MORGANTOWN — Coach Bill Stewart listed five keys at his Tuesday press conference to West Virginia’s chances of beating Louisville on the road a week from Saturday.

Those are:

No. 1, get the injured healthy.

No. 2, WVU must re-establish, with changes, a kickoff-coverage team that ranks last in NCAA Division I-A.

No. 3, win third-down plays on both sides of the ball.

No. 4, the defense has to make enough plays to get off the field quickly.

No. 5, WVU must force turnovers as it did in the win at Connecticut.

With an open date this week, the Mountaineers (6-3, 3-1) have 10 more days to prepare for the ESPN-televised noon contest at Louisville (5-4, 1-3) on Saturday, Nov. 22.

“We’re banged up,” Stewart reiterated. “It’s that time of the year. Probably every team in the league is banged up. But we should have some of our guys healthy by the next game.”

Some of the coaches are out recruiting, with others beating the bushes Friday night, and Stewart said he’s excited because the recruiting has been going well.

Practice sessions will be basic the remainder of this week, with the pace picking up Sunday evening.

Cincinnati returned the opening kickoff 100 yards-plus for a touchdown in last Saturday’s 26-23 upset victory here. Stewart, who coaches the special teams, said there will be more changes in the kickoff-coverage team this week.

“It goes back to making plays,” he said. “You’ve got to make tackles.”

Stewart said freshman fullback Ricky Kovatch, a promising walk-on, has learned the system pretty well already, but the coach doesn’t want to put him in crucial third-down ball-carrying situations yet.

Sophomore Will Johnson is expected to be ready to be the starting fullback again against Louisville. No. 2 quarterback Jarrett Brown also is expected to be available then for slot receiver duty.

“We want to try to get our best players on the field,” the head man said.

The Mountaineers finished practice an hour or so earlier than usual on Tuesday evening. They submitted to media interviews afterward.

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