WVU Football Names 2018 Season Award Winners
West Virginia’s football coaching staff has named its 2018 award winners, and there was a bit of a surprise right off the bat. The Mountaineer offensive player of the year wasn’t the one that finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting. Wide receiver David Sills V, who is playing in the Camping World Bowl, took offensive player of the year honors over Will Grier.
Offensive Player of the Year: David Sills V
Sills was named to the American Football Coaches Association’s All-America Second Team, Walter Camp Football Foundation Second Team and the Associated Press Third Team. He was named to the All-Big 12 Conference First Team for the second consecutive year and was a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation’s top receiver.
He leads the Mountaineers in 2018 with 61 catches and 15 touchdowns and was second on the team with 896 receiving yards. He is the only player at West Virginia to finish two different seasons with at least 15 receiving touchdowns. Over his career at WVU, he finished with 100 or more yards in seven games and had 12 multiple touchdown games.
Defensive Player of the Year: David Long Jr.
Long Jr., the 2018 Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, was named to the Walter Camp Football Foundation, Associated Press, Athlon Sports, Phil Steele and The Athletic’s All-America second team.
Long Jr. leads the Mountaineers with 97 total tackles on the season, including 68 solo stops. He has earned a team-best 18.5 tackles for loss on the year, second-most in a single-season in program history, and he has recorded seven sacks.
Long Jr. ranks No. 1 in the Big 12 and tied for No. 10 nationally in tackles for loss this season, and he ranks No. 2 in the league and tied for No. 17 in solo tackles.
Special Teams Player of the Year: Evan Staley
In 2018, Staley has connected on 12-of-16 field goal attempts and all 59 extra point attempts, leading the team in scoring with 95 points. He hit 7-of-9 attempts from beyond 40 yards and hit a long of 49 yards this season. He also handles the kickoffs with 68 kicks for 3,804 yards, averaging 55.9 yards per kick and has 21 touchbacks.
Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year: Trent Jackson
Jackson, a native of Stevensville, Mary., was WVU’s fourth quarterback in 2018.
Defensive Scout Team Player of the Year: Tavis Lee
Lee, an in-state stalwart from Martinsburg, is expected to move up and compete for playing time in 2019.
Special Teams Scout Team Player of the Year: Devin Wade
Wade is a redshirt junior cornerback from Westerville Ohio.
Ed Pastilong Captain’s Award: Dravon Askew-Henry, Trevon Wesco
Askew-Henry tied the school record for the most games started in a career (51) when he takes the field against Syracuse in the Camping World Bowl. He is the fifth-leading tackler on the team with 47 tackles, including 32 solo stops, 4.5 tackles for loss and two interceptions. He has finished with five or more tackles in six games in 2018 and had a season-high eight tackles, including seven solo stops and a tackle for loss against Oklahoma.
Mr. Unselfish: JoVanni Stewart
Stewart started the season at bandit safety and due to injuries made the choice to move to SAM linebacker against Youngstown State and remained at that position for the remainder of the season. Also a valuable member of the special teams, he made the most of the move, starting 10 games and currently is fourth on the squad in tackles with 49, including 34 solo stops. He is tied for second on the team in sacks with three and is second in tackles for loss with 9.5. He had a season-high seven tackles against Texas and TCU and two tackles for loss against Oklahoma.
Curtis Jones Jr. Achievement Award: Trevon Wesco
Wesco was named an All-Big 12 selection by the coaches (first team) and the Associated Press (second team). Heralded for his outstanding blocking ability, he is fourth on the team in receptions with 24 for 352 yards and a touchdown. His top performance was against TCU when he finished with five catches for 86 yards and a touchdown.