MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – On a day about honoring the past as well as the present of WVU football, the Mountaineers met Cincinnati in a matchup of a potential new Big 12 rivalry.
But the game would end with only one side happy about the future prospects of the game.
After a solid return on the opening kickoff and an 11-yard run by Jahiem White, West Virginia appeared to be in business early. A couple stops by the Bearcats and a missed field goal by Michael Hayes and the Mountaineers would lose momentum.
Fortunately for WVU, that would not be a sign of things to come and Neal Brown’s team would reclaim momentum for good. The Mountaineers finally saw pay dirt and put points on the board thanks to a drive filled with large chunks on the ground from White, CJ Donaldson and even Garrett Greene keeping the ball himself.
The scoring play occurred off of a fourth down attempt. Greene went right up the middle and sprinted in for the short touchdown.
West Virginia then started the second quarter on the heels of immortalizing Don Nehlen’s name on a stadium wall with a play the legendary coach had to enjoy. White caught a pass from Greene and then took it 75 yards to the house. Next time Nehlen and company looked at the scoreboard after seeing his name unveiled on the stadium wall, they saw the Mountaineers up 14-0.
Donaldson joins the fun, getting to the outside and running 13 yards for WVU’s third straight touchdown. With the score 21-0 in the middle of the second quarter, the home crowd was enjoying their last look at the Mountaineers in person this year.
Cincinnati finally got on the board, but it was Greene with the last laugh of the half for the Mountaineers. He joined the West Virginia scoring party with a 26-yard touchdown run of his own, making it 28-7 in favor of WVU.
West Virginia then picked up right where they left off in the first half with another Greene scramble into the end zone, his third rushing touchdown of the game. The score moved further out of reach to 35-7.
Greene surpasses over 100 yards on the ground and 200 through the air. White also adds 100+ of his own and a score to push the lead to 42-7. This was all only through the third quarter too.
Even though the offensive fire power calmed down in the fourth quarter, the damage was already done. Cincinnati would wake up a little with the game already decided, but West Virginia won the game 42-21, taking a 1-0 lead in their new series with Cincinnati.
As for if this matchup becomes a rivalry, it may have to be more competitive to ever get there.
The Mountaineers have now clinched a winning record, moving their record to 7-4 (5-3) with a trip to Waco, Texas on deck to close the regular season.
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