There was no relief, either.
Garrison's most productive performance saw only nine carries and 54 yards against Kansas State. With Buie banged up, Shawne Alston sidelined for four games and Garrison never in form, the Mountaineers actually turned to Tavon Austin and turned him loose on unsuspecting defenses.
That shouldn't be necessary this season with the three juniors, as well as freshman Wendell Smallwood, who is already enrolled. The 5-11, 195-pound Smallwood stands to benefit from the head start. His Eastern Christian Academy team played just three games last season after separating from Delaware's Red Lion Christian Academy in January 2012.
"He's quick," Garrison said. "He sees the hole and he hits it."
WVU's top three receivers from 2012 are gone and the leading returning receiver, Jordan Thompson, caught 13 passes for 85 yards in an underwhelming freshman season. A blend of other new, young and inexperienced players will be mixed in throughout the spring and then preseason practice, all of which puts the ball in the hands of the running backs.
That makes JaJuan Seider's job in his first season as the running backs coach a little more important, though configuring a player rotation isn't new. At Marshall last season, Seider worked with three freshmen who combined for 1,617 yards and 18 touchdowns and averaged 5.4 yards per carry.
"Our bigger guys have got a little more athleticism than our smaller guys, but in a good way," Seider said. "At the same time, our smaller guys run like they're bigger guys. Regardless of who's in, it's still going to be the same play.
"With Dreamius being a bigger guy, he's going to be able to fall forward for more yardage than some of the smaller guys, which is exciting. When you've got a chance to put a game away in your four-minute offense and you've got a back like him that you can hand the ball off to, that's exciting."
That's also the way the Mountaineers figure to operate this season. They don't have a superstar. There's no Heisman Trophy buzz. Nobody for now seems headed to the top of the 2014 draft boards. There are so many spots to fill that there's been a heavy emphasis on needing contributions from a collection of players, much like the situation at running back.
"It's really important," Garrison said.
"Coach Holgorsen has talked a lot about how it's going to take the whole team to win games this year, not just one person, not two people. It's going to take the whole team. We're going to carry that through spring ball and the summer and hopefully keep that going throughout the season."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.