HD Media sports columnist Chuck Landon offers his grades for WVU’s 27-21 double-overtime win over Baylor.
OFFENSE: D – It was a mess. Quarterback Jarret Doege committed three turnovers – two interceptions and a fumble – and struggled all day. Eight receivers caught passes, but the longest reception was only 14 yards. Running back Leddie Brown ran hard, as usual, and was one of the few offensive bright spots.
Then, there’s the offensive line. It was a mess for the second consecutive week. Missing offensive guard James Gmiter (COVID positive) certainly didn’t help. Neither did having to play true freshman Zach Frazier (guard) and redshirt freshman Brandon Yates (tackle) together on the left side. They each logged penalties.
WVU converted only five of 18 third-down situations.
DEFENSE: A – It made a bear rug out of Baylor. The Bears average rush was for 0.8 yards – 28 yards on 33 carries. That’s amazing. Middle linebacker Tony Fields had 10 tackles, including five solo stops; two tackles for loss, including a sack; two quarterback hurries and one pass break-up. Now, that’s a day’s work.
So, is this. Senior nose tackle Darius Stills was a force Baylor couldn’t reckon with. Still had 3.5 tackles for loss, including 2.5 sacks. What couldn’t be measured, however, was the constant disruption he created.
The defense played lights out.
SPECIAL TEAMS: C – Bryce Ford-Wheaton’s inexplicable choice to run over WVU punt returner Alec Sinkfield and cause a fumble that Baylor recovered at WVU’s 27-yard line was mind-boggling.
COACHING: C- – The defensive coaches knocked it out of the park. The offensive coaches tried to bunt on strike three and went down swinging. The difference between the two units was that immense – Grand Canyon big. Right now, WVU has to win with defense.
OVERALL: C- – Thank goodness, the Mountaineers have a bye week.