Above is a quick photo taken of the practice field where West Virginia held a practice this afternoon. It is on the grounds of the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium, literally in the shadows of the place, across a small parking lot from a stadium gate.
Anyhow, just wanted to pass this along: West Virginia coach Bill Stewart wasn't spreading a whole lot of Christmas cheer this afternoon. Many of us have come to know a man who laughs, smiles, crack jokes and is genuinely affable when he deals with media members and, quite frankly, just about anyone else.
Today, he was far from the "Stew" we have come to know. He was quick and short with his answers, had a noticeable frown, acted standoffish and was, dare I say, just a bit of a grump all around. One member of the media -- a television guy if I recall correctly -- even went so far as to ask Stewart what the reason was behind the escape from the normal "Stew" that everyone has grown accustomed to. Stewart passed it off as being very focused and wanting to win this game.
Perhaps there is a lot of truth to that -- absolutely, positively that is the case. But, it could also be that the happenings of the past 13 days have started to get to the man some, or even much more than jusy "some."
Whatever it was, it truly took me aback.
This was a different Bill Stewart. A much different Bill Stewart.