MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- West Virginia and William & Mary arrive at their season opener today at Milan Puskar Stadium on opposite trajectories.
The Mountaineers have won nine consecutive season openers, the Tribe has lost 10 of its past 11 opening games. West Virginia holds a 15-0-1 series advantage.
Still, WVU coach Dana Holgorsen has cautioned the Mountaineers about overlooking William & Mary. Despite going 2-9 last season, the Tribe nearly knocked off Maryland in the 2012 opener, losing, 7-6.
"They're a lot better than how they ended last year," Holgorsen said.
West Virginia vs. William & Mary, noon today, Milan Puskar Stadium, Morgantown, W.Va. No line available.
- TV, Radio, Internet:
Fox Sports 1, Mountaineer Sports Network, Sirius 132, XM 192.
- West Virginia:
Redshirt senior RB Charles Sims had more than 1,200 yards of offense in each of his three seasons at Houston before transfer to Mountaineers. ... West Virginia defense was ranked 119th out of 122 teams against the pass last season (312.8 ypg).
- William & Mary:
Coach Jimmye Laycock is entering his 34th season of coaching at his alma mater. ... The Tribe was nine minutes away from upsetting Maryland in the opener last season.
- Hidden stat:
West Virginia returns just 15 percent of its passing production from last season and only two receivers who had a touchdown catch.
West Virginia, coming off an underwhelming 7-6 season, will be breaking in a pair of new quarterbacks in juniors Paul Millard and Clint Trickett.
"At this point, they've done nothing to warrant not playing quarterback here," Holgorsen said. "It's going to take some game reps and putting these guys in situations where they have to respond to really know what we're working with."
"Both of them deserve an opportunity," said offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson. "At the end of the day, it's going to be who can win with this team, who can lead this group to victory."
The quarterback rotation is only one question for the Mountaineers. Saturday also will mark the West Virginia debut for several transfers, including running backs Charles Sims and Dreamius Smith and wide receiver Kevin White, who is listed as questionable with a foot injury.
Holgorsen said that even with a date with No. 16 Oklahoma looming next Saturday, he doesn't intend to hold back any of the playbook today.
"We have to figure out what we do well and what our team is all about," Holgorsen said.
William & Mary will start senior Michael Graham at quarterback. Graham started three games last season, passing for a career-high 353 yards and four touchdowns in a loss against Old Dominion.