For the second time in two consecutive games, it has been WVU’s defense that stepped to secure a win. And for the second time in two weeks, WVU’s offense has been scoreless in the 2nd half. The WVU offense put up no points in the 2nd half against Iowa State nor against K-State.
For a defense that was questionable the start of the season, it has been WVU’s offense that has failed to show-up in the 2nd half. Interceptions, fumbles, dropped passes, and pressure on the quarterback, have become common place the past two games.
WVU QB Will Grier has began struggling with the short to intermediate passes. The ball is just out of reach of his receivers has resulted in 7 interception beginning with the lose to Oklahoma State. With 7 interception and 5 fumbles in the last 3 games, WVU’s offense has become its own worse enemy on the field. Three downs and out has become the standard operational procedure for the offense the past three weeks.
The only good news for WVU is that in the last 2 games, the defense has had 3 interception, and one of these went for a touchdown, and the defense has been stopping opponents when needed. The reason for such an improved defense is that even the lesser skilled and inexperienced players have begun stepping up and making plays. Also, the defense is coming out and playing for 4 quarters. The offense on-the-other-hand gets a big lead going into half time, and then leave their playing skills in the locker room when they come out to start the second half. The offense puts the win in the hands of the defense, for now they have no desire to be physical or to do anything more to win.
HC Dana Holgorsen is upset with the lack of effort his WVU offense has portrayed the last 3 games. He is upset over the fumbles, interceptions, pressure being put on his quarterback, dropped passes, and missed blocks, and the lack of consentration. Holg understands he and his team will not and can not beat Oklahoma in Oklahoma with an offense that plays only in the 1st half, and will struggle to beat Texas at home this coming Saturday.
There are players on WVU’s offense that have dreams of playing at the next level. However, to get to that level they need to show their talent to play 4 quarters each and every week, now.
Every week we hear about the break away speed of WR Marcus Simms. I have yet to see Simms run past defensers to get open. Every time you see him he is in single or double coverage, and I’ve yet to see him make a catch when covered. If Simms is so fast then why doesn’t he out run the coverage? So far this season, I have not been impressed with Simms. However, David Sills, Ka’Raun White, and Gary Jennings can out muscle defender and week after week have proven they can make plays and spectular catches. We have yet to see this out of Simms.
WVU’s only hope at getting a shot at the Big 12 Title is to win out. They must beat Texas and Oklahoma. Unless the offense steps up its game, this isn’t happening. Grier has to get the short to medium passes down so his receivers have an opportunity to catch them, and the receivers have got to do a better job of catching these passes on third and fourth down. Three-and-outs won’t get WVU in the Big 12 Title game. Its time for the WVU offense to step up to the plate and do their part to help WVU’s defense win games in the second half.