WVU either did all the right things in the obscure practice inside the team hotel Wednesday or said all the right things afterward. Whatever the case, the Mountaineers seemed unfazed by the situation, though it is raining today.
The ceiling was high enough to throw all the passes in the playbook and rediscover the timing that was lost during the break. The room was big enough — “slightly smaller than our indoor facility,” according to Dana Holgorsen — to break off into groups and go through a full practice script.
“It was kind of neat, actually,” quarterback Geno Smith said.
And not one light bulb was damaged through the 90-minute practice.
“Not that I know of,” Smith said. “I’m pretty sure if we did, we wouldn’t tell anybody. You probably have to pay for that.”
I’m not sure this was an act. I said this yesterday, but and then WVU said it when we met with the players and the coaches at a bowl function at Yankee Stadium later in the day, but teams do the heavy lifting on campus and prefer to refine and polish during on-site practices.
Now, this may sound no different to you than the calamity before the 2010 practice, but this is different. For one, WVU didn’t max out the on-campus opportunities then and then got to Orlando and didn’t practice, at all, the first two days, before practicing twice in the wind, which led to no special teams work, and then nixing a walkthrough the day before the game.
WVU maxed out the on-campus opportunities this season and has two more days to get something done here … after making chicken salad yesterday.
I think it’s a greater issue if WVU can’t hit today and can’t go over special teams stuff today, but I’d imagine if the weather outside remains frightful, the Mountaineers will go inside at Hofstra.
Last night, though, that was not the concern and WVU instead defended and actually seemed to prefer what had happened.
“A long time ago, I was a track coach and we did all our preparation 10 days prior to the state track meet and we did absolutely nothing the week of the meet except go out and break a sweat,” said defensive coordinator Keith Patterson, who said he waited about 12 hours on a plane because of weather in Dallas Tuesday to fly four hours and eventually join the team early Wednesday morning.
“It’s all about peaking at the right time. We went really hard through the course of last week. We went extremely hard and practiced at the speed of the game so when we came here it was more mental. You see guys lose the mental part of it when they get to a bowl game because they’re going to this event or that event or sightseeing tours or whatever it may be, and they’re not physically ready to play.”