And despite what Holgorsen said postgame, it's about more than a 10-point swing on a blocked field goal-turned touchdown, or another missed FG, or punts of 12 and 11 yards that don't flip the field.
Coaches are famed for bulletin board material. Well, Louisville Coach Charlie Strong said something Saturday that maybe Holgorsen should post for the Mountaineers to read.
"We have overcome adversity all year long," Strong said, "and I just told them before the game it is not so much about just playing hard, playing smart or playing with emotion, it's about you yourself going out and doing your job. If you yourself do your job, and your teammate does his job, then we have the confidence and trust that we will get it done."
It's about a whole team being on the same page, and WVU still hasn't jelled. Holgorsen's job, now, is about much more than calling plays. It's about getting his first club - all of it - to overcome the adversity and malaise that has struck especially since Big East play began.
Think back. WVU was struggling with Connecticut at halftime (a 10-9 score) at home, before picking apart the Huskies in the second half. The Mountaineers got their helmets handed to them at Syracuse. A halftime wake-up call at Rutgers worked, but then WVU couldn't cope with a Louisville team that came to town ranked No. 103 nationally in total offense.
WVU can't get out of the blocks, either. It has led at the end of the first quarter in only two of nine games. While everyone around WVU has been talking about quarterback Geno Smith - "unbelievable," Strong said admiringly - and the passing game, the rebuilding defense hasn't matured as expected.
There were those around the WVU program that thought the second-half play at Rutgers, in the lousy, snowy, windy conditions, was a turning point for the Mountaineers, that in coming back to win with grit and resiliency, that they finally figured out who they should be.
Well, maybe not.
"I don't know we consider it a step back," WVU defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel said when asked about what followed after pitching a second-half shutout at Rutgers. "We miss a play ... a kid doesn't get his hat in the right spot on a (55)-yard run that ends up a touchdown. We don't do real good job on a pass route on another one ..."
And with the game on the line, Louisville takes 7:11 to go 13 plays and 76 yards for the clinching score, converting two third downs and a fourth down in the process.
There's one previously legitimate excuse the WVU defense can use no more. Yes, the unit didn't give up the first blocked FG for a touchdown against WVU in seven seasons (Virginia Tech, 2004), but it's often looked like Smith is passing his way through it in Big East play.
"Obviously, we have to continue to get better," Casteel said. "If it's 38-35, what was it, we can't give up 38. If we're going to do that, you have to score 39. You know, we're not getting it done.
"I don't know you can say it's a lack of experience (anymore). I think it's a lack of understanding how important every play during the week is. You know, you have to make plays ... When you're playing young people, you don't get do-overs. You don't get a 'reload it' on Saturday.
"The kids, I think they're getting better, but those are the things you have to understand, You've got to make plays when you get your opportunities, so I don't think you can say it's inexperience in Game 9."
There's a lot more to it. If Holgorsen and his team can't figure out its direction going into the real meat of the WVU conference schedule, then perhaps a Compass or Beef O'Brady's Bowl awaits.
Contact Sports Editor Jack Bogaczyk at ja...@dailymail.com or 304-348-7949.