MORGANTOWN -- Motivation can be a tricky thing sometimes. And as Dana Holgorsen makes his way through his first season as a college football head coach, he's finding that out.
Oh, it's not as if the West Virginia coach never had to address the issue before. He's been in charge of offenses at his various stops along the college coaching trail for six years now. And there were times when he had to motivate those groups.
It's a bit different, though, trying to get into the heads of 125 players at once. It can be a snap one week when LSU is in town and 62,000 are in the stands. It's not nearly as automatic a week later if the opponent is Bowling Green and the stadium is more like a morgue.
That's one of the reasons Holgorsen tries to treat every game exactly the same from a practice and preparation standpoint. Don't let 'em see the fear -- or the boredom -- in your eyes.
As West Virginia begins Big East Conference play Saturday at noon with a home game against Connecticut, however, there are added concerns. Like complacency.
Think about it. The Mountaineers are the only team in the Big East ranked among the Top 25 in the country. With an offense that appears to be headed toward breaking school records left and right, West Virginia is about to embark on four games over the next five weeks against what appear to be the four weakest links in the Big East -- UConn, Syracuse, Rutgers and Louisville.
Not until the final three weekends of the season -- when Cincinnati, Pitt and South Florida show up on the schedule -- will the Mountaineers be anything but overwhelming favorites.
So that's a month of trying to get players motivated each week.
"I'm not too worried. That's why we pay coaches to keep the team motivated,'' Holgorsen said this week. "That's our job and we'll handle that. Our job is to be the same every week and continue to improve.