden Rivers.
West Virginia did pick up a new walk-on, though, as defensive lineman Brenon Thrift is transferring to WVU from Penn State. Currently a redshirt junior, Thrift will have to sit out the 2017 season and then will have one year of eligibility remaining to play for the Mountaineers in 2018. A native of Monroeville, Pa., where he played at Gateway High School, the 6-foot-3, 290-pound Thrift spent the 2014 season at Temple, where he redshirted as a true freshman. He moved on to Lackawanna (Pa.) Community College in 2015 and then spent last year at Penn State, though he never saw any game action. Now he’s at WVU, where he’ll have two years to play one.