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West Virginia Ready To Win With Defense In 2015

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West Virginia has cultivated a reputation over the years for winning behind high-flying offenses, but if the Mountaineers are going to contend in their fourth year in the Big 12, it will be on the backs of a battled-tested and talented defense.

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Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown, WVU's best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions.

News Of Note

Football:

West Virginia primed to win with defense in 2015 | ESPN
The Mountaineers have taken their lumps since joining the Big 12, but they now boast 16 defenders with starting experience and plenty of talent.

Sure hands make Howard the choice as WVU’s QB | Charleston Gazette-Mail
If you ask Mountaineer coach Dana Holgorsen, every position is open. But we all know that's not entirely true. Karl Joseph, Nick Kwiatkoski and Wendell Smallwood aren't likely to be replaced on the depth chart, and the likelyhood that someone other than Skyler Howard will start at quarterback is slim.

The Sophomore Surge | EerSports
A look at five sophomores who could play a major role for West Virginia this season.

WVU Must Correct Turnover Margin In 2015 | BlueGoldNews
West Virginia's football team managed to fashion a 7-6 record in 2014 despite a -1.15 turnover margin. If it could change the sign in front of that number to a "plus" the Mountaineers could easily boost their win total by at least a couple of games.

Seider family wins battle with cancer | The Exponent Telegram
The sweetest tweet of all came out bright and early Thursday morning from West Virginia running backs coach Ja'Juan Seider.

Basketball:

Da'Sean Butler Back in Morgantown for Alumni Game - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports
The last time Da’Sean Butler played a basketball game in Morgantown, the Mountaineers were knocking off No. 19 Georgetown on Senior Night. Five year later, Butler and many of the teammates who took the court with him that night will be back on the floor together. It’s the West Virginia Alumni Game, set to tipoff at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Morgantown High School.

WVU players join local students for hoops clinic | Times West Virginian
Lamont West, Elijah Macon, Brandon Watkins and Logan Routt all joined together with students involved with the Fairmont Community Youth Development Center Wednesday at West Fairmont Middle School for a few hours of just shooting hoops.

Around The League

Around The NCAA:

Making sense of preseason coaches poll | Times West Virginian: Sports
Don't get upset that WVU received only three votes, with 44 teams getting more. It doesn't matter. The worst people to ask are coaches.

Jim Ross provides call of 'Kick Six' play for Paul Finebaum | Sporting News
Jim Ross is the most iconic announcer in professional wrestling. As popular as he was during his tenures in the WWE, the height of his popularity may have just recently, thanks to the internet. But one moment that Ross' call never got dubbed over was the "Kick Six," Auburn's iconic last-second touchdown to defeat Alabama in the 2014 Iron Bowl. But on Thursday, Ross joined the Paul Finebaum Show to provide the real thing.

Joey Bosa, three more Buckeyes suspended for Ohio State opener vs. Virginia Tech | Sporting News
Joey Bosa, one of the nation's top defensive players, and three more Ohio State players will miss the season opener for the Buckeyes at Virginia Tech after being suspended, according to the Columbus Dispatch.

Auburn and Louisville trade identities in Week 1's most interesting matchup | SBNation
Don't overlook this piece of college football's opening Saturday, which features two evolving power-conference contenders.

West Virginia Pros

How did Geno Smith look on Day 1? | NJ.com
Perhaps lost in all the jaws dropping over defensive end Sheldon Richardson's latest foolish mistake (a street-racing/police-fleeing arrest that he stunningly hid from his employer) is the fact that Jets actually practiced Thursday.

When will Kevin White return? | ChicagoBears.com
Senior writer Larry Mayer answers questions from fans about rookie receiver Kevin White, veteran defensive lineman Jeremiah Ratliff and linebacker Shea McClellin.

What's On Tap

Join John Flowers, DeSean Butler, and numerous former West Virginia basketball players tomorrow, August 1, 2015 at 7PM, for the first WVU Alumni Basketball game.  Tickets can be purchased online and a portion of the proceeds go to Bob Huggin's charity, The Norma Mae Huggins Fund for cancer research.

Video Of (Dis)Interest

Miss Throwdown

Today's Miss Throwdown is a model and Playboy Playmate of the Year.  CLICK HERE for Jaclyn Swedberg's Instagram.