Stew's Views: Day 7

The day before the first full-scale scrimmage of fall camp, WVU's head coach found frustration with the back-and-forth nature of his team's work on its seventh day of practice.

While watching players on both sides of the ball have positive moments may be a reason for some coaches to be pleased, Bill Stewart seemed largely unhappy after Friday's sessions.

The second-year West Virginia head man was, on the whole, a bit negative about the results of the team's workouts in spite of the fact that, from his own accounts, the Mountaineers' "effort and enthusiasm have been good."

"I was very pleased with the effort, but was very disappointed in our consistency," Stewart said. "That's something a good team has to have. I want to see somebody step forward and be the dominating force of this football team."

If there was a theme to Stewart's daily media briefing on Friday, it was just that -- displeasure with the lack of dominance by either side of the football at critical times.

He was careful to avoid directly pointing the finger at either the offense or the defense, saying only that it seemed as though neither side was converting on opportunities consistently enough to please him.

"I want somebody to take charge and take control," he said. "Is our defense going to be dominating? (The media members) keep writing that, and I keep talking about blitzing. Well, let's blitz and cover them. The offense scores every now and then -- I want the defense to snuff them out."

"If we get the ball down in (the red zone) offensively, I want somebody to put the ball in the end zone. It just hasn't been consistent, and that's what's frustrating me."

And while Stewart was careful to avoid pointing fingers at either side of the ball and made clear his displeasure with both the defense and offense, it seemed as though there was an extra bit of concern that the blue-clad defenders were not performing better.

"Every great team I have been on, the defense has always dominated at this point," he said.

"There were a couple of nice plays today by a couple of the cornerbacks. (Brandon) Hogan and (Keith) Tandy had some nice plays. I just have not seen enough great plays by our defense."

Indeed, Stewart's unease may have been partially to do with a lack of big plays -- what the head coach continually referred to as "knockout blows" throughout his press conference.

"I'm not in a real good mood right now," he said. "I wanted to see someone step up to play and knock somebody out. I haven't seen that just yet."

Of course, when the team goes "good-on-good" as it did in practice Friday (pitting the No. 1 offense against the No. 1 defense), there will typically be a few moments of glory for both sides.

That hardly spared either side of the ball from the ire of the WVU head coach.

"I'm a tough teacher," Stewart said. "I'm going to coach tough. I want them to compete, battle and get knockout blows. Hopefully we will see that tomorrow."

"Maybe in the hot sun, somebody will be able to step up and lead this football team."


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