On Monday, I wrote that West Virginia coach Bill Stewart left the door open to a possible return by suspended cornerback Brandon Hogan.
Now it looks like that door has been blown off the hinges. Stewart said today that Hogan is back practicing with the team, and there's even a chance he could play Saturday at LSU.
"Brandon Hogan is in an evaluation period by me," Stewart said Tuesday. "He is going to practice and I will watch him work. Right now, he is undergoing the exact same formula that is set in stone by the student judicial affairs committee for the rest of the student body who gets in trouble.
"I am not trying to make light of it, but he is in evaluation and I don’t know if he will play this weekend and I don’t know if he won’t play this week. If he is to play this week, he will have earned the right to play according to my standards and my standards alone. I will make that determination the day of the game. He will travel this week."
Exactly what those standards are, Stewart didn't say. Certainly, Stewart will face some criticism if he allows Hogan to play after missing just one game following his DUI arrest. And remember that Hogan has had other problems, including a citation for public urination and disorderly conduct this spring.
Hogan would certainly help the team against LSU, giving the Mountaineers an experienced corner instead of having sophomore Pat Miller make his second start.
Stewart also said that starting guard Josh Jenkins had a minor operation on his leg Tuesday morning. Jenkins got his leg rolled up on by a Maryland defender on Saturday. Stewart said he'd make a determination on Jenkins' status by Thursday, but it sounds like West Virginia will have to prepare without him.
On the plus side, linebacker Pat Lazear will try to play this week after missing the first three weeks with a bone bruise. Lazear led the team in tackles last season.
"If he wasn’t as strong as he is, I don’t think he could have recovered as well," Stewart said. "He is not in good shape, but we are going to try to play him this week."