West Virginia HC Neal Brown Excited About ‘Elite’ Garrett Greene

    West Virginia HC Neal Brown tossed heaps of praise on QB Garrett Greene, while pointing out the senior's biggest flaw at Big 12 Media Days.

    It’s the offseason, which means optimism for the impending season is at an all-time high among all coaches present at Big 12 Media Days, especially West Virginia head coach Neal Brown.

    Fresh off a 9-4 campaign capped with a Duke’s Mayo Bowl victory, Brown is beaming over his senior signal-caller, Garrett Greene, whom he called “elite” at the annual media gathering in Las Vegas.

    That moniker might surprise some, but Brown’s admiration for Greene started before either was a Mountaineer. After Greene’s first season as the full-time starter was a success, Brown believes Greene is ready to ascend even further in 2024.

    Neal Brown Calls QB Garrett Greene ‘Elite’

    Brown first met Greene at a football camp when he was the head coach at Troy and his now-starting quarterback was an undersized high school underclassman from Tallahassee, Fla.

    Brown remembered Greene when he took the West Virginia job in 2019 and recruited him to be a Mountaineer in 2020.

    It took Greene a few seasons to acclimate, appearing in 22 games with two starts between 2020 and 2022. He finally got the keys to the offense last season, making 12 starts with 2,406 yards passing, 16 touchdown passes to four interceptions, and 772 yards rushing and 13 scores on the ground.

    While Greene’s arm is impressive, it’s his running ability that really stands out. He’s averaging 6.4 yards per rush on 218 carries for his career, scoring 22 times on the ground for the Mountaineers.

    “He’s an elite runner,” Brown said of Greene at Big 12 Media Days. “He’s extremely fast. And he probably throws the deep ball better than anyone I’ve coached.”

    Greene Working on Completion Percentage

    Brown had plenty of praise for Greene, but he also had some familiar notes for his field general.

    Brown said the Mountaineers’ QB1 needs to increase his completion percentage from 53% to “around 60%,” which has been echoed this offseason by both coach and player.

    Greene has previously stated that he wants to get his completion percentage up “in the 70s” with a floor of 68%. At Big 12 Media Days, he clarified that short to intermediate throws were his biggest weakness last season, and that “dumb throws” on those plays are why his accuracy statistic suffered.

    Greene’s career passing percentage is 54%, meaning he would have to improve that mark by almost 15% to achieve the 68% floor he set for himself.

    It’s not an insurmountable leap for the talented West Virginia QB, but also not a likely one.

    Brown’s goal of 60% seems more obtainable for Greene after an offseason of explicit focus on that category and eliminating “dumb throws.”

    For a player who gains 6.4 yards a clip running the ball, the best option for the ascending QB  to avoid a bad throw is just to tuck it and take off for pay dirt.

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