Bits and Bytes - Virginia

The final wrapup of odds and ends before the Continental Tire Bowl clash.

HIGH MARKS

Coming into the year, it was noted that West Virginia had eight bowl opponents that played in a bowl in 2001.

Most times, that stat is not an accurate indicator of a schedule's strength, but this year it was. Seven WVU opponents went to bowl games this year, with WVU earning a 4-3 record against them.

BOUNCING BACK

Two Mountaineers who are attempting to come back from injuries that kept them out the last month of the season are meeting with differing levels of success.

While defensive lineman Ernest Hunter is running fairly well, wide receiver Miquelle Henderson might be iffy for extended duty.

"I'm still kind of banged up a little bit, but I'm not 100%," Henderson said after Thursday's practice. "I'm just going to try to play as many plays as I can. If it's 15 or 20 or whatever, I'm going to try to go full speed."

Henderson is worried that the injury has affected his route running, which is a key part of the WVU offense.

"My routes may not be quite the same as what they were before I got injured. It affects my timing, and that affects the quarterbacks as well."

RUSH TO GREATNESS

Somewhat quietly, WVU broke the school's single season all time rushing record with 231 yards on the ground against Pitt. The 2002 Mountaineers gained 3443 yards rushing, which broke the previoius record of 3,335 in 1988.

TIEBREAKERS

Through the last few games of the season, I've noted several instances where WVU could pull to the .500 level or above with a win. For example, Rich Rodriguez ran his career WVU record to 12-11 with consecutive wins over Virginia Tech and Pitt.

With that in mind, here are a couple more marks that West Virginia could push above even with a win.

WVU is 6-6 all time in the state of North Carolina. Additionally, the WVU senior class has a 23-23 career record at WVU. Wouldn't it be nice, on several levels, to add a win to the left side of those ledgers?

HOW MANY?

How many native West Virginians on on this year's football roster? Did you say 20? Tenwty-five? Do I hear thirty?

Actually, there are 38 West Virginians on the roster. I wonder why that number doesn't get a great deal of publicity?

MOUNTAINEER CARAVAN

Many media predictions have upwards of 40,000 Mountaineer fans donning the old gold and blue for the Bowl game here in Uptown Charlotte this weekend.

Walking around Charlotte on Thursday evening did nothing to persuade anyone otherwise, as Mountaineer fans could be seen on every corner and in most every restaurant/pub, some in overwhelming quantities.

There is nothing like walking into a nice establishment in a bowl town and hearing the ole' standby:

Lets Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Mountaineeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeers!


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