The Chalkboard: WVU – Delaware State

The Chalkboard: WVU – Delaware State


Given the status of Delaware State’s football program, the prevailing attitude concerning this game is that it’s of null value. Sure, it will be a win, but does it matter? Of course it does – and we say that because we aren’t cynical observers. Read on to discover why this game is important.

Certainly, there’s an element of coachspeak involved here – the mantras of “every game is important”, “play them one at a time” and all that. But there is also work to be done on problem areas, and this is a chance to improve upon them in game action.

You can also travel up and down the roster and find a number of players who will be looking at this week’s game with anticipation. Lamonte McDougle. Derrek Pitts. Kenny Robinson. Jalen Harvey. Jaleel Fields. Josh Sills. Isaiah Hardy. Reggie Roberson. Druw Bowen. Ricky Rogers. All of them, and more, have to approach this game the right way, and show improvement in those areas demanded by the coaches. While this isn’t a be-all and end-all game, it is the gateway to more chances when Big 12 play gets underway next week, and in October and beyond when the schedule really gets serious.

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With five additional redshirt freshmen getting their first game action against East Carolina (Chase Behrndt, Elijah Drummond, Sean Mahone, Jeffery Pooler and Zach Sandwisch), are there any more first-timers that might elbow their way onto the field this year? Barring injury, the answer is likely no. Running back Alec Sinkfield has the talent, but with four backs already in play, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to burn his redshirt for a spot carry here or there. If kickoffs continue to be a struggle, Luke Hogan could possibly make an appearance. Jacob Buccigrossi figures to get some snaps when he is declared fit to play following offseason shoulder surgery and Ray Raulerson might make an appearance at center, but we’re getting to the point where most of the spots, if not all of the actual pecking order, for the game day roster are filled.

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Twelve of West Virginia’s 18 best single-game passing performances in terms of yardage have come against Power Five teams. That ratio is likely to decrease in this Saturday’s not-so-much-of-a-contest.

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Delaware State head coach Kenny Carter has been an assistant at Louisville, Penn State, Pitt and LSU – all onetime opponents of West Virginia. He was on the Panther staff in 2000 for a 38-28 win over WVU, and while at Louisville split a pair of games in 2010-11.

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West Virginia is 95th nationally in the FBS with 68 penalty yards per game. That’s a number that needs to improve if the Mountaineers hope to compete for a Big 12 title. Texas Tech was not flagged in its season opening win over Eastern Washington – it’s one of five teams with no penalty yards this year. But pity poor Florida International, which had 163 yards of walk-offs against UCF to put them at the bottom of the national rankings.

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Does WVU face more booming kickers than any other team in the nation? Maybe it only seems that way, especially when juxtaposed with some of the Mountaineers’ special teams woes, but it’s definitely a factor this week in the form of Hornet punter Fidel romo-Martinez. The sophomore is eighth in the FCS with a 45.1 yards per kick average, and has also pinned foes deep, with five downed inside the 20-yard line. Opponents have returned just three punts for a total of ten yards against the Hornets.

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The Hornets have some of the most eye-catching names in college football on their roster. A quick scan includes such gems as Liki Seu, Ulises De Los Santos, Wisdom Nzidee, Rey Orocio and Fatu Sua-Godinet. Delaware State notes that this year’s roster is one of the most diverse in school history, with several players of Polynesian and Samoan descent joining two from Nigeria and another from Canada.

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  • #23766

    The Chalkboard: WVU – Delaware State Given the status of Delaware State’s football program, the prevailing attitude concerning this game is that it’s
    [See the full post at: The Chalkboard: WVU – Delaware State]

    #23825

    I’m not saying the Hornets have any categories that are in their favor, but their kickers are pretty good. That’s unusual because typically FCS teams don’t have enough scholarships to use on special teams.

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