MORGANTOWN - With his 10 catches in Thursday night's 20-6 win over South Florida, Jock Sanders moved into second place on West Virginia's all-time list for career receptions.
The senior slot receiver gained just 31 yards on those 10 receptions, but it still gives him 173 career catches. That eclipses the 169 of Shawn Foreman, who was second on the all-time list. He now needs just 18 more to tie David Saunders (191) for the top spot.
So, is that at all significant to Sanders? Well, yes and no.
Yes because he obviously cares about the mark, but no because he doesn't want to get bogged down with it. He did that last year when he went into the late stages of the season with a chance to reach the school's single-season record for catches (77, by both Saunders and Foreman) and fell five short.
"Everybody was all big on the receptions thing last year and I got too hyped for it,'' said Sanders, who has 36 catches this season. "I think that's why I didn't get it. Now I just try not to worry about those things. If it's meant to be then it'll happen.''
How did Sanders manage to catch 10 passes and gain just 31 yards? Well, all but one of the catches was at or behind the line of scrimmage and he never found much running room, although two of the catches produced first downs and a third a touchdown.
That third one was one of the key plays of the game, the catch-and-lateral to Noel Devine at the end of the first half that gave West Virginia a 17-3 lead. But for Sanders' part of the 7-yard touchdown he was credited with a catch and minus-4 yards. He caught the ball at the line of scrimmage (the 7-yard line) and flipped it back to Devine at the 11, 4 yards back. Devine was then credited for 11 receiving yards with no catch and quarterback Geno Smith got 7 yards passing on what was recorded as an 11-yard touchdown play.
Got it? Oh, and Devine, who also had a 1-yard reception in the game, is listed in the statistics with one catch for 12 yards and a long of 1. Go figure.
Anyway, Sanders is also chasing another school record, that for consecutive games with a catch. It is now at 34, which is second to Khori Ivy's 40 straight from 1997 through 2000. Sanders began his streak in the infamous 13-9 loss to Pitt at the end of the 2007.