Austin a consistent force for WVU this season
Published: Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, November 27, 2012 01:11
Consistency has been hard to find during past couple months.
You could argue the Mountaineers have been consistently bad since their impressive road
victory against No. 11 Texas Oct. 6.
However, as a whole, inconsistencies both offensively and defensively led to the sudden drop in play from West Virginia throughout the past seven weeks.
But you won’t have to look far down the West Virginia numerical roster list to find the guy who’s been consistent since week one in 2012.
In fact, he’s first on the list – Tavon Austin.
The senior inside wide receiver has done it all.
From returning kicks and punts to playing in the slot and even running back, the best player on the West Virginia football team this season hasn’t shown a decrease in performance.
Austin has proven he is the most valuable player to the Mountaineers, and he is also the most versatile.
During the Mountaineers five-game losing streak – their longest since 1986, which included losses to Texas Tech, Kansas State, TCU, Oklahoma State and Oklahoma – Austin remained the explosive offensive threat he’s always been while in a West Virginia uniform.
During those aforementioned games, Austin recorded 388 receiving yards, 357 rushing yards, 526 kickoff and punt return yards, totaling 1,271 all-purpose yards.
He also tallied seven touchdowns.
So, it was only natural the Baltimore, Md., native would be the catalyst to end West Virginia’s unexpected losing streak on the road against Iowa State Friday.
He had 99 yards receiving, 74 yards rushing and 88 returns yards to go along with the go-ahead and eventual game-winning 75-yard touchdown reception late in the fourth quarter.
Austin’s numbers speak for themselves, but honestly, they don’t even begin to express the value he represents to this team.
Through the tough times of a losing streak, Tavon remained calm.
He played with the same amount of passion when the Mountaineers controlled their own destiny for the National Championship game as when it was unknown if his team would even be invited to a bowl game.
The senior captain led his team by example, both in the huddle and on the sidelines.
When the Mountaineers needed a crucial stop late in the game against TCU, Austin was the first guy to meet the defense at the sidelines to provide motivation.
He has proven his worth to be more than all-purpose yards, something he’s not too bad at either, considering he ranked first nationally in that
category to end the 2011 season.
Tavon Austin is the most explosive and versatile player in college football today. His illustrious four-year career has been chock-full of accomplishments.
But the most impressive aspect of his career may be his ability to continue to play at a high level when his teammates faltered.
The popular propaganda poster produced during World War II in the United Kingdom with the phrase "Keep Calm and Carry On," had the intentions of raising morale of citizens during tough times.
I’ll leave you with a phrase in hopes of raising morale in a similar fashion during one of the most disappointing seasons in Morgantown in the last decade – Keep Calm and Tavon.