West Virginia’s playoff hopes dashed in loss to Oklahoma State
STILLWATER, Okla. — Taylor Cornelius threw a touchdown pass to Tylan Wallace with 42 seconds remaining to rally Oklahoma State past No. 7 West Virginia, 45-41, on Saturday.
Will Grier led West Virginia (8-2, 6-2, No. 9 CFP) to the Oklahoma State 14 but couldn’t connect with David Sills V on the final play. The loss all but ended West Virginia’s shot at the College Football Playoff.
West Virginia faces Oklahoma next Friday and still has a shot at reaching the Big 12 title game.
Cornelius passed for 338 yards and ran for 106 to help Oklahoma State (6-5, 3-5) become bowl eligible. Down 31-14 at the half, the Cowboys won despite leading rusher Justice Hill sitting out with a rib injury.
“Our coaches made tremendous adjustments at halftime,” Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said. “I couldn’t be prouder of them.”
Chuba Hubbard rushed for a career-high 134 yards for Oklahoma State, and Dillon Stoner caught nine passes for a career-best 127 yards.
Grier passed 364 yards and two touchdowns for the Mountaineers. Kennedy McKoy rushed for a career-high 148 yards for the Mountaineers.
Grier’s 6-yard touchdown run on fourth down in the fourth quarter gave West Virginia a 41-31 lead, but Cornelius’ 16-yard touchdown run and a stop by Oklahoma State’s defense put the Cowboys in position to win.
Cornelius, a redshirt senior, took it from there and closed out his home career with a huge win. It’s the first time Oklahoma State has beaten Top 10 teams in back-to-back home games. In between, the Cowboys lost a 48-47 heartbreaker at Oklahoma.
“He is a good player,” West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen said of Cornelius. “He has gotten better every week. He has been there for a while.”
Oklahoma State has Top 25 wins over Boise State, Texas and West Virginia this season.
“They have been in a lot of these games, and you can tell they had a little bit better mindset down the stretch than we did,” Holgorsen said. “It’s disappointing that we had a chance to close them out and we didn’t.”