West Virginia 34, Syracuse 13

West Virginia 34, Syracuse 13

Published Oct. 10, 2009 8:43 p.m. ET

West Virginia (4-1, 1-0 Big East) has won eight straight in the series.

Jarrett Brown had a superb first half, going 14 for 18 for 179 yards in leading the Mountaineers to a 27-0 lead. He finished 22 of 30 for 244 yards before departing early in the fourth quarter.

Greg Paulus had his worst game of the season for Syracuse (2-4, 0-2), giving way to backup Ryan Nassib to start the second half. Paulus was 5 of 9 for 30 yards and one interception.

Devine, who entered the game averaging 135 yards rushing, gained 91 yards on 22 carries.


Nassib was 7 of 16 for 120 yards and threw two touchdown passes, a 50-yarder to Mike Williams in the third quarter and a 24-yarder to Marcus Sales in the fourth. The TD catch tied Williams with Marvin Harrison for second all-time at Syracuse with 20, two behind Rob Moore.

With scouts from five NFL teams looking on, Paulus faltered badly. A week ago, South Florida scored four touchdowns off seven Syracuse turnovers in a 34-20 win, and the Orange continued to turn the ball over.

Paulus had been intercepted five times by the Bulls, including a critical one that defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul returned for a TD. Against the Mountaineers, he threw an interception on his second attempt. He rolled right on a third-and-2 play from the West Virginia 30, then threw back across the field into the arms of 272-pound nose tackle Josh Taylor, who caught it and then fumbled.

Linebacker Pat Lazear quickly snatched the ball near the 40 and raced down the right sideline before being forced out of bounds at the Syracuse 11. Devine scored on a screen pass on the next play.

The Orange received boos as they headed for the locker room. They punted four times, registered just three first downs, and were outgained 218-77 in the first half.

Williams was thrown to only once, with 6:04 left in the second quarter. He entered the game averaging 124 yards and eight catches a game and finished with four catches for 89 yards.