wvu football

WVU Football Gets the Win Against Texas Tech

WVU Football Unites to Defeat Texas Tech 31 – 26

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 7 10 7 7 31
TTU 7 7 3 9 26

Game Recap

In the first time this season, and perhaps the first time in a long time – WVU football came together, united on all fronts, to guarantee themselves a win against Texas Tech. Against a team who was able to put up 52-points against TCU and 53-points on Oklahoma State, the Mountaineers were able to shut their scoring down. The defense worked hard to prevent the score from turning to the Red Raiders favor, but this time they weren’t alone in doing so.

The offensive running game from West Virginia was outstanding Saturday against Texas Tech. Wendell Smallwood ran for a season-high 163-yards, earning a touchdown from 16-yards out for the Mountaineers. Rushel Shell also came up big for the Mountaineer, with 111-yards and two touchdowns from a short distance. Of the 449-yards WVU was able to gather, 300 of them came from runs. All-in-all, the Mountaineers were able to play a complete, united game of football on Saturday. Against a team that may become eligible for a bowl game after their game against Kansas State, this win could set the tone for the remainder of the season for WVU.

While the offense ran the ball against a defense who has only allowed about 270-yards against the per game, the defense was also hard at work stopping the Texas Tech offensive. The Red Raiders were only able to walk away from Saturday’s game with 378-yards, falling well-short of their season average of 603-yards.

Skyler Howard completed 12-of-23 passes – however five of his passes completed to Ka’Ruan White for 80 yards.

Game Heroes

It’s hard to name just one hero in the win over Texas Tech. However, there are a few names who come to mind when you think about Saturday’s game.

Smallwood’s running game accounted for much of the Mountaineer victory. During the second half – and a close score – Smallwood took the ball from the Texas Tech 47 to the 129-yard line in 3 consecutive runs after a personal fowl by the Red Raiders. Howard attempted a pass to Jovon Durante that fell incomplete, before returning to Smallwood on the next play. Smallwood ran the football to the 19-yard line, earning perhaps the most important third down of the game.

Smallwood was given the ball again and again achieved significant yards, landing the Mountaineers at the 6-yard line. Howard attempted a short run into the end zone, which didn’t result in a TD, but did force a personal foul when his helmet was removed by Micah Awe during play. Howard was able to run the clock out, taking a knee 3 times and ending the game with a score of 31-26.

Preparing for Texas

After a rough October schedule, no one was expecting the Mountaineers to pull together and finish the rest of the season on a positive note. However, West Virginia was able to unite and defeat a team that may be bowl-eligible after next Saturday’s game.

The Mountaineers could have come into the game against Texas Tech with their heads down and no one would blame them after their performance through October. Fortunately for Mountaineer fans, the WVU Football team has finally, after 4 consecutive losses, played a full game of football. All four quarters, down the the very last minutes of the game the offense, defense, and special teams began and completed every play as if the next point determined the win. It’s that drive and a winning attitude that will carry the team to victory over Texas on November 14th at noon.

What do you think our mountaineers have to do to guarantee a win on the road against the Longhorns?

Game Highlights

wvu football

October Schedule Proves Too Much to Handle for WVU Football

WVU falls 38-62 to No. 2 Baylor on the road

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 0 10 0 0 10
OSU 17 6 14 3 40

Game Recap

WVU football concludes their overwhelmingly brutal October schedule with a 10-40 loss to 5th ranked TCU on Thursday October 29th. TCU’s quarterback Trevone Boykin performed so well, in fact, he got a high-five after going out of bounds from West Virginia Head Coach Dana Holgerson in a show of both respect and confusion at what he just witnessed. Holgorsen was quoted saying, “He made one of the best plays I’d seen in awhile. He was right there, so I  didn’t know what the hell else to do.”

Unfortunately, this loss by West Virginia was a messy one that the team, coaching staff, and fans can’t blame solely on the difficulty of the schedule. Similar to the three games previous to Thursday night’s loss, the Mountaineers didn’t show up for the first half of the game. Mistakes made on both the offensive and defensive line lead to a lopsided score that should not have been as devastating as it was in the end.

TCU opened the game when Boykin threw a 17-yard pass to Josh Doctson for a touchdown. The next play ended in a touchdown when Boykin ran the ball in from the two, flipping over Nana Kyeremeh for the touchdown. Nine more points went on the board for TCU in the first half. The Mountaineer’s only touchdown of the game came early in the second quarter as Skyler Howard connected a 32-yard pass with Shelton Gibson on the receiving end. A field goal by Josh Lambert with about 5 minutes left in the second quarter were the last points WVU would see on the board that game.

Mistakes by the West Virginia defense kept the ball deep in their own territory with seconds remaining in the first half. Kyeremeh was called for holding, which forced a punt by Nick O-Toole in the end zone. WVU defense was called for a substitution infraction, giving up their 44 yard line to TCU. Boykin was able to connect with Doctson for 17-yards and on the next play Jaden Oberkrom was in for a touchdown. After the half, it was a steeper drop down the hill for WVU.

Coming out for the second half, WVU offense struggled to connect passes on both the passing and receiving ends of the ball.  Howard completed only 16 of his 39 passes for 160-yards and 1 touchdown. David Sills was the Mountaineer leading pass-catcher with only 3 catches for 42 yards. Shelton Gibson, Jovon Durante, and Sills all dropped passes from Howard that could have resulted in WVU touchdowns to make the score gap a little less brutal. TCU continued scoring as they did in the first half, with more impressive plays by Boykin and Doctson.

Finding the Silver Lining

It’s hard to find the positives in a game that could have been closer – a game that the Mountaineers entered and left with their heads down. However, the one positive we can all agree on is the November schedule is guaranteed to be a lighter load than what October gave us.

The Mountaineers have the talent to come back from the blow October gave them, but the question is, will they be able to mentally recover from the four consecutive losses?

Preparing for Texas Tech

The Mountaineers face their first November opponent, Texas Tech, at home on Saturday. While Texas Tech does not match the caliber of play WVU football has faced this month, the matchup will still, surely, be tough. The Mountaineers need a clean slate. They need to revert back to the feeling of victory after their first 3 wins on the season and enter Saturday’s game ready to win and maintain that mentality throughout the entire game.

WVUs biggest downfall this season has been their inability to play a full game. Breakdowns in the opening half or the closing half have bee a consistent problem this year and in order to turn the season around it will be their biggest obstacle.

Get your tickets now for Saturday, November 7th when the Mountaineers take on Texas Tech at home with the kickoff set for noon. BE sure to make it into Mountaineer World to get all fo the latest and greatest WVU football gear and accessories to cheer your Mountaineers back into a winning season!

Game Highlights

West Virginia Football Continues to Struggle Through October Schedule

WVU falls 38-62 to No. 2 Baylor on the road

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 7 10 7 14 38
OSU 17 10 21 14 62

Game Recap

We all knew that the October schedule for the Mountaineers would be a tough one, but coming off of three straight losses has Mountaineer fans asking, “what needs to be done?” WVU football conceded a win to the No. 2 Baylor Bears Saturday afternoon on the road. Baylor showed up for vengeance after their only regular season loss last year to the Mountaineers, the question is, did the Mountaineers show up?

The Mountaineer defense was forced to compete with Corey Coleman, who Head Coach Dana Holgorsen describes as “the best player in college football.” Coleman gave his home crowd a little-something extra to cheer about when he broke his single-season school record for TD catches, now totaling 16 on the season. Baylor’s Seth Russel is now the only QB for the Bears – other than RG III – to throw for 300 yards and run for 100 yards in a single game.

Skyler Howard, who ended the game with 4 completed touchdown passes, made the first error after a pass intended for Shelton Gibson ended up int he hands of Baylor’s Ryan Reid in the end zone of what would have been 6-points on the board for West Virginia. Following Howard’s interception, WVU kicker Josh Lambert‘s field goal attempt of 45-yards went wide right and the Mountaineers were forced to enter halftime down by 10.

After halftime, the Mountaineers couldn’t seem to close the gap, and the third missed opportunity came at the end of the third quarter. Adam Pankey jumped too early as Howard was changing plays. What would have been a 1-yard attempt on the fourth down became fourth and six instead. Howard‘s fourth-down attempt to Jovon Durante didn’t connect and Baylor’s seventh touchdown came shortly after on a 52-yard run by Baylor’s Jay Lee.

Baylor hit West Virginia hard in the opening quarter of the game – scoring the first touchdown in under a minute. While the Mountaineers were able to match the Bears point-for-point in in the second quarter, the Bears blew them away again in the third. By the fourth quarter, nothing WVU could do would keep up with their opponent.

Finding the Silver Lining

It’s hard to imagine a bright side when looking at the loss-margin on the scoreboard Saturday night. However, there are some positives to the WVU performance against Baylor.

Positive #1: Skylar Howard performed well, despite the first half interception.

The junior QB completed 18 passes for nearly 300-yards Saturday night, and added 4 touchdowns to the WVU score. Howard, who Holgorsen says, “puts pressure on himself” has been the “fall-guy” in the media after the past WVU losses this season. Despite what the media says about him, Howard has fought through the criticism and begun to improve in high-pressure situations. Had the Mountaineers played Baylor in either of the first two Big 12 games this season, there may have been more than one interception. Though his pass completion remains similar to the game against OSU, he added significant yards to his throws – echoing his stats win against Maryland earlier this season.

Positive #2: The team finishes strong

The Mountaineers already know what they need to do – and there are glimmers of it in the loss to Baylor. The problem lies in their slow start. In the opening quarter, and coming out after the half, the Mountaineers struggled to put points on the board, which when facing top-ranked Big 12 teams is a guaranteed loss and WVU knows it. We can imagine that every player on the field knew after the quick touchdown scored in the opening minute of the game that the loss was inevitable – but they fought for what was almost a tied game going into the half.

Preparing for TCU

The Mountaineers face the same challenge preparing for TCU as they did Baylor – competing throughout the game. With 12 days to prepare against yet another top-ranked team, WVU needs to find a way to put pressure on the opposing defense for four quarters rather than two.

What do you think WVU needs to do to improve? Does the team stand a chance against No. 3 TCU on October 29th?

Don’t forget to visit the Mountaineer World blog for all of the highlights and visit Mountaineer World for all of your game day needs! Remember to tune in for West Virginia football on October 29th to cheer on your Mountaineers!

Game Highlights

wvu football

WVU Football Falls to Oklahoma State in Homecoming Game

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 OT Final
 WVU 0 2 14 10 0 26
OSU 7 10 6 3 7 33

Game Recap

The Mountaineers couldn’t recover after a 2-yard touchdown run by the Cowboys in an overtime game at Milan-Puskar Stadium filled with a homecoming crowd on Saturday. WVU football Head Coach Dana Holgorsen said after the game, “You’ve got to put together four good quarters in the Big 12 to win football games and right now we are not capable of doing that.” Similar to last week’s loss to Oklahoma, West Virginia had another rough start against No.21 OSU.

The first two quarters of the game were wrought with mistakes from the Mountaineers. A fumble by Skyler Howard early in the game was recovered by Oklahoma State defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah which put an early 7 points on the board for the Cowboys. WVU was able to hold Oklahoma at 7 – 0 for the remainder of the 1st quarter, but at the beginning of the 2nd, a fumble by Rushel Shell gave the Cowboys the opportunity to score. At the Mountaineer 28, a sequence of five plays gave OSU’s Rennie Childs a scoring opportunity from the 1-yard line. WVU was down 14-0. The Mountaineers would turn the ball over for the third time after a 59 yard push to the Cowboy’s 15. Wendell Smallwood had an opportunity for a first-down until Chad Whitener stripped Smallwood of the ball, which was then recovered by Jordan Sterns at the OSU 5-yard line. WVU lost the touchdown opportunity and may have gone into half-time without a point on the board, but Kyle Rose‘s sack on Cowboy quarterback Mason Rudolph in the end zone gave the Mountaineers 2-points.

For every mistake West Virginia made during the first half, they topped with impressive play in the second. Smallwood opened up WVU scoring early in the 3rd quarter with a 29-yard run to the OSU end zone. Howard answered for his earlier fumble with what would be the most impressive play in the game. Howard threw a deep pass to Shelton Gibson which resulted in a 48-yard touchdown, bringing the score to 23-16. Howard pumped even more adrenaline through the stadium when he ran the ball into the end zone with 2:44 left in the 4th quarter, tying the score.

The Mountaineers began overtime with their defense, and after several plays, OSU’s Walsh carried the ball in for a touchdown on 4th-and-goal from the Mountaineer 2. The Mountaineers answered back during their possession with a push beginning with Shell‘s 5-yard run and ending with a first down at the Cowboy’s 9. Shell may have been able to run the ball in for a touchdown, but chose to take a route on the outside, leading him straight into Jordan Burton and Tre Flowers and a 7-yard loss. Howard‘s throw to Daikiel Shorts Jr. that would have tied the game ended in an in-completion and, ultimately, a loss for our Mountaineers

Who Stood Out

Though the Mountaineers struggled offensively, the defense showed up to match the amount of turnovers by West Virginia to OSU. Early in the game, corner back Terrell Chestnut ran under a Rudolph pass and made the interception with ease inside of the Cowboy’s 10, giving Chestnut his second interception on the season, and the third in his career. Daryl Worley intercepted a pass intended for Oklahoma State’s Marcell Ateman inside the Cowboy’s 50, marking his 2nd interception of the season and 6th in his career.  The final WVU interception came from Nick Kwiatkoski (his first since 2013 and 4th in his career) who caught the ball, intended for OSU wide receiver James Washington, off the shoulder of Chestnut.

The three interceptions made by the West Virginia defense gave WVU 16 takeaways this season, topping their previous year’s total of 14. WVU is now the 8th college football team since 2000 to have 13 or more interceptions in the first 5 games of the season.

Preparing for Baylor

After another lack-luster performance by WVU in the first half, it’s clear that the Mountaineers need to start capitalizing on opportunities earlier in the game. Facing No. 3 Baylor on the road next Saturday, the Mountaineers will have to do exactly what Holgorsen commented to the media – play all 4 quarters. West Virginia, as-of-yet, in the Big 12 has become a “second-half” team. While the fans admire their drive when the team comes into the 2nd half ready to make a comeback, the offense will have to work on putting numbers on the board early in the game without conceding any turnovers.

Don’t forget to visit the Mountaineer World blog for all of the highlights and visit Mountaineer World for all of your game day needs!

Game Highlights

WVU Football Win Streak Ends with Loss to Oklahoma State

Mountaineers make too many mistakes, lose to Sooners 24 – 44

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 0 7 17 0 24
OU 7 17 10 10 44

Game Recap

The WVU football 3 game winning streak was shut down on Saturday after the Mountaineers took a hard loss from Oklahoma University. What exactly led to the loss? The Mountaineers made too many mistakes on offense throughout most of the game – including five turnovers all from fumbles and interceptions by WVU QB Skyler Howard who, until the game against the Terrapins, had completed over 170 passes without an interception. Howard and the Mountaineers had a hard time with passing – Howard only completing 17 of his 32 passes throughout the game.

West Virginia was able to briefly tie the game during the second quarter after a series of plays for 86 yards. Since the passing game was obviously not effective against the impassable Sooner defense, WVU relied on running the ball as well as penalties by Oklahoma. Rushel Shell contributed 26 yards to the 86 yard push and ultimately carried the ball for 5 yards into the Oklahoma end-zone for a touchdown. Unfortunately the tied game was short lived, with the Sooners able to get back in the lead immediately after the Shell touchdown.

Howard gave WVU fans another gleam of hope late in the third quarter after a 50-yard run for a touchdown, bringing the score to 27 -24, with the Mountaineers only down by 3. Howard’s zone-read fake couldn’t have been executed more perfectly – but it wasn’t enough to win the game for the Mountaineers. The Sooners were able to dominate the last quarter of the game, ending the West Virginia winning streak by a score of 44 – 24

Who Stood Out

Shell and Wendell Smallwood were able to generate success from the running game against Oklahoma when the passing game was failing. Shell’s 26 yard contribution to the 86 yard push during the second quarter and the 5 yard touchdown gave West Virginia hope of a comeback now that the score was tied. Smallwood was able to surpass 100 rushing yards in his 22 attempts against Oklahoma University, averaging about 5 yards a play. He was also able to contribute something to the little bit of passing game the Mountaineers could generate – totaling only 8 yards in 3 plays.

Karl Joseph was a force to be reckoned with on the WVU defense. Joseph’s massive hit during the first quarter on The Sooner’s Westbrook was described on ESPN as a “heat seeking missile” and as one of the “hardest hitters in the Nation.” Joseph became the nation leader in interceptions with his 5th of the season after he was able to easily pick a pass thrown by the Sooner QB out of the air.

At one point, Jovon Durante was able to make a nice catch after having to jump to reach a ball from Howard in the end-zone early in the second half. After the ball was stripped from he Sooner defense, WVU gained possession again in the third quarter and Howard and Durante paired up again for a 34-yard pass that landed the WVU offense just 5 yards away from another TD. Unfortunately, Durante was unable to keep his feet under him and the Mountaineers settled for a 23-yard field goal from Josh Lambert.

Preparing for the Cowboys

So the question is, what do the Mountaineers need to do to prevent another shattering loss from happening against the Cowboys in WVUs Homecoming game this Saturday? After the game, some Mountaineer players and assistant coaches discussed what went wrong and what needs worked on. Karl Joseph had maybe the most important comment about the loss to the Sooners, saying that the season isn’t over and the team needs to “move on.” The downfall with the Mountaineers will come if the players begin getting inside their own heads. Shell commented that when Oklahoma made a play, WVU made the mistake of putting their heads down. Shell said “Oklahoma is a good team, they’re going to make plays.

It was made apparent through the many mistakes on offense that West Virginia’s biggest opponent is West Virginia. If the team can recover and strive to improve for the next game, rather than beating themselves up over a loss to a good college football team – they can recover next week against the Cowboys.

Game Highlights

best mountaineer tailgate

The Winner of the “Best Mountaineer Tailgate” Photo Contest Is: Susan Evick!

Congratulations Susan Evick! Like true Mountaineer fans, Susan and her tailgate party didn’t let a little bit of rain ruin their fun! They took their party inside of a local car wash and continued showing their Mountaineer pride before the West Virginia football game. Congratulations again on your big win and from all of us at Mountaineer World, we hope you enjoy your prize!

Our Runner-Up!

mountaineer footballWe had so many wonderful entries that we had to share more of them with you! Our runner-up entry was submitted by Missy Moles. Missy’s tailgate party photo was submitted after the Family Day game when the Mountaineers beat Liberty 41 – 17 in the second game of the season. We love seeing a big family all wearing their “Family Strong” t-shirts. We are all part of the West Virginia family!

Some of our favorites

Thank you everyone for sharing your best Mountaineer memories with all of us at Mountaineer World. We love seeing how much West Virginia loves WVU football!

Tailgate Contest third placeChristy B.

tailgate contest entry

Amanda Nutter

tailgate contest entry 2

Kristi Knight

Remember to stop into Mountaineer World for all of your Mountaineer game-day gear, West Virginia tailgating supplies, and more WVU merchandise!

Mountaineers Dominate Maryland in Three Game Win Streak

Mountaineers smoke Terrapins 45 – 6 to continue perfect early-season record

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 21 17 0 7 45
 LU 0 0 0 6 6

Game Recap

It was a record breaking weekend for West Virginia football during their defeat of the Maryland Terrapins by a score of 45 – 6. Just to name a few:

  • Wendell Smallwood recorded a career-high 147 yards and a touchdown
  • The 39-point win margin is the widest margin in history in the 52 game history against Maryland
  • Fourth widest margin by either team in the history of the series.
  • 37 first downs beat WVUs school record
  • The five interceptions by the Mountaineer defense is the most in a single game since 1990

Skylar Howard had another stellar performance – despite the end of his consecutive passes thrown without an interception –  as the Mountaineer’s starting quarterback as he completed 22 of his 33 passes for a total of 294 yards and four touchdowns. In fact, four of the Mountaineers first 5 possessions resulted in touchdowns against the Terrapins. Dana Holgorsen was obviously very proud of his team’s performance, saying in his post-game media conference that, “It’s a great day to be a Mountaineer.”

Individual MVP

 Player ATT Yards AVG TD
 Wendell Smallwood, RB 22 147 6.7 1

Smallwood had yet another noteworthy performance in the WVU jersey including his career high 174 yards and a run for a touchdown. After a late hit on Howard by A.J. Hendy, wendell commented that “I think it got pretty nasty,” as he commented on the performance by both teams after the incident which Hendy was not ejected for. Smallwood and the rest of the Mountaineers had entered the game ready to continue their win streak, and after the provocation of the rough play on Howard, Smallwood elaborated on how fulfilling it was to see the team step up ensure an agonizing defeat for the Terrapins.

“It was on when we stepped on the field,” Smallwood said after the game.

Unsung Hero

It’s obvious that Shelton Gibson is becoming Howard’s preferred target and it’s pretty understandable why that’s the case. During Saturday’s game, Gibson completed 6 passes for 118 yards gained and two touchdowns to help the Mountaineers blow the Terrapins out of the water. During this season, Gibson still holds the team-best title of 12 passes for 329 yards and a total of 4 touchdowns in three games.

During the first half, Howard completed a scoring-pass to Gibson during a WR screenplay that led to the second first-quarter touchdown. Shelton’s second score in the game on Saturday came after a 4-play run which eventually led Howard to Gibson on the far sideline. Gibson was able to catch the ball and run into into the end zone for a 41-yard scoring toss.

Game Highlights

wvu football

WVU Football Breezes Past Liberty University

West Virginia collects their 2nd W over Liberty University, 41-17

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 6 14 14 7 41
 LU 0 0 7 10 17

Game Recap

The West Virginia Mountaineers came out to capitalize on the momentum from their win over Georgia Southern last weekend and collected another early season win against Liberty University. The offensive push began early in the game with an 11-play push down field that resulted in a 28-yard field goal completed by Josh Lambert and shortly after, Lambert scored another 3 points for the Mountaineers after a 34-yard scramble from Skylar Howard put the ball on the Liberty 13-yard line.

When the Mountaineers gained their next possession of the game, Howard wasted no time putting the ball in red-shirt sophomore Wide Receiver Shelton Gibson’s hands for a 52-yard run resulting in a touchdown. Less than 10 minutes later, WVU’s Wendell Smallwood carried the ball a short 4 yards into the Liberty Endzone and fumbled, but was able to recover the ball at the bottom of the pile for a 0-yard fumble recovery. True freshman receiver Jovon Durante impressed his teammates with a team-best 7-catches resulting in a total of 60-yards, including a 10-yard touchdown in the 3rd quarter.

Liberty was able to finally breach the Mountaineer defense that was on a 6 1/2 quarter scoreless streak when Todd Macon was able to carry the ball in from the 7-yard line. Halfway through the final quarter, Liberty scored their final touchdown with a 60-yard push by Liberty’s John Woodrum and Zac Parker.

William Crest Jr. played for a hefty amount of time in place of Howard in the fourth quarter and was able to complete 6-of-6 passes for a total of 50-yards. Smallwood capitalized off of one of those passes and marked his second touchdown of the game with 3:36 remaining in the fourth.

Individual MVP

 Player Completions / Attempts Yards TDs INTs
 Skyler Howard, QB 21/26 263 3 0

Skylar Howard has clearly been working hard to prove he is cutout to serve as the Mountaineer’s No.1 QB this season. Howard was patient against the Liberty Flames for most of the game as he faced a defense that specializes in forcing teams to really work for the big plays. Howard combined with Smallwood and Rushel Shell in a nostalgic running game that WVU has been lacking for a long time. That, combined with Howard’s shorter passes, led to WVUs second win of the season at Milan Puskar Stadium.

Howard completed one of his most productive games since wearing the WVU jersey with 14 consecutive pass completions during the third quarter. Howard has yet to throw an interception in his Mountaineer career. Head Coach Dana Holgorsen remarked to the media after the game that Howard is “a good football player [and] a good quarterback.”

Unsung Hero

The Mountaineer offense made major strides this game after the win last weekend over Georgia Southern. There were several key players who teamed up with Howard to get the win against the Flames, but Wendell Smallwood gave an outstanding performance, collecting two touchdowns for the WVU victory.

The first Smallwood touchdown was a result of a 7-yard carry into the Liberty Endzone, but as Smallwood was coming down with the ball, it was stripped from his hands. Smallwood battled at the bottom of the pile up to regain possession and record a 0-yard fumble recovery. Late in the 4th quarter, Smallwood tallied his second touchdown after a 75-yard offensive drive led by backup QB William Crest Jr. His 5-yard carry into the Endzone gave WVU the resulting 41-17 win over Liberty.

Game Highlights

The Mountaineers will be taking the next two weeks to prepare for their border-rival Maryland, who they play Saturday Sept. 26th at home. In the meantime, submit your photos of your Mountaineer tailgate to our “Best Mountaineer Tailgate” contest for a chance to win a FREE Mountaineer World tailgating tent and don’t forget to shop at Mountaineer World for all of your WVU football jerseys, tailgating equipment, and more!

West Virginia Crushes Georgia Southern in Opening Season Game

The Mountaineers Dominate Georgia Southern with Shut Out

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
 WVU 10 6 14 14 44
 GSU 0 0 0 0 0

Milan Puskar Stadium was awash with cheers as Mountaineer Nation watched their favorite team achieve an unexpectedly easy victory over Georgia Southern on Saturday night. The West Virginia Mountaineers were able to shut out the Eagles and achieve a 44 – 0 victory for their opening season game. The WVU defense went above and beyond expectations against GSUs spread option attack that was the concern during summer workouts and preseason camp.

In addition to the great start to the season, the West Virginia defense is well on their way to producing improved results from last season. With the 5 turnovers attained – including a fumble recovery – they have almost hit last years total of two fumble recoveries. The Mountaineer Offense, on the other hand, struggled throughout the beginning of the game, but were able to pick-up in the third-quarter after a couple drives, led by junior quarterback Skylar Howard, were able to find their way to the GSU end zone.

Karl Joseph, Safety 8 7 1 3

Individual MVP

Karl Joseph, senior safety, was the sole fabricator of four of the five turnovers and was the one to recover Favian Upshaw’s fumble during the first quarter of the game. Holgorsen said to the media after the game “I’ve never given anyone a game ball, but I gave him one.” After the defeat of GSU, Joseph was named AutoNation Player of the Week and Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week

Last season, Joseph was named a WVU team captain and second-leading tackler with 92 tackles, 62 solo stops, 4.5 tackles that resulted in a loss of yards, 3 pass breakups, 3 forced fumbles, and one interception.

Unsung Heroes

Though West Virginia’s offense had a rocky start, Howard, Jovon Durante, and Shelton Gibson out-performed themselves after getting their bearing against the Georgia Southern defense. Howard’s first home start was a success with 16 of his 25 passes completing for 359 yards. The biggest – and most exciting – offensive accomplishments came from freshman Durante and sophomore Shelton Gibson who both received their first starts in college football and were able to record over 100-yards against the Eagles. Durante completed a 41-yard toss to score and Gibson followed with a 26-yard touchdown catch. “Those two guys can run,” said Holgorsen in a post-game media conference after commenting on his excitement with the performance of two of his first-time starters.

Game Highlights

West Virginia football is back in action Saturday, September 12th at Milan Puskar Stadium against Liberty. Kickoff is at 3:00 PM. Don’t forget to stop in at Mountaineer World for all of your WVU football gear and tailgating equipment. Visit our contest page for details on winning a FREE Mountaineer World Tailgating tent in the Best Mountaineer Tailgate photo contest!

How-To Throw the Best Tailgate Party

Similar to football, there’s different levels for tailgate planners – whether you’re a rookie, a starting player, or a seasoned veteran, throwing the best tailgating party in Mountaineer Country is a daunting task. For most Mountaineer fans, tailgating before the game is just as important to the West Virginia football experience as being in the stadium, watching your favorite team win. So how can you compete with the hundreds of other tailgaters for the best tailgate award? Check out these tips, best-practices, and unique ideas that can make your typical tailgate become the tailgate to be at.

Pre-Game Prep Time

  1. Know what role everyone is playing

tailgate partyThough throwing a tailgate without help is possible, you can be guaranteed it won’t go off without a hitch. Assign roles – or jobs – to your friends and family. You’ll need a chef, chef assistant, an Entertainer, and a Cleaner. Assigning the roles first will help you organize and coordinate the items you are bringing to the tailgate. For example, the chef and chef’s assistant will obviously be in charge of bringing the food, cooking utensils, eating utensils, etc.

Everyone has that one crazy friend who is without a doubt the biggest WVU fan you know – that’s your entertainer. Have that person be in charge of guaranteeing everyone has a great time. They’re responsible for music, games, and fun, school spirit items like facial tattoos, pom-poms, and foam fingers. Your cleaner will bring all of the items you’ll need to leave a spotless parking lot at the conclusion of your tailgate

* After the first game of the season, these roles can stay assigned if everyone on your “team” is a regular tailgater.

  1. Pack up the night before

There’s nothing that puts a damper on a tailgate like waiting for someone to show up because they procrastinated packing, or had to run out and get some last minute items. Pack as much as you can the night before the game to make sure you’re not the one that ruins a good time.

tailgate organization ideas

* If you’re the Chef or Chef’s Assistant, purchasing a separate toolbox for your tailgate necessities is a handy, time-saving trick. Purchase a toolbox with multiple drawers and keep items such as spatulas, tongs, grill cleaners, sauces & spices etc. organized. This cuts down on your preparation time and helps you stay organized throughout the tailgate season.

  1. Over packing is better than under-packing

You’ll never hear anyone complain about being over-prepared – unless grandma is upset she’s taking home 30 cupcakes no one ate – but not having enough food or drinks for everyone can turn your “Best Tailgate Ever” into a nightmare. Nothing is worse than hungry friends who have had a few beers.

Make sure your tailgate menu has more that the tailgate staples (i.e. burgers, hot dogs, and potato salad). Find great, easy recipes that gives everyone something they want – like steak/chicken kabobs, taco salad, pre-baked mac & cheese, shrimp cocktails, etc. If you plan on tailgating early in the day for a night game, make sure you’re prepared with breakfast foods too (i.e. omlettes, sausage, and bacon).

This is important for all roles, but most important in regards to food and cleaning products.

* For cleaners, bring extra trash bags, napkins, silverware and plates. These are the items you will go through the most. Trash bags can be used in multiple different ways – like creating a “throw-away cooler” using the box from a case of beer. Add two trash bags to the box to act as liners, put beer back in the box, add ice, and throw it away when you’re finished!

Game Time – The Day of Your Tailgate

  1. Get there early

If you sat down and really thought about it, you could probably come up with a long list of reasons you should make sure you’re early for your tailgate. The biggest reason is probably so that you can get the best spot possible for your party. In Mountaineer Country, good tailgating spots go quick – so if you aren’t planning on arriving early for breakfast, make sure you’re there between 4 and 5 hours before the Mountaineers take the field.

tailgate party locationThis means leaving the house in time to get ice and any other last-minute items.

* Tying a unique balloon on a long string to your vehicle will help your tailgate attendees know where they can find you. (Tying the same unique balloon to your car every tailgate will help other fellow tailgaters remember who had the best tailgate at the previous game and encourage them to join.)

  1. Food prep, entertainment, and decorations come first

tailgate foodSet-up everything you need for your tailgate according to your roles. Chef’s and chef’s assistant should set-up the grill, the food, and the food table first so they can begin cooking right away. Cleaners should make sure there are an appropriate amount of “trash cans” around your tailgating area – a good rule is one trash bag per vehicle. The entertainer should set-up the games, decorate the tailgate, and get the music started as soon as they arrive.

* To keep food hot, use a cooler to create a temporary “hot box.” Place hot bricks wrapped in aluminum foil in the bottom of a cooler also lined in foil. Put pre-cooked food on top of the bricks to keep it warm and fresh.

** Keep cheap, plastic drawer sets filled with paper plates, cups, throw-away utensils, etc. so everything has a place out of the way. Label drawers and coolers appropriately so no one has to search for anything.

  1. Have fun, but don’t be that guy

While it’s important that everyone has a great time, no one likes a tailgate party that is completely out of control. Don’t be that guy.

Dont Be That Guy

As the entertainer of the tailgate, make sure everyone is having a great time – but don’t let your tailgate become the tailgate no one want’s to be near.

* Don’t abandon friends who have maybe had too much to drink. If their safety is a concern, or if you’re worried they may get in trouble with the law, it’s your responsibility to get them home safely. There are plenty of options for friends who can’t get themselves home. There is no excuse for yourself or your loved ones to drive under the influence of alcohol.

Post-Game – Clean Up

It’s time to get your tailgate cleaned up and get to the game. Ask yourself – would I rather have an hour to two hours to leisurely clean-up the area of and around our tailgate? Or, would I rather stop all entertainment 20 minutes before heading to the game and risk the chance of forgetting something? Chances are, you’ll want to give yourself the time to do a proper clean-up and pack-up of your tailgate.

clean up tailgate* Cleaner: purchase a cheap storage container to pack all of the dirty dishes and utensils in after everyone is done eating. Taking plates and silverware rather than disposable utensils and paper plates can help out during cleanup – leaving less garbage laying around.

If you take the time before hand to prepare and organize, cleaning up can be done in a fraction of the time it would take if you didn’t prepare and organize. Make sure you throw away everything that isn’t reusable.

No matter how you clean-up just make sure you do your part to keep Mountaineer Country as beautiful as it has always been. No true Mountaineer fan leaves trash to litter their home.

Think You’re Ready to Claim the Title of Best WVU Tailgate Party this season?

Mountaineer World presents the “Best Mountaineer Tailgate” photo contest. The winner will receive a FREE Mountaineer tailgating tent from Mountaineer World!

mountaineer world tent

Log on to Facebook and enter the photo contest located on the Mountaineer World Facebook page in the “Tabs.” The contest will run from September 5th until October 1st 

Enter the best picture of your tailgate party from any of the Mountaineer football games leading up to the first Big12 conference game against Oklahoma State on October 3rd. Share the contest on your Facebook page to increase your chances of taking home the big prize!

Do you have what it takes to throw the best WVU tailgate party?