Suffering long has been a big part of being a fan of the Mountaineers.
All one has to do is remember back to that cold and wintry night in Morgantown in early December 2007 when arch rival Pittsburgh ended WVU's plans to play for a national championship for only the second time in the program's history.
Now, however, even that dismal event has taken a back seat to the results of the last two contests played against a then-unranked Texas Tech squad and, more recently, No. 4 Kansas State.
Words like frustrating, disappointed, angry, upset, even depressing, have been bantered about on radio talk shows and on the Internet. Fans have even gone so far as wanting coaches to lose their jobs and players to lose their scholarships because of the poor play that has cost WVU its last two games and dropped the Mountaineers out of the Top 5 and close to being out of the national polls entirely.
Some fans went so far as to boo loudly as the Mountaineers headed toward the locker room at the intermission and continue to boo during most of the second half-or at least until they elected to leave Milan Puskar Stadium before the end of WVU's 55-14 loss.
But, ask yourself one question-"Who are you booing?"
Is it the players?
Remember these are 18-22 year-old men, the majority of who do not hail from our state. Do you really believe your booing is going to make them want to play harder? Athletes, by nature, want to win. Nobody wants to put in the hours and hours and hours of practice that these players endure to go out and play the way they did on Saturday night.
So, maybe the boos that were being hailed down upon the team as it left Mountaineer Field were meant for head coach Dana Holgorsen and his staff. If they were, what makes you believe that those kinds of negatives are going to encourage them to change what they are doing?
Coaches are like players. They spend even more time studying game film and developing strategies that they believe will be successful once they take to the field. No coach, or at least none that I have met, spends all of those hours to lose.
And, if you think calling for their job is going to help motivate them to coach better, then there is some very cheap land for sale in the state of Florida. It has plenty of running water on it and a plethora of exotic animals.
It's a swamp.
Negative motivation might work in some areas of life. Sports, however, is not one of them. When was the last time you've seen a team overcome adversity because the crowd booed it on to victory.
Booing, like posting insulting remarks on a message board while hiding behind a screen name, has become all too popular among fans today. What fans have failed to understand, however, is that, while it might help ease the frustration, it fails to accomplish anything else.
So, why not just cheer?