2019 West Virginia Mountaineers College Football Odds and Expert Betting Picks
2018 Record: 8-4
2019 Las Vegas Season Win Total: 5.0
2019 Season Win Total Picks NCAA Football: 'Under'
For the first time in years, West Virginia football begins a season without Dana Holgersen on the hot seat.
The only reason that's the case is that Holgersen bolted for Houston this offseason. Holgersen left the WVU roster in shambles, and now new head coach Neal Brown is left to pick up the pieces.
Quarterback Will Grier is gone. Stud wideouts David Sills and Gary Jennings are gone. Their top four receivers are gone. Three offensive linemen are gone. Three of the top six tacklers are gone. All told, West Virginia has just nine total starters back from last year's eight-win team.
Even with the talent that they have had in Morgantown, West Virginia has gone just 15-10 straight up and 13-12 against the spread the last two seasons. They closed out last season with three straight losses, including a bowl blowout. And after a tough offseason, they enter the 2019 campaign with negative momentum.
Basically, there is no way in hell they are getting to six wins this season.
The Mountaineers have a moderately difficult nonconference schedule, with a trip to upstart Missouri and a home game against North Carolina State. They do have winnable games against James Madison and at Kansas, which is breaking in a new coach of its own.
However, once the Mountaineers get into the meat of conference play, I think they are going to bet pummeled. They have a bye week Sept. 28, and honestly I don't know if I see any wins coming after that.
Perhaps the "easiest" Big 12 games on the WVU slate are home games against Texas Tech and Oklahoma State. Those are far from gimmes. They do host Texas the week before the Longhorns take on Oklahoma. But that is the only advantage they will have in that game.
Brown, who was the head coach at Troy, was a solid hire, and I think he will be fine here. In time. This is a clear transitional season for the Mountaineers, though, and they are not going to be bowl eligible. Definitely take this one 'under'.
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