This one is a little bit of a cheat as it isn't a "play" from the season but more of an entire season thing. The Mountaineers started a new tradition of carrying out the state flag by a senior at every game.
The Mountaineers, as the representative of the state of West Virginia in the Big 12 and the only Power 5 school in the state, upped the ante by letting opposing teams know that they loved their state. Each week a senior would carry out the state flag in front of the entire team and stadium.
The idea was originally introduced by senior linebacker Jared Barber. Barber, like many other players who do not originally hail from West Virginia, have come to recognize the passion and love the fans have for the team. This passion is returned by many players referring to the state as a second home. We've seen it in the past with players like Owen Schmitt tearing up after winning the Fiesta Bowl and knowing the only state in the nation that believed in the team was the home state, West Virginia.
Why it's a top ten play:
The Mountaineers have plenty of gameday traditions from firing the musket after a score to singing "Country Roads" after a win. Carrying the state flag could easily become the next tradition and I hope it does. The way that players have come to embrace the true nature of what it means to be a Mountaineer only inspires everyone to work a little hard and do a little more.
I'm not a West Virginia native, but just like every other player who steps on Mountaineer field we become one of their own. I took great pride in carrying out our state flag Saturday night, I not only carried it out for our team but also for the 1.8 million amazing people in this great state. Carrying it out represented all of the tough, blue collar, hard working people of this state. We may not be the biggest or most powerful state but we will stand up and fight tooth and nail for what we want and believe in. I couldn't have chosen a better TEAM , University, and state to call home. It truly was my greatest moment of being a Mountaineer!
- Senior Linebacker Jared Barber on his Instagram account
When I carried it, my first thought as we were walking through the tunnel (was), ‘Just don't trip with it or catch the flag on the goalpost as we run by it.' Then as I was waving the flag and as we ran out onto the field it was the most awesome feeling. It was like I was leading a group of warriors onto a battlefield.
-Senior Tight End/Fullback Cody Clay