February 6, 2007

Move over Steve Slaton?

Ok, well maybe West Virginia star running back Steve Slaton won't have to move over, but he will either be joined by or replaced by the most dynamic running back in years. North Fort Myers, Fla. all-purpose back Noel Devine has committed to the West Virginia Mountaineers.

"Noel committed to West Virginia, he told me about 20 minutes ago," said North Fort Myers head coach James Iandoli of his 5-foot-8, 170-pound superstar. "I don't know, call it gut, a good feeling, comfort. Whatever you want to call it, he feels great about them."

Devine took an official visit to West Virginia this past weekend after a trip to Alabama the weekend before. He had been thinking of taking an official visit to Florida State this upcoming weekend but has instead decided to end the process.

"It was about much more than football with Noel," said Iandoli. "If you know him, you know it's about feeling comfortable. When Rich Rodriguez signed that contract extension, West Virginia was the team to beat. He doesn't want to go into a situation where there's a new head coach after a couple of years.

"That and the offense, he loves that offense and it fits him well. West Virginia was also consistent in recruiting him. They didn't come in and then back off and then come in again. They were always there and they had a plan for him regardless of what happened."

Devine, who rushed for 2,148 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior, has a chance to qualify academically.

"He knows what he has to do and he's working hard at it," said Iandoli. "He's been working harder after taking a trip to prep school because he knows if he leaves, he wants to leave for college."

Devine is ranked as the No. 1 all-purpose back in the country and the No. 15 player overall. He is the second five-star commitment Jason Gwaltney for the Mountaineers in three years.

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