Cumberland Times-News

Mike Burke - Sports

January 31, 2013

For Redman, it came and it went in the blink of an eye

Taige Redman, the former Keyser and West Virginia University linebacker, sat without a cocktail in the cocktail lounge of the Ali Ghan Shrine Club along with Sean Biser, his football coach at Keyser, also sans cocktail, looking back on all he’s been through since his last visit to the Dapper Dan Sports Awards Banquet.

That was in 2009 when he and the Golden Tornado were coming off an undefeated regular season and he was being honored as the area high school co-Defensive Player of the Year. In just a matter of days, Redman, who led the Keyser track team to a state championship the following spring and who was named All-State 12 different times in his four years at Keyser, would be intercepted from signing an NCAA National Letter of Intent to play for Ohio University by head coach Bill Stewart and Redman’s home-state Mountaineers.

WVU had had interest in Redman from the beginning, but was straightforward with him in explaining the only way he would become a Mountaineer is if somebody else the team was recruiting opted not to become one, which is what happened on that National Signing Day.

For Redman, who was just as honest with Ohio U. about the situation as the late Stewart and WVU were with him, it was a dream come true to sign with the Mountaineers. One of 11 children, Redman was never asked to walk on at WVU, which will likely always give him cause to consider how different his life would be had that WVU recruit not changed his mind just as Redman was about to sign with Ohio.

“It went so fast,” Redman said. “It’s been quite a quick turnaround since the last time I was here.”

During that quick turnaround, Redman played for two different head coaches, went to four different bowl games and two BCS conferences. He injured one of his knees in the Mountaineers’ win over Baylor in the fourth game this season, but continued to play. Most recently he underwent surgery on both knees (progress good), but not before graduating with a degree in criminology in less than four years.

The Mountaineers began the 2012 season 5-0, capped by a 48-45 win at Texas, buoyed by Heisman hopefuls Geno Smith and Tavon Austin. However, they returned to Texas the following week and lost to Texas Tech in Lubbock, triggering a five-game losing streak. With wins at Iowa State and then at home over Kansas to finish the regular season, the Mountaineers were 7-5 before concluding their season in Yankee Stadium in New York with a 38-14 loss to Syracuse in the Pinstripe Bowl.

“It was disappointing the way it ended,” said Redman, “particularly a season that began with so much promise. But it was all such a great experience, all the different places we played — Texas, Texas Tech. Just a great experience.

“The Big 12, it was a different world. Austin and Lubbock were like night and day. Both were very football-hostile, but Austin was very nice.”

Reflecting on his nearly four years in Morgantown, Redman said the 2012 Orange Bowl, in which WVU throttled Clemson, 70-33, was clearly his favorite bowl experience, but that he enjoyed the Gator and Champs Sports bowls as well.

“All three were great bowls,” he said. “Well organized, very hospitable, with plenty for the players to do.”

The Pinstripe Bowl? Not so much.

“The Pinstripe wasn’t my favorite,” he said. “Nothing against New York. New York is fantastic, but it’s so spread out and so busy, it really didn’t provide the greatest bowl atmosphere when it came to the group activities you have at bowls.”

Nearly midway through his college career, Redman and the rest of the Mountaineers experienced a coaching change, with the popular Stewart being replaced by Dana Holgorsen prior to the 2011 season. When the matter of the intensity Holgorsen appears to wear on his sleeve during games was broached, Redman laughed and said that the perception was reality.

“Coach Holgorsen is a lot to handle,” Redman said. “He’ll get after you, and he expects perfection. But if you like hard coaching — which I do, and which I’m used to — he’s a good one to have.”

Having experienced so much since the last time he sat on the Dapper Dan dais, just four quick years ago, Redman doesn’t know what the next day will bring, much less the next four years. He does, however, have at least two, possibly three law enforcement career starters on the table already.

He said he understands the rest of his life is about to begin moving at warp speed compared to how the previous four years moved. But if you’re going to bet on somebody to keep up, to make the most and experience the best in this life, bet on Keyser’s Taige Redman.

Mike Burke is sports editor of the Cumberland Times-News. Write to him at mburke@times-news.com.

1
Text Only
Mike Burke - Sports
  • Terps need to move and move quickly

    The good news is Maryland will never have to play another basketball game in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Goodbye, good riddance, sayonara, smell ya, no more of you, stay classy, we won’t let the door hit us on the way out.
    Until we see you in court.

    April 13, 2014

  • Then again, he’s manager of the Yankees, and I’m not

    I went to bed confused Wednesday night, which in itself is nothing new. But having
    watched most of the Orioles-Yankees game, including the final three innings, earlier
    in the evening, then watching the late Baseball Tonight before I turned in, I was under the impression that the Yankees had won the game when I was pretty sure before watching the show that the Orioles had won.

    April 11, 2014

  • At times we all should allow for a little flex

    Other than when I was a student in the Allegany County Public Schools System, I’ve always believed the most thankless job there is — or at least one of the most thankless jobs there is — belongs to the person who ultimately hits the switch on whether or not to call off school because of the weather. You’re slammed if you do, you’re slammed if you don’t. No matter what you decide it’s no win, but, like managing a baseball team or running a bar, everybody knows they could do it.

    January 11, 2014

  • A treasured member of the family of baseball

    When a former professional football player from our past dies, he is most often remembered as being one tough son of a gun, or a wonderful runner or pass catcher, or as a brilliant quarterback.

    January 10, 2014

  • Bob Giffin believed in the goodness of us all

    The first time the Giffin family exploded onto my radar was at a Fort Hill basketball game years ago in the old Fort Hill gym. Believe it was a City game, which meant the place was packed, the walls were sweating and the smell of popcorn permeated the atmosphere. And through it all marched the family Giffin in perfect formation, tallest in the front, shortest in the back, led by father Lew, mother Donna, oldest son Bob, second son Tom, third son Donnie and fourth son Johnnie.

    December 28, 2013

  • Redskins do that voodoo that they do so well

    This time last year the Washington Redskins were in the midst of a seven-game winning streak on their way to the NFC East title. Mike Shanahan was being hailed as the perfect football presence the franchise had sorely needed for so long. Quarterback Robert Griffin III in the sprint option was being hailed as the single greatest invention since the wheel, and beleaguered Daniel Snyder, the little owner who couldn’t, was being hailed for not even trying as he allowed his two-time Super Bowl winning coach and lord of all things football to pull the strings on all things football.

    December 13, 2013

  • Fort Hill’s approach is all-inclusive

    After Fort Hill opened everybody’s eyes last season in what was supposed to be a rebuilding year (*1), it was a pretty sure bet that the Sentinels, given all of their returning resources, would be making a run for the state championship this year (*2).

    December 6, 2013

  • What resource will the O’s allocate next?

    In November 1993, Dan Duquette, then the general manager of the Montreal Expos, traded second baseman Delino DeShields to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a young pitcher by the name of Pedro Martinez. According to a story in last Sunday’s New York Times, upon completing the deal, Duquette, now general manager of the Baltimore Orioles, told Neal Huntington, then a member of the Expos front office and now the general manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates, “This trade is going to be hated in Montreal.”

    December 4, 2013

  • No month of Sundays this Friday

    With Fort Hill comfortably in control Friday night in its eventual 46-7 1A West Region semifinal victory over Manchester Valley, and with score updates from the other semifinal pouring in from nearby Washington County, Greenway Avenue Stadium was abuzz, for the unthinkable was about to take place — Fort Hill was going to play Hancock.

    November 16, 2013

  • Mike Burke Ty Johnson works hard, and makes it look easy

    Any summer day you might go to Greenway Avenue Stadium to get a little exercise you are likely to see any number of high school athletes there working out — football players, soccer players, basketball players, any kind of player you might want to think of.

    November 9, 2013 1 Photo