During West Virginia head football coach Neal Brown’s weekly Tuesday press conference, the coach discussed a variety of topics including last weekend’s blunders to Kansas State, the team’s current depth as well as this weekend’s final home matchup of the season with Texas.
Brown began the day discussing last weekend’s issues at Kansas State which saw the special teams allow a blocked punt for a touchdown as well as a very unusual Casey Legg shanked field goal for one of the best kickers in college football.
“Our mistakes really stemmed from lack of details in our fundamentals, they didn’t allow us to perform our job, poor situational awareness was also an issue and we didn’t make enough plays, you’ve got to make plays, catch balls, we had an opportunity for a pick six and we dropped it and those things are easy to forget but if you go and look, you’ve got to make game winning plays and we just didn’t make those,” Brown said.
One of the topics of discussion included the regular season winding down with only two Big 12 games remaining on the season. If the Mountaineers would like to make a bowl game appearance they must win out their final two games against Texas then at Kansas next weekend.
“We’ve got Texas coming in and we’ve got two games left, it’s not too late to play good football. We’ve played good football in spots this year, but we haven’t been consistent which I promise doesn’t piss anyone off more than me, our lack of consistency is extremely frustrating,” Brown said. “But it’s never too late and Texas is coming in here and Texas is very talented and we’re preparing for their best on Saturday.”
The head coach then looked forward to this Saturday’s final home matchup of the season with Texas. Texas rolls into Morgantown on Senior Day after falling to the cellar dweller of the Big 12 in Kansas last weekend, 56-57. Even through Texas’ struggles this season, the Longhorns are still a top notch college football program.
“I really respect what coach Sarkisian does, he does a really good job of changing his looks up each week, you can tell it’s easy for them, it’s easy for the quarterback but it’s hard to defend, a lot of motions and shifts pre snap and just difficult to defend because they stress you, they do a really good job of stressing you and getting their best players in some key situations,” Brown said. “Thompson the quarterback he’s a dual-threat guy, he does a really good job of adlibbing and making big plays, he’s got a strong arm.”
Brown also went in depth about his team’s depth struggles and how he believes the entire college football landscape struggles with the issue throughout a season. Coach also talked about some of the injuries the team currently has and some players who will be healthy on Saturday.
“We’ve got a thin roster at some spots and I really think it’s not just a West Virginia problem, I think you look across the board it’s probably an issue for a lot of teams… Saint McLeod’s going to play more to relieve Jackie Matthews at spear, he played in the game on Saturday… Lance Dixon I would say is highly questionable for the game, I’m not ruling him out but I’d say he’s questionable,” Brown said. “Sean Ryan, I think is questionable. I’m cautiously optimistic he’ll play… Garrett practiced yesterday, I think it’s the first time he practiced, and he’ll be available on Saturday.”
The Mountaineers will kick off against the Longhorns on Saturday for Senior Day at noon with televising on ESPN2.