Now that West Virginia has minted itself as the undisputed king of the state of Texas, the Mountaineers’ conquest heads north across the border to Oklahoma where the Cowboys and the Sooners await. Before we turn our collective focus towards Saturday’s meet-up in Stillwater, let’s hand out some offensive helmet stickers in recognition of West Virginia’s culling of the Frogs this past Saturday.
Trevon Wesco, TE:
The tide really has turned in Morgantown, in terms of offensive landscape. When a tight end emerges from a stacked air raid attack as receiving leader against the best pass defense in the Big 12, you know that Dana Holgorsen and Jake Spavital weren’t blowing smoke throughout all the talk of implementing the tight ends on a grander scale this season. Wesco’s 86 receiving yards don’t seem blistering when you consider what the rest of the Mountaineers’ receiving corps does on a regular basis, but his 32-yard trot to the end zone in the second quarter demonstrated that even a Mack truck-sized athlete like Wesco is capable of turning loose and gracing the highlight reel. For the West Virginia native, an NFL-quality film reel is slowly coming together. At 6’4″ and 275 pounds, Wesco has the size to spare and with the home stretch of the regular season now in full swing, no. 88 might just be an x-factor in contests against Oklahoma and Oklahoma State that are sure to be absolute shoot-outs.
Will Grier, QB:
300+ yards, 3 TD’s and a runaway win. Rinse/repeat. Grier’s excellence is formulaic at this point, even after a slow first quarter in a game that was marred by too many uncharacteristic drops. One needs to appreciate the hurdle Grier was able to clear on Saturday, given that TCU’s pass defense was the class of the conference and had already gone toe-to-toe with a pair of prolific air attacks in Ohio State and Texas Tech. Had it not been for the several aforementioned drops by Sills and Simmons (one of which led to an interception), Grier might have eclipsed 400 yards on the day. Still, engineering a 37 point victory is nothing to scoff at. You have to imagine that Grier and the rest of the WVU offense are chomping at the bit to line up across from Oklahoma State and Oklahoma whose defenses are giving up an average of 416 and 426.9 YPG, respectively. If everything leading up to these finals two games are any indication, Will Grier is about to light off some serious fireworks to close out 2018.
The Mountaineers receiving corps:
When your offense is able to end the day with eight different players catching passes, seven of them collecting multiple receptions, you’re basically begging for someone to try and stop you. As a team, West Virginia averaged 14.3 yards per reception, the majority of those grabs coming on short or intermediate plays as opposed to the long ball that Grier has made a living on. Wideouts, running backs and tight ends all got in on the action, a veritable block party hosted by Grier and co. While the numbers for Jake Spavital’s offense were great across the board, they could have been even better if it were not for a couple uncharacteristic drops which might have had as more to do with the cold, windy conditions than any lack of focus. What is also important to note is that stalwarts Gary Jennings, Jr. and Marcus Simms are playing through nagging injuries. At full strength, this air attack is a colossus and you better believe that a couple teams down in Oklahoma have been put on notice. If Jennings and Simms can get back to full health by this Saturday, there’s every reason to believe that West Virginia will post its most absurd passing numbers of 2018 by the time regular season in the Big 12 comes to a close.