It doesn’t matter the team or the level of the competition, more often than not, the backup quarterback becomes a fan favorite — but what about a former QB that traded in his cleats for basketball sneakers but decided to throw on a football jersey one more time?
Well, it was proved Saturday at the Gold-Blue game that as long as his name is Miles McBride, he surpasses all signal callers as the fan-favorite. During the halftime quarterback challenge, McBride came out of the weight room holding a football — that’s all it took for Mountaineer Nation to get to its feet.
Then it really went wild when Deuce took off his pullover to reveal a No. 4 football jersey with his last name on the back.
The WVU guard shook off the rust and joined Jarret Doege and Garrett Greene in the throwing drills.
“I’m a basketball fan, you all hear me talk about it. I had an event with Huggs last week and mentioned it to him. He said as long as there is no gear involved, he’s good,” Neal Brown laughed. “Deuce said ‘I just have to have a jersey with my name on it’ so I said we could work that out.”
The head coach said one of his three goals for the spring game was for all in attendance to have fun. He definitely accomplished that by having McBride show off his arm.
“Every basketball game I watched, it seems they always mention he played quarterback at Moeller (high school),” he said. “I figured the fans would enjoy it and they did. He was a good sport.”
As for the actual WVU quarterbacks, this year’s spring game was a productive one. Doege was the leader of the gold team and completed 10 of his 14 attempts for 79 yards, while also adding a score with legs.
“I thought Jarret was really solid. I was excited he pulled the ball on the zone read down on the goal line and scored,” Brown said. “That’s something that’s been a point of emphasis. Not that he’s ever going to be a guy we call run plays for, but he’s got to be able to pull the ball when the defense gives you a pull read and he’s to continue to improve in the pocket.”
Brown also praised Doege for a “perfect pass” to Isaiah Esdale in the 1-on-1 period, adding improving his accuracy on the deep balls was an emphasis this spring.
“I feel much better about that after 15 practices,” the head coach added.
Greene, representing the blue team, continued to show off his dual-threat capabilities — but it was his 51-yard pass to promising newcomer Kaden Prather to set up a field goal that was one of the true highlight-reel plays on Saturday. He completed eight of his 16 passing attempts for 103 yards and one interception.
“Garrett was anxious at the start and that’s kind of the way he’s been at the beginning of all these scrimmages, been real anxious then settled down,” Brown said. “I thought he threw a great ball to Kaden Prather.”
Greene also took home the Juice and Most Improved First-Year Player awards.
Will “Goose” Crowder and Matt Cavallaro also took reps with the blue team. Crowder completed three of his four attempts and had the longest pass of the day – a 65-yarder to Sam Brown for a touchdown.
“I thought Will Crowder came in and did some nice things,” Brown said. “With limited opportunities, he’s done well this spring.”