VIENNA-The faces may be different, but the task that lies ahead for redshirt junior Matt Lindamood remains the same as West Virginia University's football team opens spring drills on Wednesday.
"It kind of reminds me of my first day of camp when I was a freshman," explained Lindamood, who was in town attending the Boys and Girls Club Steak and Burger Dinner back in January. "You really don't know what to expect until you get to that first drill."
Gone are leading rusher Noel Devine and leading receiver Jock Sanders as well as seven of the 11 starters on a Mountaineer defense that was ranked among the best in the country in 2010.
Photo by Jim Butta
West Virginia redshirt junior Matt Lindamood saw action in all 13 games last season. Lindamood scored a touchdown in a win over UNLV.
Those, however, aren't the only names WVU fans have become accustomed to hearing when the pads come out in the spring. Also missing when the old gold and blue takes to the practice field at 9:25 a.m. will be former assistant coaches Jeff Mullen, Chris Beatty, Lonnie Galloway, Dave Johnson and Dave McMichael.
"You really can't let it (the coaching changes) affect you as a player," said Lindamood. "It's still my job to go out there and prove to whoever that I can get the job done and deserve a chance to play."
Something the former Big Red all-state performer accomplished during the past two seasons in Morgantown.
Redshirted as a freshman, Lindamood played in 12 games during the 2009 campaign, seeing action on more than 75 plays on special teams. His season-high of 16 plays came against Auburn and he got in on 14 plays against East Carolina.
Lindamood finished with five tackles for the year, including four solo stops.
That was just the beginning for the six-foot, 236-pounder as last season saw the Parkersburg native play in all 13 contests, earning one start. He was used on 125 plays on offense, including a season-high 18 in WVU's 24-21 overtime win at Marshall.
He finished the season with 15 carries for 49 yards, an average of 3.3 yards per carry, and scored a touchdown in the Mountaineers' win over UNLV.
But, like so many players returning on the offense, all of that means little as a new staff has spent the past three months evaluating those players returning to see how they will fit in WVU's new offensive scheme.
A scheme developed by new-offensive coordinator/head coach in waiting Dana Holgorsen.
"I've always been the kind of player who goes out on every play and gives it everything I have," said Lindamood. "So, it (a new offensive staff) doesn't really bother me. If I do the things I need to do, then my playing time will take care of itself."
Lindamood heads into his fourth spring as the No. 2 fullback behind redshirt junior Ryan Clarke on the three-deep depth chart and as a vital member of the Mountaineers' special teams-holding down starting slots on all four units.
WVU concludes spring drills with the annual Gold/Blue Game at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 29.