As spring practices get underway for West Virginia football this week, head coach Neal Brown wants to work on making his team a more resilient group.
“In the last two years, I don’t think we’ve responded to adversity in an elite manner,” Brown said after the team’s first practice on Wednesday. “We need to be able to do that in order to improve where we’re at in our league right now.”
The Mountaineers are 11-11 in Brown’s first two seasons leading the team, but just 7-10 in Big 12 conference play. WVU finished seventh in the conference in 2019 and improved to a fifth-place finish last season.
By focusing on how the team responds to adversity, Brown said he is hoping to improve how players perform at the end of games.
“Having to think when you’re tired. That’s exactly what I’m thinking about,” Brown said. “We have not executed as well as we’ve needed to in critical situations when we’ve been fatigued and we’ve not held our emotions in check as well as we need to.”
Brown said working on adversity this spring will result in tougher practices designed to tire players out more.
“You put them out there and you challenge them,” Brown explained. “You create the adversity by making the practices hard…The only way to practice that is you continuously put people in [those situations].”
West Virginia’s spring schedule continues this weekend with practices set for Saturday as well as on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday of next week.