West Virginia wouldn't be 4-2 without the clutch kicking of Josh Lambert.
The Mountaineers' kicker has a pair of game-winning field goals this season, including a 55-yard field goal to beat Texas Tech last weekend. He took some time to talk with ESPN.com about pressure kicks, why he became a kicker and some of his social media exploits.
You missed a field goal earlier [in the game against Texas Tech]. What was going through your mind as you headed out for the game-winner?
Josh Lambert: After I missed the one, I had to put it out of my mind really quickly; you have to forget about it because if you let it follow you, it will haunt you later on. I stayed warm, hoping to get another opportunity. When we got close enough, I’m thinking in my mind, as long as we get to the 40, which would have been a 57-yard field goal, we would be OK. We got close enough, he sent me on the field and the rest is history.
Biggest kick of your life so far?
JL: Yes. It’s the longest field goal I’ve had in a game and for it to be a game-winner, it’s definitely the biggest kick so far.
When coaches try to freeze a kicker, does that even effect you at all?
JL: No, I kind of expected it and it really doesn’t bother me at all. The reason they do it is to give the kicker more time to think about it, but I’m pretty good about not thinking about things, so it doesn’t affect me.
What’s the toughest part about being a kicker?
JL: We don’t have very many opportunities to prove ourselves. When you do get an opportunity, you have to make the most of it. A quarterback missing a throw or a receiver dropping a pass is not as big a deal as a kicker missing a field goal. That’s the hardest part.
Why did you want to do that?
JL: I used to play soccer and in sixth grade I quit playing and decided I needed to pick something up. During PE [physical education] I was on the football field kicking a soccer ball and the PE teacher suggested I try kicking a football. I made the team in seventh grade and now I’m here.
At what point did you start to enjoy it?
JL: I think junior year in high school, I knew I had a shot at going to the next level and I started taking it more seriously.
What’s the best part of being a kicker?
JL: The best part is after we win, going in the locker room with your teammates and seeing how excited everybody is. That gives me the most satisfaction. I don’t think there’s a better feeling than that.
I saw the tweet about Dana [Holgorsen] finally talking to you. What did he say?
JL: After the game, he came up congratulated me and gave me a hug, you know. I tweeted that because everyone played into it after the Maryland comment that he had never talked to me before, which wasn’t true. After the Texas Tech game, I thought I’d have a little more fun with it.
You seem to have a lot of fun on Twitter. Why do you like to joke on social media?
JL: I don’t know. It’s just fun interacting with people. People say more on social media than they say in real life. It’s just a little fun.
You look at it as an opportunity to get your personality out there?
JL: Yeah, I also like to interact with the fans. That’s their way to talk to us and contact us and I like talking to them.
Seems like that can be good and bad?
JL: Definitely good and bad.
What’s been the best tweet you’ve gotten?
JL: I get a lot of tweets on game days from fans saying good luck and after games they’re real interactive. We have a great fan base --the best fan base in the nation.
You made light of the Dana "doesn’t talk to me" comment, but does he say anything to you before a kick? Or that is the situation where he doesn’t talk to you?
JL: Game days, that’s the situation he doesn’t talk to us. He lets us do our thing. Other than that, we have conversations.
Where you surprised that whole situation became a thing?
JL: I really didn’t think people would take it literally, but a lot of people took it literally. That was surprising to me. I don’t see how people would think a head coach wouldn’t talk to his starting kicker.