West Virginia vs Baylor: Burning Down the Couch

I know I was poo-pooing the Bears of Baylor a few weeks ago, and… this is me, eating my words. After three pretty decent wins, they are now ranked #25. WVU is favored to win the game, but this is going to be our first real test of the season. And it’s our first Big 12 conference game. Finally!

Admittedly, I didn’t even really know who Baylor was until they showed up on our schedule this year. Which, honestly, I should be embarrassed to admit out loud since their previous QB, Robert Griffin III, won the Heisman last year and everyone keeps comparing Geno Smith to him. In my defense, no… I have no defense. Bad football blogger, bad!

What’s interesting to me is how much Baylor has in common with WVU. Baylor’s Coach Biles was an offensive assistant with Captain Weaver Dana Holgorsen at Texas Tech in the early aughts. (That’s what we call them, right? The early aughts?) WVU and Baylor both have what’s known as an “explosive offense” and defenses that kinda suck are struggling.

What to look for in Morgantown tomorrow

Passing Lots and lots of passing. The dynamic duo of Smith and Austin are going to be hard to shut down, provided our offensive line steps up and allows them to be dynamic. Ahem. Baylor has a pretty good quarterback in Nick Florence, and two receivers (Terrance Williams and Tevin Reese) that might give WVU some trouble. Here is where I would say things about WVU’s defense, but that horse is dead. Or at least it better be. Also, I’m sick with The Plague right now and I probably shouldn’t let my blood pressure get too high. The good news is that Baylor’s secondary is pretty shaky as well.

Many points on the scoreboard Two teams with explosive offenses mean a high-scoring game. Both teams also tend to snap the ball quickly and skip huddling, which keeps the pressure on and the defense on its toes. (Oregon is another team who uses this tactic pretty effectively. See, honey, I can say nice things about Oregon.) Here it is illustrated in equation form for you math lovers. Explosive offense + shaky defense = many points scored.

Passion Both teams really, really want this win. WVU needs to prove we’re worthy of both the Big 12 conference and our Top Ten ranking. Baylor fought their way into the Top 25, and they aren’t interested in leaving. Plus, if I were Baylor, I would love to upset a team that’s freshly joined my conference, and is the subject of much hype, Heisman talk, and bowl predicting.

Burning couches Or at least, I hope not. Listen, Mountaineer Nation, at the risk of alienating and offending you all, I have to bring this up. I know that burning couches is our “thing”, and has been for a long time. In fact, when I google “when did wvu” (yes, I google things sometimes! I don’t have room in my head for all the dates and details of every game we ever played), the third most popular search is “when did wvu start burning couches”. The answer, by the way, is after we upset Pitt in 1975, back in the days when they were winning National Championships. But, I digress.

Can we find a new thing? Not only is burning couches dangerous and illegal, it’s a stupid way to celebrate a win. It makes us all look like a bunch of backwoods hicks who don’t know how to act when we win an important game. Don’t write the West Virginia jokes for them, people. I mean it, no burning things – no couches, no loveseats, not even an ottoman.

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