"He's doing a great job of making checks," WVU coach Dana Holgorsen said of Smith. "He's getting us in the right plays. His completion percentage is off the charts, and he's not taking sacks."
It was another record-setting day for the Mountaineer offense.
In the final stages of the third quarter, Smith moved past Marc Bulger for the school's career passing yardage record. Smith completed 34 of 39 passes for 411 yards and five touchdowns. He has as many touchdown passes this season as incomplete passes (nine each) through two games.
Offensive Player of the Game
Bailey made the most of his catches as well, finishing with 173 receiving yards and three scores. Tavon Austin added another 11 catches for 113 yards and a touchdown. It was the first time WVU had two players with 10 or more catches since Mickey Walczak and Mark Raugh each reached double-digits in a 1981 loss to Syracuse.
"They're good," JMU coach Mickey Matthews said, "and they're very worthy of their ranking ... their quarterback, you just can't sack the guy. He's bigger than our defensive linemen. When I was at Georgia, we used to play Peyton Manning, and that was the biggest problem we had with him -- we couldn't sack Peyton because he was bigger than our defensive linemen. That's what Geno is."
The Mountaineer defense showed signs of improvement after struggling in the season-opener against Marshall. WVU allowed only 300 yards -- 93 of which came in the fourth quarter when backups entered the game.
Defensive Player of the Game
9 total tackles
2.0 tackles for loss
Notably, the WVU defense came up with two goal-line stands in the second half, as Tyler Anderson intercepted a Justin Thorpe pass a few drives after the defense stuffed JMU's Jordan Anderson on a fourth-and-goal run.
"One thing we haven't faced, going back to last year, is adversity," Holgorsen said. "We had three close games to finish the [regular] season last year and overcame adversity ... but we faced some adversity there in the third quarter ... [and] the goal line stands were really impressive."
For James Madison, Thorpe threw for 71 yards and added another 44 on the ground. Jordan Anderson, filling in for the injured Dae'Quan Scott, added 75 yards on 17 carries.
The game drew a crowd of 45,511 to FedEx Field, the home of the NFL's Washington Redskins. That was more than 10,000 more than the number of those in attendance at Maryland's home game against UConn in nearby College Park. It was only about 2,500 fewer fans than Pittsburgh drew for a home game against a Virginia Tech team that came in ranked in the nation's top 15.