The subject of the recently stout West Virginia defense -- with six sophomores and one freshman starting, salute -- will be scrutinized inside the inky pages of the PG in coming days. But, first, we wanted to run past you a couple or three innerestin' digits.
Since the opening five minutes of the Colorado game, when the host Buffaloes stomped up two hasty touchdowns, the Mountaineers' defense has:
* Yielded just five touchdowns in the past 355 minutes of regulation and one overtime (their 59 points in this span equate to roughly 9.8 points per game, which would rank them second only to USC's touchdown-per-lousy-Pac-10-game average).
* Allowed just four touchdowns, along with seven field goals, in opponents' 17 trips inside the Red Zone (that 64 percentage would rank them sixth among all major-college programs, although, as it is, they stand No. 16 overall in the category).
* Prevented the opposition from scoring on 81 percent of its possessions (Alabama and Penn State, by comparison respectively, are only 1 and 2 percent better for the entire season).
If you really dig math, you'll figure that something's gotta give this week against Cincinnati, which scores on average one of every three possessions this fall.
One note about the special teams, particularly the kickoff-coverage unit that ranks 119th and last: Courtney Stuart (knee) will miss three to six weeks, Jim Lewis (foot) another week and Archie Sims (apparent concussion) an indefinite period, Coach Bill Stewart said. Added the coach: "I asked what planet Archie was on in a meeting and he said 'Earth,' but he looked to me like he was on Jupiter."
Oh, and as expected -- he did beat then-No. 24 South Florida last week -- Tony Pike will start at quarterback for Cincinnati.