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West Virginia vs. Texas: A Preview & Prediction

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WVU is a touchdown underdog even though they are leading Texas in the polls. That, the new and exciting environment and the blasting our defense has taken in the press all are good signs for a Mountaineer team that always plays better when dissed.

Justin K. Aller - Getty Images

Much has been made of WVU’s offense this past week, and that praise has been deserved. Less has been said of WVU’s defense this past week, but any expressed concern would be valid. I think most would agree that our defense has to step it up if we’re going to beat Texas and other opponents that recruit more talented athletes. The latest Big 12 recruiting comparisons/rankings puts WVU mid-pack. Texas is the clear leader with several 5-star prospects in their recruiting pocket.

By this time in the week, most of us are exhausted with statistics. Gamblers want an edge; fans want assurance. We’re looking for some hope. I’m here to offer it as I predict a 10-point win for WVU in Austin, Texas. How are we going to do this? Easy…we’re underdogs, even though we’re ranked higher than Texas. That pisses our guys off. And the opposing crowd will raise the level of intensity on defense, which is desperately needed.

Here are FIVE reasons why we’ll beat the Horns:

Heisman candidate - Geno Smith will lead a scoring effort that will take the crowd out of the game.

Offensive lines – Our O-line is championship caliber – theirs is young and struggling.

Receiving corps – It’s tough enough to face Tavon Austin & Stedman Bailey – but J.D. Woods is shining!

New Atmosphere – WVU plays better under pressure. Austin is one great place to play.

Superior Coach – Holgorsen has been respectful of Brown, but Mack is overrated as a coach.

My defensive concerns are mitigated by the notion that our defensive line will be able to apply some pressure against Texas’ youthful front five. My offensive concern is our running game, highlighted by the absence of Shawne Alston, who isn’t even making the trip to Austin.

Obviously we’re not going to put up 70 or rack up several hundred yards of offense. But I expect us to cover the spread and win 55-45.

What’s your prediction?