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2013 West Virginia Mountaineers Gambling Odds | Predictions

2013 Football Previews – Big 12 – Mountaineers

The departure of longtime starting QB Geno Smith signals the departure of a gifted passer and a gifted athlete who put up some mind-numbing statistics. Moreover, it’s not just Smith who says goodbye to Morgantown for the greener pastures of the NFL.

Big 12 Conference 2013 College Football Previews: West Virginia Mountaineers (Team Link)
Head Coach: Dana Holgorsen
2012 Record: 6-6
West Virginia Gambling Odds to win BCS Championship: 300-1
West Virginia Gambling Odds to win Big 12: 25-1

Receivers Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey broke most of the pass-catching records at WVU, and the Mountaineers also must replace them. It could be a tough slog without a designated offensive leader to spur the charge.

Still, WVU has plenty of options to explore. Three interesting candidates are vying for the starting QB position, including junior Paul Millard, redshirt frosh Ford Childress and Florida State transfer (and Morgantown native) Clint Trickett.

The running backs, at least, will be just fine with returning junior Andrew Buie to join Dreamius Smith and underclassman Dustin Garrison.

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The Mountaineers will struggle to find players to do Austin and Bailey’s job; sophomore WR K.J. Myers probably is the best equipped to do so. Junior college transfer Kevin White also brings some explosiveness from Lackawanna College in New York state. The offensive line returns only one starter, though guard Mark Glowinski could emerge.

The defense returns a bunch of starters, but that doesn’t inspire tremendous confidence, because West Virginia’s defense was positively vile last season. The notoriously crappy “D” finished in the bottom five per cent in the FBS in scoring defense, passing defense and total defense in 2012. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

A bunch of position coaches were fired near the end of last season, and 2013 should see West Virginia adjust to new schemes and start to employ more speed and aggression on that side of the ball. The top candidates to elevate their game are LB Isaiah Bruce and safeties Karl Joseph and Darwin Cook.

On special teams, top kickers and punters and the top return men are gone. Needless to say, it will be a wholesale rebuild in this aspect of the game as well.

The Mountaineers saw perennial success when they played in the now-defunct Big East Conference.

The migration to the Big 12 – in addition to making little geographic sense – has been rather humbling for the Mountain Men after a 6-6 maiden voyage (too many vague Deliverance references here? Sorry!)

Coach Holgorsen must re-build this program in a hurry, if job security is something he values. As is often the case at West Virginia, there is plenty of speed on the roster to utilize – it’s more a case of delivering the motivation and game planning for these fresh faces to yield improvement.

For the first time since 2002, West Virginia might not see postseason football this year.

Mountaineers 2013 Schedule

8/31/13 12:00 PM ET WILMA
9/7/13 7:00 PM ET @OKLA
9/14/13 12:00 PM ET GSU
9/21/13 TBD @MD
9/28/13 TBD OKST
10/5/13 TBD @BAY
10/19/13 TBD TTU
10/26/13 TBD @KSU
11/2/13 TBD @TCU
11/9/13 TBD TEX
11/16/13 TBD @KU
11/29/13 TBD ISU

Click here to check out MORE 2013 college football previews for the NCAA Football Season!

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