WVU coaches to players: Just relax

MORGANTOWN – The West Virginia University football coaching staff wants the players to just relax and go out and do what they do best – play football.

“We need to relax, and we need to expect good things to happen,” Dana Holgorsen said, “because right now offensively that is not going to happen.

“I’m sick to my stomach about what happened offensively Saturday, but this week we are trying to get better. Guys need to relax. I saw a few times on Saturday where a few things happened. Some guys got all wide-eyed and thought, ‘Oh, crap.’ That can’t happen. That’s 100 percent coaching, though. We can’t have guys who are afraid to make a mistake. That does not exist on defense. But it is happening a little bit on offense.”

But facing unbeaten and 11th-ranked Oklahoma State at noon Saturday does not allow for many tensions to ease.

“It starts with us, the coaches,” offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson said. “You have to have a contagious personality that is worth catching. If I am uptight and all the coaches are uptight, then the players are going to probably be uptight. We just need to go out there and play ball.”

Holgorsen said if he expects the players to change his outlook, he has to change his own.

“I’m going to expect good things to happen,” he said. “I’m going to go out there and not be worried about calling the perfect play. If you sit there and worry about calling a different play, then you are going to call a bad one. That mentality needs to go away. We need to relax, and we need to expect goog things to happen.”

Holgorsen did admit that it is difficult to stay motivated after playing poorly. He said the team will work to restore its confidence.

“If we can get a little better, then we can get some confidence,” he said. “Then hopefully, it will steamroll, and we can start scoring points and winning games. You have to believe it’s going to happen. Otherwise, it will not happen.”