The Times West Virginian

Bob Herzel

October 2, 2009

Running game lifts WVU over Buffs, despite turnovers

MORGANTOWN — A fumbling, disjointed West Virginia University football team turned to Noel Devine and its running game in the second half to pull out a 35-24 victory over a stubborn Colorado team before a sellout crowd of 60,055 fans Thursday night.

The Mountaineers overcame four first-half turnovers, giving them 13 in the last three games, and a number of costly penalties and missed receivers, but none of it mattered as Devine had one of his finest games.

He electrified the crowd with his first carry, a 77-yard touchdown burst, added another 56-yard run and finished with 220 yards on 22 carries.

But it wasn’t until the Mountaineers put away the passing game and the trick plays and went to old-fashioned, grind-it-out football with a 14-play, 69-yard drive that ate up 6 minutes and 45 seconds that WVU’s dominance was emphasized.

Thirteen of the 14 plays were runs, the only pass being a near disaster on an incompletion, ending with Ryan Clarke bursting into the end zone from a yard out.

“I haven’t seen a drive like that in a long time at West Virginia,” said coach Bill Stewart.

The Mountaineers decided to go to the power running game when they were leading, 21-17, late in the third quarter.

“We told the offensive line we’re hanging our hats on you guys,” offensive coordinator Jeff Mullen said.

The line was Devine, so to speak.

If you were looking for a relaxing evening, Milan Puskar Stadium was not the place to be. A wired crowd, dressed in gold, was treated to non-stop action from the start.

Colorado took the opening kickoff and drove down the field to the WVU 23 before the drive stalled. That led them to call on Aric Goodman, a familiar face to the Mountaineers, who has had a star-crossed career in Boulder.

Text Only
Bob Herzel
  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Watson tees off a new century at The Greenbrier

    You knew this was going to be one of those unpredictable, memorable days when you drove into the Greenbrier Resort and headed to the Old White Golf Course and found the best parking place in the joint.
    As Bob Uecker would say, right there in the front rooooow.

    April 20, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Under pressure, NCAA decides to change rules

    At first glance, it appears that they do not go hand-in-hand, a pair of rules changes the NCAA’s Legislative Council approved this week, sending them off for what seems to be smooth sailing toward becoming rules.

    April 18, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU gymnast hopes to stick her final landing

    The reaction, one suspects, was the same as most people who see either a picture of West Virginia University gymnast Hope Sloanhoffer or meet her for the first time in person — a quick double take, maybe even stumbling over the first few words of an introduction.

    April 17, 2014

  • Bussie looks forward to WNBA

    On Tuesday, the weather turned cold, the wind blew and amongst the raindrops that fell a few snowflakes fluttered quietly to Earth.
    It was as if it was a celebration of Asya Bussie being drafted on Monday night by the Minnesota Lynx, champions of the WNBA, with the third selection of the second round, the 15th overall pick of the draft.

    April 16, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Jackie Robinson’s impact extends beyond baseball

    It is Jackie Robinson Day as I sit here writing this today, and I feel as though I am doing it in a world gone mad.
    Every player in Major League Baseball wore No. 42 on Tuesday in honor of Jackie Robinson, the man who took racism’s best shot and integrated the game that was known then as the National Pastime even though it was as white a Ku Klux Klan robe.

    April 16, 2014

  • Gyorko, Padres agree to extension

    Jedd Gyorko, who hasn’t hit much of anything with a .178 start on this season, hit the jackpot on Monday, signing a six-year contract extension with the San Diego Padres for $35 million with a one-year club option at $13 million.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Spring game showed defense has improved

    From Dana Holgorsen’s viewpoint, which was standing right behind the offense, West Virginia’s Gold-Blue Spring Game on Saturday was a rousing success for it showed very little of what the Mountaineers will be in this coming season, probably not even showcasing the man who will direct the offense in the quarterback position.

    April 15, 2014

  • WVU signs guard; Adrian arrested for DUI

    There was something good and something bad for West Virginia men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins this past weekend as Kansas junior college player Tarik Phillip committed to play for the Mountaineers but rising sophomore Nathan Adrian was charged with Under 21 DUI after he was stopped at 1:20 a.m. Sunday for an expired registration sticker.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Garrison still proving he can carry the ball

    The running back raves from the West Virginia coaching this spring have been directly mostly toward Wendell Smallwood, and rest assured he earned every one of them with his versatility, but it was a reborn running back who well may have taken the biggest jump up the depth chart.

    April 14, 2014

  • WVU baseball drops seventh straight game

    One’s athletic skills are tested on a daily basis but every so often other aspects of an athlete’s makeup are tested, often far more important aspects in the game of life.

    April 14, 2014

House Ads
Featured Ads