MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Thanksgiving is a time for family, football and good food.
Those traditions are no different for the West Virginia football team.
“It’s a family thing for me,” linebacker David Long said. “I’m a big family person myself. I haven’t got to do Thanksgiving since I have been here but it’s a nice time to be around the family, catch up on some stuff and definitely eat good.”
Mountaineer fans are very familiar with one family in particular, the Whites. Thanksgiving at the White house is sure to be a good time.
“It was a big dinner, about 20 plus people there and tons of food,” Ka’Raun said.
One of their favorite things to do was to play games together.
“We played this game, Taboo, its called,” Ka’Raun explained. “That’s a big family game in our family. So that’s the game we usually play. It’s like charades.”
For one WVU linebacker, Thanksgiving was a day that he could be found in the kitchen.
“I used to cook,” Al-Rasheed Benton said. “Me and my brother do the cooking to take some off my mother. So I’m pretty sure she’s a little upset that I’m gone because she’s been doing the cooking lately. It’s just great. That’s one of the only times all my family will be around and in the same vicinity. We have the whole family there so it was always great for me.”
However, most of the Mountaineers won’t get to be with their families this year.
“We will practice our guys in the morning; we’ll be done by about 1 and then they need to go enjoy Thanksgiving,” head coach Dana Holgorsen said. “I can’t really let guys go home-home, but guys like (redshirt freshman linebacker Dylan) Tonkery, I’m sure is going to go down the road. Guys that are relatively close, they can go, and they’ll probably fill their car up with a bunch of their teammates.
“Some guys like to go to their girlfriends’ house or whatever that’s relatively close. They need to be in their beds here on Thursday night. Other than that, if they want to drive to Pittsburgh, that’s fine with me. They just have to be back in their beds on Thursday night. Guys that don’t have anywhere to go, we know we have a whole lot of people that aren’t from here that are from a variety of places, coaches open up their houses to players, and a lot of players go over. They are going to have plenty of opportunities to eat.”
Most players will end up at their position coaches’ houses.
“Coach (Tyron) Carrier is having all the receivers over for dinner,” David Sills said.
So what is on the menu at the Carrier home that the players like best?
“Some Lemon Pepper chicken, he usually makes that’s pretty good,” Ka’Raun said. “Mac and cheese, everything everybody loves to make. But it’s pretty good.”
Mac and Cheese was a pretty popular dish for a lot of the WVU players.
“Mac and cheese. What I do is when that yam juice hits that Mac and cheese it’s pretty good,” Benton said. “You get a little bit of the cinnamon from the yam juice on the mac and cheese is pretty good.”
Long also enjoys the dish.
“Probably macaroni,” he said.
While Sills is looking forward to turkey and stuffing and Kyzir is looking forward to eating stuffing.