Now that spring football is over, we can begin to look ahead to the 2021 Mountaineer Football season. Coming off of a 6-4 season, West Virginia will be looking to build on the success they had in a 24-21 Liberty Bowl victory over Army to close the 2020 season. Several players return on offense and defense, and many expect the Mountaineers to take another step forward this season.
For those of you that know us, we like to be a little bold from time to time. Today, we are going to make five BOLD predictions for WVU Football in the upcoming 2021 season.
Here are our predictions:
- Jarret Doege solidifies himself as a top QB in the Big 12
Bowling Green transfer Jarret Doege was solid last season, passing for 2,587 yards and 14 touchdowns to only 4 interceptions. Many expect backup Garrett Greene to give him a run for his money by the time the season starts, but I’m just not buying it. Despite being benched in the Liberty Bowl, Doege will start AND finish the season for the Mountaineers. In the process, he will also solidify himself as one of the top signal-callers in the Big 12 Conference. He will not receive any accolades nor Heisman attention, but he will get the job done for West Virginia this season.
- The defense finishes atop the Big 12 again
Statistically, West Virginia had the best defense in the Big 12 Conference in 2020. With the departures of Tony Fields, Darius Stills, Tykee Smith and Dreshun Miller, many expect the unit to take a step back in 2021. I, for one, am not a part of that crowd. Under the leadership of Jordan Lesley coordinating the defense, West Virginia will once again have the best unit in the conference. As a matter of fact, they will be a big contributor to the next prediction on our list.
- WVU knocks off top-10 Iowa State in October
Iowa State has no business being in the position that they are. A program that was a basement-dweller in the Big 12 for most of their time in the conference, their recent success has them with a “big head,” you might say. That will be until the Mountaineers knock them off in Morgantown in October. West Virginia is a better program than Iowa State, we all know that. Three-straight losses is enough against these Cyclones, and Neal Brown will have his troops ready to roll, notching a signature win in his young tenure.
- Neal Brown gets first win over Texas
Since arriving in Morgantown, Neal Brown is 0-2 against the Texas Longhorns. Had the game been officiated fairly last season, this may not be the case, but it is a hand the team was dealt. Steve Sarkisian will struggle in his first season on the job in Austin. Losing Sam Ehlinger will hurt this team, and I expect them to take a huge step back in the upcoming season. Coach Brown will knock off the Longhorns for the first time in his tenure, and he may even give us a “Horns Down” hand gesture in the process. Circle November 20th on you calendars, it is going to be a great day to be….well, you know.
- WVU makes and wins another bowl game
Something we grew so accustomed to under Dana Holgorsen was losing bowl games. This will no longer be the case under Neal Brown. For the second year in a row, West Virginia will make the postseason and return to Morgantown with a trophy in hand. We also expect it to be a more significant bowl appearance than the Liberty Bowl, which will bode well for attention on program. Whether it is the Alamo Bowl or even, in wild and exciting circumstances, a New Year’s Six Bowl, another bowl win will be huge for Coach Brown’s vision for the program.