The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

April 3, 2012

Productive Bailey has made a mark at WVU

MORGANTOWN — Stedman Bailey is one of the most productive wide receivers in West Virginia University’s football history.

A 5-foot-10, 193-pound redshirt junior from Miami, Fla., has caught 96 passes in 26 games for 1,596 yards and 16 touchdowns. His 1,279 yards last year is a WVU single-season record by a receiver.

That ranked No. 1 in the Big East and 13th nationally. But the conference coaches voted Bailey to only the All-Big East second team.

Phil Steele and ESPN.com, however, put him on their All-Big East first teams.

Bailey said coming into spring practice after the 70-33 crushing of Clemson in the Orange Bowl on Jan. 4 meant a great deal to the Mountaineers.

“It gave each and every one of us a huge boost to our confidence,” he stated. “We just feel good, getting a lot of work in and looking forward to next year.”

He noted that they have been working really hard and that he and his teammates are expecting a lot out of themselves.

“We hold ourselves accountable for everything that goes on out there,” he continued. “But we want to be great. So we’re putting in the work.”

The Mountaineers, who finished 10-3 in 2011, will resume practice on Sunday after returning from school’s week-long spring break.

Bailey ranked third last season in Big East scoring with 5.5 points per game. He also set a WVU record for consecutive 100-yard receiving games with four.

In leading the team with 12 receiving touchdowns, he averaged one on every six receptions. He caught five passes for 82 yards in the bowl game.

Bailey has observed a change in atmosphere in the spring workouts.

“It’s a lot of positive energy,” he said. “The offense and defense both are looking good. We’re all working to get better, and we’re helping each other become better players.”

He thinks the addition of younger pass catchers is going to help him and other veteran receivers.

“It’s going to help us older guys a lot,” Bailey reasoned.

“It also takes some of the pressure off of us.

“I know those guys want to compete and get themselves in their roles in the offense.”

 

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