WVU Gets Bye Week at Perfect Time - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

WVU Gets Bye Week at Perfect Time


West Virginia has experienced all of the highs and lows of a college football season in a matter of three weeks. From the depression of a blowout loss to the high of an upset win and right back down to depression, the Mountaineers are reeling as they enter their bye week.

Ah, the bye week.

It comes at the perfect time for Dana Holgorsen and his Mountaineers this season, smack dab in the middle of the schedule with six of its 12 guaranteed games remaining. It also appears that the team has faced the toughest of its opponents already, with Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Baylor now in the rear view.

The head coach isn't ready to write off his team, but he knows that the parity in the Big 12 combined with WVU's struggles make the games ahead just as concerning as though left behind.
"We did play three really good teams that are in our conference, but that's what's exciting about the Big 12. That's why college football and being relevant in the Big 12 is exciting, but with that comes you've got to play a lot of good teams. Are they the best three teams in the league? We'll figure that out at the end of the year."

Holgorsen isn't yet convinced that his Mountaineers can't pull themselves up into the conversation by the time the season comes to a close.

"Maybe we can work ourselves into being one of the best three teams in the league," he said. "It's possible if we just keep getting better, take one game at a time, try to win that and move on."

With a 1-2 record in the league, there is still time to make something of a season that is certainly on the wrong track. The question is whether or not WVU can turn around its poor offense and keep its defense playing more like it had through five games and not in No. 6.

That is where the bye week plays such a large role. There needs to be time to regroup, both for health and for focus. When the Mountaineers traveled to Waco, Texas, the Bears that awaited them had played two fewer games and had time to rest and prepare. West Virginia clearly wasn't ready for what met it at Baylor.

"Heading into Baylor, we tried to convince them that we had enough in our tank to go play a good football team. Looking back on it, I don't know if we did," said Holgorsen. "They were obviously a lot more energized, fresh, excited and ready to play. It showed out there."

The Mountaineers are not seen as a threat to the Big 12 crown and are right now just looking to find the three wins that will guarantee them a 13th game in the season. The coaching staff doesn't view it that way, as they see the parts despite the fact that they haven't worked together to show what those within the program may have expected before the season began.

"I've seen good things and bad things," said Holgorsen. "A lot of inconsistencies on all three sides of the ball and as a team, we're inconsistent. That comes with inexperience. What I anticipate is our team continuing to improve, just trying to get better every day, just trying to get better on offense, defense, special teams, individually."

Health is part of that equation. WVU will rest quarterback Clint Trickett for the week with hopes that he can come back 100 percent for Texas Tech preparation. Running back Dustin Garrison and linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski are trying to return from injuries, as is safety Ricky Rumph. Both offensive lineman Quinton Spain and receiver Ivan McCartney are recovering from concussions.

Wes Tonkery broke his thumb and Mario Alford has a shoulder injury. It's the perfect time for a bye week.

Holgorsen and the Mountaineers need to take advantage of it and show progress through the remaining weeks of the season.

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