Memphis, Tennessee – The West Virginia Mountaineers looked dead in the water.  Down 21-10 and the offense stalled, Neal Brown turned to Austin Kendall, a redshirt senior who everyone had completely forgotten about.

Kendall, who has only played in one game this season – the first game against Eastern Kentucky – was only 3-6 for 43 yards on the season.  Neal Brown, however, never lost faith in Kendall and knew that he would give the team a necessary spark.

And it worked!  In one half of play, Kendall’s stats were exceptional – 8/17 for 121 yards, 2 touchdowns and no interceptions – but it was the calm and leadership that he brought to the team that really made the difference.

In the 4th quarter, Kendall made two huge passes, one across the middle to a diving Sam James and a beautiful touchdown to T.J. Simmons in the corner of the end zone on a post route that put the Mountaineers up for good.

This was likely the last time that we’ll ever see Austin Kendall in a West Virginia uniform.  He’s already announced that he intends to move on following the bowl game.  However, this is the best possible way to finish his up and down career with the Mountaineers, winning a big bowl game on the final game of the season.

West Virginia is so proud of you tonight, Austin.  Good luck in your future and Once a Mountaineer Always a Mountaineer.  


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Brad Smith
Brad Smith, "The Voice of Morgantown", is the most trusted, accomplished name in West Virginia sports journalism. Smith is the foremost, preeminent authority on West Virginia athletics and a lifelong fan of the Mountaineers. Smith, a proud graduate of West Virginia University, resides in Morgantown most of the year, but has a home in Jacksonville, Florida, where he lives during the winter.