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What I Think After “dominating” LIU

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For the worst team to ever come into Morgantown, they sure put up a fight

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 11 LIU at West Virginia Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This game unfolded the way most pay-for-win games do. The Mountaineers returned the first kickoff for a touchdown. They scored 21 points in the first quarter. They went into the halftime up 38-0. They scored 21 in the third quarter then just rode the ball to a win in the fourth. Still - I came away with a decent amount of thoughts

QB 3 > QB 2 > QB 1

I’ve been on record that I thought Crowder would be the better quarterback long term because I like guys who pass. Greene is a pure runner while Crowder is definitely a passer. the ESPN metric QBR confirms my beliefs. Crowder finished with a 98 QBR. Greene with a 94 QBR. Doege with an 88 QBR. Start Crowder! (Kidding).

Greene vs Doege

Ok let’s talk about it. It’s the thing everyone wants to talk about, so let’s talk. My initial observation during the game is that Greene is too quick to run and doesn’t give his receivers any time. He breaks down immediately and goes for a run. Long term, this year, next year, and beyond I don’t know that he is a tenable quarterback if he can’t pass. I do know that Jarret Doege is not a tenable quarterback currently.

Jarret Doege has only three games in his WVU career where he has thrown a pass over 40 yards.

I wrote that in my Three Things I Want From LIU article. Doege still only has 3 games with a pass over 40 yards. His longest pass of the game was a 39 yard screen to Sean Ryan. Doege underthrew a go route to Bryce Ford-Wheaton on the first drive and it was nearly intercepted. He threw the ball nearly 50 yards, but once again it was underthrown and nowhere near where our receivers had a chance to catch and run. Doege caught the ball and then launched it within 2.5 seconds. By the time the ball comes down, 4 seconds later, the cornerback is up against Wheaton and Reese Smith has run his route into Wheaton’s.

I’ll get to this offense in a minute but that was one of three long throws by Doege. None of them connected and two weren’t close. Does anyone have confidence that Doege can stretch a defense, because I don’t. I absolutely don’t. If Doege’s ball is thrown a few yards further, Wheaton can run under it in the endzone for a touchdown.

On the flip side, Greene had several nice plays. He ran for two touchdowns, scrambled several other times and had a very nice scramble drill where he threw a nice ball to Esdale on fourth down. Does Doege make any of those plays? Do we actually score on any of those drives with the way the run game was working? (I mean probably, LIU is awful). Still, what does Doege do that Greene doesn’t versus what does Greene do that Doege doesn’t.

Neal’s Post Game Comments

This is what Neal said after the game - “We had the two first drives scripted for him. Now I don’t know that he did it they way we said to but he did… There’s probably a few things he didn’t do well, but he’s always full throttle”

I’m confused because I only saw Greene in for one series before you pulled him. Are you mad that he didn’t do the plays the way you wanted, even though they worked? Is it because you thought you would get more execution out of your first team and didn’t so you were going to play Doege for 3 series before playing Greene and never got to those situations? I just don’t know. There was the opportunity to work on a two-minute drill at the end of the first half and change-of-possession in the second half but we should have seen Greene more than we did in the first half.

“We didn’t think he was ready to play in the opener. We knew he was going to play today. We’ll go back and evaluate the film and, if his play here and his play throughout the week warrants that he gets an opportunity in situations then, yes, we will use him. I think he can help us”

I get the sentiment and understand it as a coach. You call the plays and want them executed in a certain manner. Greene seems to come off as a talented guy who wants to improvise and do things his way and Neal Brown is such a meticulous creature of habit that this type can not sit well with him. I still don’t know how you can’t play Greene when the rushing attack looked so much better with him on the field. Justin Johnson and Greene ran for 140 yards on 24 carries (14/98 for Greene, 10/42 for Johnson). Leddie Brown ran 15 times......for 31 yards. Johnson had back to back tough inside runs because Greene was the QB and the option keeper was there.

Winston Wright

Winston proves that last week wasn’t a fluke. Wright may be the most dangerous man on the team right now because that dude is just creating seams and flying. Returning the opening kickoff for a touchdown is exactly what you are supposed to do against a bad team like LIU and Wright did. Glad to know we are now dangerous on kick returns.

Defense

Allowed 9 first downs.

2 for 13 on 3rd downs. 0 for 3 on 4th down.

95 total yards.

60 passing. 35 rushing.

Glad ya’ll got a breather.

Rushing Attack

In the last half of the Maryland game and the first half of the LIU game, Leddie Brown has rushed the ball 20 times, for 41 yards. I’m just going to stop right there.