WEIRTON, W.Va. (WTRF) — It may be called a coal miner’s lunch, but West Virginia’s sports fans haven’t had any trouble embracing it as their meal of choice.

As March Madness begins, the Mountaineers’ exclusive pepperoni roll provider is ramping up production for hungry spectators.

You may know it as your favorite game time snack, or maybe just as the bread they throw during time outs. But what you may not know is that every Coliseum pepperoni roll’s journey starts the same way…84 miles away in a small Weirton, West Virginia, factory.

Barney’s Bakery on Park Drive is the home of WVU’s official pepperoni roll.

They started off with local sales of cakes, cookies and other sweets. But it was when a friend tried their pepperoni roll that they realized how much their recipe was resonating.

“He looked at me and he said, ‘you really don’t know what you have there.’ And I said, ‘it’s a pepperoni roll.’ And he goes, ‘but your roll is as good as anybody’s in the state,'” said George Barney, President of Barney’s Bakery.

From there, the route from small-town bakery to statewide success was inevitable. Today you can find their rolls at Walmart, Sam’s, Costco, Kroger and of course, wherever the Mountaineer is.

Their formula is even finding success far beyond our mountains.

“I think the farthest we’ve had someone call us is from Louisiana, wanting to know if they were going to be on sale,” Barney said.

With the help of a small factory team, they have it down to a flaky science. They’re expecting to make three million for distribution this year alone.

Nexstar’s WTRF asked the Barneys for the secret to a good roll, and all they would say is that you have to know dough.

“They’re guillotine cut on the ends. So you don’t have that glob of dough, the dough isn’t folded on the ends, it’s guillotine cut, so you’re getting pepperoni from end to end,” said Mary Jo Barney, Vice President of Barney’s Bakery.

So now that their kitchen creativity is achieving stadium success, how do they feel about representing one of West Virginia’s chief food exports?

Sometimes I just look at it as my job, and she gets on me and says ‘you should be proud,’ and I am deep down, but…it’s just not me.

George Barney, President, Barney’s Bakery

But the Barneys have every right to take a bow. They’ve earned their own footnote of West Virginia history, one that Gold and Blue Nation can see flying over the stands.