Texas and West Virginia enter this matchup with identical 4-6 records. The winner will have a chance to play for bowl eligibility next week while the other will be eliminated from postseason contention.
The all-time record between the Horns and Mountaineers is tied 5-5. The road teams have had more success in the series winning seven of the ten games. Texas has won three of the last four contests.
Consistency has been a struggle for both teams. Texas has shown the ability to compete with anyone in the conference but has not been able to close the door late. West Virginia beat TCU and Iowa State before getting overmatched against Oklahoma State and Kansas State.
Here are three things Texas needs to do to leave Morgantown with a win:
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With as many close games as they play, Texas cannot afford to give teams extra possessions. Taking care of the ball has been the difference in multiple games this season for the Horns.
Texas lost to Kansas last week despite outgaining the Jayhawks by over 150 yards. Texas turned the ball over four times resulting in three Kansas touchdowns. If you take away those turnovers, Texas likely wins in a blowout.
Play better red zone defense
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Texas ranks 90th in red zone defense this season among FBS schools. A major reason for the five-game losing streak. Kansas was 7-7 on scoring touchdowns in the red zone last week.
Texas needs to embrace the motto of “bend don’t break” when it comes to red zone defense.
Holding West Virginia to field goals instead of touchdowns would help Texas’ odds of winning tremendously.
Slow down Leddie Brown
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The Texas run defense has been historically bad all season. Pete Kwiatkowski’s unit lacks the scheme and personnel to stop the run consistently.
West Virginia’s success on offenses runs through Leddie Brown. The Mountaineers are 3-0 when Brown runs for over 100 yards and 1-6 when he does not.
If Texas holds Brown to under 100 yards it would go a long way towards a victory.