Immediate Focus

Although Saturday's game against the University of South Florida will be one full of emotions, senior offensive lineman Ryan Stanchek is still keeping focused on the issue at hand – defeating the Bulls.

Stanchek, who will be playing his final home game as a Mountaineer along with the rest of the senior class, has a difficult assignment in front of him. USF's defensive line, one of the best in the country, sparks a Bull defensive unit that ranks among the nation's best against the run.

"(South Florida) has played very well against us. They have an excellent defensive line, and my buddy, George Selvie, is an all-American defense end. I will be excited to go against him. He's a great player. He was actually recruited as a center then switched to the defensive side of the ball. He moves great and he's a great football player," Stanchek said.

The senior hopes that playing the southern team so late in the season at home will work to West Virginia's advantage.

"I hope they're freezing," Stanchek said with a laugh. "We will be cold. We have a lot of Florida guys too. I don't think that really has a big affect, maybe a little mentally here and there. They have clothes, I'm sure they will be wearing them."

Stanchek and the rest of the Mountaineers will be switching up their clothing a little bit on Saturday. The Mountaineers will be dressed in their white jerseys to participate in the "White Out" that is being held to commemorate quarterback Pat White's final game and honor the rest of the senior class.

"I'm wearing my white undershirt for (White.) I think it's a great thing. He's a special player and he deserves everything he gets," Stanchek said.

Stanchek and the rest of the senior class are hoping to go out with a victory over the Bulls. WVU has not tasted that since 2005, when the Mountaineers won 28-13 in Tampa.

"(Getting a victory) would be huge. It's our last time stepping foot on a field that we bled and sweated on for five-plus years," Stanchek said.

Although Stanchek's eye is on getting a victory over the Bulls, he has begun to reminisce on his collegiate football career as it comes to a close. He has worked alongside White as the two grew as football players during their time at West Virginia.

"I was thinking the other day that I am the only lineman that has been out there for every one of (White's) yards. That's pretty neat. I'm sure when I'm an old man I will be bragging to everybody because I don't think that [NCAA quarterback rushing] record is going to be broken anytime soon," he noted.

Stanchek and White have combined for some remarkable successes during their careers, including two BCS bowl victories and three consecutive wins in New Year's Day bowl games. Those accomplishments have exceeded what he ever expected when he came to WVU.

"Honestly, I thought we had potential but not at that time," he reminisced. "It's just amazing, everything that has happened. Some stars aligned the right way. We've had some great players come through here. It's great to be a part of it."

Another accomplishment that Stanchek would like to add to the Mountaineer record books before his career is over is being part of the most successful class ever at West Virginia University in terms of wins. While the class could probably already make that claim, what with three major bowl wins and consistent national rankings, it would like to put that final stamp on their careers.

"(The senior class) has had a lot of success here. We just want to win this one and hopefully win the next one and become the all time winningest class. That would be pretty neat."


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