The college football season is only five weeks old, but that means it is also a third of the way to the end. I do not anticipate that the 4-0 WVU team is going to complete for a spot in the College Football Playoff, but the record means there is a chance. A 12-0 Mountaineer team would likely get in, but it is always nice to have some help. Despite the team not playing this week, there are plenty of games across the college landscape that could factor into being chosen for the playoff or not.
Once disposing of an opponent you have to wish them nothing but the best. If they win out, they move up the polls and make your victory look that much better. This is truer yet with non-conference opponents. Those would be easy selections for me on a week-by-week basis. I will not take the easy route.
The season-opening win over Missouri has lost luster with the Tigers now 2-3. They still have Florida, Tennessee and Arkansas on the schedule. If somehow they ran the table the win looks that much better.
BYU also is just 2-3, but as an Independent, they are not locked into a conference schedule. The next three weeks they play at Michigan State, host Mississippi State and play at Boise State. Running those games or even going 2-1 would be an advantage for WVU. This appears unlikely, with the Cougars’ two wins (over Arizona and Toledo) coming by a combined four points, but the game is played on the field.
Mountaineer fans, you want these two teams to win. Every week.
Three Week 6 games important to WVU:
While just 2-2, both of Oklahoma’s losses have come against Top 6 teams (Ohio State and Houston). On name brand alone the Sooners will get the benefit of the doubt in polls and get ranked higher than may be deserved. An 8-2 Oklahoma team invading Morgantown in November will likely be a Top 10 team and should the Mountaineers win, giving them a quality victory.
A win by 2-2 Texas only hurts WVU. It bumps Oklahoma out of the Top 25. Texas’ wins are against an over-ranked (shocking, I know) Notre Dame team and UTEP. It’s conceivable that the Longhorns end the season at or below .500. Knocking off Oklahoma (or Baylor) is no good as far as WVU fans should be concerned.
#6 Houston (5-0) at Navy (3-1)
2:00pm, CBS Sports Network
With a win over Oklahoma already under their belt and a showdown with Louisville late in the season, Houston is what Tim Brando refers to as a “fly in the ointment.” They are a serious threat to steal a spot at the playoff table from one of the Power Five conferences. To this point in the season the Big 12 appears to be the odd man out and if two conferences fail to get in, there’s little chance for the Big 12.
I do not see the Midshipmen pulling the upset, but they are one of the better teams left on Houston’s schedule. Navy is always a threat, especially if a defense does not play assignment football.
The result of the game itself should not be as important as how the game plays out. For WVU fans, it’s the team you just defeated against the team you play next. The Red Raiders average 59.5 points a game this season, with a low output of 55.
The Mountaineers were only able to score 17 on the Wildcats. If Tech goes into Manhattan and puts 45 points on the board, is that an omen for the Mountaineers’ trip to Lubbock? WVU should be able to put up a season-to-date high in points against the Raider defense. Will it be enough?
If you love the Mountaineers, or any team, then you have to follow ALL of college football. There is no sport that has as many moving parts affecting the ultimate champion.