The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Sports

February 3, 2010

Two star QBs sign with WVU

While Geno Smith is the odds-on favorite to take over at quarterback, coach Bill Stewart knows he has a winner on deck.

Maybe two.

Quarterback Barry Brunetti is the star of the latest Mountaineer recruiting class.

In all, the Mountaineers inked 19 recruits Wednesday on National Signing Day. According to rivals.com West Virginia had the 19th best recruiting class in the nation.

Brunetti, a 6-foot, 207-pounder out of Memphis University High in Memphis, Tenn., was a two-time first-team all-stater and led his school to back-to-back 13-0 seasons and state titles as a junior and a senior.

He is rated as one of the top dual threats in the country by several recruiting services.

Brunetti finished his career completing 240-of-432 passes for 3,882 yards and 43 touchdowns and rushed for 1,660 yards and 39 scores.

He threw for 2,237 yards and 23 touchdowns with just one interception.

Brunetti was also offered by Duke, Louisville, Memphis, Mississippi State, Penn State, Purdue and Tennessee.

“Barry Brunetti is a Parade All-American, tremendous football player and a state champ,” Stewart said. “You can read all you want about Barry Brunetti, but he has not lost a football game that he has started in since the seventh grade.”

On top of that, WVU also landed Texas QB Jeremy Johnson, a 6-2, 175-pound Silsbee High product.

“When I went into Texas to visit Jeremy Johnson, I went to his school and it was just a great visit,” Stewart said.

“He ran a 10.6 in the 100 meters and had a 24-foot long jump. When we went to dinner (I bought mine and they bought theirs, just to have that out there), the waiter comes up and says, ‘West Virginia, huh?’ I said, ‘Yes sir.’ He then said he watched the Gator Bowl and that it was a heck of a story. The waiter said, ‘You know that coach (Stewart) played for Coach (Bobby) Bowden.’ I laughed and said, ‘Yes, he did.’”

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