WVU Mountaineers


When new Big 12 members TCU and West Virginia meet on the football field this fall, there will be a built-in rivalry. WVU has never won a national championship in football. But in rifle? That’s a whole ‘nother matter. The Mountaineers claim 14 national championships in the sport. But in 2010 and 2012, upstart TCU snatched the NCAA rifle championships. I can already see trouble brewing.

It’s easy to see why WVU was attracted to the Big 12. They’re eager to set their recruiting footprint in Texas, because as Mountaineer A.D. Oliver Luck said, “West Virginia’s high schools produce fewer D-I football recruits than a Pearland High, or a Westlake.” The Big 12 sends teams to the National Championship. Although WVU’s travel budget will increase by a million dollars, and they were assessed a 5 million dollar exit fine from the Big East, they’ll still come out ahead with the new TV deal, the SEC-Big 12 Champions Bowl, and the Big 12’s greater revenue sharing package.

But does anyone really understand why we wanted West Virginia? Yes, their football team is consistently ranked in the top 25, and their rifle program is the envy of...well, of everyone who pays attention to rifle programs. But as snooty as we ‘Horns are about our academic standards, (US New and World Report ranked us # 45 in the nation), we brought in a school ranked # 164. That’s a lower ranking than ANY of the SEC schools we snub. 

Somebody explain the attraction, please.