Swing and a Miss …..

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    Recruiting is almost over ……  We Think.

    11 in the fold now which includes giving walk-on Routt a schollie.  Waiting on Richardson to get his crap together.  So, we have either 1 or maybe 2 spots still open.  Even with the very good and maybe the best recruiting class in recent years, this class could have been much better IFFFFFFF…….  we didn’t fall short on a number of recruits.  Huggs got scooped on a few.  A few of our “locks” that we knew we had locked up were the best inpressions of Houdini.  Some would even call this class a big miss because of not filling the last 1 or 2 and “having” to give a spot to a walk on.  Here is my list of what we lost.


    Devin Cambridge  —  Last minute “flip” to Bruce at Auburn

    Clarence Nadolny – Poached by TT

    Brandon Rachal – Goes to Tulsa.  WTF….. Tulsa?

    Rayjon Tucker – opted for the Draft


    Javon Franklin – Bruce paid ….errrr….  convinced him to play for him

    Atticus Taylor – NCSt.  He had been a heavy lean to WVU for months.

    Dontaie Allen – 3* we had him then immediately goes to 4* when Cal offered him at KY.


    Josaphat Bilau – To Wichita St …. WSU over WVU?  …… that was a shocker

    KM – Lock from day 1.  How we let him get away first to Vandy????? Then he went pro.

    That’s 9 that were either “Locks” or heavy leans that we just couldn’t land.  Yes, some of the SG’s were because we landed McNeil and Sherman.  Some of the SF’s because Matthews and Haley.  But good players don’t back off of competition.  We just couldn’t seal the deal.  Lost opportunity to fill those last few slots.


    Reminds me of when catlett would recruit kids and wouldnt put in the time and effort….. lose them…..and then say, “I dont want kids that dont want to be here.”…… amazing….. the money they make and dont have to close the deal…… having said that it is now common knowledge that a bunch of schools are paying players


    Maybe some of those we do have scared some of the others off. Time will tell. Look at the positives and trust in Huggs.   Go Mountaineers. And God bless America!  (What’s really, really important. )


    I agree that we do have some very good guys coming in with the 5 we have on board …. if Richardson makes it.  We fill almost every hole we have.  But the 7 we lost leaves us 2 short recruiting.  Oh, you can say that Routt was scheduled to fill one of those holes ……. but was that the plan in December? January?  February? He would have been here on a Promise Schollie (or some Masters type schollie) if we had only 5 to fill.  Maybe some of the above didn’t come because they were looking at immediate PT.  But ALL?  And I’ll give you that 2 of the above 9 opted to get paid.   Let me restate that.  2 get a paycheck while others may get paid.  Good players don’t back away from competition.  They know it makes them better.  They know that playing against the top players not only on the practice floor but in games (P5… vs WSU, Tulsa) makes them better.  Just ask Tarik and Jaysean.  We just didn’t close the deal for the last 2 slots.

    Swing and a miss…….

    1. agree

    All that’s left now it appears is Otis Frazier.  Unless, Huggs has another DeAngelo Hunter or Billy Dee Williams up his sleeve.  Which in both cases didn’t amount to much help.   Frazier, supposedly is scheduled to visit the weekend before school starts.    Do you think he is worth a scholarship or should they just hold it until next year?    The loss of Richardson could prove to be a big loss if he doesn’t make it to Morgantown.  If Culver and Oscar get into foul trouble Logan Routt is the only backup.  Haley would have to fill in at a forward spot.   Hopefully, he is just finishing up his academics to be eligible.  You would think that the coaching staff would know his academic status before they recruited him.  Even if he does come in in August he will be so far behind that he would be a non factor.  Maybe by the time conference games roll around he could give the team some quality minutes.    Do you think that Frazier is worth the investment?   The way that things are now it appears that this type of situation is going to happen again next year and the year after that.  Trying to fill a roster will become extremely difficult.   Players leave early for the pros and players transfer.   Coaches are scrambling throughout the summer to fill holes.  I think it’s going to get worse before it gets better.


    I like the idea of having 2 additional scholies for next year. Last year I thought our rotation went too deep….. but saying that, nothing could have helped with the 4 geese that did not fly in formation and then had to go in a different direction


    The decision to put Routt on scholarship was made on his merits, and on his contributions to the team and the program. We reported on this a good while ago, that he would be a scholarship player. Also, note that the Promise only covers four years.

    That said, it’s true that this class did not come together as expected. Cambridge, we were told, was solid. However, he changed his mind. Not sure how you prevent that.

    WVU did have the strong tie of Kenyon Martin to his son, but the hiring of Jerry Stackhouse gave Vandy an in to put together the recruiting package for Scottie Pippen Jr and Martin Jr. selling the NBA angle. Disappointing? Sure. And WVU looked like it was in good shape. But that’s why I say that nothing is ever guaranteed in recruiting, because you don’t know what kids will decide or what will change. And Vandy wound up not getting KMJ either. Was WVU supposed to pay him to get him?

    This was definitely a mixed bag of a recruiting year. Really like the players WVU got. But getting at least one more would have made things much more solid.


    Huggs needs to concentrate on the culture. In any organization, culture can overcome a lot. Lesser talent with good culture will usually beat superior talent with bad culture. That being said, good players win games.


    Actually Gianojo, you summed up my initial thoughts on this matter.  Give Huggs someone who is willing to work and has a modicum of talent, and he will deliver to you a player that makes other coaches say “how did we miss this guy” in the recruiting process.


    Finding players who are willing to “grind” in this day and age is getting harder and harder to do. A lot of kids want you to hand them everything and don’t want to put the work in. Not commenting on anyone directly, just a general view on recruiting.

    I take that back…Jevon Carter is the epitome of a grinder. A “nobody” who made himself into a “somebody.”

    WVU should put a statue of Jevon Carter out in front of the Practice Facility with the inscription:
    Give me your 2 star players
    Your under recruited
    Your huddled Grinders yearning to breathe free!


    You nailed it Jeff.  It’s the typical millennial way of life.  I want it now….. no ….. I DESERVE IT NOW….. generation.  Sorry guys.  This is the generation that we baby boomers gave you.  We spoiled these brats and gave them everything that we never had.  It’s all our fault.


    Hereby nominating Jeff as our poet laureate. Excellent!


    You play with the guys who sign up for your program. Period.

    All of us would want to get every top high school player in America. It doesn’t work that way.

    WVU got Jerry West and Hot-Rod Hundley, in major part, because they grew up watching the Mountaineers play. In today’s world, there aren’t enough Jerry Wests and Hot-Rod Hundleys in West Virginia … or the nation, to be honest … to make WVU a national champ.

    So our best bet is to watch Huggins mold what he DID get into the Big 12 titlists (or at least 2nd to Kansas) and maybe make an astounding run in March Madness.

    Nothing is perfect. No one gets everything they want, except rich kids, and many of them implode anyway.

    I’ll just watch what Huggins puts out there and cheer for my alma mater.

    Same thing for what Neal Brown puts onto Mountaineer Field in the August 31 opener.

    It’s in my blood, in my DNA, to cheer, cheer, cheer for the Mountaineers.


    Wonder what Huggins would think about that?
    There’s the old saw, ” You can get a lot with a smile
    rather than a gun! But you get much more with a smile
    AND a gun”!
    And in sports, “You get a lot with hard work! But you
    get much more with hard work AND talent”!
    Until the reasons these guys are flipping is identified
    and corrected nothing is going to change.
    And in regard to “spoiled brats” moniker, there’s another
    old saying, “One man’s poison is another man’s tea”!
    Keep the little pinkie up Bruce!


    You said it Tony.  Talent and Hard Work.  We’ve seen an up tick in talent.  Last year’s class with Culver, Matthews, McCabe and Culver was a very good class.  This year with OT, McBride, Sherman and McNeil is even better.  Hopefully Richardson will qualify and we land a 13th guy.  Next year starts off great with Cottrell.

    Even at that, we did lose a number of very good prospects that we just couldn’t close.  Happens to every team.  Happens to the Blue Bloods.   We haven’t been this close to getting excelent back to back to back recruiting classes for years.  Huggs recruiting lately has really turned the corner even though we have a number of swing and misses.


    Gale was a more than decent game-day coach.  But, his recruiting skills, and his ability to relate to recruits was below average.  His assistant was a much better people person than was Gale.  Unfortunately, I no longer can remember the name of his primary assistant.


    Gary McPherson?


    Eugene, correct about Gale’s game day coaching.  He was an outstanding floor coach.  He got more out of his kids on game day than IMO even Huggs.  More with less.   Unfortunately he was not a recruiter.  He never professed to be a recruiter and didn’t like the dark side of recruiting.  It is thought that the recruitment of his last class was what really pushed him over the edge.  That class of first year players Hargett, Schifino, Sally, Garnett and Briggs may have been his overall best.  Too bad Hargett and Garnett were cancers and Schifino became a head case leading to a melt down of the team.


    “Finding players who are willing to “grind” in this day and age is getting harder and harder to do. A lot of kids want you to hand them everything and don’t want to put the work in. Not commenting on anyone directly, just a general view on recruiting. ”

    Sorry, but that is one of those BS statements that if repeated again and again people believe it to be true.  It may be true for a lot of the general student population, but for 99% of student athletes that’s not true.  They work harder and put in more time and effort than any group before them.    The #1 “excuse” that most posters use when Huggy fails to sign a recruit is that they, the recruits,  are afraid of hard work…and we know this how?

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Home forums BlueGoldNews WVU Sports Swing and a Miss …..