The Panthers, who will receive a $550,000 payment from WVU for the game, are in an unexpected transitional stage early in the season. Starting center Michael Davis and starting right guard Harrison Clottey, both fifth-year seniors, quit the team following Saturday's 42-14 loss to FCS Chattanooga.
That won't help a running game that's been historically bad. The Panthers have 102 yards rushing, including a program-worst total of 30 yards last Saturday, and average only 2.4 yards per carry.
Miles reassigned running backs coach Tony Tiller to another job within the athletic department Monday and promoted graduate assistant Brock Lough to take over the position.
"We are still trying to get the right guys on the field who give great effort and play hard at all times," Miles said Monday on the Sun Belt teleconference. "To play for us, you have to put it on the line every play, every down."
Miles believes his team lost its spirit early in the loss to the Mocs, who were up 14-0 after 10 minutes of the game and ran for 401 yards on the way to a 42-0 lead.
"We had some young guys in their second college football game and they were learning how to handle it, and then some guys that have been around and haven't had success who are probably more fragile than the young guys," said Miles, who is using eight true freshmen and has 15 true or redshirt freshmen in the two-deep on offense and defense.
The Panthers played two quarterbacks. Ben McClane came in during the fourth quarter and completed 7 of 12 passes for 164 yards in leading two touchdown drives. He relieved Ronnie Bell, who was 9-for-22 and played under constant pressure.
"Ronnie got beat up," Miles said. "He was running for his life. They manhandled us up front. They got pressure on our quarterback and we weren't able to run the football."
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Senior Pat Eger, who played both guard positions and center against Oklahoma, will make his first career start at center against Georgia State. Holgorsen said redshirt freshman Tyler Orlosky will play and that Eger will continue to backup the guards.
"Tyler will be fine," Holgorsen said. "He's a redshirt freshman, he's a little undersized and the guy he went against - that nose guard - that dude was a good player. He physically got outmanned a little bit. On one of those fumbles, he got lit up a bit. But he's not hurt. He'll play. Pat has no problem going from center to guard, and then we can put Tyler back in at center. I expect that to continue."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.