Pat White's 295 yards of total offense and two rushing touchdowns and Marc Magro's team-best eight tackles, including two sacks, garner Player of the Game honors in No. 6 West Virginia's 28-23 win at No. 22 Cincinnati.
White rushed for two touchdowns and 155 yards to lead the Mountaineers – who could jump to fourth in the latest BCS rankings after losses by top five Oklahoma and Oregon – to a major win at Saturday. The junior became the first quarterback in the Big East and just the 12th in NCAA history to eclipse the 3,000 yard rushing mark. The win, WVU's 24th in 27 games with White, sets up a BCS berth game this week against Connecticut. Whichever team wins will capture the league's automatic invitation. But the Mountaineers want more – and they might be able to get it. WVU (9-1, 4-1 Big East) now needs only to beat UConn and Pitt and have either LSU lose or Oklahoma beat the Kansas-Missouri winner in the Big XII title game to vault into second place provided no team jumps them.
That's largely due to White. He put on a dazzling display just before the break, gouging UC for 67 of the 68 yards in a late push that gave the Mountaineers a needed 21-10 lead at the half. He also completed 13 of 19 passes for 140 yards. His shorter runs gave WVU's defense much-needed rest, and allowed the Mountaineers to play a more ball controlled style than could be imagined.
Magro, besides his stops, forced a fumble that should have resulted in a score if not for White's interception on a high throw to Darius Reynaud. He also played defensive end in key rushing situations and manned his normal linebacker slot. Magro's toughness was a solid addition to a lineup primed for speed and coverage skills due to Cincinnati's scrambling quarterback and fleet receiving corps. The Morgantown native was a main reason WVU is returning home with two games left to play in a bid to reach its first true title game since 1989.