As the Mountaineers head into the second half of their schedule at just 3-2, there is no doubt that the last five teams they’ll face are better than the first five they’ve already played, starting with Kansas State. So taking care of the details will be important.
Like holding onto the ball, dropped passes continue to plague this WVU wide receiving corps, who unofficially had 7 more drops a week ago in their one score loss to Texas Tech. While it wasn’t a dropped pass, Sam James’s fumble resulted in the game winning touchdown for the Red Raiders.
Turnovers will also be a key against the Wildcats, who are first in the Big 12 in turnover margin at +6. WVU, on the other hand, is near the bottom, seventh overall at minus -2.
WVU has to avoid non-offensive touchdowns. In their win over Kansas, the Wildcats returned two punts for scores and had a pick six, helping to score 21 points in their 55-14 victory.
WVU will need to lean on Leddie Brown and their running game as a whole, the Wildcats are only 8th best against the run in the Big 12 allowing nearly 160 yards a game. Brown is the third leading rusher in the Big 12 averaging 118 yards a game, while as a team the Mountaineers are averaging nearly 170 yards a game that’s 4th best in the conference.
The Mountaineer D is still number 1 overall in the Big 12 while the Wildcat offense is ranked 8th averaging 367 yards allowed per game, above only Baylor and Kansas. Despite that, the ‘Cats are averaging 35 points per game — that’s three more than WVU.
Getting pressure on the quarterback will also be key for WVU. The Wildcats have done a good job defending their passer this season only allowing 7 sacks in five games.
K-State is also road tested they already have wins at Oklahoma and TCU.
Maybe the Wildcats are the team the Mountaineers need to see — WVU has won four straight against K-State.