Ok, Coaching Caps on….what would you do….?

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    So as I was reading you guys thoughts on how many points OU might hang on us, I couldn’t help but wonder:

    Here you are taking your extremely young and no doubt beat up team on the road to face one of the nation’s most prolific offenses and an improved defense.  So how do you approach such a daunting task?

    At first thought you may want to try to limit their possessions by utilizing every possible second of the play clock between every snap and rest your shorthanded defense as much as possible.  However, knowing that you do not have an o-line capable of mashing out 3 or 4 yards per snap, that could backfire and become another Missouri debacle only way worse.

    On the other hand, your offense seems to have been at it’s best when Austin is allowed to run a bit of tempo and find some rhythm.  Yet this same Austin may or may not be able to play and even if able, certainly wouldn’t seem to be fully healthy.  So with a limited QB who has proven himself to be a tough cookie, or a backup with very limited reps and in all fairness no chance to have a strong grasp of the total offensive package, you could still be inviting them to hang a huge number on you if that rhythym escapes you.

    And can your team with all it’s youth bounce back from a total behind the woodshed experience or will it totally break their will for the rest of the season?

    Or do you play with who you have, full tilt go and use this game as the ultimate audition for who can help you in your remaining games, and after the bye week, treat it as a 5 game season knowing that 3 wins will get you bowl eligible?

    I would treat it like any other game, go with whoever is healthy, put them in the best position possible on both sides of the ball to be successful, and hold nothing back.  There wouldn’t be a bullet left in my proverbial gun at games end.

    Leading up to the game, my players would all be prompted to understand that this is that moment and reason they came to West Virginia and worked so hard to get here in the first place.  Discipline and fundamentals would be stressed but always followed up with trying to get them not to worry about being yanked over a mistake as long as it was an aggressive mistake within the framework of what has been taught.  Prompt them to have fun and leave it all on the field but also to understand that it is just one game and our season won’t be a success or failure because of it.  Our goal of bowl eligibility still awaits us and what better chance to line up against an elite team and program and turn it all loose.



    This may be way off base, OU knowing that our Oline is very young and inexperienced, I think I would max protect every chance I got or at least until we see if that is going to work.

    I would also guess that they have realized that some of our best plays have come from crossing routes so, they will have that covered which may give us some opportunities down the field and on the outside.

    If our passing game gets going, I would let AK run tempo with the hopes of getting in a rhythm and maybe wear their defense out (not likely with their depth). If not then, I would try to control the game with clock management, then try to use as much time off the clock as possible. Maybe keep some tightends back to block and then release into the flats for some completions after our backs clear that area of the field or maybe some seam routes.

    The Defense is another story. With all of the injuries and a CB missing from the game and 1st half. The question is how do you attack their OLine? If you blitz, then we almost have to be in man coverage which leaves everyone with their back to JH and he is going to run for 300 yrs if we lose containment.

    So, I guess I would to try to mix up the blitzes and try to catch them off guard and try(try is the key word) to confuse JH. Then try to keep him contained,  mix in some stunts or twists and of course disguise your blitzes (I know, that’s what we try to do every game).

    Lastly, pray our young inexperienced players can hold up and keep everything in front of them, trying to minimize the big plays and reduce the stupid penalties that keeps the opposing offense on the field.

    I dont really know and I am glad that I am not one if our coaches. That’s why they get paid the bigger bucks. Haha



    There’s a lot to be said in this situation for shortening the game by clock management.  But if you make a conscious decision to run the play clock down on a running game clock, then I would NOT let the O-Line get set until there’s like 10 seconds on the play clock.  We don’t need a bunch of false starts because we’ve kept those O-Linemen in the set position for 25 seconds.

    If the game clock is stopped, then you have more leisure to run plays at your own pace.


    I’d be ready to punt….alot.


    It took them a while to separate from Kansas, so who knows.


    1st series I would bring the house on each play and gamble on catching them off guard. Force a 3 and out and do not let them get rolling out of the gate. From just be as unconventional as you can, bring pressure from weird places. If we give Hurts time he will destroy us throwing to some very talented receivers, if we don’t get hands on him behind the line he will run all over us. Of course if I’m OU I ignore Hurts early and just pound it up the middle which they could probably do all day if so desired.

    On offense… yeah, I got nothing.


    I’d channel my best Bill Stewart pre game pep talk. Then hope that Moore and Scott can pull a Calvin playbook out of their hats. …….  Like Mex, I got nothing after that.  Not O, Not D ….  Nada, Zilch, Zero.


    Some really good thoughts and analysis in this thread.

    I agree with the clock management option, as limiting possessions is the best way to keep the score down against OU. No other team has shut them down either, so I don’t view that as defeatist. Just a smart way to approach it.

    That said, WVU will do everything it can to try to win. It will, as madrev says, go full tilt. To not do so sends a bad message, that the staff doesn’t think much of you as players.

    Part of that effort, though, is figuring out if anyone else can help you over those final five games, with the bowl trip as an objective. What better place to see if you can handle assignments than in this kind of environment, against this kind of opponent? I’m not saying you run out guys that you don’t think are ready to play. You don’t put a freshman in who hasn’t worked with the travel squad yet. But, as Brown has said all season, that process is ongoing, so hopefully there are one or two guys that take that next step forward this week.

    Defensively, the focus is consistency. Execute your assignment every time, not just 80-90% of the time. I am not sure that any exotic tactics will produce big results, and WVU has to execute the pocket containment tactics it showed against Brock Purdy. That’s obviously tougher against a guy who is twice as fast and quick.


    One thing that worries me is Jalen Hurts size.  He is just a big ole Dude and we have all repeatedly seen guys hit him and just bounce off or get shrugged aside this year.

    So even if we get good pressure on him, hold contain and then get home, getting him on the ground is not a given.  Kinda reminds me of what we experienced at Missouri with Kelly Bryant.

    It’s easy to say well, they had trouble putting Texas away and we had every chance in the world to have Texas on the ropes sans the 4 turnovers….but that whole connect the dots analytics is a bunch of crap.  Either way you gotta play the game and see.  Unless Lawrence Taylor shows up and sends a bunch of his special assistants to the OU players hotel, it’s probably gonna be a long day tomorrow.


    I just think you’re going to have to take some serious gambles on defense in order to stop them.

    Unlikely the front 4 will get a lot of pressure on Hurts. Even if they do and it’s not quick, play disrupting pressure he can get away and make huge plays with his mobility and/or running ability. If he’s not pressured quick something bad will happen. And as Kevin’s mentioned he is a faster and perhaps more importantly far more powerful runner than Purdy or even Ehlinger for that matter.

    Best Hope is force him to throw early as he is not great as a quick read thrower. He can make some pretty big mistakes.


    Bringing pressure from more than the front 4 is needed to keep him from sitting back and picking our DB’s apart.  The DB’s will have to step up big time in coverage.  Even if we can hold the passing yds down, holding Hurts to under 100 yds will be a challenge.  Then they have a trio of backs that average 50yds/gm each.    This compares to our best two backs (McCoy, Brown) with a total of 187 and 156 yds respectively.  Their 3 each have about doubled our rushing yds.

    Don’t see how we stop these guys.  Just slow them down as much as we can and restrict the number of plays.

    Just hopefully we can generate enough O to keep our D off the field.


    OU has put their punter on the national AMBER ALERT. Nobody has seen him all year.


    That’s ok Allen, he won’t be needed tomorrow.


    Last 3 games OU scored 55 then 45 then 34.  Can we keep this downward trend?


    Butler, MAYBE in the first half we can. And I would not bet a significant amount on that.

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