Here are five things Texas fans need to know about West Virginia before Saturday’s game:
Return of JT Daniels
West Virginia quarterback JT Daniels will be making his first appearance at DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium since 2018 on Saturday. Daniels was at USC for the 2018 and 2019 seasons before transferring to Georgia. West Virginia is Daniels’ third stop in his collegiate career. Back in 2018, Daniels threw for 322 yards passing and one interception in USC’s 37-14 loss to then-No. 9 Texas.
West Virginia is coming off of a huge 33-10 win against Virginia Tech. The Mountaineers are keeping the Black Diamond Trophy for another year after dominating the Hokies in Blacksburg. While Virginia Tech is not a ranked team, West Virginia’s win over a rival in a tough road environment could help prepare them for Saturday in Austin.
West Virginia defensive lineman Dante Stills opted to use his fifth year of eligibility, despite expectations of entering the NFL draft this past spring. Stills was awarded All Big-12 First Team honors in 2021 after registering 36 tackles and 7 sacks. He’s one of the best defenders in the conference and is right on track for a similar production level this season. Stills currently has 9 tackles, 2.5 sacks and 1 forced fumble.
West Virginia offensive coordinator Graham Harrell is largely associated with Mike Leach’s air raid offense, but the former Texas Tech quarterback runs a more balanced offense in Morgantown. Tight end CJ Donaldson and running back Tony Mathis have been keys to the Mountaineers’ run game this season. Meanwhile, the connection between Daniels and wide receiver Bryce Ford-Wheaton has been pretty consistent so far. Ford-Wheaton has already caught four touchdowns so far in 2022.
Regarding time of possession, the Mountaineers average 33 minutes and 40 seconds per game. Their opponents up to this point average 26 minutes and 20 seconds. Texas’ average time of possession is even less than that, clocking in at 25 minutes and 46 seconds. The Longhorns could be in trouble again if they are unable to hold onto the ball.
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