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Coming into the Guaranteed Rate Bowl the ‘Eers are getting +4.5 points against the Golden Gophers and that is a spot that I kind of like for WVU. West Virginia has been a dog of 4.5 or more this season four times and have covered three of them, meanwhile Minnesota has been a favorite of 4.5 points or more five times this year and only covered it twice. It is a number that sits in a sweet spot for West Virginia to cover. Based on trends.
However, West Virginia is going to have to replace Leddie Brown, who is not playing as he readies for the NFL draft, and the teams second leading rusher is its quarterback, Garrett Greene, though it will give an opportunity to Tony Mathis Jr. to lighten the load. There is not much tape on Mathis, who has played sparingly and has not scored, which could make it tough on Minnesota — despite its stout rushing attack.
Look for West Virginia to have to go to the air to win this game and connect with Winston Wright and Bryce Ford-Wheaton.
Improbably this is the first time the two schools have ever met on the field. Minnesota started playing football in 1882, West Virginia launched its program in 1891!