With so much on the line, it was important for WVU to start their final trip to Oklahoma for a Big 12 Conference game hot. And on a bit of a chilly fall night, the Mountaineers opened up the game against Oklahoma red hot. But that offensive heat would soon cool and the rest of the game would be a much different story.
West Virginia’s offense was able to do whatever it wanted on the opening possession, a possession that ended up with CJ Donaldson getting away from a defender to walk into the end zone. As many predicted, the Sooners would have just as easy of a time against the WVU defense and quickly responded with a score of their own.
To no surprise, points were at a premium all night long, at least for one team.
Oklahoma could have blown WVU out without ever throwing a pass.
— Mike J. Asti (@MikeAsti11) November 12, 2023
And in a blink of an eye, the game was all tied up at 7. The question then became which defense would step up first. The answer to that question was Oklahoma, which then led to the OU offense moving the ball with ease once again. After miss firing on a couple pass attempts, Dillon Gabriel kept the ball himself and ran it in to give the Sooners a 14-7 advantage.
But momentum can switch at any moment, and jumped to the Mountaineers when WVU grabbed a fumble and handed the ball right back to the offense. Unfortunately for WVU, Garrett Greene and company couldn’t get much going and Michael Hayes missed a long field goal left. The score would stay 14-7 after squandering the turnover.
Despite getting gashed most of the first half, West Virginia’s defense did hold Oklahoma to only a field goal as the second quarter started with the scoreboard reading 17-7.
A failed fourth down attempt by the Mountaineers allowed Gabriel and the Sooners to continue running all over the field. The beat down would move to 24-7 mid way through the second quarter. Add a Gabriel to Jayden Gibson connection for 32 yards and WVU found themselves looking up at a 31-7 game and wondering when the bleeding would stop.
And just when it seemed like the Mountaineers would finally get back in the end zone, Oklahoma’s defense did something they rarely do – step up. OU’s goal line stand served as a back breaker and sucked more life out of WVU.
West Virginia was not dead yet. Greene found tight end Kole Taylor and WVU scored an absolutely necessary touchdown to stay somewhat in the game. It was 31-14 in favor of Oklahoma at half time.
Initially, the second half started with Oklahoma still on fire and adding another touchdown. Greene would throw his second touchdown pass of the game to answer and make the score 38-20 after a failed two-point try.
Fast forward past several more scores for the Sooners and tensions boiled up with the scoreboard showing 52-20. Anthony Wilson stood over Oklahoma receiver Drake Stoops after he caught a touchdown. That led to small brawl as the lights turned off, just as they do to celebrate every Oklahoma touchdown.
There was still be another seven minutes left in the game, none of it would really matter. The outcome was decided long ago. Oklahoma finished the night winning 59-20.
The loss drops WVU’s record to 6-4 (4-3) and puts pressure on Neal Brown to end the season strong. West Virginia will return to Morgantown to close their home season next week against Cincinnati.
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