Saturday, September 23, 2023

Tony Fields II is Heading to the Senior Bowl

Moments ago, the Reese’s Senior Bowl announced that WVU linebacker, Tony Fields II, has accepted an invite to compete in the game this January.   Fields has been sensational this season for WVU after transferring from Arizona. He is currently one of the nation’s leading tacklers with 79, and has added one sack and one interception.  

Which Mountaineers Advanced to the NFL Divisional Round?

(Photo by WVU Athletics) The Divisional Round of the 2023 NFL Playoffs is officially set. Here is the schedule between the remaining eight teams this weekend;   (Saturday, Jan. 21) Jaguars at Chiefs - 4:30 p.m. Giants at Eagles - 8:15 p.m. (Sunday, Jan. 22) Bengals at Bills - 3:00 p.m. Cowboys at 49ers - 6:30 p.m.   The West Virginia University Mountaineers will be represented in both NFC games. There are a total of four former Mountaineers that will compete in these games - players that span both the Dana Holgorsen and Neal Brown eras in Morgantown. Here are the Mountaineers who will be suiting up this weekend in the NFL Playoffs; Mark Glowinski - New York Giants Will Grier - Dallas Cowboys  Colton McKivitz - San Francisco 49ers Kyzir White - Philadelphia Eagles  With all four being on separate teams on the NFC side of things, at least one Mountaineer will go on to punch his ticket to Super Bowl LVII on February 12th.   Geno Smith of the Seattle Seahawks, Bruce Irvin of the Seattle Seahawks and Daryl Worley of the Baltimore Ravens, were all eliminated during the Wild Card Round. Best of luck to all Mountaineers chasing a championship!

A True Mountaineer

Since joining the West Virginia Mountaineers, Jordan McCabe has embraced the Mountain State, its people and the spirit of being a Mountaineer like no other player in the past, present or future.  Although McCabe is from Wisconsin originally, he is a true Mountaineer at heart. West Virginia is a small state and has a lot going against it.  It doesn’t have the advantageous geographical location or the weather or several other factors that make a wealthy state prosperous.  The people of the state are tough, hard-working and it’s their spirit that makes West Virginia the best state in the country. Jordan McCabe is undersized and not an exceptionally athletic young man.  Although an extraordinarily skilled ball-handler, passer and shooter, his athletic ability is not on par with other Division I college basketball players.  What he lacks in athletic ability, he makes up with toughness, working hard and pushing himself to be the very best leader and point guard that he can be. Jordan McCabe is West Virginia and West Virginia is Jordan McCabe.  When Bob Huggins talks about the basketball team representing the great state of West Virginia and its people, there is simply no better representative for the university and our state than Jordan McCabe. McCabe does it the way that Huggins and West Virginians throughout the state can appreciate; he works harder than anyone else.  Every single morning of the week, McCabe is up before the sun rises and is at the West Virginia Coliseum or basketball practice facility working on his game, putting in the time to improve while the rest of the world sleeps.  This grind is what separates McCabe from everyone else.  Like West Virginia, his work ethic makes up for the disadvantages that he was born with. There are no off days for Jordan McCabe and West Virginia fans can rest assured that he has worked harder this offseason than anyone in the Big 12 to make sure that the Mountaineers are back on top of the conference where they belong this year.  

VOTE: Pat White or Robert Griffin III? Who Was Better? Pat White or Robert Griffin III? Who would you rather have on your team? With WVU and Baylor set to kickoff tomorrow, Fox College Football’s Twitter page ran a poll asking fans which signal-caller they would rather have on their team. Cast your vote for Pat White, and let the word know who the best of the best was. Sure, RGIII won a Heisman Trophy, but Pat White could run circles around him on a football field. VOTE!

The Big 12 is Weighing Their Options

With four of the five Power 5 conferences already announcing plans for their 2020 College Football season, the Big 12 has been left in the dust. A decision is expected sooner rather than later, but their opportunity to set themselves apart as leaders has come and gone. Nonetheless, we are beginning to see reports as to what we can expect from the Big 12 when they meet to discuss the season on Monday. According to Brett McMurphy of Stadium, the Big 12 has virtually passed on a 9-game conference only schedule. What is likely to come of the meeting is a 9-conference games plus one non-conference game model, or the league may allow schools to schedule as many non-conference games as they want. At the moment, WVU only has one non-conference game left on their schedule in Eastern Kentucky. That game is set for September 12th. This morning, G. Allan Taylor of The Athletic also reported that WVU is in preparation of moving this non-conference game to as early as August 29th — College Football’s week zero.   Things are about to get interesting in the Big 12 and around the nation, and we will have it all for you here on The Voice of Motown.

Will Grier is On a Podcast With His Brothers

Former Mountaineer quarterback Will Grier is quite the busy man these days. Not only is he had at work as a backup for the Carolina Panthers, but he has since found the time to begin a podcast with his younger brothers; Nash and Hayes.   The trio of Griers have recently started their brand new podcast, "Shifting Griers." On this show, the brothers share life stories, as well as discuss their current lives that have taken them on completely different journeys.   If you were ever interested to take a peek behind the curtain at the life of Will Grier and his famous brothers, this is your chance. Give it a listen!

Kevin White Set to Join George Campbell in New York?

Kevin White hasn’t had the smoothest NFL career. Since joining the league in 2015, White has yet to complete a season healthy. After being drafted seventh overall by the Chicago Bears, he would go on to spend four seasons with them, and then have a brief stint with the Arizona Cardinals. It is being reported by multiple sources today that White may have just found his new home — and he will be joining up with a former Mountaineer receiver. Kevin White is reportedly working out with the New York Jets. Should he be signed, he would join George Campbell who signed an undrafted free agent contract with the Jets in May. White has played for Jets Head Coach Adam Gase before when Gase was the offensive coordinator for the Bears in 2015. Stay tuned to The Voice of Motown as we will bring you updates when White’s signing becomes official.

Darius Stills Invited to the NFL Combine

(Photo by Ben Queen - USA Today)    After being snubbed on an invite to the Reese’s Senior Bowl, WVU defensive lineman Darius Stills has officially announced that he has been invited to the 2021 NFL Combine. The Fairmont native took to Twitter only minutes ago to share the great news. Stills, who became a household name for the Mountaineers, finished his senior season with 22 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and 1 interception.    

BREAKING: The Nation Has a New Leader in Total Defense

According to Jed Drenning, WVU’s sideline reporter, the nation now has a leader in total defense. That leader is the Mountaineer defense.   After a solid outing against Kansas allowing only 157 total yards, WVU is now allowing the least amount of yards per game in FBS. They were able to surpass Air Force, and now have a 240.3 to 241 edge over the Falcons. Drenning would also report that WVU is now number three and number nine in the nation against the run and pass respectively. The Mountaineer defense will encounter their toughest challenge of the season, however, when they travel to take on Texas Tech at 5:30 this Saturday. If they can contain the Red Raiders, it is time we start seeing West Virginia as legitimate Big 12 title contenders.

How to Watch Marshall-EKU and Why Mountaineer Fans Should Tune-In

Where: Joan C. Edwards Stadium (Huntington, West Virginia)   When: 1 p.m.   Channel: ESPN   Tomorrow, in front of a limited capacity crowd, the Marshall Thundering Herd will take on the Eastern Kentucky Colonels. Not originally on the schedule, this game was added last minute when both squads saw their 2020 seasons take a hit from cancellations. The Colonels will be the Mountaineers’ season opening opponent as well, which is what make this game so intriguing for fans of the Old Gold and Blue. We will get our first look at the Colonels, and will have a chance to scout them as a fanbase. They are coming off of a 7-5 season in 2019, and yield what was a solid rush defense last season that only gave up just over 100 yards on the ground per game. The Herd will have to be up for the challenge after they lost quarterback Isaiah Green to transfer. Redshirt freshman Grant Wells will replace Green, and will see his first start of his young career.     Tune in tomorrow at 1 p.m on ESPN.

A Transfer to This SEC School Would Make the Most Sense for Austin Kendall

(Photo by Ben Queen - USA Today)  After playing hero for the Mountaineers in the Liberty Bowl, Austin Kendall officially entered the NCAA transfer portal this week. Exercising his free year of eligibility, which was given to players due to COVID-19, Kendall will be looking for a new home as a grad transfer. Bringing the experience that he does, along with his highly touted four-star high school days, we should expect Kendall to receive a lot of attention from many different schools. However, there is one school in the SEC that would make the most sense as a landing spot for Austin Kendall, should he be contacted by them. Before he ultimately ended up at Oklahoma, Kendall originally committed to Tennessee. The North Carolina native was prepared to suit up for the Volunteers in hopes of becoming their next great quarterback. But things changed, life took Kendall on a different course, and he would eventually become a Sooner. Fast forward five years later, and Kendall and Tennessee could potentially be perfect suitors for each other. The Volunteers struggled mightily at the quarterback position in 2020, and Kendall has yet to live up to his full potential at the collegiate level. His experience is everything that Tennessee is looking for at the moment, and he could potentially be a fantastic bridge quarterback for the next talented quarterback that the Volunteers land. Things just didn’t work out for Kendall in Morgantown, and he deserves his next shot to prove himself. No matter where he lands, we will support him 100%. Whether that be Rocky Top or somewhere else in the nation, the program he commits to will be getting themselves a solid quarterback.

JT Daniels and Jarret Doege Are More Similar Than You May Think

(Photo by WVU Athletics)    When news broke that former Georgia quarterback J.T. Daniels was transferring to WVU, fans were ecstatic. Though his career hadn’t turned out quite the way that he had planned, he would still have a chance to catch fire in the Old Gold and Blue. Well, folks, we are eight games into his stint in Morgantown. He has been far from bad, but his stats aren’t necessarily jumping off the page, either. Actually, when you take a look at his stats, they are eerily similar to one former Mountaineer’s stats through eight games. Who could that be? The answer may surprise you. Jarret Doege. In 2021, Doege connected on 169 of 255 passes (66%) for 2,071 yards and 11 touchdowns to 7 interceptions through eight games. He had also helped his squad accumulate a 4-4 record which included a 38-31 victory over a nationally ranked Iowa State squad. As for Daniels, he has connected on 185 of 293 passes (63%) for 1,961 yards and 12 touchdowns to 6 interceptions. His squad has a record of 3-5, and no victories over a ranked foe. While Daniels may have the better touchdown-interception ration, Doege had a better completion percentage, more yards, and a better record. Granted Doege did have a MUCH better defense to work with, but stats are stats. Doege simply had more success through eight game last season than Daniels has had this season. But let’s also take a look at something else that had helped this outcome - Doege had more to work with. He had 1,000 yard rusher Leddie Brown in the backfield, and more seasoned targets at receiver. Daniels, on the other hand, is working with a lot of youth all around. Minus the experienced offensive line, many of his receivers and running backs are relatively youthful. This does play huge dividends on the signal-caller’s performance. If you are shocked by these stats, that’s no surprise. I am, too, and so will many others. Is J.T. Daniels better than Doege? In my opinion, yes. However, Doege does have something to argue here. So we have to ask the question - how much of an improvement over Doege was Daniels? We will have to wait until season’s conclusion to truly know.

One Year Ago Today, the Jarret Doege Era Began

On November 16th, 2019, exactly one year ago today, the Jarret Doege era began in Morgantown. After stumbling to a 3-6 start under Oklahoma transfer quarterback Austin Kendall, Head Coach Neal Brown made the decision to insert Bowing Green transfer quarterback Jarret Doege into the starting lineup. In a less than ideal situation, Doege’s first start for the Mountaineers came against the nationally ranked Kansas State Wildcats. However, Doege, as well as the entire Mountaineer Football team, would defy the odds and bring home a massive victory. West Virginia would defeat Kansas State, 24-20, and snap a five-game losing streak. Doege would be phenomenal in the matchup, finishing 20-for-30 with 230 yards and 3 touchdowns to no interceptions. His 50-yard touchdown pass to Bryce Ford-Wheaton early in the fourth quarter would prove to be the game-winner. Fast forward one year later, and Doege is still the Mountaineers’ starter. He is currently 7-4 as the starting quarterback, and has tossed 21 touchdowns to only 6 interceptions. All it took was one gutsy decision from Neal Brown to pull his starting quarterback, and he found the perfect signal-caller to begin “The Climb” with.

WVU Becomes Favorites to Win the Brawl

With the disappointing football product on the field at Acrisure Stadium last weekend against Big 12 newcomer Cincinnati, Pitt found itself in a situation we are familiar with – getting booed by your home crowd for poor play calling and execution woes. While the betting line was never broad for the game, Pittsburgh initially opened as favorites in the upcoming Backyard Brawl for the official betting line. At the beginning of the week, Vegas line makers changed their minds in favor of the Mountaineers. WVU has a slight edge in the 2023 Backyard Brawl by a single point. Successes can change the story and create a new narrative about the football program that shapes future betting lines, including Texas Tech heading to Morgantown to round out our trio of home games. What does West Virginia do as the favorites against more than the Duquesne Dukes? Find out this Saturday night, September 16th, live on ABC at 7:30 pm. Photo by WVU Athletics

WVU’s First Big 12 Tournament Opponent Will Be Without Head Coach

(Photo by WVU Athletics) The Mountaineers will open up Big 12 Tournament play on Wednesday night against Texas Tech. The two sides split the season series 1-1 with both teams losing at home. When WVU and Texas Tech collide on Wednesday night, the Red Raiders will be without a major piece to their team. According to Pete Thamel of ESPN, Red Raiders Head Coach Mark Adams has been suspended after an inappropriate verbal exchange with a player that included a “racially insensitive” comment. Thamel shared that the news was first broken by KCBD. ESPN’s BPI favors the Mountaineers 61.6% to 38.4%. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.