Continuing on with our 100 day countdown to WVU’s season opener against the Alabama Crimson Tide, we have reached day 58, the number once worn by WVU center, Kevin Koken.
Originally from Youngstown, OH, Kevin Koken was a four-year member of the WVU Football program, from 1985 to 1988. Koken was a part of one of the greatest offensive lines in program history, his senior season, which featured the likes of Rick Phillips, John Stroia, Bob Kovach, Brian Smider, and Keith Winn.
The 6’ 2”, 263 pound offensive lineman saw limited action his first season wearing the old Gold and Blue, but was able to earn a permanent starting job in 1986. The Mountaineers failed to earn a bowl berth Koken’s first two seasons in the program, going 7-3-1, and 4-7 respectfully.
In 1987, the Mountaineers went 6-5 in the regular season, earning victories over Boston College and Virginia Tech along the way. The team would earn a bid to the 1987 Sun Bowl where the Mountaineers would drop a 35-33 decision to the Oklahoma State Cowboys on Christmas Day.
Koken’s senior season was easily his most impressive and most memorable campaign as part of the WVU football program. The team earned their first perfect regular season in school history, running the table with an 11-0 record. The Mountaineers would go on to play for the national championship in the 1989 Fiesta Bowl, another first in program history. Although the Gold and Blue would fail to win the big game, losing to Notre Dame 34-21, the team is forever held in high regards as the best in school history.
Kevin Koken would go on to graduate from West Virginia University in December of 1988 with a bachelor’s degree in communications. He tried out for the Philadelphia Eagles in the spring of 1989, but was one of the team’s first cuts heading into that season’s training camp. However, the WVU grad was able to quickly find work with Fed Ex, and is now a regional Vice President for the shipping company at its Pittsburgh area headquarters.
All countdown profiles of numbers 100-58 are still available here at WVU Pros.