The Mountaineers actually did win a few of those against Baylor. The Bears came into the game averaging 207 yards rushing and 5.3 yards per carry. Against West Virginia they had 119 yards and averaged 2.6 yards.
Baylor quarterback Nick Florence, who had been sacked only three times in three games, was dropped three more by the Mountaineer pass rush. West Virginia also hemmed him in otherwise, giving him just 14 yards on four rushes (he finished in negative yardage after the sacks) after he'd averaged 58 yards and nearly 10 yards per carry on his non-sack rushes this season.
Now, whether or not that bodes well as WVU prepares to face a team like Texas - which runs the ball on just under 60 percent of its plays - remains to be seen. The two offenses are simply apples and oranges.
"The challenge Texas gives you is multiple shifts,'' defensive coordinator Joe DeForest said. "Every third play you're going to get tight ends in motion and they try to confuse you with all the movement. And then they settle down and just try to run the ball down your throat.
"We have to just let them move, read our keys and go from there. But it's a big challenge.''
The Longhorns are averaging 43.5 rushes per game and gaining 228 yards. But quarterback David Ash is also second in the country in pass efficiency (behind WVU's Geno Smith) and has thrown for 10 touchdowns and just one interception.
So stopping the run and getting pressure on the quarterback are both perhaps more important this week than last. Neither has much to do with the secondary, which is where many of WVU's defensive failings rest, so Saturday night's game should answer a lot of questions about how well-equipped the Mountaineers are to handle the multiple offenses it will see the rest of the season.
"There are a lot of good things we did and a lot of good things that happened [against Baylor],'' Slaughter said, referring to his defensive front. "But the bottom line is that we gave up 63 points. It's almost like a moral victory that we won despite that. And we're not interested in moral victories.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.