WVU’s Huggins Sees Multiple Causes For Mountaineer Defensive Problems

WVU’s Huggins Sees Multiple Causes For Mountaineer Defensive Problems


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins was in a bit of a philosophical mood after his team’s 106-72 win over Youngstown State on Saturday at the WVU Coliseum. While noting that the Penguins were more athletic than what they showed on film, Huggins turned more than one question about defense and guarding into a commentary on the rule changes in today’s game, which he said have taken defense out of the picture.

“It’s like were playing in Europe,” Huggins noted. “We invented the game, we wrote the rules for the game, and we’ve been the best at the game forever. Why would we want to be them?

“I think the rules have negated defense. It’s everything to give the offense an advantage.”

Huggins recently noted that he might look at different defensive systems, including gap-based schemes, as an alternative to his squad’s struggles with man-to-man and trapping. While some of those issues may be related to the rules, Huggins notes other problems are making WVU (5-2) a below-average defensive squad.

West Virginia is allowing 75.9 points per game to its foes, and has committed eight more turnovers than them to date.

“We’re just not doing what we do,” he said. “You get a guy in a trap, you can’t let the closest guy to the ball catch it. you have to make the guy furthest away from the ball catch it. You have to kow who to rotate to. You have to see where the guy is looking to pass the ball. It’s obviously not rocket science, but there’s more to it than what I think people think there is.”

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