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The Mountaineers (5-0, 2-0 Big 12) set a lofty goal of winning the conference championship right away, but that’s way too far in the distance to contemplate. For starters, West Virginia must get through one of its toughest October schedules after going 28-8 in the month over the previous decade.

After beating ranked teams Baylor and Texas in successive weeks, West Virginia travels to Texas Tech (4-1, 1-1) on Saturday before returning home for an Oct. 20 showdown with co-leader Kansas State (5-0, 2-0).

“I’ve got some guys that believe,” said West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen. “I like the way this team plays together.”

Tuberville, who lost to West Virginia when he coached at Auburn in 2008, gets another crack at the Mountaineers on Saturday. What he’ll see is a much different foe.

Back then, West Virginia relied heavily on the run. Under second-year coach Holgorsen, quarterback Geno Smith is averaging 399 yards passing per game, has thrown 24 touchdown passes and no interceptions.

“They’ve got a real good one,” Tuberville said. “He does a good job of spreading the ball around. He’s a cool guy in terms of just under pressure. I’ve been very impressed.”

There are seven teams with one league loss, but that number will certainly dwindle on Saturday.

Kansas State travels to Iowa State (4-1, 1-1), while it’s Texas (4-1, 1-1) against Oklahoma (3-1, 1-1) at the Cotton Bowl, TCU (4-1, 1-1) at Baylor (3-1, 0-1) and Oklahoma State (2-2, 0-1) at Kansas (1-4, 0-2).

“Everybody understands how competitive it is and everybody seems to want to be a part of that,” said Kansas State coach Bill Snyder. “I think perhaps that adds to the stability of the conference. I think the people who are in the conference want to be in the conference. That’s the important thing.”