Welcome, By-Godders, to The Shotgun Throwdown, WVU’s best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor, and daily distractions.
CONFERECE EXPANSION IS BACK ON THE MENU
According to a report yesterday ($) from Max Olson of The Athletic, the Big 12 has honed in BYU, Cincinnati, UCF and Houston as their top targets to help shore up the conference after Oklahoma and Texas announced their impending departure for the SEC.
While it’s not the perfect situation for West Virginia and we should continue to keep pitching ourselves to anyone that will listen, adding those four schools will go a long way in keeping the Big 12 positioned as a legitimate Power 5 conference. One could argue that in most seasons the league, top to bottom, would be at least on par with the PAC-12, if not better. The additions would allow the conference to split into two divisions and switch to an eight conference game schedule, opening up non-conference spot for the Mountaineers to schedule another regional opponent each year.
There’s no timeline for any official announcement as the Big 12 is still actively evaluating other schools, but with those four programs being specifically named I would expect something official to break within the next month or so.
The West Virginia men’s soccer team is back in action tonight at 7PM ET, where they’ll take on No. 17 ranked Penn State. The Mountaineers are coming in hot off that 2-1 win over No. 3 Pitt on Monday, and look to continue climbing up the polls with another Top 20 win. It’s also Trivia Night, as fans can play for a chance to win Nike gear, soccer tickets to future home matches and football tickets to the LIU game on Sept. 11. Additionally, the fixture is the first of three Happy Hours this season, with half-off drinks at the concession stand from 6-7 p.m.
If you’re not in the area, the game will be broadcast on ESPN+. If you’re not already an ESPN+ subscriber, you should absolutely use this link to sign up. $6.99 per month is a steal for the amount of content you get access to.
WEST VIRGINIA ROUNDUP
- The No. 13 West Virginia women’s soccer team dropped their game to No. 7 Penn State, 2-0, last night in Morgantown. While the Mountaineers led the Nittany Lions in shots, 13-10, they couldn’t overcome Penn State’s back-to-back first half goals. The Mountaineer women will be back in action next Thursday, when they take on No. 8 Georgetown in Morgantown.
AROUND THE NCAA
- After a nearly three hour weather delay, the Gus Malzahn era at UCF began with a come-from-behind win over the Boise State Broncos. The possible future Big 12 conference members found themselves down 24-7 after the first half, but were able to pull out the 36-31 victory in a game that ended at 1:30 AM ET.
- No. 4 ranked Ohio State survived an early scare from the Minnesota Golden Gophers last night. The Buckeyes found themselves down 21-17 midway through the third quarter before overtaking the lead. Minnesota hung around and kept it competitive until the final minutes of the fourth quarter, but Ohio State’s receiving corps was just too good.
- Penny Hardaway is building the Memphis Tigers into must-see TV, according to SB Nation’s Ricky O’Donnell. Penny has brought in Larry Brown and Rasheed Wallace as assistants, and has picked up commitments from two of the country’s top prospects in Jalen Duren and Emoni Bates.
VIDEO(S) OF INTEREST
Neal Brown sat down with Tony Caridi to break down tomorrow’s season opener against the Maryland Terrapins in this week’s United Bank Playbook
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