WVU prepping against UNLV 'trap'
College Football Videos
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia plays UNLV on Saturday and opens Big East Conference play at home against South Florida five days later.
While the Mountaineers (3-1) say they aren't overlooking the 1-4 Rebels, some say it's harder to stay focused on this weekend's game with such a quick turnaround.
Saturday's 3:30 p.m. kickoff is what many call a "trap game," and West Virginia's seniors and coaching staff are making sure the entire program doesn't have a second-straight loss and a letdown heading into Big East play next week.
"They better know that our whole emphasis is on the UNLV Rebels," said Mountaineers coach Bill Stewart. "If we don't know that, they're going to be real sad come seven o'clock. That would be heartbreak."
Three of UNLV's losses have come to Top 25 teams: Wisconsin, Utah and, most recently, Nevada. Stewart said the Rebels competed strong against all three of those opponents and didn't quit.
"They're playing hard. They were in that ballgame against (Nevada) and had Utah on their heels," Stewart said. "Anyone who thinks we can walk or skip out there Saturday and it will be a cakewalk, there will be a lot of heartache in Morgantown Saturday night."
After Saturday's game, though, West Virginia won't have long to prepare for its Oct. 14 date with the Bulls.
"It can be tough physically. It usually takes until about Wednesday to get your legs back, but then you have to play Thursday," said West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith. "We'll be prepared for it, and we're just going to prepare for it as usual."
Smith said he has watched film of South Florida this week while he continued to prepare for UNLV.
"It's not looking past UNLV or anything, just over-preparing myself because it is such a short time between games," Smith said.
Having such a long time to prepare for the team's next game after its 20-14 loss to LSU on Sept. 25 has given the team time to look at South Florida, Smith said. It has also allowed the team to get some much-needed rest leading up to Big East play.
"It's been good and bad," Smith said. "Good that we've had time to rest up and get players ready for this Big East run, but it's bad because you still have that bad taste in your mouth."
The Mountaineers squarely are focused on its season goal of winning the Big East for the first time since 2007 and heading to a BCS bowl for the first time since that season, as well.
"Winning the conference and going to a BCS bowl is first," said senior linebacker J.T. Thomas. "There are so many things that we have in front of us, so we're definitely taking this game as a stepping stone into the Big East and other things."
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.