West Virginia news and notes

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Here are a few news and notes from West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen's final news conference before the Discover Orange Bowl against Clemson:

  • Holgorsen said he had not made a decision on who would start at safety in place of the injured Terence Garvin. Freshmen Shaq Petteway and Wes Tonkery, and junior college transfer Matt Moro will all be rotated in. "When you lose Terence Garvin, who was our leading tackler last year and has played a lot of football, you can't just replace him with one guy," Holgorsen said. "And all those guys I mentioned are all new guys. Matt is a junior college kid first year, Wes is a freshman, Shaq is a true freshman. You've got a lot of guys that haven't been put in that situation. So what you do is you plug one guy in, see how it works, and then if you need to take him off and calm him down and put somebody else in there, then you need to do that."

  • One of Holgorsen's bigger concerns about playing in the game was the way his players would handle some of the distractions of South Beach. But he said there were no problems with any of his players. "We all had our concerns with it just because it's a busy place, and there's a lot to do," he said. "I give our team a tremendous amount of credit. You know, we named captains in the beginning of the week with Geno Smith, Joey Madsen, Keith Tandy and Najee Goode, and then we talked to the rest of the seniors about this being your team and there's going to be situations out there to where you're going to have to make decisions on whether you do the right thing or do the wrong thing. That's no different here than it is in Morgantown throughout the course of the week. I just was really proud of how the guys handled themselves."

  • Holgorsen was also asked if there was such a thing as being over prepared, with so much time to get ready for the game. "You've got to be careful with time on your hands," he said. "Coaches have a tendency to outsmart themselves at times, so you've got to figure out what your team does well, which we've had a lot of time here in the last four months to figure out what our team does well, and we've just got to put them in those positions to be successful."