Most of the Mountaineer fans I know have steeled themselves to the inevitable disappointment that comes with being a fan. At some point, the team will let you down in a way that’s difficult to stomach and then, the next day, you’ll wake up and get on with things. A trip to Texas has all the makings of that sort of game.
1. That’s a big game on a big stage in front of a big crowd, estimated at more than 100,000 before you account for the fans watching on TV. WVU hasn’t thrived on the road in front of big crowds.
2. WVU’s defense last week was hilariously awful and its offense came against a team that was somehow even worse. While Texas doesn’t have Baylor’s offense, its defense is surely better (because honestly, how could it be worse?) and the question becomes one of, “Who can outlast the other?”
3. The gamblers know this. That’s why Texas is a heavy favorite. The last number I saw had them favored by at least six points. Most of the experts seem fairly confident of a Mountaineers loss.
Well, I’m not an expert, and I’m prepared for disaster (“Mack blocks the punt! Miami scores!”), but I can’t help thinking that WVU can at least be competitive in tomorrow night’s tilt. And I much prefer to believe that WVU’s loss(es) will come against teams it never saw coming, like Kansas State in a couple of weeks.
In other words, a chance to play on the biggest stage under the brightest lights against one of the nation’s most storied college football programs won’t necessarily lead to the utter calamity that is being predicted. So I’ll take WVU 56-49 over Texas, not because that’s realistic, but because Texas 35-10 over WVU doesn’t make any sense to me at all.*
*please note: I’m pretending that Shawne Allston is playing tomorrow (he isn’t even making the trip) and that Texas hasn’t gotten its hands on the Maryland game tape (our offensive line can be a bit…porous).