Personally, after Iowa State upset TCU last week I didn’t think WVU had a chance in this one after losing to TCU and Oklahoma State. The first half of this one gave me hope, then came the second half, and WVU’s offense couldn’t get out of it’s own way.
WVU led this one at half time 3 – 20, and never put a single point on the board in the 2nd half. If it hadn’t been for WVU’s beleaguered defense stepping up in the last few minutes of this game, WVU was looking at its 3rd Big 12 loss of the season.
We keep hearing WVU lacks depth, and its obvious WVU’s defense has more depth and stamina than WVU’s offensive line. As this season goes along its becoming more and more obvious that it’s WVU’s O-line that struggles the most in the 2nd half.
While the WVU’s defense may struggle, it’s obvious that the back-ups are getting better. Today, WVU had 4 defensive starters out, but in the end they came together for a needed stop to secure a win over Iowa State. WVU’s offense couldn’t get enough of a push for Justin Crawford to pick up a half a yard on a 4th down. On a more positive note, WVU is ranked 4th in the Big 12 Standings, so they are still in the hunt for the Big 12 Title game, but they have to win out.
WVU WR Ka’Raun White had his best game of the season with 4 catches for 167 yards and a TD. WVU RB Justin Crawford had his best game in his past three outings with 25 carries for 102 yards. QB Will Grier bounced back after his lackluster performance against Oklahoma State completing 80% of his passes for 318 yards and a QBR of 89.9. Grier had touchdown completions to David Sills and Ka’Raun White.
The more I watch WVU punter Billy Kinney, the more impressed I get. Kinney appears to be improving each week.
If WVU’s offense can get where it can play 4 quarters allowing the defense to rest on the sideline, I believe we’ll see better play from WVU’s defense. WVU’s defense was gasping in the 4th quarter last week and again this week. The biggest issue I see with this WVU team is the offensive line. The O-line just doesn’t have the depth and talent it needs to play 4 quarters of football. I am not blaming Coach Wickline for this. I just thing WVU needs to recruit better talent, and hope they get them to commit.
Good news, I thing we are seeing improvement in the kick return game. The punt return game is improved, but struggles getting yardage on punt returns.
WVU travels to Manhatten, KS to play the Wildcats next week, and I hope to see WVU’s offense come out and play 4 quarters. This will be a tough enviroment. If they let down the least bit, they could lose this one.
I loved it today when Coach Holgorsen got in the ear of the officials for ghost calls. Way to go Coach!