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Former WVU QBs to start for WLU and Wheeling

West Virginia Mountaineer fans might recognize a couple of names when they check local college stats this football season.

Both the Wheeling University Cardinals and the West Liberty Hilltoppers are expected to start former Mountaineers at quarterback when the division II football season kicks off this Thursday.

For West Liberty, Jack Allison has won the starting job for the second year in a row and at Wheeling, graduate transfer Trent Jackson has apparently earned the starting nod. Allison and Jackson were both three-year Mountaineers and overlapped on WVU’s roster in 2018 and 2019.

WEST LIBERTY

After starting his college career at Miami, Allison transferred to West Virginia in 2017. He most notably was WVU’s starting quarterback in the 2018 Camping World Bowl against Syracuse. In that game, Allison threw for 277 yards and an interception.

He appeared in seven total games for WVU between 2018 and 2019, throwing for 496 yards with two touchdowns and four interceptions. Allison announced his transfer from West Virginia midway through the 2019 season and landed at West Liberty that offseason. He started three games for the Hilltoppers during their 2020 spring schedule, passing for 478 total yards with five touchdowns and seven interceptions.

WHEELING

A product of Kent Island High in Maryland, Jackson walked-on at WVU in 2018. He did not see the field in three years in Morgantown and transferred to Wheeling following the 2020 season.

He joined the Cardinals as a graduate transfer this summer with three seasons of eligibility remaining. He competed in a four-way battle to be the team’s starting quarterback with returners Tyler Sprouse and Brennon Norris and freshman Ryan Cammas.

“Trent is an experienced guy, he just hasn’t got to play a lot of football yet at the college level,” Wheeling coach Zac Bruney said at MEC media day. “He’s had a lot of experience in a couple of different offenses at a very high level.”

The Cardinals had a bit of a hole at the position entering this offseason, with Sprouse and Norris combining to throw just 37 total pass attempts in the team’s four games last spring.

“Our quarterback room is doing well,” Bruney said.

“Coach (Nemo) Washington handles those guys and he’s getting them as ready as possible.”

Jackson is listed as the Cardinals’ starter on the team’s two-deep depth chart this week but just like WLU, Wheeling expects to use multiple quarterbacks when they play at Seton Hill Thursday. Norris is listed as Jackson’s primary backup.

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