Perhaps Mountaineer fans should have expected this. Instead of making a big rally and getting a win, once again the Mountaineers came up short in a big game. With the chance to ride the wave of a big rally and pull of a big win over No. 11 Oklahoma State, the Mountaineers were unable to get over the hump.
WVU was able to trim a 20-point deficit down to six points. This comeback was done by defense and special teams. The Mountaineers got the ball on their own 2-yard line trailing by six points with 2:25 to go in the third quarter.
How did the Mountaineers start this drive? A false start. How else?
Before the third quarter ended the Mountaineers were moving the ball.
When the fourth quarter started so did West Virginia miscues, again. Will Grier received the snap before he was ready and it resulted in an 11-yard loss. This forced the Mountaineers to punt. It was a 32 yard punt, which was not even the worst punt of the day. Oklahoma State put together a nine play, 52 yard drive that put the Pokes up by two scores again.
The next time the Mountaineers got the ball Will Grier threw his fourth and final interception of the day. Two plays later the Cowboys were once again in the end zone. Any hope of a Mountaineer comeback had been dashed.
“We’re just not one of those top teams right now,” coach Dana Holgorsen said.
Grier had a streak of 300 yards passing in seven straight games. That streak is now history. When the game started Grier had thrown five interceptions. He almost doubled that total and now has nine.
After the game the players were not allowed to talk to reporters. The coaches would handle that.
“We’d have one or two guys not doing the right thing,” said defensive coordinator Tony Gibson. “It blows my mind how it happens. We didn’t have a lot of calls coming in for the fact (Oklahoma State) wanted to play fast. We knew their tempo.”
The defense and running game failed to show up. This time Will Grier was unable to bail them out as he failed to throw for 300 yards and also threw four interceptions. Grier was never able to relax in the pocket and was under constant pressure. He finished 20-42 for 285 yards and two touchdowns, certainly not numbers that are up to his standards.
Fear not, Mountaineer fans, as another showdown against a ranked team looms this Saturday. Is there any reason to expect different results?