West Virginia has consistently started slowly on the recruiting path under Dana Holgorsen. The Mountaineers are hoping to buck that trend this year, though they’re already battling uphill against it. Mike O’Laughlin committing to West Virginia late last night should be a huge boost for what is currently an underwhelming class. O’Laughlin is the 3rd player to join the 2018 West Virginia class, and, interestingly enough, the third to pledge to the Mountaineers from out of their usual recruiting footprint, as the 3-star tight end hails from Illinois.
— Mike O’Laughlin (@mikeolaughlin3) April 23, 2017
THE O’LAUGHLIN FILE
|Name||Hometown||Position||Position Rank||Star Rating|
|Mike O’Laughlin||Oak Park, IL||TE||28||⭐⭐⭐|
The impact of this commitment really can’t be understated. O’Laughlin is the most talented player in the class right now, but he also wants to be a leader off the field, and hopes to spark a movement of Illinois recruits committing to West Virginia. O’Laughlin chose West Virginia over offers from Cincinnati, Miami (OH), Western Michigan, Central Michigan, Ball State.
If you just look at that offer sheet, you might not be very impressed, but O’Laughlin is absolutely a P5 level talent, and his main problem right now is just a lack of exposure. I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see him start to load up on Big 12 and Big 10 offers after he attends a large amount of camps this summer.
The reason I can safely say that I’m sure O’Laughlin will accumulate more offers after this summer, and throughout his senior season is largely because of his film. O’Laughlin is an athletic specimen. At 6-foot-5, O’Laughlin is only 213 pounds, and looks way more like a wide receiver than a tight end. He’s faster than pretty much linebacker he faces, and can go up and get passes over smaller corners. West Virginia wants him to add a bit more weight to help aid his blocking efforts at the next level, but the Mountaineers are extremely excited about the mismatches they can create with him at tight end.