Mountaineers fans are finally starting to “Trust the Climb”
MORGANTOWN, WV—Most Mountaineer football fans are starting to “Trust the Climb” after West Virginia trounced visiting BYU 37-7 Saturday night. ” I thought we put a lot of good football out there tonight, West Virginia coach Neal Brown said after the game. ” This was our first complete game of the season, and this team is coming along, and I like where we are at.” he added.
The 37-7 victory was the largest margin of victory in a conference game since a 47-10 win over TCU in 2018. The victory came in front of a noisy 50,266 on a nice November evening at Milan Puskar Stadium. “The only negative was the penalties,” Brown said. “I want to thank the crowd because there was a lot of energy in the stadium.”
Freshman Jahiem White rushed for a season high 146 yards and CJ Donaldson Jr. added 102 yards and two touchdowns on the ground, his third 100 yard rushing effort for the season. White had his second 100 yard game of the season. WVU finished the game with a season high 336 yards rushing. It was the most rushing yards against any team since 2016 when WVU had 388 yards in a 56-28 loss to Oklahoma.
Garrett Greene completed half of his 24 pass attempts for 205 yards and two TD’s before Brown put backup Nicco Marchiol early in the 4th quarter.
The Mountaineer defense was stellar, holding the Cougars to just 67 yards rushing on 21 attempts and ended the game with only 277 total yards. Linebacker Lee Kpogba led the Mountaineer defense with 8 tackles. “The stats really tell the story defensively,” Brown said. “Any time you can hold a team to 67 yards rushing, you’ve got a good chance of winning the game.” Brown added.
At the end of the first quarter, Pro football Hall of Fame linebacker Chuck Howley’s No. 66 was officially retired. Chuck’s son Scott, daughter-in-law Emily and granddaughter Anna were on hand to accept on his behalf.
It was BYU’s first appearance in Morgantown. BYU is now 0-2 against WVU after being defeated in September 2016 in Landover, Maryland 35-32. The Cougars are now 5-4 overall and 2-4 in the Big 12 Conference. West Virginia is now 6-3 and 4-2 in the conference tied for second place. If it wasn’t for the last second hail Mary loss to Houston earlier in the year WVU would be tied for first place in the conference. However, that has to be put in the past and the Mountaineers must prepare for a hungry Oklahoma team that lost the Bedlam game 27-24 to Oklahoma State Saturday.
WVU will face Oklahoma in another night game at 7 p.m. in Norman. It will be televised nationally on FOX. Oklahoma is 7-2 and now tied with WVU in conference at 4-2.
If WVU plays near perfect in every department against the Sooners it could come home with its second straight regular season victory over the Sooners. Hopefully the Sooners will still be dwelling on their loss to Oklahoma State or they could be ready to pounce on the Mountaineers in desperation to stop their losing skid.