Jenn Menendez: Well thanks for joining me folks. Let's get started.
bill v: giving up 37 pts a game. at some point doesnt coaching come under fire? The schemes are probably fine, but might not fit this group of players (recruited for 3-3-5 stack). havent seen adjustments
Jenn Menendez: Hi Bill, I think yes, at some point you have to question if this defense is indeed improving at all. To me, that's the question. It was clear out of the gate they lost some key guys up front, would be young this year and would struggle to transition to a new scheme. I think it's fair to question at this point if they're getting any better. That question has been posed a few times, and Holgorsen continues to say it's not the scheme, but techniques and energy, etc.
Danks: A strange as this sounds, I feel like Kansas State isn't a terrible matchup for WVU's defense. Am I nuts?
Jenn Menendez: I was thinking the same thing myself, so maybe we're both nuts. But really, I think it's fair to look at that way simply because K-State runs the ball a lot. That seems to be one of the small strengths of this defense. We'll see on Saturday...
WVUfan: Can West Virginia beat K-State? What are your thoughts?
Jenn Menendez: Can, they? Yes. Will they? I wish I could answer that for you. The offense obviously needs to rebound from last week, and the defense needs to stop the run and and that is a tall order.
teddyballgame14: Texas Tech players spoke about arrogance and overconfidence of WVU players coming into the game on Saturday. Much as I love Tavon Austin, I get tired of watching him strut around after making even the routine plays. So, I can't disagree with accusations TT players levied. Any word on the coaches addressing player attitudes?
Jenn Menendez: Dana Holgorsen talked about the team not having the right attitude heading into the Texas Tech game many, many times this week. Considering what he revaled to the media, I'm guessing the internal message was even stronger. I think getting pounded by an unranked team ought to take care of some of that on its own, but I do think the coaching staff has addressed that.
GT Lynn: Seems like Dana might have been a little too overconfident, too.
Jenn Menendez: It's possible...? I did hear a few clips from his radio show Thursday night that sounded pretty sarcastic, but then again he spent 7, 8 years there, and has to respect the way Tuberville has turned that defense around.
bill v: Dana said in his presser, the Copeland would start and he'd play another freshman receiver. Who's earning bench time other than Ivan.
Jenn Menendez: He said Copeland would start, yes. My best guess is that he starts in place of Jordan Thompson. I think Stedman Bailey is back on Saturday though we never know until we actually see players on the field like you guys. I don't know exactly what you refer to about "another" freshman receiver...
Andrew: We've seen a lot of coach Holgorsen go for 4th and whatevers in the past two games, which I in some cases like because it shows confidence in the offense, but has he talked about taking points at all in future 4th down situations?
Jenn Menendez: I didn't get a chance to ask him that this week, but did pose the question to OC Shannon Dawson, who said like he often says, it's all about what the defense is giving them. I think it was pretty telling a few times in the Texas Tech game when they went for it on fourth inside their own 40...
danks: It's unfortunate that the defense has payed so poorly as a unit, because I feel Isaiah Bruce has played well. Sure, he has made mistakes, but he's a freshman...it's expected. This kid has a bright future.
Jenn Menendez: Yes, he has played very well to this point, kind of a pleasant surprise. Karl Joseph is another freshman who has looked very good at times too. Both seem to have a bright future.
GT Lynn: Any word on Will Clarke's status? I think he's the anchor of the front seven
Jenn Menendez: No, unfortunately no word. All we got this week is that he is "day to day." The same status we've been given about Shawne Alston for almost a month now....
teddyballgame14: What happens to Geno's Heisman chances, if WVU were to lose three more games in the Big XII?
Jenn Menendez: You know, I'm not sure. If he looks the way he did against Texas Tech, I think the answer is obvious. But if he goes back to his usual form, and this team loses two or three more it doesn't automatically take him out of the running.
bill v: just looked it up...the other guy was Robinson.
Jenn Menendez: The other receiver? Yes, that's Devonte Robinson, who Holgorsen mentioned that he nearly threw in the game the other day.
bill: what is the weather forecast for sat. night?
Jenn Menendez: Just looked it up, and it will be cool - in the mid 50s during the day with small a chance of rain and looks like it could be in the 40s after the sun goes down.
danks: Are you surprised WVU isn't doing any Heisman promotion for Geno, or is it pointless considering how dialed-in the media is to everything now? If I remember, I don't think Baylor did much last year.
Jenn Menendez: Yeah I ran that by somebody about a month ago, and the answer was along the lines of it not being necessary because of how on the radar he has been.
Rob: Any thoughts on the O-line tipping off the pass/run play selection?
Jenn Menendez: Very interesting and something Holgorsen said they are aware of. I missed the telecast myself, and did not hear exactly what Spielman was saying but it sounded like he was spot on.
Patrick in Philly: A better question is to why FX allowed Chris Spielman to do that repeatedly on national television.
Jenn Menendez: Well, theoretically analysts are allowed to be journalists up there in the booth and call it the way they see it. Have no idea what the internal conversation was.
Joe DeForest: Do I need to update my resume?
Jenn Menendez: Well, certainly for reasons stated earlier - the defense being young, transitioning, etc. - I think he'll have some time to right the defensive problems. But, then again, nothing surprises me in this business anymore.
teddyballgame14: Did Texas Tech provide the Big XII with a blueprint for stopping WVU's offense? Or, was this simply one game where the offense had a rough day?
Jenn Menendez: I think it was the perfect storm of problems. Certainly they provided a blueprint of how to slow the offense down. But some of Geno Smith's passes were overthrown, others were dropped, and the run game probably would have been better with some different personnel in there. I think if those three things are fixed, the offense can find a way to be successful.
Andrew: Kansas State doesn't have the flashy players quite like WVU does, what makes their offense tick and has been able to bump them up to #4 in the country?
Jenn Menendez: My understanding - not having seen them a ton - is that they are incredibly balanced and disciplined in all three phases of the game. They are a complete team, with a good offense, good defense, and time will tell if they indeed a great team. They don't get penalized a ton, and have a quarterback that can make things happen when the play breaks down.
Andrew: With all the fuss about travel being such an issue in joining the Big XII Conference, what was your sense on a back-to-back Texas trip for the team?
Jenn Menendez: I think it was probably a factor they're not quite willing to acknowledge. Crossing time zones four times in the span of 10 days has to have a small effect at the very least.
wvu1guy: What do you think will be K-States biggest obstacle on Saturday night other than the slowing down the offense?
Jenn Menendez: I think you mean what will the biggest obstacle for West Virginia considering K-State tries to slow down the offense....
Well, rebounding from that terrible game last week for starters, finding a way to stop the run for the defense.
GT Lynn: I noticed WVU was favored by 2 or 3 points. Your thoughts?
Jenn Menendez: Surprises me a little because I'd give the advantage to Kansas State in this game. But I guess because the Mountaineers are home and they haven't lost two games in a row in a long, long time...that could squeak the odds in their favor.
Andrew: I read an article a week ago that WVU is thinking of charging a $30 "riot" fee, per student, for post game couch burning and whatnot. Is this something that they REALLY think will stop all the post game activities?! Jenn, what are your thoughts?
Jenn Menendez: Yeah, I don't know to be honest. But it is a problem. In general excessive drinking and the issues that stem from it is a problem that is so ingrained in the culture of college - not just West Virginia - but many, many colleges. Sounds like you don't think it will work at all.
teddyballgame14: have you ever seen a team give up so many big plays? And, as the season goes along, with injuries and fatigue playing a factor. Is it even possible this team's defense gets even worse?
Jenn Menendez: No, I'm not sure I have. It was a pretty abysmal performance. It's hard to imagine things get worse. To a point, I do buy the coaching line that the attitude probably had some affect on this at TTU, and maybe, just maybe a win or two can get the confidence up again. I may be far too optimistic.
Jenn Menendez: Well thanks as always for joining me folks. Dress warm for Saturday, and catch up again next week.