The Washington Times - August 5, 2009, 09:50AM

The jaunt to Big East media day yesterday provided probably the opportunity I’ll have all year to write extensively about West Virginia.

For years, there was a guaranteed week of considering the various things the Mountaineers presented. West Virginia was a fixture on Maryland’s schedule from 1980 to 2007.

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Last year – and again this year – the teams won’t meet.

“I don’t know what happened there,” senior linebacker Reed Williams said.

Filling in the blanks: Maryland added California for a home-and-home in 2008 and 2009.

“Well at least they’re staying in the blue-and-gold, so they’re not too far from us,” Williams said.

It’s not like West Virginia didn’t find a suitable (albeit temporary) replacement, either. The Mountaineers scheduled home-and-homes with Auburn and Colorado over the last two years. All but this season’s game at Auburn landed on a Thursday night on ESPN.

Next year, though, Maryland-West Virginia picks up again in Morgantown, the first of at least four straight seasons the schools will meet.

And that will suit Williams, a West Virginia native, just fine.

“That’s a great rivalry,” Williams said. “To be able to go to U-Md., that was fun every year. It’s a great crowd and we always had some fun over there. And obviously it was always a tough opponent to play against.”

Patrick Stevens