NCAA FB

Sat, Nov 3, 2012 - 3:00 PM ET
Game Preview
 

TCU-West Virginia Preview

Share This Story

   
 

Since putting up eye-popping numbers in their first five games, Geno Smith and the rest of West Virginia's offense have looked very pedestrian.

The Mountaineers' inability to contain their opponents remains a concern.

Hoping to have worked out its kinks during a bye week, No. 23 West Virginia tries to get back on track Saturday against fellow Big 12 newcomer TCU, which appears likely to have quarterback Trevone Boykin available as it visits Morgantown for the first time.

While the Mountaineers (5-2, 2-2) averaged 52.0 points in opening 5-0, they haven't been able to get much going in back-to-back losses. One week after falling 49-14 at Texas Tech, West Virginia suffered a 55-14 home defeat at the hands of then-No. 4 Kansas State on Oct. 20.

"This is about as low as it gets," said Smith, who threw his first two interceptions of the season.

The bye week, though, appears to have come at just the right time for West Virginia, giving the Mountaineers a chance to regroup.

"It's like everything in life," offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson said. "There's going to be good days and bad days. So we have to stay positive and just keep forging ahead. That's the only way you work yourself out of a rut."

Getting Smith going again figures to be the first priority for West Virginia. After averaging 399.2 yards and totaling 24 touchdown passes in his first five games, the Heisman Trophy hopeful has averaged 209.0 with a combined two scoring strikes in his last two.

"If he thinks that all this falls on his shoulders, he's sadly mistaken," coach Dana Holgorsen said. "He needs to relax a little bit and not bear that burden. That's not his job. We're going to get him back on track from the standpoint of just worrying what he needs to control."

The Mountaineers also need to pick up the pace defensively. West Virginia is giving up averages of 39.9 points and 493.6 yards to rank seventh-worst in the FBS in both categories.

"Nobody's pointing fingers anywhere," Holgorsen said. "We all understand that we have to continue to as coaches put them in position to be successful, teach them how their technique is, teach them how they make the plays, build confidence in them to where they can do it, and then get out there and work hard on it."

While it wasn't certain if the Mountaineers would have to face Boykin this weekend, the redshirt freshman is likely to play despite suffering a left knee injury during last Saturday's 36-14 loss at Oklahoma State. Boykin, who took over under center with Casey Pachall suspended indefinitely, dropped to 1-3 as a starter, completing just 21 of 40 passes for 185 yards with a touchdown and an interception against the Cowboys.

"We had our chances and we were in the ball game," said coach Gary Patterson, whose team was outscored 33-0 over the final three quarters. "We only scored one (offensive) touchdown, and that's not good enough to win in the Big 12."

Hoping to avoid losing three in a row for the first time since a four-game skid in 1998, TCU (5-3, 2-3) knows it faces another tough task against the Mountaineers.

"It's a big ballgame going into West Virginia. Both of us came into the Big 12 this year and are on the same path. We understand what we have to do," Patterson said. "We have to get ready to play. It's a great venue in Morgantown, and they have great fans and some really good players."

The Horned Frogs had posted four straight wins over Top 25 foes before falling 56-53 to then-No. 18 Texas Tech in triple overtime Oct. 20.

West Virginia hasn't suffered consecutive defeats on its own field since losing its first two home games in 2003.

The Mountaineers took the only previous matchup in this series, winning 31-14 in the 1984 Bluebonnet Bowl.

Tagged: Virginia, West Virginia, Texas Christian, Geno Smith, Trevone Boykin

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

College Football Pick'em on FOX


NCAA FB Videos

Sumlin annoyed by media's Manziel questions Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Kevin Sumlin responds to questions about life after Johnny Football by toying wi...

AJ Pasquale's journey back to UCLA Posted: Jun 17, 2014
UCLA football ops intern AJ Pasquale describes his own personal journey after th...

Winston issued adult civil citation Posted: Apr 30, 2014
Get the latest news surrounding Jameis Winston's recent shoplifting fiasco.

Get Inside the Locker Room with Scout.com

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Florida_Gators/browse/featuredproduct/759777/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_759000/ff_759777_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Michigan_State_Spartans/browse/featuredproduct/760171/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_760000/ff_760171_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White
    Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_USC_Trojans/browse/featuredproduct/761373/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_761000/ff_761373_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/829709/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829709_xl.jpg&w=100 64.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimso..
    Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_LSU_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/829740/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829740_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple
    Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_Sooners/browse/featuredproduct/830935/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_830000/ff_830935_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson
    adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Notre_Dame_Fighting_Irish/browse/featuredproduct/861243/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861243_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue
    adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Nebraska_Cornhuskers/browse/featuredproduct/861247/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861247_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapback Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1087345/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1087000/ff_1087345_xl.jpg&w=100 29.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapba..
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1093431/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1093000/ff_1093431_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash