1989 West Virginia Mountaineers football team

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1989 West Virginia Mountaineers football
West Virginia Flying WV logo.svg
Gator Bowl, L 7–27 vs. Clemson
Conference Independent
Ranking
AP #21
1989 record 8–3–1
Head coach Don Nehlen
Offensive scheme Option
Home stadium Mountaineer Field
(Capacity: 63,500)
Seasons
« 1988 1990 »
1989 Division I-A independents football records
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
#1 Miami         11 1 0
#2 Notre Dame         12 1 0
#3 Florida State         10 2 0
Northern Illinois         9 2 0
#15 Penn State         8 3 1
#17 Pittsburgh         8 3 1
#21 West Virginia         8 3 1
Syracuse         8 4 0
Southwestern Louisiana         7 4 0
Akron         6 4 1
South Carolina         6 4 1
Virginia Tech         6 4 1
Louisiana Tech         5 4 1
Army         6 5 0
Louisville         6 5 0
East Carolina         5 5 1
Tulsa         6 6 0
Southern Miss         5 6 0
Tulane         4 8 0
Navy         3 8 0
Rutgers         2 7 2
Boston College         2 9 0
Memphis         2 9 0
Cincinnati         1 9 1
Temple         1 10 0
Rankings from AP Poll

The 1989 West Virginia Mountaineers football team represented West Virginia University in the 1989 NCAA Division I-A football season. It was the Mountaineers' 97th overall season and they competed as a Division I-A Independent. The team was led by head coach Don Nehlen, in his 10th year, and played their home games at Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, West Virginia. They finished the season with a record of eight wins, three losses and one tie (8–3–1 overall), and earned a Gator Bowl berth against No. 14 Clemson, where they were defeated 27–7.

1989 Schedule[edit]

Date Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
September 2 Ball State* #17 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV W 35–10   57,866[1]
September 9 at Maryland* #17 Byrd StadiumCollege Park, MD (MD-WV Rivalry) W 14–10   45,000[1]
September 16 South Carolina* #12 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV W 45–21   66,015[1]
September 23 at Louisville* #9 Cardinal StadiumLouisville, KY W 30–21   39,132[1]
September 30 #10 Pitt* #9 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV (Backyard Brawl) T 31–31   68,938[1]
October 7 Virginia Tech* #9 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV (VT-WV Rivalry) L 10–12   62,563[1]
October 21 Cincinnati* #18 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV W 69–3   47,176[1]
October 28 at Boston College* #15 Alumni StadiumChestnut Hill, MA W 44–30   32,000[1]
November 4 at #16 Penn State* #13 Beaver StadiumUniversity Park, PA L 9–19   85,911[1]
November 11 Rutgers* #19 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV W 21–20   61,336[1]
November 24 at Syracuse* #17 Carrier DomeSyracuse, NY W 24–17   46,757[1]
December 30 vs. #14 Clemson* #17 Gator Bowl StadiumJacksonville, FL (Gator Bowl) L 7–27   82,911[1]
*Non-conference game. daggerHomecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll. All times are in Eastern Time.

Season Summary[edit]

Coming off of its first ever 11-win season and with junior Major Harris returning to lead a potent offense, West Virginia entered the 1989 season ranked 17th in the AP Poll and with high expectations. The Mountaineers started the season accordingly, racing to a 4-0 record and to #9 in the AP Poll. In Week 5 against #10 Pitt, however, West Virginia fell victim to another memorable collapse in the Backyard Brawl. Trailing 31-9 in the 4th quarter, Pitt scored 22 unanswered points and kicked a game-tying field goal as time expired to force a 31-31 tie.[2] The Mountaineers would suffer another heartbreaking result the following week with a 12-10 home loss to Virginia Tech, as well as a 19-9 loss to #16 Penn State in State College. Despite those disappointing defeats, WVU finished the regular season at 8-2-1, a #17 ranking in the AP Poll, and a trip to the Gator Bowl to face #14 Clemson. The Mountaineers faltered, however, losing 27-7 and finished the season at 8-3-1 with a #21 ranking in the final AP Poll.[3]

Statistical Leaders[edit]

All stats are courtesy of WVUStats.com unless otherwise cited.[4]

  • Passing:
Major Harris - 142/245, 2,058 yards, 17 touchdowns, 11 interceptions
  • Rushing:
Major Harris - 155 carries, 936 yards, 6.0 average per carry, six touchdowns
Garrett Ford, Jr. - 148 carries, 733 yards, 5.0 average per carry, six touchdowns
  • Receiving:
Reggie Rembert - 47 receptions, 850 yards, 11 touchdowns
  • Interceptions:
Preston Waters - 7 interceptions

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l DeVault, Mark. "WVU 1989 Schedule". WVU Stats (West Virginia University Athletics). Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  2. ^ Antonik, John & Scuillo, Sam (December 1, 2007). "Tales from the Backyard Brawl". MSN Sportsnet (West Virginia University Athletics). Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  3. ^ DeVault, Mark. "WVU 1989 Schedule". WVU Stats (West Virginia University Athletics). Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  4. ^ DeVault, Mark. "WVU 1989 Statistics". WVU Stats (West Virginia University Athletics). Retrieved January 17, 2012.