They all redshirted in 2009 and figured to be ready to go a year later. Kindler needed surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder that cost him the entire year.
"The guys I came in with were able to get more advanced on the field by taking reps," he said. "I was trying to catch up in the film room, but there's nothing like taking actual reps in practice or a game when you're young. You can learn so many more things so much quicker."
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West Virginia offensive lineman Nick Kindler, right, has started the last five games at left tackle.
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He was healthy again a year later, but that 2011 season was the first spring with Holgorsen and offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh. Kindler's first impression was compromised by his recovery and the reality he couldn't shake: He was behind his peers.
"The mistakes I was making out on field were mistakes all my buddies I came in with were making and correcting the season before in their transition from their redshirt years," Kindler said. "It was just frustrating because you'd always go, 'Gosh, I've seen this a million times before on film? Why can't I get my feet and my hands right and do it?'" Kindler figured things out and played a reserve role late in the season at both left tackle and guard. He was a backup at right tackle last season and had what he called a "very mediocre" performance in his first career start against Kansas State, though he maintained a role as a reserve the rest of the way.
"I always worry, I'm always kind of on edge about whether I'm going to get reps, even as an older guy," he said. "But I know by now you have to keep trying to prove yourself, no matter what your role is or how much playing time you're getting."
This season he's brought together the sum of his experiences at WVU to help unite an offensive line that needed some kind of push in the right direction.
"The consistency that we have is not winning football, but we have been improving up front," Holgorsen said. "Quinton Spain played his best game last week. Pat Eger was really good before he went down. Orlosky, Adam Pankey, Marquis Lucas are young and they are going to keep improving.
"They're still inconsistent, still learning to play together and still improving. I am pleased with their attitude and their will to get better."