Continental Tire Bowl Preview

The Mountaineers travel to Charlotte to take on border rival Virginia in the inaugural Continental Tire Bowl.

Series: Virginia leads series 11-10-1

Common Opponents: Maryland & Virginia Tech - WVU 1-1 , UVA 1-1.

Hit the Road with the Mountaineers

Cavaliers to watch:
RB-Wali Lundy, WR - Billy McMullen, QB - Matt Schaub, RB - Marquis Weeks, WR- Heath Miller, LB - Angelo Crowell, LB Merrill Robertson, S - Jerton Evans, LB Darryl Blackstock.

Injuries:
WVU - Kelvin Dubose (Disciplinary) Out, Ernest Hunter (Leg) Questionable, Miquelle Henderson (Ankle) Probable, Ken Sandor (Ankle) Probable, Grant Wiley (Rib) Probable.

Cavaliers - Alvin Pearman (Knee) Out, Chris Canty (Elbow) Questionable, Elton Brown (Foot) Probable, Kwakou Robinson (Illness) Probable .

Game outlook:

BlueGoldNews.com
Game Info
WVU 6-1, 9-3
UVA 6-2, 8-5
Sat. 12/28 11:00 am
Ericsson Stadium
Series: UVA 11-10-1
TV: ESPN2
AP: WVU-15 UVA-NR
Line: WVU -5
Stats & Trends
WVU offense vs. Cavalier defense

Although the Cavalier defensive statistics are anything but impressive, they have managed to keep the game close enough so that the offense can win the game. The key to this ability is turnovers. Virginia's turnover margin is +1.0 per game, which ranks them 14th nationally. If the Mountaineer offense continues their season long tradition of protecting the ball, the Cavalier defense will be spending most of their time on the field.

The leader of the Wahoo defense is Angelo Crowell (6-1 235 Sr), ranked as the 7th best inside linebacker by The Sporting News. Crowell, a three-year starter, has recorded 141 tackles, 3 sacks and 6 tackles for losses. Look for Crowell to come on some blitzes early in the game to feel out WVU's run blocking and pass blocking schemes. Teaming with Crowell at inside linebacker is Rich Bedesem (6-2 235 So). Bedesem has totaled 52 tackles this season after coming off a knee injury in 2001. Rounding out the linebacking corps is Merrill Robertson (6-1 248 Sr) and Darryl Blackstock (6-4 226 Fr). While Robertson has had a great season, racking up 121 tackles and 9 sacks, Blackstock has been the talk in Charlottesville. The freshman has terrorized opposing quarterbacks by recording 10 sacks and 13 tackles for loss. The Cavalier linebackers are very aggressive which could lead to a couple of big gains by Avon Cobourne or Quincy Wilson if the linebackers over pursue the play.

The Cavalier defensive line is anchored by Chris Canty (6-7 283 So) whose playing status is questionable going into the bowl game. Canty totaled 86 tackles this season including four quarterback sacks. If Canty cant go, defensive end Brennan Schmidt (6-3 274 Fr) and nose tackle Andrew Hoffman (6-5 282 So) will have to pick up the slack. Schmidt and Hoffman,with only one year of experience between them heading into the 2002 season, have racked up 130 tackles and 4 tackles losses.

The defensive secondary is experienced and could make it difficult for the Mountaineer passing attack to get on track. Safety Jerton Evans (5-11 200 Sr) is UVA's most experienced defensive back. Evans is a four year starter that has recorded 108 stops and 6 pass break-ups this season. Manning the other safety position for the Wahoos will be Willie Davis (6-2 185 Fr). Davis is a young but talented defensive back that has been learning the ropes from Evans. Davis has one interception and 28 tackles on the year. If Davis gets in trouble, Shernard Newby (6-1 208 Sr) is more the capable of stepping in. Newby leads the team with 3 picks. Filling out the defensive backfield is Almondo Curry (5-8 178 Jr) and Jarmaine Winborne (5-10 206 Jr). Curry and Winborne are experienced but both are less than 6 feet tall, which could have Miquelle Henderson licking his chops. The cornerbacks have chipped in 113 stops and 6 tackles behind the line of scrimmage.

By the numbers:

WVU ranks 20th in total offense (415.08 yds/game), 2nd in rushing offense (286.92 yds/game) and 109th in passing offense (128.17 yds/game).

Cavaliers rank 99th in total defense (421.92 yds/game), 105th in rushing defense (206.15 yds/game) and 63th in passing efficiency defense (122.44 rating).

Advantage: WVU

WVU defense vs. Cavalier offense

The Cavalier offense is led by the ACC Offensive Player of the Year, Matt Schaub (6-5 235 Sr). Schaub had an outstanding year, completing an incredible 68.7% of his passes for 2794 yards and 27 touchdowns. The Virginia quarterback completed passes to 15 different receivers while throwing only 7 interceptions on 396 attempts. Schaub may very well be the best QB that the Mountaineer defense has faced this season.

Joining Schaub in the offensive backfield will be running backs Wali Lundy (6-1 212 Fr) and Marquis Weeks (5-11 206 So). Lundy lead the Cavaliers in rushing this season, gaining 699 yards on 174 attempts and averaging 4.0 yards per tote. Lundy also adds a second dimension with his pass catching abilities, catching 53 passes for 359 yards and 2 touchdowns. Weeks, injured for a portion of the season, has averaged 5.6 yards on 38 attempts and should not be overlooked. Although inexperienced, Lundy and Weeks combine to form a very talented backfield.

In the passing game, Schaub's favorite target this season has been Billy McMullen (6-4 208 Sr). McMullen smashed most of UVA's receiving records, totaling 209 receptions over his outstanding career. The Mountaineer defense will need focus attention on McMullen, as shutting down this receiver will go along way towards a WVU victory. Teaming with McMullen has been Michael McGrew (6-2 200 Jr) and Ottowa Anderson (6-0 190 So). McGrew and Anderson have combined for 53 receptions, 605 yards and 5 touchdowns.

Although the receivers play a large part in the Virginia passing attack, the tight end and fullbacks play a surprisingly active role. The Cavalier's tight end, Heath Miller (6-5 256 Fr), has hauled in 30 passes for 273 yards and 9 touchdowns. His ability to find an open area in the endzone will become important as the Wahoos reach the red zone. Fullbacks, Kase Luzar (6-2 235 Jr) and Virginia leads series 11-10-1\r\n

Common Opponents: Maryland & Virginia Tech - WVU 1-1 , UVA 1-1.

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Hit the Road with the Mountaineers

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Cavaliers to watch:
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RB-Wali Lundy, WR - Billy McMullen, QB - Matt Schaub, RB - Marquis Weeks, WR- Heath Miller, LB - Angelo Crowell, LB Merrill Robertson, S - Jerton Evans, LB Darryl Blackstock.
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Injuries:
\r\nWVU - Kelvin Dubose (Disciplinary) Out, Ernest Hunter (Leg) Questionable, Miquelle Henderson (Ankle) Probable, Ken Sandor (Ankle) Probable, Grant Wiley (Rib) Probable.

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Cavaliers - Alvin Pearman (Knee) Out, Chris Canty (Elbow) Questionable, Elton Brown (Foot) Probable, Kwakou Robinson (Illness) Probable .

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Game outlook:

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BlueGoldNews.com
\r\n\t\t\t\tGame Info
WVU 6-1, 9-3
\r\n\t\t\t\tUVA 6-2, 8-5
Sat. 12/28 11:00 am
Ericsson Stadium
Series: UVA 11-10-1
TV: ESPN2
AP: WVU-15 UVA-NR
Line: WVU -5
Stats & Trends
\r\nWVU offense vs. Cavalier defense
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Although the Cavalier defensive statistics are anything but impressive, they have managed to keep the game close enough so that the offense can win the game. The key to this ability is turnovers. Virginia's turnover margin is +1.0 per game, which ranks them 14th nationally. If the Mountaineer offense continues their season long tradition of protecting the ball, the Cavalier defense will be spending most of their time on the field.

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The leader of the Wahoo defense is Angelo Crowell (6-1 235 Sr), ranked as the 7th best inside linebacker by The Sporting News. Crowell, a three-year starter, has recorded 141 tackles, 3 sacks and 6 tackles for losses. Look for Crowell to come on some blitzes early in the game to feel out WVU's run blocking and pass blocking schemes. Teaming with Crowell at inside linebacker is Rich Bedesem (6-2 235 So). Bedesem has totaled 52 tackles this season after coming off a knee injury in 2001. Rounding out the linebacking corps is Merrill Robertson (6-1 248 Sr) and Darryl Blackstock (6-4 226 Fr). \r\nWhile Robertson has had a great season, racking up 121 tackles and 9 sacks, Blackstock has been the talk in Charlottesville. The freshman has terrorized opposing quarterbacks by recording 10 sacks and 13 tackles for loss. The Cavalier linebackers are very aggressive which could lead to a couple of big gains by Avon Cobourne or Quincy Wilson if the linebackers over pursue the play.

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The Cavalier defensive line is anchored by Chris Canty (6-7 283 So) whose playing status is questionable going into the bowl game. Canty totaled 86 tackles this season including four quarterback sacks. If Canty cant go, defensive end Brennan Schmidt (6-3 274 Fr) and nose tackle Andrew Hoffman (6-5 282 So) will have to pick up the slack. Schmidt and Hoffman,with only one year of experience between them heading into the 2002 season, have racked up 130 tackles and 4 tackles losses.

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The defensive secondary is experienced and could make it difficult for the Mountaineer passing attack to get on track. Safety Jerton Evans (5-11 200 Sr) is UVA's most experienced defensive back. Evans is a four year starter that has recorded 108 stops and 6 pass break-ups this season. Manning the other safety position for the Wahoos will be Willie Davis (6-2 185 Fr). Davis is a young but talented defensive back that has been learning the ropes from Evans. Davis has one interception and 28 tackles on the year. If Davis gets in trouble, Shernard Newby (6-1 208 Sr) is more the capable of stepping in. Newby leads the team with 3 picks. Filling out the defensive backfield is Almondo Curry (5-8 178 Jr) and Jarmaine Winborne (5-10 206 Jr). Curry and Winborne are experienced but both are less than 6 feet tall, which could have Miquelle Henderson licking his chops. The cornerbacks have chipped in 113 stops and 6 tackles behind the line of scrimmage.

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By the numbers:

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WVU ranks 20th in total offense (415.08 yds/game), 2nd in rushing offense (286.92 yds/game) and 109th in passing offense (128.17 yds/game).

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Cavaliers rank 99th in total defense (421.92 yds/game), 105th in rushing defense (206.15 yds/game) and 63th in passing efficiency defense (122.44 rating).

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Advantage: WVU
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WVU defense vs. Cavalier offense
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The Cavalier offense is led by the ACC Offensive Player of the Year, Matt Schaub (6-5 235 Sr). Schaub had an outstanding year, completing an incredible 68.7% of his passes for 2794 yards and 27 touchdowns. The Virginia quarterback completed passes to 15 different receivers while throwing only 7 interceptions on 396 attempts. Schaub may very well be the best QB that the Mountaineer defense has faced this season.

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Joining Schaub in the offensive backfield will be running backs Wali Lundy (6-1 212 Fr) and Marquis Weeks (5-11 206 So). Lundy lead the Cavaliers in rushing this season, gaining 699 yards on 174 attempts and averaging 4.0 yards per tote. Lundy also adds a second dimension with his pass catching abilities, catching 53 passes for 359 yards and 2 touchdowns. Weeks, injured for a portion of the season, has averaged 5.6 yards on 38 attempts and should not be overlooked. Although inexperienced, Lundy and Weeks combine to form a very talented backfield.

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In the passing game, Schaub's favorite target this season has been Billy McMullen (6-4 208 Sr). McMullen smashed most of UVA's receiving records, totaling 209 receptions over his outstanding career. The Mountaineer defense will need focus attention on McMullen, as shutting down this receiver will go along way towards a WVU victory. Teaming with McMullen has been Michael McGrew (6-2 200 Jr) and Ottowa Anderson (6-0 190 So). McGrew and Anderson have combined for 53 receptions, 605 yards and 5 touchdowns. \r\n

\r\nAlthough the receivers play a large part in the Virginia passing attack, the tight end and fullbacks play a surprisingly active role. The Cavalier's tight end, Heath Miller (6-5 256 Fr), has hauled in 30 passes for 273 yards and 9 touchdowns. His ability to find an open area in the endzone will become important as the Wahoos reach the red zone. Fullbacks, Kase Luzar (6-2 235 Jr) and