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WVU Falls 9 Spots in ESPN’s SP+ Prediction, 2nd Worst Team in Big12



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West Virginia football has gotten worse over the past few months according to ESPN’s Bill Connelly, who has them falling nine total spots and the second-worst Big12 team in ESPN’s latest SP+ predictions. The website describes SP+ as, “a predictive measure of the most sustainable and predictable aspects of football, not a resume ranking, and, along those same lines, these projections aren’t intended to be a guess at what the AP Top 25 will look like at the end of the year.”

West Virginia has fallen nine spots from No. 66 to No. 75 since the first SP+ prediction was released in February. That nine spot drop is tied with Georgia Southern, Houston and Stanford for the sixth largest drop. They are behind Wyoming (-19), James Madison (-17), UTSA (-12), Arizona State (-11) and Baylor (-10).

The SP+ projections play heavily into returning and incoming talent, so West Virginia’s drop on the midst of losing 19 players to the transfer portal, the most in the Big12, shouldn’t come into a shock. Add in that 247Sports has West Virginia with a mid-tier class ranking of 39th in the country with only one four-star recruit in quarterback Nicco Marchiol, who is unlikely to see playing time this season, and the SP+ ranking makes sense.

As for the rest of the Big12, West Virginia is only placed higher than Kansas (No. 109). The rest of the Big12 rounds out with Oklahoma (No. 5) at the top followed by Texas (No. 31), Oklahoma State (No. 32), Kansas State (No. 38), Baylor (No. 40), TCU (No. 45), Texas Tech (No. 48) and Iowa State (No. 58).

West Virginia’s two non-conference FBS opponents this season are both placed higher as well with Pittsburgh coming in at No. 19 and Virginia Tech slotting in at No. 61.

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