We were supposed to have the Oklahoma State Cowboys over a barrel. It was homecoming. It was our first Big 12 Conference home opener. And our team was playing in front of a sold-out crowd − which meant more than 60,000 Mountaineer fans to rattle the Cowboys with our all-fired enthusiasm and noise levels.
Everything, and I mean everything, pointed to a Take Me Home, Country Roads home field advantage. So what happened?
Too many turnovers and penalties for starters. The Cowboys scored 17 points off of our turnovers.
We trailed at the half, 17-2, but a nip and tuck in the second half pushed us into overtime. We suddenly saw a light of hope. Actually, it was more like thousands of iPhone flashlights that glowed so brightly it looked like someone had taken a hole punch to the stadium.
However, I’m not giving up on our team. I’m not giving up on Howard. No one wants to win more than the young men who play their hearts out week in and week out for Mountaineer Nation.
As Mr. Close-Talker at Mario’s Fishbowl said (over and over) on the eve of the Baylor game last year: “You just gotta believe, buddy. You just gotta believe. If you believe, then it can happen.”
And you know what? He was right. That mindset worked last year when we upset the Bears, 41-27, and now we just gotta believe when our team heads to Waco this weekend.
It’s always a good day to be a Mountaineer. Let’s go.
You can check out the game summary on NBC Sports.