Mountaineer playoff hopes still alive and kicking
After passing the midway point of the season the Mountaineers have made some noise in the college football world. After knocking off No. 4 ranked Baylor, West Virginia got ranked in the AP Poll at No. 22. It was the first time WVU got ranked in the Top 25 since the 2012 season.
Clint Trickett is playing his best football yet in his collegiate career. Through the first seven games of the season he’s thrown for over 300 yards in every game. He has stepped up bigger than ever for the Mountaineers this football season. He had a lot to prove this year and I think a lot of people seemed disappointed at first when Trickett was named the starting quarterback in the offseason. He’s made some major changes in his style of play compared to last year and you can clearly see it on the field. However, having a wide receiver named Kevin White to throw to can help out a lot.
White is another player who has made a huge impact on the Mountaineers’ season being the first receiver in college football to reach 1,000 receiving yards this season. He is arguably the best college wide receiver this year and if I was an NFL scout I would have my eye on him as a potential first round pick. He has gone over 100 yards receiving in every game so far this season through seven games. This guy is a playmaker like Tavon Austin was for WVU and defenses are becoming aware of that. It would be tough for him to take home the Heisman even though the only other receiver he would have to go up against is Amari Cooper from Alabama. Kevin White is a dominant player who should have a future in the NFL one day if he keeps playing like he has been.
After coming off of a huge come from behind win at Texas Tech being down 14 points with just over seven minutes to go, the Mountaineers scored 17 unanswered points as Josh Lambert kicked a game winning 55 yard field goal as time expired. Winning that game was huge for Dana Holgorsen’s career as the head coach of the Mountaineers. WVU was hungry for a win against Tech since they should’ve pulled off the upset against them last year in Morgantown. There’s no doubt that victory sparked a light that went into high gear the next week’s game against Baylor.
West Virginia’s playoff hopes are still alive considering two of their remaining five games are against ranked opponents and Oklahoma State just recently got bumped out of the top 25 from No. 15. There is no question it will be a tough mountain to climb to accomplish that goal. But if WVU can clinch a bowl game this year that would be something they couldn’t even sniff for last season finishing 4-8 and ending the season with back to back losses against Kansas and Iowa State.
Knocking off No. 4 Baylor was the first time WVU beat a top 10 ranked opponent since beating Georgia back in 2007 in the Fiesta Bowl. It was the biggest win for Holgorsen and his Mountaineers since beating Clemson in the Orange Bowl three years ago in his first season as head coach.