Jenn Menendez's WVU football chat transcript: 11.1.12

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Jenn Menendez: Thanks for joining me today. Let's get started.

teddyballgame14: What makes this week different from the last two? Should we expect TCU's defense to come in and shut down the Air Raid using the same tactics that Texas Tech and K-State employed?

Jenn Menendez: The best strength of this TCU is forcing turnovers. They've got 14 or 15 interceptions and are solid at stopping the run. But sounds like they mix things up on the field and try to confuse the offense if they're in man or zone and have been pretty solid all year.

teddyballgame14: With all due respect to the late Bill Stewart... Doesn't the utter lack of talent on the defensive side of the ball demonstrate why Oliver Luck had to make a coaching change two years ago? Everybody could see that Stewart & Company were NOT recruiting the same level of talent that WVU once did...

Jenn Menendez: Let's remember they did lose some key guys to graduation and several who were recruited by the previous regimes have fared pretty well after WVU. But your point is heard. I think the key is moving forward. Holgorsen has talked a lot in the last two weeks about going after JUCO players that can help as soon as next year.

WVUfan: What's the mood of the team this week? Are they ready to go?

Jenn Menendez: It sounds like they are ready to put those two losses behind them. I think the players were legitimately embarassed, humbled and we will see what they're made of now. Does that mean they're suddenly going to run the table? No. But I think stepping back for a week helps with perspective.

AlstonFAN: What's the status of Shawne Alston?

Jenn Menendez: No real update this week other than when Holgorsen said all injured players are practicing with the exception of three he said were done for the year. (Snow, Bell, Williams)
Alston, if you recall, tweeted last week that he'd be back for the game, and while I'm done predicting when we will or won't see him - it did come from his own mouth. Or tweeting hand anyway...

G.T. Lynn: Any changes on the defense? Also, is Will Clarke 100 percent?

Jenn Menendez: According to Holgorsen in his press conference this week there were no schematic changes to the defense - which I don't think surprises any of us since he's said that multiple times. When he said all injured players are practicing, I took that to include Clarke along with Brodrick Jenkins and Stedman Bailey and Alston.

jcalvert: I feel we sincerely miss Coach David Lockwood and Darin Roberts is in way over his head. What are your thoughts

Jenn Menendez: I honestly think it's too soon to call Roberts in over his head. There have been a lot of injuries among the defensive backs, some inexperience back there. If we get to the end of the season and none of these guys have improved at all, or looked better at all...then I'm with you. Until I see zero progress I'm not ready to say that.

teddyballgame14: Any interesting stories come out about players or their families being affected by Hurricane Sandy?

Jenn Menendez: Unfortunately did not get any of those stories this week.

teddyballgame14: Anyone comment on the unfortunate injury the occurred with Marcus Lattimore this weekend? Seems like he's the perfect example of the sacrifices these college athletes make, and an academic scholarship isn't always sufficient compensation for the price being paid by the athlete... especially star athletes whose numbers are on the jerseys the fans are buying...

Jenn Menendez: Another good question. Don't know what the players think of that. But you make some good points.

teddyballgame14: What does Geno & Company need to do to get the Air Raid Attack back on track this week?

Jenn Menendez: Teddyballgame: Thanks for all of the questions. I'd say the biggest thing they need is to get some confidence back, and score on an early drive to do so. The other key, in my opinion, is for the O-line to get back to form and give Smith the time he needs to go through his progressions.

jKrause: Is the game sold out Saturday?

Jenn Menendez: The school sent out information earlier this week that there were still tickets available. Not sure exactly how many but it's the first time all year they've said that without the disclaimer of no two being next to one another.

G.T. Lynn: I thought more of the pressure problem was due to the receivers not getting open than on the offensive line. Anyone question Holgorsen on that?

Jenn Menendez: You're right, that was certainly part of it - particularly against Texas Tech. I'd imagine part of why Holgorsen busted a few redshirts among his freshman heading into the K-State game was to get guys in there who can get open and make plays. Certainly a factor.

jcalvert: Geno needs to move the chains. If teams are going to send 7/8 into coverage he needs to be able to A) run for yardage and B) take more deep shots down the field to loosen up the coverage. Since we are getting "back to basics this week" do you think things will look "easy" again?

Jenn Menendez: Yes he does. He was doing so fairly well earlier this season but then got away from it. As for the deep shots, yes they would go a long way to opening things up for him and the receivers.

teddyballgame14: How concerned is Holgersen with the weather forecast this weekend? They seemed to struggle in the wind at Texas Tech. If it stays cold in Morgantown, will that impact the gameplan? Will they be forced to throw less with more of an emphasis on the running game?

Jenn Menendez: I didn't get the feeling he was concerned at all about the weather. Sounds like it might be a few patches of sun finally on Saturday and almost 50.

jKrause: prediction?

Jenn Menendez: Honestly I'm done making predictions with this team. Sorry. This is obviously a very important game for so many reasons.

Jenn Menendez: Well thanks for taking time out of your Thursday afternoon to join me on here. We'll be back next week, same time, same place. wvusports


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