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The Shotgun/Throwdown: Tuesday (10/11/11) Edition

Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown, WVU's nationally recognized best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions. We're being brought to you today by Staghorn Octoberfest.

We've got the bye week blues. Actually, bye week is a misnomer. A bye implies a free pass into the next round of a bracket/tree tournament. It's an off week, but I digress. It's the halfway point of the season, so the week off now is sort of a natural break. But don't tell Coach Holgorsen that, he'd rather keep to the routine and play every week. But, with the schedule being what it is, the coaches are on the road several days this week for recruiting. The big news, if you want to call it that is the Big East's "expansion plan." We have coverage of that for you as well as a couple player features to go along with mid-season reports and awards.

Here's WVU's entry in Spencer's weekly SB Nation Alphabetical:

V is for Velocious. Running with great speed, as in both West Virginia and Oregon's offenses in the third quarter. After a lackluster first half, the Mountaineers leveled UConn with 23 points coming out of the half, while Oregon put 22 on Cal after the intermission. If possible, attempt to negotiate a peaceful surrender at halftime with either of these teams, or perhaps just distract their coaches at halftime by having odd deliveries made to their locker rooms, thus distracting them from figuring out exactly how to crack your defense open like a fresh oyster.

What You May Have Missed:

Gold And Blue Now: Tuesday - WVMETRONEWS.COM
Tony Caridi and Hoppy Kercheval break down the latest news on the Big East and conference expansion, Kyle Wiggs goes over the Big East's match ups for the week and find out what is going to happen during Mountaineer Madness

Wallace stands up for WVU, counters Kendrick - Charleston Gazette
There is, however, another state native out there with an extensive sports business background with quite a different perspective. That's Chris Wallace, a Buckhannon native, avid Mountaineer fan and general manager and vice-president of basketball operations for the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies.

NCAA College Football Power Rankings Week 6 - ESPN

P.S.R. 1-120: Week 7 Re-Ranking - Pre-Snap Read

Big East: West Virginia Showing It's In A Class By Itself Among Big East Teams - Hartford Courant
Midway Through Season, Mountaineers Showing Their Mettle

Midseason report: West Virginia - Big East Blog - ESPN
West Virginia Mountaineers Record: 5-1 (1-0, Big East)

Big East midseason overview - Big East Blog - ESPN

Video: Midseason One Good Thing - Big East Blog - ESPN
Andrea Adelson's one good thing from the Big East at midseason is West Virginia's offense.

VSR: Tanik Named Student-Athlete of the Week - MSNsportsNET.Com
Varsity Sports Report

News of Note:

Off Week Underway - BGN
Through his first few months as a head coach, Dana Holgorsen has revealed himself to be a man who likes staying in a routine and isn’t much for reflection. So as you might imagine, his West Virginia team’s first bye week -- which inherently breaks routine and demands reflection -- isn’t exactly a welcome occurrence.

Busy week - Parkersburg News and Sentinel
Classes, recruiting highlight WVU’s off week

Football Notebook - MSNsportsNET.Com

Holgorsen to offense: Let it happen - Charleston Gazette
At one point, Holgorsen left his front-row view of the field and walked back to where his offense was gathered on a bench. And he let them have it.

Fans shouldn’t be worried about offense’s slow starts - Daily Athenaeum
West Virginia is outscoring its opponents 89-23 in the third quarter this season, including 23 against UConn.

Big-play Bailey strikes again - Register-Herald
Stedman Bailey’s stock is rising.

Defense Dominant - BGN
“When you put together a second half like [the defense] did, it makes the first half almost look like a disaster,” head coach Dana Holgorsen reiterated on Sunday. “It was just a dominating performance by Coach Casteel and those guys.”

HERTZEL COLUMN: Starks faces, overcomes adversity - Times West Virginian
For most of the preseason, when he was recovering from shoulder problems, and early in the season, Starks was standing in the corner, sort of whipping boy for the coaches, maybe even someone they could make an example of to get through to the younger players.

Coaches regaining trust in Brad Starks - Charleston Daily Mail
"We've had conversations with him and said, 'Look, it's all about trust with us. We can't put you into a critical situation or position until we feel that we can trust you,' " Roberts said. "And to his credit, we were very hard on him because we felt like he was an upperclassman who could take it and he withstood a lot of criticism and a lot of hard coaching. He's really done well for us and he's going to continue to get chances to play."

Molinari Takes Advantage of Punting Opportunity - WV Illustrated
"You've got to take advantage of these opportunities when you get them," the redshirt freshman said. "You can't let them slide by or anything, so you've just got to go out there with confidence and make it happen."

WVU Music Video Highlights: UConn Game - WV Illustrated

Around the League (and Beyond):

Big East Football Players of the Week and Honor Roll - Big East Coast Bias
Stedman, Geno and Jewone make the lists

Conference Realignment: Big East Authorizes Expansion To 12 Team Model - Big East Coast Bias

Big East Expansion Candidates: By The Numbers - Big East Coast Bias
Here's a look at some of the Big East's possible expansion targets and where they rank financially, academically, and in distance from the current members.

Report: Big East contacts Conference USA about acquiring UCF, Temple might be next - The UConn Blog

Big East announces plans to add six teams, but real story is what's left unsaid - The UConn Blog
Exit fees weren't raised

No quick fix likely for Louisville football team - Courier-Journal

Bearcats eye Keg as rumors continue - Cincinnati Enquirer

Bulls' focus shifts to UConn - Tampa Tribune

Syracuse University football team takes a deep breath and turns its focus inward during bye week - Post Standard

Rutgers prepares for Navy's triple-option offense - Star Ledger

Inconsistency is bigger question than who's to blame for Panthers - PPG

What's On Tap:

Priority Season-Ticket Deadline Friday - WVMETRONEWS.COM
Mountaineer Athletic Club members and past season ticket holders have until Friday, Oct. 14, to reserve priority seating for the 2011-12 men’s basketball season.

WVU Plans Another Mountaineer Gear Sale - WV Illustrated
On Oct. 14, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., the Shell Building will host a sale to the general public that includes Mountaineer apparel and other items straight from the athletic department itself. The event coincides with Mountaineer Madness, which begins that night at 7:30 p.m. from the Coliseum floor. Doors to the Coliseum open an hour before, at 6:30.

Video of Interest:

The Mountaineer Sports Network's weekly look into Mountaineer Football. Hosted by Tony Caridi and analyst Dwight Wallace, this week's edition focuses on WVU's 43-16 victory over the UConn Huskies.

Video of (Dis)Interest:

It's not's Tinyballs

Miss Throwdown:

Today's Miss Throwdown is Brazilian model Gracie Carvalho. Clicking on her picture will get you to today's gallery.

Staghorn Octoberfest image via