"What do you do?" DeForest said. "You tell me. If you've got an answer, tell me."
Begin with a deep breath and then a slow, smooth exhale. If everyone is going to praise WVU's offense and grant Baylor's defense a pass, it's only fair to flip the script and extend the Baylor offense credit.
"This wasn't the ideal opponent to open up with," DeForest said.
No, but now the Mountaineers must make something of it. It could start with personnel changes, and it doesn't take much imagination to see where that might occur. WVU's defensive line has done well. The linebackers make plays across the field. Cook has a knack for being near the ball and making something happen. The other safety, Karl Joseph, has had ups and downs, but is certainly trending up.
That leaves the cornerbacks and Texas has three receivers keying a suddenly potent passing attack that averages 12 yards per completion and one touchdown every 8.5 attempts from quarterback David Ash. Using the golden Geno Smith standard, that's pretty good. Smith averages 12 yards per completion and a touchdown every seven attempts.
DeForest did pull starting cornerback Pat Miller after Williams caught his 16th pass. He caught his 17th against freshman cornerback Nana Kyeremeh for a touchdown.
"I didn't want to," DeForest said. "You want to build these guys' confidence. As soon as you pull a guy, he loses confidence and you may need him later."
Yet Coach Dana Holgorsen talks often about accountability and he'll pull a punter or an offensive lineman or even a backup quarterback if he can't handle the task. Trust the expectations are the same on DeForest's side of Holgorsen's team. The urge that might be harder to resist, and smarter to follow, is status quo.
"I don't feel like it's a personnel issue," Cook said. "We always had the right plays called and we were in the right place to make plays. This is a team defense. It's my fault. It's the defensive line's fault. It's the linebackers' fault. It's everyone's fault. You don't give up 63 points because of a couple players."
DeForest felt best about getting lined up properly and not falling victim to Baylor's tempo, which is shallow praise, but was nevertheless a top goal before the game and one that will remain valuable in the Big 12. And like Cook, he thought players were in position to make plays that they just didn't make. It might be better to trust those players to return to the right spot and make the best play the next time than gamble on a new player to do the same.
"We'll look at making personnel changes and making better calls, but we've got to do a better job of, when the ball is in the air, attacking the ball," DeForest said. "They ran the same plays we practiced. They never really tempoed us. We were always in position to make plays. They just executed better than we did. That's what we've got to change if we want to compete in this league."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.