Texas Football vs West Virginia: Week 11 Schedule, Preview, and Prediction
Texas football enters Week 11 on a hot streak. After winning three of their last four, the Longhorns (5-4, 3-3 Big 12) are just one win away from becoming bowl eligible. This week, they face No. 16 West Virginia (7-1, 4-1) in another stiff test at DKR.
Where to Watch
Saturday, November 12, 11:00 AM CST, FS1
What to Watch For
West Virginia has been a bit of a surprise team in the Big 12 this year. They are currently in second place in the conference standings, one game back of Oklahoma. The Mountaineers are also the only other team rather than the Sooners with any real shot at making the College Football Playoff from the Big 12 this season.
They have found success in 2016 using good balance between an efficient offense and a tough defense. They are currently No. 4 in the Big 12 in total offense, averaging 510.8 yards per game, and No. 2 in total defense, allowing 394.0 yards. Skyler Howard has been excellent under center, throwing for 2,293 yards and 16 touchdowns against six interceptions. The Mountaineers are the No. 3 rushing team in the conference behind Justin Crawford and Rushel Shell. These two have combined for 1,090 yards and nine rushing touchdowns as the No. 7 and No. 8 runners in the conference.
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Defensively, West Virginia has been solid against both the run and the pass and has stifled some of the more prolific offenses in the conference. Against Texas Tech, the Mountaineers limited the No. 1 scoring offense in the conference to just 17 points in a 48-17 victory. Rasul Douglas has been the Big 12’s best ball hawk this season, posting a conference high five interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown.
The Mountaineers have found success through their balance. They can run the ball, throw it over the top, and play stiff defense on the other side. That makes them a difficult matchup since they are winning on so many levels. That makes them a particular challenge for the Longhorns in this one.
Keys to Victory
- Feed D’Onta Foreman – The Texas offense has run through Foreman this season and this game should not be any different. West Virginia is one of the better defenses that Foreman and the Texas running game will face this season, but there should be room to run between the tackles. The Horns will need to be patient and continue pounding the ball with the running attack.
- Find Offensive Balance – Last week, Shane Buechele and the passing attack had their struggles. To beat West Virginia, Texas will need better balance offensively. When the Mountaineers inevitably stack the box to stop Foreman and the running game, Buechele has to take advantage by beating the defense over the top with the pass.
- Create Turnovers – As always, it will be important for Texas to win the turnover battle. Against a solid team like West Virginia, creating short fields and quick score opportunities will play a huge factor in the outcome of this one. If Texas can force turnovers and set up their offense, they’ll be in position to secure another upset win.
Texas is undefeated at home this season and has already beating two top 15 teams in DKR. West Virginia, however, may be the most “for real” ranked team to come to Austin in 2016. The Longhorns come into the game as two-point favorites and will need to play their most complete game of the season to win this one.
Texas 31, West Virginia 27
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