Childress is the first freshman to start for the Mountaineers since Pat White in 2005. The passing yardage topped Scott McBrien's previous freshman record of 257 set in a loss to Pitt in 2000. McBrien would transfer the following year and go on to torment the Mountaineers as the Maryland quarterback.
WVU plays the Terrapins (3-0) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday on ESPNU at Baltimore's M&T Bank Stadium.
"He threw some balls that would have set him up for a really good game if we make the play on them," offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Shannon Dawson said of Childress.
Aggravated by mistakes made against the Sooners, the Mountaineers started three new receivers against the Panthers (0-3), but saw many of the same errors. Childress counted a few dropped passes among his incomplete passes, including two by new starter Kevin White.
White, who lost a fumble in the red zone a week earlier, dropped two passes and one was a sure touchdown.
"It is frustrating, but they didn't mean to drop it," Childress said. "They go on to the next play and hopefully they're going to catch it."
Childress blamed himself for some lost yardage and squandered opportunities and highlighted a few long passes the Mountaineers thought they could exploit against a defense that was crowding the line of scrimmage to combat the run.
He connected with new starter Ronald Carswell on a 43-yard completion in the second quarter, but Childress was upset he didn't lead Carswell more for a touchdown. Childress also thought he could have thrown a similar long ball to White farther and given him more room to run under and catch it.
A 45-yard touchdown pass to Ivan McCartney was effective, but McCartney had to slow down to catch the pass before beating the dispatched defender into the end zone.
"I think my deep balls are what I need to improve on most," Childress said. "I tend to underthrow deep balls. I don't want to overthrow them. I want to give them a shot, but I need to let it go to give them a shot."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.