MORGANTOWN - It was hard to argue with Geno Smith late Saturday night.
The West Virginia quarterback had, for the second week in a row, pretty much thrown away - literally - any thoughts of winning the Heisman Trophy. He and his Mountaineer teammates had somehow, some way, completed a rapid transformation from national darling to national punch line.
Kansas State had walked into Mountaineer Field expecting to fight for its life and its No. 4 national ranking. As it turns out, all the Wildcats had to do was show up because there was little to no fight put up by the hosts.
And so there sat Smith after West Virginia's humbling 55-14 loss, one that came on the heels of a 49-14 pasting a week before at Texas Tech.
"This is one of those things were we've reached our low,'' Smith said. "This is as low as it gets.''
Or is it?
No, West Virginia won't lose as badly this week. But that's a guarantee made possible only by the fact that the Mountaineers don't play. They are off this weekend before beginning a season-ending stretch of five games against TCU, Oklahoma State, Oklahoma, Iowa State and Kansas. There's a good chance that in only one of those games - Kansas at home to end the season - will West Virginia be favored.
But even that's not guaranteed. Who knows how low things could get by then?
Of course, who ever believed they would get this low, this fast? It was just nine days ago that WVU strolled into Lubbock, Texas, as the No. 5 team in the country with the Heisman frontrunner in Smith. Today the Mountaineers find themselves ranked No. 25 and the butt of jokes thanks to a defense that can't stop anyone and an offense that inexplicably can't score on anyone.
"I've never had to deal with adversity of this magnitude,'' said Smith, who threw for just 143 yards against Kansas State and suffered his first two interceptions since Dec. 1 of last season. "I've never lost two games in this manner.
"I have to do a better job of being a leader, stepping up and getting guys to respond. And I'm going to do that. I'm going to dig deep. I have to look myself in the mirror and just figure out ways to get better.''