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by Greg Talkington
(June 9)Bridgeport High School all-state kicker Zach Anglin will be "pursuing his dream" this fall when he competes for the kickoff and punting positions at West Virginia University.
Anglin is one of several invited walk-ons who will be trying to make the squad.
Despite averaging 45 yards a punt while driving kicks into the end zone 78 percent of the time his senior year, few colleges showed interest in Anglin's abilities.
"Glenville State really pursued me and I talked to Fairmont State some," Anglin said. "But Glenville is the only school that actually offered scholarship help."
With that in mind, Anglin pieced together a film of his senior season and sent it to WVU and Marshall University.
Mountaineer defensive coordinator Steve Dunlap viewed the film and was impressed.
"He took the tape around and showed it to all the other coaches and they apparently liked what they saw," Anglin said. "He called my dad (Rick) and we went down one weekend during basketball season.
"Coach (Don) Nehlen talked to me there and said he was definitely interested."
But there were no scholarships available for special teams players.
"He told me if I performed well enough to punt and do kickoffs, I would receive a scholarship my sophomore year," Anglin said. "I'll probably be competing against Brendan Rauh and he's pretty good."
Anglin won't have to worry about field goals and extra points, as the Mountaineers return veteran Jay Taylor.
"I'd really have to work a lot more on my placements and become more consistent to compete with him," Anglin said.
Marshall also invited Anglin to walk on, but he already had his heart set on going to WVU.
"I've always dreamed about going to WVU since I was little and went to my first game," said Anglin, who earned an engineering scholarship. "I was so in awe of the stadium and I guess it gets down to the fact that I'm a hometown boy."
While football has always been number one in Anglin's athletic pursuits, he expressed surprise that no schools talked to him concerning baseball.
Anglin led Bridgeport to the Big 10 and Harrison County titles by hitting over .500. He was selected as the county's co-player of the year.
"WVU showed some interest at the end of my junior year, but I think they thought I was strictly committed to football," Anglin said.
Anglin will participate in the North-South Football Classic on June 20.