Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Quick Look at WVU's 2012 Schedule

Here is a look at WVU's schedule for the upcoming year...the first in the Big 12!

Day, Date, Opponent, Time

Sat. Sept. 1 Marshall TBA

Note: Why?

Sat. Sept. 8 Open

Sat. Sept. 15 vs. James Madison + TBA

Note: Cash grab game in DC.

Sat. Sept. 22 Maryland TBA

Note: Is there anybody still playing for the Terps?

Sat. Sept. 29 Baylor # TBA

Note: Interesting homecoming game. And, the first Big 12 game ever for WVU.

Sat. Oct. 6 at Texas TBA

Note: First trip in the Big 12 is to take on the Legend of the conference.

Sat. Oct. 13 at Texas Tech TBA

Note: One of Dana's former stomping grounds. Defense optional.

Sat. Oct. 20 Kansas State TBA

Note: Huge matchup, as Kansas State looks to be one of the top teams.

Sat. Oct. 27 Open

Sat. Nov. 3 TCU ^ TBA

Note: The battle of former Big East teams? Kind-of?

Sat. Nov. 10 at Oklahoma State TBA

Note: Another former spot for Dana. Take the over.

Sat. Nov. 17 Oklahoma TBA

Note: Depending on how the season goes for both, could be a Gameday option.

Sat. Nov. 24 at Iowa State TBA

Note: I have been looking of forward to the first trip to Ames since October!

Sat. Dec. 1 Kansas TBA

Note: Charlie Weis has some serious work to do.

+-FedEx Field, Landover, MD
^-Mountaineer Day

WVU is Officially Out of the Big East at the End of June.

Here ya go, folks. Here is the quote Mountaineer fans have been waiting for since October. Oliver Luck said in a statement today that

“This closes a chapter and opens a new one filled with exciting possibilities for WVU’s future. I’ve heard from Mountaineer fans across the country who have made it very clear that they are proud and honored to be heading into the Big 12.”

And now, Mountaineer fans feel free to exhale.

WVU in the Big East will Officially End Today

It is done. WVU is out of the Big East, and headed to the Big 12. An announcement will come today. WVMetronews with the details.
The settlement allows WVU to leave the Big East for the Big 12 on July 1, but WVU will have to pay the Big East $20 in damages.

WVU, however, will get half of that payment from the Big 12, sources say. $5 million will be a direct gift while the remaining $5 million will be returned to the Big 12 in future years by WVU taking a smaller payout from the league.

Friday, February 10, 2012

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WVU's New Football Foes

Now that it looks like WVU is heading to the Big 12 in 2012, what is the team's chances of second straight year to a BCS game? The Mountaineers should be able to integrate right in, and be competitive. But, where exactly do they stand? Let's take a quick look at the conference for 2012.

Baylor: No Robert Griffin III, not a lot of defense equals a rebuilding year for the Bears.

Iowa State: A bowl team from a year ago, questions at quarterback and defense will keep them midpack.

Kansas: Transition year for the Jayhawks as Charlie Weiss takes over the team. It will be interesting to see what he does at the quarterback position.

Kansas State: Quarterback Collin Klein is back, and so is much of the defense. Another solid season for the Wildcats is in the cards.

Oklahoma: Landry Jones and most of the offensive line are back, so scoring won't be a problem. Defensive needs to catch up.

Oklahoma State: Lost major keys parts on offense and defense, but should remain competitive with younger guys stepping in.

Texas: Too many questions for the offense entering the Spring to make them a true contender. Defense did step up last year, and helped the team stay in games.

TCU: The newcomer will have an explosive offense if the young line gives Casey Pachall time to throw. Will be a very competitive team right away.

Texas Tech: Plenty of talent, just a lack of execution over the last few years. Crucial year for Tommy Tuberville to get team to buy into system.

Yes, I'll miss the Big East...and I won't miss the Big East

What I'll Miss...Big East Championship at the Garden.

What I Won't Miss...The terrible yearly ESPN theme song for the Big East Championship.

What I'll Miss...Trips to New England, so I am within driving distance to see WVU.

What I Won't Miss...Trips to New England, so I don't have to see them lose some terrible game to UConn.

What I'll Miss...Beating Rutgers in football, every year.

What I Won't Miss...Losing to Syracuse in basketball, every year.

What I'll Miss...Being the perennial BCS favorite.

What I won't Miss...Failing to reach expectations nearly every year.

What I'll Miss...Skip Holtz in white.

What I won't Miss...Rick Pitino in white.

What I'll Miss...The Backyard Brawl.

What I Won't Miss...Playing DePaul in anything.

What I'll Miss...The Husband/Wife Rivalry (WVU/Cuse)

What I Won't Miss...The Husband/Wife Rivalry.

In all seriousness, the Big East was good to West Virginia. There are a lot of great memories...really too many to choose from. But, it's time to take the next step. Big 12, here we come.

Embrace Your New Big 12 Overlords!

A new chapter in WVU sports will start this fall. The school is on the way to the Big 12, following the news of an agreement made with the Big East to leave early.

The Big East will make about $20 million from the resolution, with WVU paying $11 million.

The source said the Big 12 would handle the remaining amount and the Mountaineers will enjoy full membership in that conference beginning July 1.

The source said WVU's early exit from the Big East is no longer conditional upon Boise State joining the Big East as a replacement in 2012.

So, as one chapter closes, another begins for WVU...a chapter that will take them west. Trips to the Northeast will be replaced with trips to Texas and the heartland of America. And, anyone not excited has something wrong with them.

The new rivals will be some of the most tradition-rich teams in college sports. Kansas is a basketball Mecca, Oklahoma is 8th all-time in football victories, Texas is 2nd all-time, and Oklahoma State ranks 4th all-time in National Championships for all sports.

That's just a little example of the tradition of winning the Big 12 has. WVU will jump in with every sport they have, and should be competitive in most. There is also word that Oliver Luck is looking to bring back a Men's Golf team. As for Men's Soccer (which the Big 12 doesn't have) look for a new home in Conference USA or the MAC. Rifle will also stay put.

These are exciting times for Mountaineer fans. The school is coming off an Orange Bowl win, both basketball teams are competitive, both soccer teams are strong, and the remaining Olympic sports should only get better with the move to the Big 12.

So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the transition to the big, bad Big 12.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Two Representing WVU at the NFL Combine

West Virginia will be represented by two former standouts at this year's NFL Combine. Najee Goode and Bruce Irvin will be in Indianapolis for the week-long scouting event. Both players join an impressive list of players looking to impress all 32 teams before the NFL Draft in April.

Goode had a solid final season at the inside linebacker position. He finished with 87 total tackles to lead the team. Goode also had five sacks, one interception, and a forced fumble. He has decent size, very good awareness, and solid tackling ability. He will certainly be looking to improve his speed, and show he can play in a base defense. CBS has him listed as a 7th round prospect.

Irvin is the sack specialist, who had his numbers drop a bit in his final season. However, most scouts will understand that he saw many more double teams this season than last. He still finished with 8.5 sacks and forced three fumbles. He also played many more snaps this season, totaling 40 tackles. Irvin has pure rushing ability, tremendous speed, and technique. Can he play DE in the league? Or is outside linebacker in his future? Look for Irvin to destroy some of the speed drills at the combine. CBS has Irvin as a 3rd-4th round prospect. If he has a good combine and pro day, he will go higher than that.

Snubs: Julian Miller and Keith Tandy both should have been invited. Miller had a productive career at DE for WVU. He is also projected to be a late-rounder. Meanwhile, Tandy didn't have the strongest final season, but does have a very good skill-set at CB, and is projected to be a mid-round pick.

Is the End Near?

It seems the end is undoubtedly near for WVU in the Big East. One of the big Mike Casazza nails it out of the park today, writing about the separation.

Casazza writes...

There's no way West Virginia dismisses Florida State unless the Mountaineers are absolutely certain they won't be a part of the Big East in 2012 and has a guarantee from the Big East. We could see that Thursday.

It could be that the two sides have already reached a proposed settlement and that they'll submit it to the judge that requested this hearing.

That judge will then agree or disagree with the proposal and make sure the terms are fair and equal for both sides and any third parties that may be involved and affected by the conclusion.

It seems that the biggest fact is the FSU angle. Casazza is right on the money with saying what he did about the FSU game. WVU would never sacrifice the game (and certainly the money they will have to give up) if they didn't have some clear indication the Big 12 is in their immediate future.

It would also be nice if WVU and FSU could clear this up quickly, so the story can be put out quickly. Casazza also points out that WVU could get away free, if FSU could find a comparable opponent.

No matter what happens, look for more news to break this week about the future.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

REPORT: Mike Smith Leaving WVU...Already

Mike Smith, who expected a defensive coaching position a few weeks back is headed back to the NFL...already. At least that's the word from Jeff Darlington of nfl.com, who tweeted about it earlier today. Darlington wrote...

Small note learned while reporting Welker feature: Mike Smith, who accepted a job with WVU, has decided to instead stay as OLB coach.

Smith had accepted the West Virginia ass't DC job, but Rex Ryan convinced him last week in Hawaii to stay with the Jets instead. Just fyi.

If true, WVU is now looking to fill two spaces once again. Most people believe that WVU must be targeting someone from the Giants or Patriots, considering the hiring process is taking forever, and now might have just reached a new level.

Nothing is official at this time, but Darlington seems pretty confident in his tweeting.

UPDATE: College Football Talk just tweeted that WVU has announced that Smith has gone back to the Jets.

Signing Day Musings

WVU signee, Jarrod Harper told the News-Tribune that the Mountaineers plan to alternate Pitt and Maryland in their schedule. At least, that's how the incoming safety perceived it from talks with the coaching staff. When reached for comment, WVU told the paper that there is no info regarding the future at this time. (Solid work by former colleague Mike Minnich)

Eric Kinsey is finally a Mountaineer. Though, it was a strange evening for WVU fans following his saga. The defensive end from Miami decided to wait to announce until last night, and then what followed can't really be explained in a few sentences. Go check out Geoff Coyle's Twitter Timeline...it basically explains the night.

Expect at least one or two guys to make an instant impact. The question is where? WVU had no true "need" spots, but depth was certainly added, and typically one or two first-years always get in the mix early. Look for JUCO transfer, Matt Glowinski to get in the mix early on the offensive line. He's a big kid, with two years of experience in. Tarvares Copeland and Deontay McManus could get early looks at the wideout position, and look for the young tailbacks to get right in the mix.

Damon Cogdell is the most important former player in Mountaineer history. Not from what he has done on the football field, but for what he has done as coach at Mirimar in Florida. Not only is he an outstanding coach, but he also has helped send a slew of incredible players to Morgantown. That list includes Geno Smith, Stedman Bailey, Ivan McCartney, Dante Chambers (no longer on the team), and Josh Taylor. You can now add Devonte Mathis to that list, who sent in his letter yesterday.

WVU gets an early jump on the 2013 class. It has been reported that highly-touted Ohio safety, Jayme Thompson has committed to WVU. Thompson has interest from numerous Big Ten schools and Notre Dame. Granted, a year is a long time to hold a commitment, and you certainly couldn't kill the kid if he wavers at some point, but not a bad way to start a recruiting season.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Video of Travares Copeland Choosing WVU

According to rivals.com the athlete Copeland is a 3-star recruit.

National Signing Day Tracker

Already Enrolled:

Ford Childress, QB, Houston, TX (3-star): Profile
Karl Joseph, S, Orlando, FL (3-star): Profile
Jordan Thompson, WR, Katy, TX (2-star): Profile
Imarjaye Adbury, DT, Miami , FL (3-star): Profile
Sean Walters, S, Hallandale Beach, FL (3-star): Profile

Signed LOI

Korey Harris, DL, Fruit Cove, FL (3-star): Profile
Christian Brown, DL, Bridgeton, NJ (3-star): Profile
Jarrod Harper, S, Frostberg, MD (2-star): Profile
Nana Kyeremeh, DB, Worthington, OH (3-star): Profile
Tyler Orlosky, OG, Lakewood, OH (3-star): Profile
Brandon Napoleon, ATH, Jersey City, NJ (3-star): Profile
Tony Matteo, OC, Akron, OH (3-star): Profile
Devonte Robinson, WR, Delray Beach, FL (3-star): Profile
Sam Lebbie, LB, Hyattsville, MD (3-star): Profile
Will Johnson, TE/WR, Osseo, MN (3-star): Profile
Garrett Hope, LB, The Woodlands, TX (3-star): Profile
Torry Clayton, RB, Homestead, FL (3-star): Profile
Noble Nwachukwu, DE, Wylie, TX (3-star): Profile
Roshard Burney, RB, Palm Beach Gardens, FL (3-star): Profile
Mark Glowinski, OL, Lackawanna College (3-star): Profile
Deontay McManus, WR, Baltimore, MD (4-star): Profile
KJ Dillon, S, Apopka, FL (3-star): Profile
Adam Pankey, OL, Hamilton, OH (3-star): Profile
Darreal Joyner, WR, Miami, FL (3-star): Profile
Devonte Mathis, WR, Miramar, FL (3-star): Profile
Travares Copeland, WR, Port St. Lucie, FL (3-star): Profile
Eric Kinsey, DE, Miami, FL (3-star): Profile

stars based on rivals.com ratings