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Thread: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

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    Member adkindo's Avatar
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    WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    12 Hours to tip-off, and I am so ready for college basketball. I was listening to a podcast this week which is hosted by 3 former WVU players from the 2010 Final Four team. It is part WVU sports, but mostly current events and stories that would interest WVU fans. Anyway, they had former long time WVU Basketball Assistant Coach Billy Hahn on for an interview and he was talking about going to watch WVU practice recently with former WVU player and current Boston Celtics Assistant Coach Joe Mazzulla. He told the guys that Mazzulla was amazed and kept saying they looked like an NBA team with their size...and he told the hosts that if Bob Huggins cant get a National Championship with this group, then he probably will just never get one.

    If this team can be just an average shooting team, they literally have no weaknesses on paper. They kind of remind me of this years Lakers team in that they can go super big, but even when they go small, they are still pretty big and athletic. So many first year players are returning this year that underperformed last season....which is extremely normal on a Bob Huggins team. It does not matter if they are a Freshman, transfer or JUCO player, the jump from 1st year to 2nd year is nearly universal, and the increases in production are often significant.

    The Frontcourt

    Oscar Tshiebwe (PF/C) - It all starts with former McDonald's All American and 5 Star recruit Oscar Tshiebwe returning for his Sophomore season. The 6'9" hyper athletic big man with the never ending motor will be a force in college basketball this season. Oscar averaged a double double in conference play last season as a true Freshman. He has a soft touch out to 15' and shoots free throws at a solid clip. He can go from baseline to baseline as fast as any player on the roster. He should be in the conversation as the best big man in college basketball this season.

    Derek Culver (PF/C) - Joining Oscar in the frontcourt is former Top 100 recruit, fellow bash brother 6'10" Junior Derek Culver. Culver was 1 rebound shy of averaging a double double last season. While he does not have the touch that Oscar possess, he is bigger and stronger than anyone on the team. His one real weakness is his FT% and as someone who has been among the national leaders in FTA's per game each year in college, a slight improvement would make a major impact. Like Oscar, he attacks the offensive boards, and when he gets it the only option is often to allow him to score or foul him.

    Emmitt Matthews (SF) - Matthews is a prototypical SF/Wing at the next level, and after having real interest from scouts as a Freshman that came on strong late in the season, he had a disaster of a Sophomore season. Matthews is 6'7" and has a nice shooting stroke (that did not go in often last year), can defend up and down a position, and can take it to the rim and throw it down on a defenders head. Matthews is an X factor for this team as he has to bounce back and provide perimeter shooting and the ability to score off the dribble.

    Off the bench - It starts with Gabe Osabuohien (SF/PF) who transferred from Arkansas last season. At 6'7.5" and a motor for days, Osabuohien is an ideal Bob Huggins player. He can defend 4 positions, and does all the little things which never appear in the boxscore. Next is Isaiah Cottrell (PF), a 6'10" Top 100 4 Star incoming Freshman that brings a face up game to the 4 & 5 position. Cottrell is expected to be a real contributor as the season progresses. Then there is Jalen Bridges (SF), a 6'7" Top 100 4 Star Red Shirt Freshman. Yes, a Top 100 recruit decided to Red Shirt last year before the season started. His game is very similar to Matthews, but reports are Bridges is a very high level perimeter shooter. Finally there is incoming Freshman Taj Thweatt (SF), a 6'7" hyper athlete from New Jersey and incoming Freshman Seny Ndiaye (C), a 6'11" athlete from Huntington Prep. There is a solid chance both Thweatt and Ndiaye have a very limited role this season, and Ndiaye is more likely to not play this season

    The Frontcourt

    Jordan McCabe (PG) - Like Matthews, McCabe closed out his Freshman season much better than he played in his Sophomore season. He was a 4 Star recruit from Wisconsin. He is under 6' and not hyper athletic, but he is a ball handling prodigy and a floor general. Also, when I say prodigy, I legit mean as a kid/teenager he was a Youtube star that performed at NBA Halftime shows, with the Globetrotters as a special guest, and was a guest on the Ellen Show. He can handle the rock. He also spent the offseason in Michigan with one of the elite shooting coaches who rebuilt his shot, and the rumors are he is wearing out the nets.

    Miles "Deuce" McBride (PG/SG) - McBride is a 6'3" Sophomore combo guard who was a pure steal for Huggins out of Cincinnati Moeller where he was a two sport star, and rated higher as a QB than he was a basketball player. McBride was easily a high 4 Star, and maybe even a 5 Star talent that broke his leg during his Junior season in football. This caused him the miss his final years of high school basketball which caused many of the Blue Bloods to quit recruiting him...but Huggins did not. He is a 3 level scorer, and plays Huggins style defense. Per Huggins, Deuce is the first name out of the mouths of pro scouts that call...they ask about Deuce before Tshiebwe, Culver and Matthews. Deuce may ascend to being the face of the program this season.

    Off the bench - Sean McNeil (SG) is a 6'3.5" Junior that transferred to WVU from JUCO last season. As with every JUCO transfer I can recall with Huggins, he struggled a little his first year, but is expected to make a huge impact this year. He can stroke it from almost anywhere past half court, and can put it on the floor on a hard closeout and drain a perimeter 2 point shot like a pro. McNeil led the country in scoring as a Freshman at the JUCO level at over 30 PPG. Similar in that he was a JUCO transfer last season, Taz Sherman (SG) is a 6'5" Senior that was a prolific scorer at the JUCO level in a good conference. Sherman also took most of the season to find his groove, but unlike McNeil, Sherman is a 3 level scorer. Next is Kedrian Johnson (PG/SG) a 6'4" Junior combo guard JUCO transfer this season. Johnson was the #4 Ranked JUCO Guard in the country last season who averaged 26 PPG. His film is great, but there is the trend of first year JUCO guys taking a few months in Huggins system before they get rolling. The final front court player on the roster is America's Favorite Walkon Sophomore Spencer Macke (SG) who led Kentucky in scoring as a high school senior.

    The base depth chart based on last season is below, but I expect Huggins to play a solid amount of 3 guard lineups this season with either McNeil or Sherman on the court.

    PG - McCabe, Johnson
    SG - McBride, McNeil, Sherman, Macke
    SF - Matthews, Bridges, Thweatt
    PF - Tshiebwe, Osabuohien, Cottrell
    C - Culver, Ndiaye

    The last time we saw this team, they were beating down #4 Baylor in Morgantown...the same Baylor team that is ranked #1 (Coaches Poll) and #2 (AP Poll) to begin this season. Get your wagers in before the country realizes this team in on a journey to the Final 4.
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    ugh....WVU beats South Dakota State 79-71. We showed a lack of energy, discipline and shooting that I did not expect. We barely out rebounded SDSU while we had a height and length advantage. Nobody but Taz Sherman shot the 3 well as WVU was 25% (8-32) from 3, while Sherman was 4 of 6. Deuce McBride showed he is the best player on the court scoring 21 points to lead WVU. WVU got very little offense from their bigs while Tshiebwe was in foul trouble all night, and Culver was big on the boards with 14 rebounds. SDSU is favored to win their conference, and they are pretty good. They put a clinic on for WVU how to play the game well with decent shooting, a lot of hustle, and outstanding passing....in the end, they just did not have the level of talent to win.
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Kentuckian At Heart WVRed's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    In other news, WVU replaced Tennessee in the Jimmy V Classic and is now playing number 1 Gonzaga on December 2.

    But yeah, WVU looked off tonight from what little bit I got to see.
    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    I've read books about sparkling vampires who walk around in the daylight that were written better than a John Fay article.

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRed View Post
    In other news, WVU replaced Tennessee in the Jimmy V Classic and is now playing number 1 Gonzaga on December 2.

    But yeah, WVU looked off tonight from what little bit I got to see.
    Huggins asked for it.....

    We were sitting in the room last night and it came across the ticker that Tennessee couldn't play because of the COVID-19. So, I thought what the heck, let's call ESPN. I called some guys that I've known for a long, long time and say, 'hey, man, can you work this out and get us in the Jimmy V and get us playing Gonzaga.' He said, 'let me call you back.' Ten or fifteen minutes later, he called me back, and he said, 'we got it done. You're in.' It happened pretty quick.
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    WVU picks up their 2nd win of the season with a 78-66 win over VCU. Culver had a big game with 23 points and 15 Rebounds....and his frontcourt partner Oscar Tshiebwe put up a double double with 11 & 16. Still not close to where they need to be, but they played with better defense, more efficient scoring and decisively won on the boards. WVU will play Western Kentucky tomorrow to secure their first championship of the season.
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Kentuckian At Heart WVRed's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Wonder if the Gonzaga game still happens.

    This is going to be a wild season.
    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    I've read books about sparkling vampires who walk around in the daylight that were written better than a John Fay article.

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRed View Post
    Wonder if the Gonzaga game still happens.

    This is going to be a wild season.
    they probably caught it intentionally when they saw WVU was added their schedule
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Kentuckian At Heart WVRed's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by adkindo View Post
    they probably caught it intentionally when they saw WVU was added their schedule
    With the way they are playing against WKU they are probably getting caught looking ahead.
    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    I've read books about sparkling vampires who walk around in the daylight that were written better than a John Fay article.

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    WVU wins the inaugural Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic with the 70-64 win over Western Kentucky. It was not pretty, spent a lot of the game behind, but was able to take control of the game about halfway through the 2nd half. WKU is solid, probably a tournament team...but WVU still is not clicking....and played terrible transition defense. On days like this, you are ok just leaving with the W.
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    WVU climbs to #11 in the AP Poll....was hoping for #10 so the Wednesday game against Gonzaga could be billed at a Top 10 matchup!
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    the renovations @ the Coliseum look nice! Check out the massive HD scoreboard...

    https://twitter.com/wvusports/status...563515904?s=21
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Kentuckian At Heart WVRed's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Are you pretty lonely in here?
    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    I've read books about sparkling vampires who walk around in the daylight that were written better than a John Fay article.

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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRed View Post
    Are you pretty lonely in here?
    no, at a minimum it is cathartic
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius

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    Kentuckian At Heart WVRed's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by adkindo View Post
    no, at a minimum it is cathartic
    You are the only WVU fan in here. I know Slyder posts from time to time. We had a poster named Homer Bailey who followed WVU but he hasn’t posted in awhile.
    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    I've read books about sparkling vampires who walk around in the daylight that were written better than a John Fay article.

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    Member adkindo's Avatar
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    Re: WVU Basketball 2020-21 - The Journey to Indianapolis

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRed View Post
    You are the only WVU fan in here. I know Slyder posts from time to time. We had a poster named Homer Bailey who followed WVU but he hasn’t posted in awhile.
    I do find that strange....growing up in southern WV, a lot of people were WVU and Reds fans...
    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius


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