It wasn’t too surprising that WVU football took down No. 16 Kansas State last Saturday. However, the ease with which the Mountaineers came out victorious was striking and fun to watch.
Neal Brown’s unranked side won 37-10 in front of over 10,000 happy fans inside Milan Puskar Stadium. The win moves WVU to 4-2 overall, with a 3-2 record in the Big 12 Conference.
Despite giving up the first points of the game, the Mountaineers grabbed a commanding lead in the first half. Three consecutive touchdown drives in the second quarter gave them a 21-point lead.
While KSU was able to score right before the half, the WVU defense pitched a shutout the rest of the way.
The Mountaineers added 13 second-half points and cruised to an easy home win. This was Kansas State’s first loss within the conference.
WVU found success on both sides of the ball as this was one of its most complete victories of the season.
Quarterback Jarret Doege threw for over 300 yards again to go along with two touchdowns. Both Leddie Brown and Alec Sinkfield were productive in the running game, as well.
With the way the Mountaineers’ defense is playing of late, the offense won’t need to score a whole lot.
It limited KSU to just 225 total yards, while forcing three turnovers.
The win was crucial for both the team and lots of bettors at West Virginia sportsbooks. WVU was actually the favorite, laying -5.5 points in the spread to the higher-ranked opponent.
This weekend’s matchup is a little different. WVU will need to keep its focus as it prepares to play No. 22 Texas.
Online sportsbooks in WV show WVU as about a touchdown-sized underdog on Saturday.
Let’s revisit the Mountaineers’ amazing performance from this week and look ahead to the Longhorns.
WVU football topples KSU
Unlike a lot of other games this season, WVU didn’t have to overcome a sizable deficit in this one.
Besides a late score with just over a minute remaining in the half, the second quarter was the most dominant we’ve ever seen the Mountaineers.
Even though a terrible offensive possession backed up the WVU defense late in the first, it held strong. WVU stuffed the run on first down, then forced two straight incompletions.
Although KSU started its drive from the Mountaineer 36-yard line, its best bet was a 52-yard field goal attempt.
The Wildcats’ Blake Lynch missed the field goal, and WVU had all the momentum on its side.
The Mountaineers didn’t look back.
After that, WVU’s offense scored three touchdowns in a row, while its defense surrendered minimal yardage and generated two punts.
With a 24-3 lead, the Mountaineers knew they were in the driver’s seat the rest of the way.
When senior linebacker Dylan Tonkery took an interception 18 yards for another score, this contest was just about over. WVU took a 34-10 lead about halfway through the third quarter.
Tony Fields II was another senior who impacted the game. He led all players in total tackles with 15.
Along with Tonkery’s pick, both defensive backs Sean Mahone and Nicktroy Fortune also added interceptions.
On the offensive side, the Mountaineers were very balanced this week. Doege’s 300 passing yards were distributed among eight receivers.
Brown and Sinkfield were great in the running game, too. Brown rushed for over 100 yards for the fourth time this year, while Sinkfield scooped up 85 yards on 14 carries.
The victory puts WVU right back in the mix in the Big 12. Currently, Iowa State and Kansas State sit at the top of the standings with 4-1 records.
Mountaineers vs. Texas preview
This Saturday, the Mountaineers will get to prove their worth as they battle the 22nd-ranked Texas Longhorns.
Although Texas came into this season as one of the favorites to win the conference title, things haven’t gone as planned. It will come into this weekend’s matchup with an identical 4-2 record overall, with a 3-2 mark in the Big 12.
After losing two straight to TCU and rival Oklahoma, the Longhorns have recovered quite well.
They beat Baylor by 11 two weeks ago, then followed that up with an upset of then-No. 6 Oklahoma State.
Even with a few early losses, Texas coach Tom Herman knows his team can still win this wide-open conference.
The Longhorns are led by senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger. He is one of the rare players in college football to pace his team in both passing and rushing yards.
Ehlinger has thrown for over 1,600 passing yards, along with 20 touchdowns in the air. He also leads Texas in both rushing attempts and yards, with 78 carries for 284 yards. He has recorded seven rushing touchdowns, as well.
He’ll be the focus of the WVU defense; however, the Longhorns have plenty of other offensive weapons. A total of seven players have at least double-digit receptions through their first six games.
Currently, sophomore Joshua Moore is the top target, responsible for 22 catches, 343 yards and seven touchdowns.
Junior Joseph Ossai is Texas’ top performer on defense. He’s the team’s leading tackler with 45, in addition to accounting for the most sacks with four.
WVU running backs should be ready to cover up the football. Ossai has already caused three fumbles and recovered another.
As always, the turnover margin will be vital in determining the outcome of this game.
ESPN’s Football Power Index doesn’t like WVU’s chances this weekend. It’s giving the Mountaineers about an 18% chance of leaving Texas at 5-2.
WVU odds at WV sportsbooks
Residents in and around Morgantown can wager on the Mountaineers or any other college football game with one of the state’s online sportsbooks.
West Virginia now features a total of five mobile platforms:
At the moment, DraftKings is showing the following odds for WVU’s upcoming tussle with Texas:
- WVU +6.5
- Moneyline: +180
- Texas -6.5
- Moneyline: -230
- Over 55 (-112)
- Under 55 (-109)