MORGANTOWN, W.Va – West Virginia head coach brought with him some positive news for his team moving forward.
Running back Tony Mathis, who has missed back-to-back games, will return to the field this Saturday against Oklahoma. Mathis’ absence wasn’t made official until the day before the game in Ames, Iowa.
Being without Mathis left WVU with Justin Johnson Jr. as the team’s top running back option. While Brown acknowledged Johnson played well, having Mathis back will obviously offer a necessary boost for a struggling offense.
Mathis missed the TCU game after suffering an injury the week earlier in a loss to Texas Tech. Donaldson was able to step up with an increase in carries due to Mathis’ absence. Unfortunately for the Mountaineers, Donaldson left the game twice and now is done for the year. Donaldson finished with 104 rushing yards for an average of 5.5 per touch.
On 99 carries so far this season, Mathis has totaled 492 yards and 5 touchdowns for an average of exactly 5 yards per carry. Already without Donaldson, Mathis missing the game will mean a larger workload for Justin Johnson Jr., who ran for 36 yards on 10 carries during the TCU game and has 285 yards and 3 touchdowns to this point in 2022 as either the third or second option depending on the week.
Mathis was named Big 12 Co-Offensive Player of the Week in his last outing for his 163-yard performable in a win over Baylor.