With his long and flowing hair, Ford Childress of the West Virginia Mountaineers became the talk of social media sites, as Mountaineer fans referenced his physical features to that of Ronnie ‘Sunshine’ Bass, of the popular football picture “Remember the Titans.” While his looks were comparable, Childress’s ability to step up on the field when the Mountaineers really needed him is what people are talking about now.
M ountaineer Field was loud and jumping last Saturday afternoon as the West Virginia Mountaineers hosted the Georgia State Panthers in a 41-7 victory. After a tough loss in Oklahoma, the West Virginia coaching staff knew they had to make some changes on the field, beginning with former starting QB Paul Millard. Soon after the Oklahoma loss, Millard and FSU transfer; Clint Trickett found themselves in the backseat as freshman, Ford Childress, was bumped from third-string to starting QB.
A t first, the rookie looked strong and confident, but the Mountaineers quickly found themselves in some tight binds with nowhere to turn. Starting in his first collegiate game, Childress had trouble reaching his receivers, constantly under-throwing the ball, and missing other open receivers. He also had an interception at the Panthers’ 30-yard line against a blitzing defense, after what looked like a promising drive. But not all things went poorly with the fresh QB. Childress was able to connect to 9 different receivers, including returning senior, Ivan McCartney for a 45-yard touchdown pass.
W hile many passes were dropped that Saturday afternoon, one receiver seemed to click especially well with Childress. KJ Myers, sophomore receiver from Jacksonville, Florida found himself on the receiving end of seven passes, six of which were completed for a total of 64 yards. The Florida native made his debut in the 2012 season with 2 receptions, 9 yards, and 1 touchdown. After a busy game and a display of tenacity on the field, it is no question that Myers will be back, fighting for yards, and moving the chains.
W hile the offensive side of the WVU squad is still looking for the right combination of players, the Mountaineers defense seems to be coming together. While still sewing some holes in the defense, the Mountaineers were able to hold the Panthers to 10 first down conversions. Georgia State also went 3-13 on 3rd down conversions. Safety, Karl Joseph, and only a few plays recovered a fumble forced by West Virginia LB, Nick Kwiatkoski, later, Childress sent freshman wide receiver, Daikiel Shorts into the end-zone for a 23-yard touchdown leaving the score at 34-7.
C hildress finished the night with 359 yards passing and a possible starting spot in the Mountaineers game against the Maryland Terrapins. With the perfect offensive boost that the team needed, the Mountaineers will travel for a Saturday afternoon game at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Stay tuned for more updates on the Mountaineers throughout the seas