Just as players and fans alike began to celebrate what looked to be another Andre Ellington touchdown, Darwin Cook forced a fumble. The redshirt sophomore free safety recovered it, raced 99 yards for a touchdown and West Virginia was suddenly up 28-17.
The Mountaineers never looked back. They went on to score three more touchdowns in the half, all of which were in the last 2:29 of the period.
"Anytime we lost this season it was because momentum shifted and we couldn't swing it back our way," said Tajh Boyd, who finished with 250 yards passing and two touchdowns.
"The Georgia Tech game, North Carolina State -- momentum shifts -- it's hard to come back from a momentum shift."
Momentum certainly shifted on that play, according to offensive coordinator Chad Morris.
"I thought that we were playing about as well as we had been playing. That hadn't stopped us at that point. We were moving the football," he said. "[Ellington] was trying to make a play, trying to reach for the goal line.
"Obviously, that was a huge momentum swing for us. It just seemed like once that happened, it just snowballed."
Morris added, "It just took the wind out of our sails. The very next series, we come and turn the ball over again."
Heading into the half…
"We had to still fight, don't quit on the team. We still have fans out there watching, don't quit." - Sammy Watkins
"The just made more plays than we did. They out executed us. They just came to play. It showed on the scoreboard." - Andre Branch
"It was more about having pride and not quitting on the team, not looking back." - Watkins
Addressing the rumors of a move to UT…
"I have not talked to any head coach at any school, received any call from any head coach, have not approached coach [Dabo] Swinney for permission to talk to anybody. That's it. That's all I can tell you. In this day and age, rumors fly fast." - Kevin Steele
Heading into 2012…
"We've had a very good year. We're a young football team. We've got to learn from a lot of mistakes we've made. When things don't go good, we've got to learn how to recover from them, not have to wait four or five series, two or three series for them to happen." - Morris
"New year, new team, everything's new. We start over. Six weeks ago didn't have nothing to do with next year. This won't either. Been around long enough, I've lost the Orange Bowl and won the national championship. Lost an ugly Orange Bowl and won the national championship." - Steele
"We've got to use this as motivation to get better." - Morris
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