As West Virginia prepares to take on Maryland this weekend, the staff at Blue Gold Sports put together predictions for this upcoming season. The staff gave a prediction on the record West Virginia would finish with and why they would finish with that record.
Ashley O’Brien: 9-4, bowl win included
The Mountaineers have two challenging non-conference games before the annual dreaded Oklahoma match-up. Taking on Maryland and Virginia Tech in the first three weeks of the 2021 season is nothing short of a challenge, one that hopefully ends in West Virginia winning a non-bowl game away game (something we did not see in 2020). With all of the conference realignment conversations, Brown’s third season leading the Mountaineers needs to be a standout season (or at least one where the Mountaineers win games on the road).
Should the Mountaineers step up when not in Morgantown, I think the season has the potential to be great. I see a mid-tier bowl game victory for West Virginia, but I sadly don’t see an Oklahoma victory this season despite it being the Sooners’ potential last season in the conference.
Ethan Bock: 7-5
West Virginia enters its third season under head coach Neal Brown as they continue to try and improve the football program. I predict the Mountaineers will go 7-5 in the regular season with a bowl game appearance. It’s a good 7-5, though. The Mountaineers have a tough non-conference schedule and then open up Big 12 play on the road against Oklahoma. WVU should take care of the bottom half of the conference but there’s always a trap game. The Mountaineers could exceed expectations if they upset Iowa State when the Cyclones come to Morgantown in late October. With all of the losses on defense, it will take a couple of games for the pieces to come together. On paper, this season doesn’t seem too much of an improvement from Brown and his staff but it is. This is a critical season for the Mountaineers and they will continue to trust the climb.
Wesley Shoemaker: 8-4
I think this year’s West Virginia team will be a lot better than some think. I believe they can sweep their non-conference, but wouldn’t be surprised to see them be 2-1 heading into Oklahoma. All reports indicate that Jarrett Doege has gotten better and I believe that having a veteran presence as your quarterback will only help this team. There’s no way West Virginia can finish worse on the road than they did a year ago, and that gives me reasons to be optimistic. The schedule is hard, but don’t be surprised if Iowa State gets upset on Halloween weekend in Morgantown. Obviously, there will be games this team under performs, but I think the good will outweigh the bad. I think they will then reach a solid bowl game if they finish 8-4.
Quinn Burkitt: 8-4
I believe the Mountaineers will continue their climb under Neal Brown as many positions around the field are much more deeper than they were last year. The four losses I see WVU taking will be @ Oklahoma, @ TCU, v Iowa State and v Texas. Leddie Brown will be the leader on the whole offense again as Bryce Ford-Wheaton will lead all wide receivers in touchdowns. Scottie Young and Nicktroy Fortune will have big years in the secondary as well.
Aaron Parker: 8-4
In the highly anticipated 2021 season, I think Neal Brown and his staff take a big step forward. In the first three games, the Mountaineers will face two old rivals in Maryland and Virginia Tech, and I think they win both of those games. I think the losses will be Oklahoma, TCU, Iowa State, and Kansas State. I think the big wins will be Virginia Tech, Oklahoma State, and Texas. WVU hasn’t beaten OSU since 2014, so I think they finally win one in Morgantown this year. If an 8-4 record is achieved, then I think that would put WVU in a respectable bowl game.
Carleigh Minor: 7-5
Neal Brown and his staff are doing many things to improve this years season. I predict they will go 7-5 in their regular season. The games I believe that are going to tough are Oklahoma, Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas, and Texas. Brown’s third season with WVU football, we can highly anticipate changes are going to be shown this season for the better. Overall the football team is going to have a great season.
Hayley Maguire: 8-4
As Neal Brown enters his third season, I think the only way West Virginia is going is up. This team is consistently improving in all three phases of the game. The Mountaineers have a lot of talent returning from last year’s team. With a couple breaks here and there throughout the season, this team should be able to finish with eight wins on the year, and should be competitive in every game this season.
(Top Photo: Ben Queen)