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SAY HELLO TO MY ALMA MATER
AS TOLD TO ELIZABETH MCGARR
August 16, 2012
On the eve of their programs' first Big 12 games, two beloved QBs dish on what makes their schools great
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August 16, 2012

Say Hello To My Alma Mater

On the eve of their programs' first Big 12 games, two beloved QBs dish on what makes their schools great

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INTRODUCING MORGANTOWN IT'S A BEAUTIFUL little community. It'll be a great road trip for people from Texas and Oklahoma because we have hills and lots of trees. There's not a better place when the foliage changes in October and early November. Golds and reds and yellows, 50-degree days, the sun is shining. Like a lot of Big 12 communities, it's a small college town. When there's a home football game, nothing else really happens the day before or after.

THE SCHOOL'S FIGHTIN' SIDE WE'VE ALWAYS been fairly good at what I like to call punching above our weight. That's been true going back to the Sam Huff years in the '50s through this more modern era. We'll need to do that because there are some awful good teams in this conference.

THE STATE'S TRUE COLORS ONE THING THAT'S been true over the years is the loyalty that people in this state have for the Mountaineers. We don't have any professional teams. We've been the flagship school since 1867, when the university was founded. No matter where you go, people rally around the Mountaineers. It's one of the things that holds the state together.

READY TO RACK 'EM UP DANA HOLGORSEN, OUR coach, is one of the sharper offensive minds in the country. Our style of play suits us for the Big 12. It's wide open. We're going to see games where we've got to score 45, 50 points to remain in it. We're excited about that.

THE MISSION AHEAD IT'S A TOUGH CONFERENCE, top to bottom, and we have to bring our A game every week. You can't slip away with a victory if you bring a B or a C game because the competition is that good.

HOW HE WOUND UP A FROG I WAS FAMILIAR with the school, and once I got the offer, early in my senior year at Katy High [outside Houston], I committed right away. It was perfect. I love Fort Worth. The school was very good academically; I was in the business school. And I had a great opportunity to come in and start as a redshirt freshman. All those things kind of tied in.

THE SCHOOL'S FIGHTIN' SIDE WE'RE JUST A BLUE-COLLAR team. Put our backs up against the wall, and we'll fight. That's the attitude that Coach [Gary] Patterson instills in the players, and everybody has to buy in. When everybody buys in, a lot of good things happen.

THE LASTING ROSE BOWL WIN MY SENIOR year [2010] we would have loved to play in the national championship game, but it didn't work out. Given that, I don't think there's a better way to end it than the Rose Bowl. That win over Wisconsin was great for the school. It got us recognition and got us a chance to be in the Big 12.

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