Morgantown, West Virginia – Let me preface this article by saying no, I don’t know more about football than Neal Brown. He’s an outstanding young coach and got the job done by beating Baylor in overtime.
Having said that, this game should not have ever gone to overtime. In fact, it shouldn’t have been close. Neal Brown and staff are far too conservative and far too comfortable with the idea of punting the ball.
The Big 12 is loaded with dynamic offenses and it’s important to take every possession seriously, to really do everything possible to score every single possession. Playing field position and relying on your defense in the Big 12 Conference will lead to a lot of losses, particularly for a team that struggles with careless, silly mistakes.
That’s why it’s particularly important for Brown to play to win, not play not to lose.
West Virginia’s defense bailed the Mountaineers offense out multiple times. West Virginia’s offense was sloppy, not creative and way, way too conservative.
Brown’s go-to play on 3rd and 5 or longer is the up-the-middle run play and defenses know it. Opposing defenses know it’s coming, key on it and it rarely works. Although Jarret Doege had a very challenging game, he is certainly capable of hitting quick outs, slants or crossing routes for 5 yards to one of his outstanding young receivers.
Brown has mentioned multiple times that he doesn’t want to show future opponents everything the Mountaineers can run, but in a close conference game, it’s imperative that he throws everything he has at the other team and not leaving anything on the field.
Following the game, Brown said, “Offensively, it wasn’t good enough. A times, it was hard to watch. Extremely frustrating.We found a way to win today. I’m never going to apologize. People are going to say it’s ugly, I’m going to say it’s gritty.”
Well, Coach Brown, congratulations on a huge win, but it doesn’t have to be so ugly.