Time To Forget About the Penn State Game, Beat Duquesne and Pitt!
STATE COLLEGE, PA.—Let’s call the first game at Penn State a tough exhibition game and mentally start the season at 0-0 vs Duquesne. Use Duquesne as a much needed tune-up to correct the mistakes and get ready for the “Backyard Brawl” against Pitt!
It’s a bit tough to start a new season against a team (PSU) that is picked to finish at the top of the Big Ten Conference when you (WVU) are a team that is supposed to finish last in the Big 12 Conference.
On a positive note the Mountaineers stayed in the game until the 4th quarter, even with the 4th largest crowd ever (110,742) at noisy Beaver Stadium. The WVU offense faced an extremely stingy Nittany Lion defense. Mountaineer head coach Neal Brown noted that the PSU defense is the best one WVU will face all season. There are potentially nine draft picks on that side of the ball for the Lions.
The 38-15 final score was not indicative of how the Mountaineers played. The score looked like a blowout but PSU coach James Franklin ran up the score with seconds to go in the game hurrying up to get into the end zone. Coach Brown was asked if he had “a problem with Franklin doing it.” Brown responded ” I wouldn’t have done it, but it doesn’t bother me. Stuff like that, what comes around goes around. At some point, it’ll all come around. I don’t know when. It doesn’t bother me. I’m not upset about it.”
WVU quarterback Garrett Greene went 16-27 for 162 yards and 15 carries for 71 rushing yards and one rushing TD. PSU coach Franklin complimented Greene in his opening statement. “I think that’s a good quarterback, that quarterback is going to cause problems for people this year,” Franklin stated. “He is mobile. He can extend plays. He is accurate. That was a positive.”
“We had a chance to win,” Brown said. “We came out (of halftime) and it’s three and out (on defense). We get the ball. It’s 14-7. We get an explosive run, and we get a procedure penalty (on wide receiver Cortez Braham) wiping out the big play.
All in all the score could have been 21-0 Penn State at the end of the first quarter. But WVU hung tough against No. 7 in the country until the 4th quarter. If WVU can correct early season mistakes they could be 3-1 heading into the TCU game. I”m going to make a bold prediction of 3-1 going into the TCU game with a solid victory over Pitt. I don’t think Pitt’s defense can handle a triple threat Greene at quarterback. Remember WVU has the third toughest schedule in the country this year.