Holgorsen may be on hot seat

Every coach, if he (or she) stays in the business long enough finds themselves facing a ‘must-win’ scenario.

Third year West Virginia football coach Dana Holgorsen, and his staff, may very well be dealing with that situation this week as the Mountaineers prepare to take on a No. 16 Texas Tech squad that dealt the 2012 squad its first setback of the season en route to a disappointing 7-6 finish.

I doubt very seriously if Holgorsen will address any questions that may pop up during today’s Big 12 Teleconference surrounding the question and it would be surprising if he or his assistants or players spent much time dealing with the possibilities of being perched on the ‘hot seat’ when they conduct their interviews on Tuesday.

But, nine days after the worst defeat in recent Mountaineer history, the wolves are gathering and their howls are beginning to be heard by those that will be forced to make a decision as to whether the former offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and the University of Houston stays around for a fourth season.

Fans of the old gold and blue that poked fun at a Clemson defense that surrendered 70 points in a 70-33 loss to WVU in the Orange Bowl just two years ago are finding out that the good-natured ribbing that they bestowed on Tiger fans following that contest isn’t as much fun as those being tossed at their beloved Mountaineers after surrendering 73 points at Baylor.

Whether or not it is fair to say that a coach’s job is on the line or not, isn’t the question that should be asked, however.

What should be asked is ‘What must WVU do to knock off a Red Raiders team that comes to Morgantown for the first time with an unblemished record and a legitimate opportunity to capture a Big 12 title in head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s first season at the helm?’

You can bet the former Texas Tech quarterback is making his players watch every second of WVU’s victory over a heavily-favored Oklahoma State team.

So, catching this team by surprise just isn’t going to happen. TTU will come into Milan Puskar Stadium understanding that it will get the Mountaineers’ best shot.

But will that be enough?

Have Holgorsen and offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson settled on a starting quarterback and, if so, can Clint Trickett, Ford Childress or Paul Millard raise the level of their games to lead WVU over its final six contests of the regular season?

Was the open week long enough for former Parkersburg South standout Ron Crook to correct the problems of an offensive line that was beaten badly play-after-play by the Bears?

Then, there are the questions surrounding the defense. You don’t give up 73 points without raising eyebrows about the direction that unit is heading. Especially after giving up so many points the year before.

Is anyone feeling the ‘burn’ in Morgantown?

Contact Jim Butta at jbutta@newsandsentinel.com