The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Breaking News

College Sports

November 30, 2011

Mountaineers favored by 1-point over South Florida

MORGANTOWN — Any football fan who doesn’t think West Virginia will have a tough time beating South Florida should think again.

The Bulls (5-6, 1-5 Big East) are listed as only a one-point underdog by USA Today against the No. 22 ranked Mountaineers (8-3, 4-2 Big East) for Thursday night’s regular-season finale.

The kickoff is set for 8 p.m. at Raymond Jones Stadium in Tampa. ESPN will televise the action.

You would think being tabbed as only a slight favorite would add to the motivation WVU players undoubtedly possesses, with at least a share of the Big East championship at stake.

USF also needs a victory to become bowl-eligible, so the Mountaineers are expecting its best shot.

The Bulls, who share last place in the conference with Syracuse, have been baffling under second year head coach Skip Holtz.

They started the season with a surprising 23-20 victory at Notre Dame, then won their next three games to go to 4-0.

But South Florida fell 44-17 at Pitt in its fifth game and has lost six of the last seven contests. Two defeats were by three points each and another by six points.

The WVU-USF series is tied at 3-3 all-time. But the Bulls own 2-1 edge for games played in Tampa.

They won by 21-13 in 2007 and by 30-19 down there in 2009.

After winning by 28-13 in Tampa in 2005, West Virginia added victories over USF in Morgantown by 13-7 in 2008 and by 20-6 in 2010.

Despite the fact Tampa hasn’t been kind to WVU, Coach Dana Holgorsen said it isn’t a matter of concern. He said his team just needs to focus on the present,  not the past.

“As many close games as there are in the Big East,” he stated, “you’ve got to find ways to get the job done. It’s a big challenge.

“But we’ve got a good bunch of senior leadership (23 players) and it’s important to them that we meet this challenge.”

Holgorsen considers the USF game as bigger than any of the previous 11 because of what’s riding on the outcome.

Text Only
College Sports
  • Miners stop Lorain County 5-1

    The West Virginia Miners received a strong outing from starting pitcher Patrick LaGanke, and scored one run in each of the final five innings to defeat the Lorain County Ironmen 5-1 Thursday.

    July 25, 2014

  • Some topics of interest to area fans

    Tom Hart, a widely known retired Morgantown High School administrator and coach, continues to excel as one of the nation’s top bowlers

    July 25, 2014

  • 072514 WVU Replacing Sims a challenge for WVU

    Every year, almost every college football preview publication available lists one key statistic that most use to evaluate the prospects for any given football team — returning starters.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • WVU’s Worley clear starter at cornerback

    There were few bright spots in West Virginia University’s 4-8 football campaign last year, and even fewer on the defensive side of the football, where the Mountaineers gave up more than 455 yards and 33 points per game.

    July 24, 2014

  • Holgorsen to appear on ESPN special

    West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen will appear Wednesday on ESPN’s annual mid-summer college football coaches’ “car wash” — in which guests appear across multiple programs and platforms over one day.

    July 23, 2014

  • Holgorsen: WVU getting comfortable in new league

    Dana Holgorsen remembers the glory days of West Virginia University football — the ones that included conference championships and BCS bowl wins. In fact, he was part of one of those, leading the Mountaineers to a Big East championship and an Orange Bowl victory in his first season as head coach in 2011.

    July 23, 2014

  • 072314 miners Miners take series with Paints

    The way the West Virginia Miners see it, they don’t have the luxury of planning for tomorrow.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • WVU's Fleming signs with Yankees

    Second baseman Billy Fleming of the West Virginia University baseball team has signed a professional contract with the New York Yankees, foregoing his upcoming senior season.

    July 22, 2014

  • WVU to kickoff 2018 season against Tennessee in Charlotte

    The Charlotte Sports Foundation (CSF) announced Tuesday morning that it has secured a regular season college football game for the city of Charlotte pitting the University of Tennessee against West Virginia University.

    July 22, 2014

  • Can summit of bigwigs really solve college athletics issues?

    I see where the Big 12 Conference is going to host in New York City what will be titled “A State of College Athletics Forum.”

    July 22, 2014

Saints Training Camp