I've seen a lot of comments (here and elsewhere) operating from the assumption that our offense was playing poorly against WVU and we were bailed out by our defense. I don't think that's accurate. Our defense obviously played a very good game, but I think our offense was pretty good as well.
To start, lets look at the raw numbers. We had 330 yards, which is at least somewhat respectable. We gained 113 on the ground, and Ross averaged 3.4 ypc. Neither number is eye-popping, but those are decent numbers. CJ completed 16/25 for 64%, plus a touchdown and no interceptions. Overall, there's nothing bad about those numbers, although I'll admit that it's a bit of a comedown from three 500+ yard games.
Breaking down the offense drive-by-drive, we had 13 drives, not counting the victory formation at the end. Of those, 6 ended up in points, 5 ended with punts, and 2 ended with turnovers. Of the five that ended in punts, we started at our own 5, 11, 14, 26, and 30 yard lines. It's tough to start pressed up against your own end zone, and on any team, bad starting position is going to make it harder to be productive. Still, we only had two 3-and-outs (and they happened to be the first two possessions of the game)
Looking at the possessions where we put up points, we started two in WV territory (at the 24 and the 6) and the rest on our own 34, 20, 46, and 22 yard lines. To the offense's credit, we capitalized on the two possessions deep within WV territory with touchdowns. Good teams need to take advantage of their opportunities, and we did, so credit where credit's due. The remaining possessions averaged 56 yards each, including an 8 minute, 89 yard possession resulting in a touchdown to seal the victory.
It's a little bit disappointing that we had to settle for field goals in the first half, but I think part of that has to do with the fact that we were holding a substantial lead at that point, and some of our play calling may have been a bit conservative (which is justifiable in that situation). I think the biggest reason we didn't put up more yards, though, was that we had either a very short or a very long field for 5 of our 13 drives. When you start in the red zone, there just aren't many yards to gain. On the other side, when you start inside your own 15, its just hard to get started. If we had a couple more drives that started between our 25 and 40 yard lines, I think we would have been much closer to 450 yards on the day.
Turning to the eye test, I'll agree that CJ and Ross started out a slow and looked off early. Two three and outs and a muffed punt didn't really start things out well. Diggs never really showed up (either because of injury or because they were selling out their defense to double and triple cover him). Back to back fumbles lost is terrible, but they'd be more troubling if it wasn't monsooning and if WVU wasn't doing the same thing. As it is, I'm inclined to give the fumbles a pass unless and until they become a recurring problem.
That said, the team did a lot of things right and capitalized on their opportunities. By the end of the game, our offense had a more than decent performance. I'm happy with that, and I'd give the offense a solid B for it's performance against WVU. The offense looks legit, and the defense is looking better than expected. We kick up the level of competition quite a few notches in two weeks, so we'll have a much better idea how good this team is then.