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Know Your Enemy: The Delaware State Hornets

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Before beginning conference play, the Mountaineers take on the historically black college from Dover.

NCAA Football: Delaware State at Missouri Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

2016 Synopsis

Delaware State did not win a single game last season, finishing with an 0-11 record. Their closest games were a 3-point loss at Morgan State (20-17) and a five point loss at Howard (26-21). The Hornets did play one FBS team, Missouri (who finished 4-8 last season), losing to them 79-0.

Who did they lose?

The Hornets lost their starting quarterback Daniel Epperson. He passed for 1,021 and six touchdowns. One of Epperson’s top targets, Aris Scott, is also gone. He had 40 receptions for 533 yards last season.

Delaware State v Missouri Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Who do they return?

Just about everyone else. This team was plagued by having many young, inexperienced players. The Hornets still aren’t quite good enough to challenge for a MEAC title, but they should get a couple in the winner’s column.

Why should West Virginia be worried?

I should have said this about the East Carolina game, but I neglected to and I apologize. The Mountaineers should be worried about risking injury. Put both games away early and give the young guys some experience.

Why should West Virginia not be worried?

WVU shouldn’t be worried about Delaware State because...well...the Hornets aren’t very good. They have the seeds for success down the road, but don’t pose much of a threat in Morgantown.

If you need a transitive argument, WVU beat Missouri 26-11, then Missouri beat Delaware State 79-0.

Key player for Delaware State

The player I’m going to be keeping an eye on is Mike Waters. The sophomore running back accounted for about 25% of their offense last season. He should dazzle the Mountaineer second or third-team defense.

Delaware State v Missouri Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Key player for West Virginia

I’m going to go with Martell Pettaway. The sophomore running back should see plenty of action since Holgo burned his redshirt last season against Iowa State. Could plant the seeds to build a Kennedy McCoy-Pettaway backfield tandem in 2018.

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Iowa State Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports