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West Virginia @ Kansas: Preview and Open Game Thread

My old friend, do you know the Klingon proverb that tells us revenge is a dish that is best served cold? It is very cold... in Lawrence!

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

West Virginia @ Kansas
Time 11:00 AM
Location Lawrence, KS
Stadium Memorial Stadium (50,071)
Series WVU Leads 3-1
Television Fox Sports Net
Radio Jayhawk Radio Network
Affiliate List
Satellite: SiriusXM Ch. 199
Online (Free):
Live Stats Kansas Live Stats

Kansas is 0-10 (0-7) after dropping a MUCH closer than expected 23-17 decision to TCU last weekend in Fort Worth. The Jayhawks had a the ball with a chance to drive for a touchdown to win the game twice with less than five minutes to go in the fourth quarter, but couldn't capitalize.

West Virginia comes into the game with a 5-4 (2-4) record. The Mountaineers come into Lawrence on a two-game win "streak" after dropping their first four conference games. WVU handled Texas in Morgantown last weekend, 38-20, and knocked off Texas Tech the week before 31-26, also in Morgantown.

West Virginia has suffered from inconsistent quarterback play and been plagued by injuries to their defense, but at 5-4 with their last three games against the bottom three teams in the league (KU, ISU, KSU), they are hardly clinging to bowl eligibility. Unless, of course, the improbably happens - 2013 was real, y'all. (Go ahead, relive the gamethread.) Should WVU lose to KU again, it would have to put serious doubts in the minds of the Mountaineer faithful about the likelihood of a bowl game in 2015.

West Virginia says they remember what happened two years ago. Not only are they not taking Kansas lightly this time, but they are determined to not let that happen again, and some are even out for a measure of revenge.

However, for once, Kansas is NOT facing a team coming off a disappointing loss. No, this time we have something completely different to focus on, and perhaps surprisingly, it's not the opponent - "we have met the enemy, and he is us." Since 2010, every time it seems like Kansas has taken a step forward, it's been immediately followed by two (or three or four or twelve) steps backward. Every time we think we're making progress by playing a game closer than expected - or even winning (a la WVU in 2013) - it's been followed by more rounds of blowout losses.

So the question is, will the Jayhawks take a REAL step forward today? Will they play West Virginia close? Will they threaten to win the game at any point in the second half? That is what I'm looking for today. Otherwise, we have to face the reality that the TCU and Texas Tech games were the anomalies in a horrific season, and the task before David Beaty that is often described as "Herculean" may be even more daunting than anybody thought.

Anyway, it's almost gametime, so you know what that means...