Tuesday, May 30, 2023

West Virginia Lands Top Recruit in the State

The top ranked recruit in West Virginia in the 2020 class is coming home.  Sean Martin, a 6'6 260 pound defensive end out of Bluefield, West Virginia, initially committed to North Carolina on June 17th.  Today, he committed to the Mountaineers! https://twitter.com/SeanMartin32/status/1201199456768667648?s=20   In addition to offers from North Carolina and West Virginia, the 3 star recruit has offers from Baylor, Duke, Illinois, Marshall, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota, NC State, Oregon, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Purdue, Rutgers, Temple, Utah, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Virginia Tech. Martin led Bluefield High with 144 tackles and 17 sacks last season as a junior as the Beavers made it to the Class AA State Championship.  He is the clear-cut top recruit in the state for the 2020 class and is a monster get for West Virginia. Coach Neal Brown has made keeping in-state recruits at home a real priority since taking over as Head Coach and now he has landed the very best of the best in his first season.

The Gerad Parker Hire and How It Will Affect the Offense

On January 10th, Head Coach Neal Brown hired Penn State Wide Receivers Coach Gerad Parker to the same position, but also gave him another title. Not only will Parker replace Dye in the receiver’s room, but he will also have the title of Offensive Coordinator. It had for the most part been unclear what his role would be in the schematics and overall philosophy of the offense, but some insight was given on the matter as Brown met with the media today to begin spring football.   While there has been no official word on whether or not Parker will assume play-calling duties, it is expected that Neal Brown will continue in that role. During his introductory press conferences with the Mountaineers, Brown even went as far to say that he will continue to call plays for the rest of his career. Ultimately taking the possibility of Parker calling plays off of the table. However, during his opening press conference of the spring today, Brown did briefly describe Parker’s role with the team and how he will be utilized in the offense. According to Brown, the logic behind the hire of Parker was to give the offensive room a leader. As he went on in his press conference, Brown listed the difficulties of being both the head coach of the football team and the leader in a specific unit room. With that becoming an issue in the preparation for the offense in 2019, Brown felt it would be best for the team to have a specific leader for the offensive unit. While his presence alone was reasoning behind the hire, Brown went on to state that Parker’s vision will be used in the offense. The extent of how his vision will be used is unclear, but having an extra set of eyes watching offensive film can only be a positive for the Mountaineers. West Virginia was nothing short of anemic on offense in 2019. In order for the team to make any kind of strides in 2020, improvements must be made on the offensive unit. Having a proven commodity such as Parker leading the offense should result in an offense that will gel better together moving forward. The true impact of Parker’s hire on the offense remains to be seen. Fans will be on the lookout for changes in scheme and the approach of the offense when the Mountaineers take the field for their annual spring game on April 15th. Nonetheless, the hire is looking like a home-run for Neal Brown early on.    

Governor Justice makes a confusing announcement to the state

Moments ago, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice announced that he will not shut down the entire state, as other states in the country have decided to do.  Justice gave the examples of New York and other states that have completely shut down, saying he hopes that our state does not have the same outcome as their state.  He continued to compare "what West Virginia has done and New York has not done", but didn't offer any real details on what he's done differently than New York. Justice called West Virginia "the most vulnerable state in the United States", citing age and various health conditions as reasons that the Mountain State is so at risk.  With this said, he implored businesses to allow employees to work from home. A doctor in the state then spoke and said that Justice is "setting the standard for the entire country", but again, no examples were given as to what he's done to stop the spread of the virus, other than continuously saying, "Wash your hands, don't touch your face, don't panic, etc." Justice ended his message by saying, "I love West Virginia and its people.  God bless this wonderful state and wonderful nation." The outcome is so unclear and baffling that the over 20 minute message left viewers perhaps more confused and scared than ever.  Watch below: https://twitter.com/RochelleHiggy/status/1241501417325510656?s=20

The Power 5 is on the Verge of a Huge Mistake

Everyone is concerned about the possibility that there may not be College Football this fall — that is no secret. However, the conferences that actually have sense; the ACC, SEC, and the Big 12, have all decided it would be best to see how everything plays out once students return to campus. On the other hand, we are having to deal with the Big Ten and the Pac-12; the two conferences so eager to make a political statement they can’t contain themselves. https://twitter.com/sportscenter/status/1292588464052084736?s=21 According to ESPN, the Power 5 commissioners met Sunday afternoon to discuss potentially delaying or cancelling the season all together. Reports have indicated this meeting was called by the Big Ten who has been moving towards delaying the season despite an official decision having yet to be made. To put this simply, today is only August 9th. We still have well over a month before the season even kicks off for many of these conferences, and most schools have yet to even welcome back students. There has been absolutely nothing for the presidents and chancellors of these universities to monitor other than the decision the MAC made to cancel fall sports — which was obviously made based on finances, not “health.” If the Power 5 conferences were to cancel or postpone the season as early as tomorrow, it would be a huge mistake. Things change dramatically overnight with COVID-19, and monitoring could take place all the way up until the season was scheduled to kickoff. If these commissioners pull the plug on fall sports this early, it is nothing more than a political stunt to please the media.   Stay tuned to The Voice of Motown for updates on this situation. We hope as much as you do that this blatantly misguided decision doesn’t come so soon.

WVU Ranks High in Most All-Time AP Poll Appearances in the Big 12

Mountaineer Football is a storied program — everyone knows that. However, one statistic released today by Fox Sports puts into perspective just how successful the program has been over the course of its history. https://twitter.com/cfbonfox/status/1295411869432209410?s=21 According to Fox, WVU ranks third in the Big 12 in all-time AP Poll appearances with 306. Texas is ahead of them in second with 731, and Oklahoma is in first with 847.   The most mind-boggling revelation on this list is that Iowa State ranks last behind Kansas. Way, way behind Kansas. The Jayhawks have 58 more all-time AP Poll appearances than the Cyclones. Quite the wild statistic considering how horrendous the last decade has been in Lawrence. WVU currently sits 15th on the all-time wins list among FBS teams with 755, also behind only Oklahoma and Texas in the Big 12. Considering the rich tradition of solid football that the Big 12 Conference has, ranking third in these categories behind two of the most storied programs in College Football history isn’t too shabby.

Pitt to Allow Normal Capacity at Football Games in September

Today, the University of Pittsburgh announced their plans for fan capacity through the month of September. https://twitter.com/brett_mcmurphy/status/1299081382396940290?s=21 According to Brett McMurphy of Stadium, Pitt will not allow fans at home games for the first month of the season. This is good news for the Pitt football team being as they are used to playing in front of no fans. It will be business as usual for the Panthers. #EatSh*tPitt

WVU Offers 3-Star 2022 Prospect

Albert Redd, a three-star outside linebacker prospect in the 2022 class, announced today via Twitter that he has received an offer from Neal Brown and the Mountaineers. https://twitter.com/redd_albert/status/1303839814110896130?s=21 Redd hails from Kernersville, North Carolina. Standing at 6’3” and weighing 210 pounds, he has garnered attention from multiple FBS programs. He currently holds offers from North Carolina, Louisville, Liberty, Old Dominion, and Akron, according to 247Sports.

BREAKING: Oklahoma State Starting Quarterback Injured

This isn’t the start the Cowboys wanted for their 2020 season. https://twitter.com/kellyhinestw/status/1307364455748165633?s=21 During the first half against Tulsa, Oklahoma State starting quarterback Spencer Sanders suffered a “lower extremity injury.” He left during the first quarter and is doubtful to return, per Kelly Hines of Tulsa World. Depending on the severity of the injury, this could affect Sanders when they play West Virginia next week. Stay tuned to The Voice of Motown for updates.

Neal Brown to Fans: “We will get better.”

Today, Neal Brown took to Twitter to make a promise to Mountaineer Nation. https://twitter.com/nealbrown_wvu/status/1310510725471834113?s=21 Brown would express how disappointed he was with his team’s performance on Saturday. He would state that they “made too many mistakes to beat a quality opponent on the road.” However, despite all of this, he is not “discouraged” and he “still believes” in his players and staff. Brown would finish his tweet with a promise, “we will get better.” Like Brown, we also believe in this team. Saturday was disappointing, but “The Climb” has only begun. Let’s Go Mountaineers

Quit Complaining About Neal Brown

If there is one thing Mountaineer Nation is good at, it's complaining.   Whether it be helmet stickers or the play of the team itself, this fanbase will almost always have something to bitch about. I am here to tell you today, when it comes to complaining about Mountaineer head coach Neal Brown, just stop.   No, the team does not look to be complete right now - and yes, the play-calling doesn't always seem to be up to par. But c'mon, man. Really? Some of you are already calling for Neal Brown's job only 15 games into his tenure? A tenure that began with a bare cupboard due to Dana Holgorsen's negligence.   If you are one of these individuals, chances are you don't actually know football, or you really aren't a fan. Coaching goes far beyond what goes down on the field, especially for Brown. While things are not as good as they have been before on the field, the recruiting trail is on fire for the Mountaineers. This is all due to the job by Neal Brown.   Complaining about Neal Brown means you are complaining about the program he is building. It means you are not happy with the state of the program. If you ask for my opinion, I truly can't remember a time when things were trending in the right direction as much as they are right now under Brown. Those of you who are complaining about Neal Brown right now are simply not paying attention to the details.   Brown is building something special in Morgantown. It will take time, but he will bring the program to heights the Mountaineers haven't seen in quite a while. It is time we as a fanbase take a step back, and allow him to do his job. Allow him to continue to build the program through recruiting, and a complete philosophy and culture change.   We have to TRUST THE CLIMB and quit complaining. Be happy we have a coach that is willing to put in the effort to make us great. Not only the effort, but the time. Yes, the time. It is only his second season, folks. Rome wasn't built in a day - and Mountaineer Football will not be built in one season.   Trust Coach Brown.

What WVU-Kansas Moving Channels Means

Gus Johnson is unquestionably FOX’s best College Football play-by-play announcer. The excitement and energy he brings to each game is unmatched, and we always leave with at least one memorable call from Johnson per game. This Saturday, we will once again see him calling a Mountaineer game. West Virginia’s matchup against Kansas was moved to FOX from FS1. It is slated for the noon slot, meaning that a legendary booth team will be making their way to Morgantown. https://twitter.com/wvufootball/status/1315756557989277698?s=21   Johnson and his partner, Joel Klatt, will be on the scene calling the game for us at home. Of course, the stadium will be opened for 15,000 people. However, each person that attends the game will be missing on this rare opportunity to have Gus Johnson describe the sights and excitement from Morgantown. Check out memorable calls from Johnson during Mountaineer games shared on the WVU Football Twitter page.  

The Perfect Bowl Opponent for WVU in 2020

2020 will be a season unlike any other. All teams participating in the FBS this fall will be bowl eligible, meaning that literally any team with any record in any conference could be extended a bowl invitation. However, now that nearly all FBS programs will be participating this season, this has become more of a concept than a reality. Nonetheless, should WVU be able to continue their success this season, they will likely be offered one of the Big 12's bowl spots. Now that we are nearly halfway through the season, who we may play in a bowl game will begin to take shape.   One of the Big 12's bowl affiliates is with the Lockheed Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth, Texas. This bowl spot usually goes to the lowest qualifying school in the Big 12, but with the conference being solid from top to bottom, this could be a destination the Mountaineers find themselves in at the end of the season. Though most bowl games have two conference tie-ins, this one does not. Instead, this Big 12 member will be going up against a Group of Five school. It can be anyone in the MAC, C-USA, American, Mountain West, or Sun Belt.   If the Mountaineers find themselves in the Lockheed Armed Forces Bowl, there is really only one opponent that makes complete and total sense - that opponent is Marshall. I know, most of you in Mountaineer Nation cringe at that idea, but hear me out. This would actually not be a bad matchup at all.   Marshall, just like WVU, actually has one of the best defenses in the entire nation. While the Mountaineers have the nation's best, Marshall isn't far behind coming in at 5th. Yes, Marshall hasn't necessarily played world beaters, but in today's College Football, this is hard to do.   On the offensive side of the ball, Grant Wells is good - really good. I have actually been thoroughly impressed with his play, and anyone who knows me knows I never give Marshall credit for anything. However, I just cannot help myself with Wells. The kid can ball.   Of course, Marshall would have to hit a few bumps along the way to the C-USA Championship to end up in this bowl game, but it certainly could happen. These two fanbases constantly bicker with one another, so why not let our guys settle this one on the field?   Who wouldn't want to see Leddie Brown carve up this Marshall defense, and for Darius Stills to get himself a sack or two on Grant Wells? This bowl matchup could prove once and for all that WVU is the superior program - even though we know they are. It would be two of the best defenses in the nation going head-to-head, and would provide quality holiday entertainment for the entire Mountain State.   One last thing...WVU is 12-0 all-time against Marshall. Wouldn't it be nice to make that 13-0 and have all offseason to boast about it?   Think about it, Mountaineer Nation. Marshall would be a perfect bowl opponent for West Virginia in 2020.

WVU Rolls 16th-Ranked Kansas State

West Virginia had a solid day on defense, and put it all together on offense as the Mountaineers rolled the 16th-ranked Kansas State Wildcats, 37-10. The Mountaineers finally put a complete game together on offense, and this is largely because of a solid outing from Quarterback Jarret Doege. The Bowling Green transfer was hitting on downfield passes, and finally looked like he was in control of his passes. He finished the game going 22 of 34 for 301 yards and two touchdown touchdowns to no interceptions - his third consecutive 300-yard game. Leddie Brown had his fourth 100-yard game of the season, tallying 24 carries for 102 yards and a touchdown. Bryce Ford-Wheaton would lead all receivers with 3 catches for 104 yards.   Defensively, West Virginia used an interception returned 18-yards for a touchdown by Dylan Tonkery in the third quarter to take away any hope of a comeback by the Wildcats. Freshman Quarterback Will Howard struggled all day, throwing three interceptions, and completing just around 50% of his passes. Running room was scarce for the Wildcats as they finished with only 41 yards on 23 carries. Kansas State finished with 225 total yards as compared to WVU’s 485.   West Virginia travels to Texas next week to take on the Longhorns. Kickoff time is set to be revealed early next week.  

WVU’s New Bowl Projection After Being Cheated Against Texas

After WVU’s unfair 17-13 loss to the Big 12’s sweetheart Texas Longhorns, the Mountaineers have fallen down many bowl projections. Brad Crawford of 247Sports released his updated bowl projections this morning, and West Virginia’s bowl matchup is now less that spectacular. Crawford has the Mountaineers playing the UTSA Roadrunners in the SERVPRO First Responder Bowl. The Roadrunners are a member of Conference USA, and are currently 4-4 on the season. Despite a mostly mediocre record, UTSA played undefeated BYU close in a 27-20 loss. The Mountaineers and Roadrunners have never met on the gridiron before. The First Responder Bowl is set to be played on December 26th at 3:30. The game will be televised on ESPN.

WVU Offensive Lineman Will Miss Final Two Games of Season

https://twitter.com/jhubb3366/status/1328423616367693825?s=21 WVU offensive lineman, Ja’Quay Hubbard, announced via Twitter that he is officially out for the season on Monday afternoon. According to Hubbard, he will be having shoulder surgery on Tuesday morning. The extent of his injury is unknown. Hubbard transferred from the University of Virginia this past summer, and is listed on the WVU Athletics website as a redshirt freshman.