"I don't know what I was thinking, to be honest," Shorts said. "I don't remember the play honestly, but watching the film, coach pointed it out. Now I know next time to stay up and I'll get in the end zone."
Millard took some of the blame for a game that saw WVU finish with one pass play of 20 yards or more. He overthrew Ivan McCartney when McCartney - who, by the way, is WVU's most accomplished receiver despite his uneven career - ran by two defensive backs on a deep post route. A yard shorter and McCartney gets his hands on it and possibly steps through the defenders for the final few yards before the end zone.
It was with the wind and deep down the field, though, so that was like water off Millard's back.
"You can't get too upset with yourself after plays like that, but you've got to put it out there and give yourself a guy a chance to make a play," he said.
What really bothered Millard was a miss on a much shorter throw in the fourth quarter. The Mountaineers had the ball at their 13-yard line, but called a screen pass that was set up to work. Freshman running back Wendell Smallwood moved to the left side, wiggled through the defense and hid behind two offensive linemen.
The pass was a bit behind him and hit a lunging linebacker in the hands.
If Millard puts some more touch on the ball and leads Smallwood just a little, it avoids the linebacker and keeps the play moving behind the blocking. Smallwood then has a rather sizable escort from left guard Marquis Lucas and center Tyler Orlosky. The hardest part of the play would be figuring out who blocks the safety deep and the linebacker to the right, the only defenders left unblocked on the play.
"If he caught that, you can't say he's going to run 80 yards for a touchdown, but the possibility was there," Milard said. "That's what the play was set up to be."
It would have been nice to get some practice doing some of those things in the space William & Mary afforded last week. Oklahoma grants no luxuries.
The Sooners have overhauled their defense and added speed to the scheme, which closes windows quickly. They also ask their defensive backs to play close to receivers and to do whatever they can to keep a receiver from running his route. Meanwhile, the rest of the Sooners seek to attack the passer to force quick throws, short gains and bad decisions.
The Mountaineers hope they get to tell a different story.
"They bring a lot of guys, a lot of different blitzes, probably like five guys every time," receiver K.J. Myers said. "They're going to test our receivers, which is perfect. They going to play it out there like, 'You've got to beat me.' They'll put their people in the box and blitz and try to get to the quarterback fast. They let the receivers know, 'You've got to beat me,' so we've got to beat them outside and inside."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.