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The Shotgun/Throwdown: Wednesday (9/21/11) Edition

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OK, now that most of us have stepped back from the ledge, take a deep breath. Massive conference realignment seems to be on hold for the moment as the PAC-12 has said they are planning on staying at 12...right now. Averting this raid by them, the Big XII appears to be on it's way to survival for the near future. The questions remain on who the Big XII add and if the SEC will stay at 13. The Big East is also looking to add and UConn still wants out and I believe the lack of statements by Oliver Luck and WVU indicates we do too. But, by the time you read this, everything could have changed again.

Oh, and there's the little matter of possibly the best team in the country coming for a visit this weekend, which is all Coach Holgorsen is willing to talk about (and I don't blame him). Yes, we need the crowd into it, but don't kid yourselves into thinking that will affect LSU much. LSU is used to all this attention. I just hope we get the chance to get used to it as well. I have plenty of articles along with coach and player interviews more on realignment, of course.

What You May Have Missed:

Dana Holgorsen News Conference - Mountaineer TV
Head coach Dana Holgorsen talks about Saturday's matchup with second-ranked LSU.

Football: Coach Holgorsen News Conference - MSNsportsNET.Com

Gold And Blue Now: Wednesday - WVMETRONEWS.COM
In today's episode we hear from both WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen and LSU head coach Les Miles, Hoppy Kercheval goes inside the numbers and Hoppy and Tony Caridi talk some more conference expansion.

College Football Power Rankings - Andy Staples -
This week Staples gives teams Greek Gods, WVU gets Dionysus, god of drink at #16

Changes in ticketing could benefit students - Daily Athenaeum
17,056 tickets were requested for Saturday's game, eclipsing the previous record for requests by almost 2,000. With only 12,500 seats available for students, roughly 4,500 people who sought a ticket were turned down.

The Geography of College Football Fans (and Realignment Chaos) - NY Times
Interesting breakdown of fans by conference

Morning Tailgate: Conference Realignment Continues, And Here's What We Know Right Now -
Do they say "To Hell with you: we're the SEC, and we can play with 13 teams if we want to"? It is technically doable.

Pac-12 Expansion Dead, Big 12 Still Alive - Team Speed Kills
Realignment isn't completely over just yet. The Big 12 probably needs to add another school or three (like BYU) to get to 10 or 12 members. The Big East also needs to get more football members. As for the SEC's quest for a 14th school, I don't know. Maybe Mike Slive revisits West Virginia's application. Maybe he raids the ACC. Maybe he stays on 13 for a while.

Conference Realignment Takes a Deep Breath - WV Illustrated
In the words of Lee Corso, who will be in Morgantown later this week with ESPN's College GameDay, not so fast my friend.

News of Note:

WVU football: Holgorsen refuses to talk conference realignment - Charleston Daily Mail
"They understand everything I talk about is worrying about things you can control. You can control going to class. You can control getting treatment, going to study hall, practice, preparation, giving good effort."

Just Focus On The Game - WVMETRONEWS.COM
There was very little talk about conference expansion in Dana Holgorsen’s Tuesday press conference, quite simply because he doesn’t have anything to say about it. Holgorsen isn’t trying to avoid it, but he knows it’s nothing he can control.

Playing fast but not loose - PPG
"Nobody goes faster than Oregon. We don't go faster than Oregon, and they handled their tempo just fine," said Holgorsen.

Holgorsen up for the challenge - Daily Athenaeum
"The good news is there is only one ball, so that ball can only go to one of them," he said. "Our job is to figure out which one it's going to and stop it."

WVU coach sees offensive improvement - Register-Herald
“We took a step forward last week. Very much so,” Holgorsen said. “That’s always good to see as coaches. As coaches, we told them to finish blocks and to continue to be in the right spot for two weeks, and we saw it happen in the third game. We improved technique-wise, and we got a little more effort out of them to the point that we sprung a guy a couple of times.”

WVU football: On third down, Alston may be answer for No. 16 Mountaineers - Charleston Daily Mail
"What he brings - and it's because he's one of the few guys we have that has experience - is maturity. Being in that situation doesn't phase him much because he's been there before."

LSU coach expects hostile crowd at WVU - Inter-Mountain
"Our guys understand big games and loud crowds," Miles said. "It won't be foreign to the team. We expect a quality opponent and a loud crowd. It will benefit us."

LSU, WVU a contrast in styles - Times West Virginian
“None whatsoever,” he said. “Our offense is 100 percent different from their offense and our defense is 100 percent different from their defense. All around, we’re a different football team.”

West Virginia defense focused on slowing down tough LSU running game - Daily Athenaeum
LSU has scored on its last 40 possessions inside the red zone, and it's going to get in the end zone with its power-rushing attack.

LSU defense presents a test for West Virginia - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
"It doesn't matter how many seniors they had last year, especially defensively, they'll just replace them with guys who are every bit as good," Holgorsen said.

Fast, strong, deep - Charleston Gazette
LSU defense has all the ingredients

WVU fans can show true colors - Parkersburg News and Sentinel
West Virginia, not just its football team, will be on display this weekend. If ever there was a time for Mountaineer fans to show everything that is good about the university-and the state-they love, this is that time.

WVU no stranger to big games - Times West Virginian
Hertzel recalls a couple of the biggest

Assistant Coach Steve Dunlap - Mountaineer TV
Assistant coach Steve Dunlaps talks about LSU's offense.

Linebacker Najee Goode - Mountaineer TV
Najee Goode previews the preparation and expectations for this weekend's games against LSU.

Video: Football Interviews 9/20 - BGN
Coach Roberts, Julian, Bruce, Alston and Geno

VIDEO: Mountaineer Player Interviews - WVMETRONEWS.COM
Julian, Coach Roberts, Sticks, Stedman, Coach Bedenbaugh, Madsen, Will Clarke, Garvin, Tandy, Najee, Geno and Tavon

WVU Football Interviews: LSU Week - WV Illustrated
Coach Roberts, Sticks, Stedman, Bruce, Najee, Tavon, Tandy, Julian, Pat Miller, Braun, Geno and Alston

Around the League (and Beyond):

Video: Marinatto Speaks After Football Schools Meet in New York - Big East Coast Bias

Big East Meets in NYC: The Possible Big East-Big 12 Merger Is Dead - Big East Coast Bias

John Marinatto's Grand Solution Was Navy And Syracuse Fans Feel Better About Themselves - Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician
Funny thing is, replacing Cuse and Pitt with Navy and Air Force actually increases the BE standing in the BCS

Syracuse University head coach Doug Marrone excited about move to ACC, but focused on Toledo Rockets (video) - Post Standard

UConn has some unlikely allies: Duke and Maryland - The UConn Blog

Louisville football freshman QB Teddy Bridgewater is steady already - Courier-Journal

N.C. State Primer - Down The Drive

USF notes: Reserves are gaining valuable experience - Tampa Tribune

Brandon Coleman ready to make potential become reality at Rutgers - Star Ledger

Pitt Vs. Notre Dame: Todd Graham Press Conference Top Ten - Cardiac Hill

Forde Yard Dash - ESPN

What's On Tap:

GameDay Set for Mountainlair Plaza - MSNsportsNET.Com
Here are the rules and timetables to know

Coliseum Parking Limited on Friday - MSNsportsNET.Com
With the expected increase of recreational vehicles on campus for this weekend’s WVU-LSU football game, parking at the WVU Coliseum on Friday, Sept. 23, will be extremely limited.

Video of Interest:

Video of (Dis)Interest:

Let's learn about rugby!!

Hump Day Video of the Week:

Miss Throwdown:

Today's Miss Throwdown is Colombian Native Sandra Valencia. Click on her picture for today's gallery.


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