Mountaineer Defense Needs To Regroup Vs. Hot Oklahoma State
MORGANTOWN, WV—Oklahoma State will be ready to avenge last year’s 24-19 loss to the Mountaineers in Morgantown when the Cowboys kickoff in a 3:30 national televised game on ESPN Saturday. Oklahoma State is coming off a 39-32 victory over Kansas. The Cowboys also have a win over Kansas State, 29-21. They want to keep their win streak alive and have a big chip on their shoulders from last year.
Oklahoma State and WVU have identical 4-2 and 2-1 conference records. “Credit Coach Mike Gundy and his staff,” Mountaineer head coach Neal Brown said. “They had a tough loss earlier in the year, they rebounded with two ranked wins in a row and they’re playing extremely well. They’re one of the hottest teams in the country right now, and I think it starts with their running attack.”
The Mountaineer defense will have their work cut out for them. Cowboy running back Ollie Gordon II has been the constant in those two victories. The sophomore ran for 136 yards and a touchdown against Kansas State before adding 284 all purpose yards against the Jayhawks.
“It’s going to come down to who can win the turnover battle and who scores in the red zone, who scores touchdowns and who can hold the opponent to field goals or force some takeaways down there,” Brown said. The Mountaineer coach said Aubrey Burks practiced Monday which is a good sign for the defense. Brown also said he expects lineman Wyatt Milum to return Saturday. Thomas Rimac is still a week away from returning.
Hopefully WVU’s defense will play better than against Houston. “We’ve got to respond, and life is all about response,” Brown added.
Oklahoma State leads the series between the schools 9-5 including a 4-2 mark in Morgantown. Home field should help WVU with the fan base but the Cowboys still have a winning record at Milan Puskar Stadium. The fans will play a big part in Saturday’s contest. QB Garrett Greene will have to keep up his hot pace on offense. The game shapes up to be a high scoring game on both sides.