Legendary Mountaineers: The 12 Greatest Players and Coaches Out Of West Virginia
Who are the greatest Mountaineers of all time? Here we will go over the top 12 Mountaineers throughout the history of West Virginia University football, but before we do, I would like to pay homage to the 1988 West Virginia football team. They went undefeated in the regular season and took WVU to its first national championship game, where sadly they lost to Notre Dame 21-34. 1988 won't be the last time West Virginia gets to the big game; it's only a matter of time. Let's Goooo!
12. Jeff Hostetler
Hometown: Hollsopple, PA
Played 2 seasons for the Mountaineers 1982 and 1983
Hostetler's first game as a Mountaineer was against No. 9 Oklahoma, he threw four touchdowns for 321 yards and no interceptions in a 41-27 win over the Sooners.
Hostetler led West Virginia to a 18-6 record over two seasons.
Passed for 4,261 yards while at WVU
Won Super Bowl XXV as the starting QB for the New York Giants defeating the Buffalo Bills 20-19
11. David Saunders
West Virginia is known more for its running backs than its receivers, but David Saunders may be the Mountaineers best receiver of all time.
Hometown: Palatine, IL
Played three seasons for the Mountaineers 1995, 1996 and 1998. (Did not play in 1997)
Holds WVU career receiving yards record 2,608 yards
Holds WVU single season receiving yards record with 1,043 yards in 1996
No. 2 on WVU career receptions list with 191 receptions
10. Oliver Luck
West Virginia's latest athletic director Oliver Luck was once a celebrated quarterback for the Mountaineers.
Hometown: Cleveland, OH
Played four seasons (three-year starter) 1978-1981
5,765 career passing yards
Academic All-American, Rhodes Scholar Finalist and current WVU Athletic Director
9. Avon Cobourne
Hometown: Camden, NJ
Played four seasons 1999-2002
Rushed for over 1,000 yards in all four seasons at West Virginia
Holds WVU career rushing record with 5,164 yards
Second on the single-season rushing yards list with 1,710 yards
8. Rich Rodriguez
Coach Rich Rod may have had an extremely unpopular end to his career at West Virginia University, yet you cannot ignore what he accomplished as head coach in Morgantown.
Hometown: Grant Town, WV
Played four seasons as a linebacker from 1981-1984
Record as head coach at West Virginia: 60-26 with a winning percentage of .698 percent
Coached WVU to two BCS bowl appearances, even though he didn't coach the Mountaineers in the 2008 Fiesta Bowl he did get them there
WVU had at least eight wins in six of his seven seasons, including three 11-win seasons, 2005-2007.
2003 and 2005 Big East Coach of the Year
7. Steve Slaton
Hometown: Fairless Hills, PA
Most touchdowns in a single game by a Mountaineer with six
First Mountaineer to have over 100 yards rushing (215) and 100 yards receiving (130) in the same game
Holds WVU single season rushing yards record with 1,744 yards
Holds WVU single season all purpose yards record with 2,104 yards
Ranks first all-time in rushing touchdowns in WVU history with 50
6. Ira Errett Rodgers
Hometown: Bethany, WV
Played four seasons at WVU 1915-1917 and 1919
Played QB, RB/FB and punted/kicked extra points
First All-American in Mountaineer football history
First Mountaineer to rush for 200 yards in a game
Coached West Virginia football eight seasons 1925-1930 and 1943-1945
Record at WVU: 41-31-8
Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1953
Also coached WVU baseball and golf
His No. 21 has been retired by the WVU football team
5. Marc Bulger
Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
Played four seasons at WVU (started three)
Holds career passing yards record at WVU with 8,153 yards
Holds single season passing yards record with 3,607 yards
Leads all WVU quarterbacks in pass completions (630) and attempts (1,023)
His 59 touchdown passes is the school record
4. Major Harris
Born: Spartanburg, SC
Major Harris is the only West Virginia quarterback to lead WVU to the national title game. Had he not been injured early in the game he might possibly could have been the only Mountaineer QB to win West Virginia a national championship.
Below is a Youtube link for Major Harris highlights from the 1988-89 season.
3. Don Nehlen
Born: Mansfield, OH
Seasons at WVU: 21
Record at West Virginia: 149-93-4
Undefeated regular seasons: Two, 1988 and 1993
Nehlen is the longest tenured coach in Mountaineer history. He is also the only coach to take WVU to the national title game.
2. Pat White
Hometown: Daphne, AL
Played four seasons 2005-2008
Only QB in NCAA history with four straight bowl wins (two of those being the Sugar and Fiesta bowls)
Holds NCAA record for rushing yards by a QB with 4,480 yards
Accounted for over 100 touchdowns in his college career with 56 passing and 47 rushing
His 10,529 yards of total offense is No. 1 in Mountaineers history.
1. Sam Huff
Born: Edna Gas, WV
Hometown: Farmington, WV
Played guard and tackle for four seasons 1952-55
Helped lead West Virginia to 31-7 record over three years and a berth in the 1954 Sugar Bowl
In 1955 Huff was voted an First Team Academic All-American
His No. 75 is retired by the WVU football team.
Played in the NFL under legendary coaches Vince Lombardi, Tom Landry.
The first rookie middle linebacker to start an NFL championship game, which his New York Giants won 47-7 against the Bears
Played in four consecutive Pro Bowls from 1959-63 and was MVP of the 1961 game