Head Coach Takes Issue Across The Board
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bob Huggins lamented West Virginia’s lack of passing against No. 10 Kansas.
It was, in the end, a prime aspect that haunted Huggins and the No. 6 Mountaineers as they tried to capture a top 10 match-up at home and remain atop the Big 12 standings. Instead, the Jayhawks rallied back from down 15 in the second half, using a 12-0 spurt with approximately five minutes to go that set up a thrilling finish. Unfortunately, WVU was left on the short end of a 71-66 final because of a failure to execute and make shots.
Much of that, according to Huggins, was because of the inability to pass or properly set-up the offense. It forced the ball into Jevon Carter’s hands, and the guard simply hoisted along threes at times because of a lack of options.
“We had guys open,” said Huggins, whose team made 10 shots in the second half while committing 11 turnovers. The Mountaineers took 27 three-pointers in 62 shots. “We just didn’t pass the ball. I think all those threes are a lack of toughness. That’s the easy way out. I tried to simplify it.”
Huggins also took issue with Kansas’ open three-point looks that boosted the rally. KU hit a trio of big ones late that helped spur a rally and snap a four-game skid inside the Coliseum. Two of those came from Svi Mykhailiuk as the hot-shooting guard popped open in the corner.
“People not doing their job,” Huggins said. “We gave him a three in the corner in the first half, and I took the guy out. We had a timeout and I said ‘Please explain to me what you don’t understand about staying with him.’ Do not give him an open look in the corner. We got in we talk about it at halftime, they come out and leave him open. I don’t know what would possesses you to do that. I wish I knew. I don’t know. We just left him open.”
West Virginia also went south on offense, scoring just six points over the final 5:53.
“J.C. had the ball too much,” Huggins said. “He had the ball too much because no one else would get open.”
West Virginia could have a hold on the top of the Big 12 standings. Instead, a pair of blown second half leads in as many games as them in fourth and likely falling out of the Top 10. Check out the rest of Huggins’ comments below.
Note: The coach did address the issue of freshman forward Teddy Allen not playing, noting it was because of a poor attitude. Allen led the team in scoring in the opening three league victories, but a change in manner and approach that the coaching staff didn’t approve of saw Allen log just five minutes against both Baylor and Texas Tech before being held out entirely against Kansas.
Allen sat at the end of the bench with strength coach Andy Kettler and never took of his long-sleeved shirt that was atop his jersey. It marked the first time Allen did not play this season. The newcomer is averaging 8.6 points and three rebounds in approximately 12 minutes per game.