The officials didn’t cost the Mountaineers the win. Were there some bad calls Saturday, yes. Did those calls cost WVU the win, no. The OPI call was one of the worst calls the Big 12 refs have whistled in the five years WVU has been apart of the league. The overturned interception was a closer call, was called an interception on the field and then overturned. However, as bad as both of those were, that didn’t cost the Mountaineers the win.
The deciding factors on losing on Game Day to a top 10 team on the road came down to the following.
The first was Special Teams, a missed FG and a miscue on a punt return was a ten point swing. Marcus Sims called for a fair catch and gets a man blocked into him resulting in a fumble. TCU proceeds to put 7 points on the board after being given the ball in great field position. WVU later got one of its two penalties on the day on a kickoff for kicking the day out of bounds. The other side of Special Teams that was hard to overcome, Adam Nunez the punter for TCU found the golden horseshoe on Saturday. He ended the day with 7 punts for over 300 yards, an average of 43 yards a punt, that also included placing 3 punts inside the five yard line. WVU’s punters showed 5 punts for 199 yards, an average of 39.8 with no punts inside the 20. The o
Secondly, if you want to win against a Gary Patterson team ranked in the top 10 on the road you have to hold onto the ball. The turnover margin was lost by the Mountaineers 2-0. It could have been worse as the offense was able to recover 2 of their own fumbles. The Grier interception was the result of throwing into coverage and the receiver stopping his route.
The third factor was missed tackles on Kenny Hill, both on his game winning TD run and his TD catch. The DAWGS had the boundary contained on the TD run, however couldn’t bring Hill down. The throw back pass to Hill was set up nicely by the Horned Frogs, the defense crashed the motion man and after the first missed tackle great blocking lead Hill to the endzone.
The last factor was the offense’s inability to finish drives. The Offense put up over 500 yards of offense and almost doubles the Horned Frogs on first downs. However, those total’s should have been higher if not for dropped passes. Late in the game the receivers were gassed, on a few plays they barely got lined up before the ball was snapped.
The Mountaineers have to correct the mistakes as another Top 25 awaits this week with the Red Raiders coming to Morgantown for a high noon shootout.