MANHATTAN, Kan. — Just when West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen seemed to have settled on a quarterback, Clint Trickett’s erratic arm made things unsettling.

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

West Virginia’s Clint Trickett was benched in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s 35-12 loss at K-State.

Trickett completed 15-of-28 passes for 227 yards, but missed several open receivers throughout the afternoon. After Kansas State reeled off three consecutive second-half touchdowns, Holgorsen turned to Paul Millard for the final 7:31 of what became a 35-12 loss.

“You’ve got to be able to throw to open people and complete it, and Clint was not doing that,” Holgorsen said.

Trickett’s final pass attempt was an overthrow of Jordan Thompson streaking down the right hash.  On the next play, Trickett scrambled 5 yards for a first down only to have the ball stripped by K-State safety Ty Zimmerman at the Wildcats’ 46-yard line.

“The frustration level is high. I’m frustrated with myself, it’s obvious,” said Trickett, whose record dipped to 1-3 as a starter at West Virginia. “I’ve got to play better.”

Trickett’s streaky performance began with 1-of-6 passing as WVU punted four times in the first quarter and trailed 7-0. Then he hit on nine straight passes and 10-of-13 as the Mountaineers took a 9-7 lead in the second quarter. Included in that stitch was a 6-yard touchdown scramble and a 50-yard hookup to Ronald Carswell that led to a field goal.

Even during the second half, Trickett made two excellent throws: an on-rhythm screen that Kevin White took for 43 yards (leading to another field goal) and a 20-yard deep out to Daikiel Shorts. But Trickett also lost two fumbles, and missed Cody Clay on a third-and-5. By the time K-State led 28-12, Holgorsen went to Millard in the bullpen.

“When we were down two touchdowns, we obviously have to pick the pace up, run two-minute offense and throw the ball more,” Holgorsen said. “Paul has a little more experience spreading the ball around.”

Alas, Millard went 4-of-14 on two final drives: one that culminated on downs at the K-State 36-yard line and another that was intercepted by Dorrian Roberts.

“I thought he did a very average job,” Holgorsen said of Millard’s relief cameo.

Offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson was reluctant to call WVU’s quarterback battle re-opened.

“Going into the game Clint had played well, but he had a bad series, went out there and missed a few open guys,” he said. “So we tried to put somebody in there to give us a spark.”

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  • Keith

    Holgerson is the same genius that embarrassed Clemson. He's trying to make a silk purse out of a sows eat. Don't worry, he'll be gone soon enough. He's the next Bobby Bowden. We run him off and he'll go somewhere and build a dynasty. I hope it's the SEC because I don't want him coming back here and kicking our asses.

    • Keith J

      His staff recruited that sow's ear. That's unfair to the players. I think there's talent there. It has to be properly coached.

    • Dale

      It's time to stop bringing up the Orange bowl,we can't live on those memories for ever.Its time for a new coach.

    • susanf

      Now THAT'S funny! The SEC wanting Holgerson?? I don't think so!

      • Teddy

        Rumor is LSU is seeking Holgy for the head coach!

        • susanf

          Are they suicidal??

  • peleliu

    problem is, we can not fire him till he wins 80 % of his games like Stew. WVU could hire another coach and bring him in like we treated Stew and put Hol. on the road to scout and continue use digital scouting also. The buyout is no big deal' we could pull it out of the 80 million we got so I can not listen to the games in my area any more. Also we could use the beer money as a revenue source. money is not the issue, leadership is.

  • jwg66

    Agree with Kieth. Should get behind the girls soccer and our riffle teams. They know how to win. Wonder if there is a halftime for the band to play at a shooting match. In all seriousness, there is something special when they can win like they have.

  • randy

    its time for a change the last 16 games we are 5-11 so i agree fire holgerson

  • Keith

    The girls soccer team won the conference championship last night.

    • Bobby M

      I thought drinking WAS suppose to make THESE losses feel better might HERE I believe their making IT worse!

  • Keith

    Come on you guys, open up, say what you're really thinking. Don't be so shy.

  • Bobby M

    Friends! I've SAY it before and again - I LIKE Holgs and wish his lots OF success but its ashame it ISNT working out HERE and maybe its time TO say to coach Holgs "Thanks Friend BUT sorry to" and then wish HIM the best on his future endevors and MAYBE hire a Doc Holliday or Todd Grams type OF coach to pull us OUT OF THIS mess!

    We need a ROCK N Roll Rumble Head coach not some BLA BLA matter OF fact head coach!!!!!!

    • John

      I would rather have anyone including holgs as Doc. Look at that powerhouse he has built in Huntington. What a joke. He has no excuses now, a great recruiter, what a laugh. He is playing with all his players now and can't beat a lowly Middle Tenn State. I am by no means a holg guy, but Doc and Todd would be a major step back. Getting rid of Doc and Dunlap were the two best things to happen in recent memory to the eers.

  • Midwest Mountaineer

    This team could not beat Martinsbuurg

  • tw eagle

    best play of game was squirt avoiding the punt when arendt ran into him as ball is coming down . . .Trickett was erratic , and I could see Millard coming in to speed the plays . . .where was kj myers , or Worley ?
    hurt ? carswell and white failed to make
    catches when it counted . . .dropping catchable balls . . .had WVU kicked the FG at end of half , the D doesn't have to gamble when K st gets to 21 . . .two scores down the Mounties were trying for a TO . . .didn't get it . . .Cook & Joseph played better , but they might as well be udders on a bull when it comes to helping out the corners on pass coverage . . .one major recommendation -
    when doing a 0 blitz , remind the cover guys to stay close enough to interfere with the recievers rather than let them catch and score . . .KUDOS to the D line and also to
    the O line . . .another winnable game gets away . . .it's past time to drop the swing pass
    in the backfield . . .and why do the bubble screens always get stuffed ? the wide guys are afraid to block for each other ? it looks so simple and easy when the opponent does it , 5 to7 yds , and 12-15 when a tackle is missed . . .WVU play calling is inept and predictable . . .the ball handlers quit when the going gets tough . . .so what can be done when the coaching staff can't or won't get the playmakers to commit to playing a whole game ? watch the game again , WVU (Trickett) moved the team on "broken" plays ,
    where he had to extend or improvise because Holgersons calls were being stuffed . . .enough , taking some solace seeing pervert state get drilled . . .

  • george

    same ole same ole

  • richard

    bad team, bad coach, bad coaches and a bad year.

    • BH

      Well said.

  • ron51

    what a joke of a head coach I've supported hoggy since he's been here but today was the last straw he has no football skill I guess it's time to get on board with big larry I can't beleave I iust that

  • Toadman

    Fire Holgerson NOW! What a disgrace this so called Head Coach is to Mountaineer's everywhere. Pay him the $12.2 Mil buyout on the remainder of his contract and move on. This guy is in no way head coach material on the Div. 1 level. I wouldn't even want him as head coach on a high school team. Get rid of the rest of the coaching staff too and hire someone who bleeds real Blue & Gold. Oh, and by the way, get rid of those chicken s--- yellow helmets. They look about as classy as my grandfathers outhouse!

    • Bill

      I will second that!

      • Bill

        Sorry, I only second that on the yellow helmets.

  • Moon

    I can't even begin to figure out our offensive problems. Just a lay person and fan...but it is not hard to figure out our defensive problems. On the first three touchdowns we had them in 3rd and long...on all three touchdowns we did NOT pressure...we rushed 4. In three other key 3rd and long situations during the game we rushed 4 and the QB sat back unhurried and completed a pass for a first down. I do not know why it is so hard to understand...The next time we rush 3 or 4 on a third and long should be FREAKING NEVER!!!!

    If you can't cover....and we can't....then you have got to PRESSURE. Very frustrating to watch us pressure on 1st and 2nd downs with great success and then try and drop back and cover on third and long...TIME AFTER TIME...and get beat. Amazing!

    Very tough loss against a team that was completely beatable.

    • j hicks

      The O is just to young things will get better hope next year the D I believe is the letting the man with the 3-3 5 stack go. He had thing fairly good on the d side. We are young their also but don't look for it to get allot better with all the quick passing the B12 does.

  • Andy Price

    Why don't we try putting a junior high player in his place

    • William

      The biggest quarterback mess in the history of WVU football!
      Don't worry WVU fans Holgorsen will "FIX IT"