Morgantown, West Virginia – Make no mistake about it, Jarret Doege had an outstanding game yesterday while leading the Mountaineers to a victory over the #22 ranked Iowa State Cyclones.
Yesterday, Doege was everything that has been hoped for since he arrived in Morgantown. His pocket presence was good, he moved in the pocket effectively, he threw dimes downfield and he was the senior leader that the team needed to beat a really tough team.
With that said, Jarret Doege hasn’t been that for much of the year and the criticism that he’s faced has been absolutely fair. While Doege leads the Big 12 Conference in passing yards, he’s also made several unforgivable plays that have led to West Virginia losses throughout the season.
He has not been consistent and as a redshirt senior in his fifth year of collegiate football, consistency is expected. While yesterday’s performance makes it easy to forgive the four previous losses, it’s difficult to simply forget.
Jarret Doege’s overall performance this season certainly deserves critique and criticism and the West Virginia Mountaineers have not arrived at 4-4 and 2-3 in the Big 12 Conference.
Yesterday’s upset win over Iowa State was a positive step in the right direction. West Virginia’s play-calling has changed for the better in the last two weeks and Jarret Doege has certainly made improvements in his game, which is very commendable.
But let’s not pretend that the criticism Doege or the coaching staff faced previously was unfair or unjust somehow. At least three out of the four losses that West Virginia has this season were completely preventable with better coaching and leadership on the field.
While it can be argued that players are “just kids” and shouldn’t be criticized, it’s important to remember that this is Power 5 football and the stakes are very high. In addition, West Virginia’s fanbase is far more understanding and considerate in their judgment of student-athletes and coaches than at most major programs around the country.
At 4-4, the West Virginia Mountaineers can still turn this season around and finish this season strong, and Jarret Doege has a real opportunity to re-write history and make his final season in Morgantown a success.