Written by Greg Walker
In 1968, Mike Sherwood and his golden arm had the best day in Mountaineer football history. Facing the hated Pitt Panthers in Pittsburgh, Sherwood, in just his second game as a starter, completed 27 of 37 passes with a pair of touchdowns for a school record 416 yards.
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The highlight of the day was Sherwood's 73-yard touchdown strike to halfback Robert Gresham, part of his school record 409 yards of total offense. His two rushing touchdowns made Sherwood accountable for four scores in WVU's 38-15 victory. Ironically, Coach Jim Carlen nearly suspended Sherwood for that game for oversleeping and missing a team meal.
Carlen decided to stick with his rookie signalcaller and it became just the first of many successes for the three-year starting quarterback (1968-70). Sherwood led WVU to three consecutive winning seasons and an overall record of 25-7.
The Bellaire, Ohio, native led WVU to a 14-3 victory against South Carolina in the 1969 Peach Bowl; that squad finished 10-1 and is considered one of the finest teams in Mountaineer history.
Sherwood ranks among the school career leaders in total offense, passing yards, pass completions, pass attempts, touchdown passes, touchdowns responsible for, passing efficiency, completion percentage, 200-yard passing games and 200-yard total offense games.
Sherwood was selected to play in the 1970 Blue-Gray Game and was also the winner of the 1970 Ira E. Rodgers Award.
A second generation Mountaineer, Sherwood came to WVU after playing just one season of prep football at Bellaire High School. He missed his junior year due to an injury, but during his senior season, Sherwood led Bellaire to a 9-1 record and accounted for 1,215 total yards and 140 points.
Following his WVU career, Sherwood remained at WVU as a graduate assistant for coaches Bobby Bowden and Frank Cignetti. After earning his master's degree in 1974, Sherwood went to Bethany College to become offensive coordinator from 1974-78. He then accepted a similar position at Waynesburg College from 1978-79. He served as head track and field coach for Bethany and Waynesburg as well.
In 1980, Sherwood returned to Bellaire High School, where he has been ever since. He was Bellaire's head football coach from 1980-84 and compiled a 26-12-2 record, earning 1980 Eastern District coach of the year honors. In 1982, he coached the Ohio side in the Ohio-West Virginia all-star game.
Sherwood became Bellaire's athletic director in 1984 and later took on the additional responsibility of assistant principal, serving in both roles for seven years. Last year, he relinquished his duties as athletic director to concentrate full time on his current position as assistant principal.
Sherwood and his wife Pam have been married for 21 years. They have two children, daughter Kelli (16) and son Matt (15), and reside in Bellaire, Ohio.