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West Virginia Mountaineers 2014 Season Preview - NCAAF - Big 12

Category: NCAAF Tags: Big 12 West Virginia NCAAF Preview Comments: 0
West Virginia Mountaineers 2014 Season Preview - NCAAF - Big 12 - 5/22/2014 Free NCAAF Analysis

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2013 Record: 4-8 (2-7)

Bowl Result: No 2013 Bowl Game

Offensive Returning Starters: 7
Defensive Returning Starters: 7

Reasons to be Optimistic

The move to the Big 12 has not been great for the Mountaineers on the field in terms of wins and losses, but it was their best decision in terms of finances, exposure, and attractive matchups for the foreseeable future. If it wasn't for this move a couple seasons back West Virginia would be stuck in a similar situation to teams like UConn and Cincinnati, and any Mountaineer fan should be happy about their fate as a result.

Senior QB Clint Trickett returns for another season, but he didn't inspire much confidence in his time on the field in 2013. At least West Virginia will have an experienced guy under center that they can call upon.

The offense should be better with offensive threats like Mario Alford, Daikiel Shorts, and Kevin White coming back with experience.

Running back Charles Sims has moved on, but it appears his heir apparent is set with Dreamius Smith ready to take on a larger role.

Reasons to be Pessimistic

West Virginia has won just 4 of their last 16 conference games and it will be an uphill battle for wins again this season for the Mountaineers in a very tough conference.

The offensive line loses its starting tackles and center and it is still to be seen how effective this unit will be as a result.

Defense has been a big issue for West Virginia and they have to improve on their 100th scoring defense if they are going to stay competitive more often in conference play. The defense returns the majority of their starters so perhaps experience will help this unit in 2014.

Prediction: I wouldn't be surprised to see West Virginia have a very similar season to what they in 2013. Tough opening game for the Mountaineers as they face Alabama on a neutral site. This contest against the Crimson Tide could do more harm than good for the psyche of this squad.

Record: 4-8 (2-7)

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