Tag:West Virginia
Posted on: February 19, 2011 5:30 pm
Edited on: February 19, 2011 5:49 pm

The top 10 is stacking losses, one after another

It started last Saturday when Ohio State fell at Wisconsin. Then Kansas lost at Kansas State on Monday. Then Georgetown lost at Connecticut on Wednesday while Wisconsin lost at Purdue. And then, on Saturday, Pittsburgh lost at St. John's, Notre Dame lost at West Virginia and Texas lost at Nebraska, meaning we've seen the schools ranked first, second, third, fourth, eighth, ninth and 10th in the latest AP poll lose over the past eight days.

Four of those losses were to unranked teams.

All of them were on the road.

So, more than anything, this stretch is a reminder that winning road games is difficult without exception. But it also highlights how vulnerable even the so-called best of the best are this season, and it should make for an interesting NCAA tournament because the top seeds aren't going to seem invincible. Assuming it's true that believing you can win is the first hurdle an underdog must jump, let's go ahead and acknowledge that the eight and nine seeds will have more realistic dreams than usual of the second weekend because they're going to see the one seeds as beatable.

Take the schools projected as one seeds now, for instance.

The Pittsburgh Panthers? They've lost to two currently unranked teams. The Texas Longhorns? They've lost to two currently unranked teams. The Kansas Jayhawks? They've lost to a currently unranked team. The Ohio State Buckeyes? Well, they haven't lost to any currently unranked teams. But they have played one-possession games with three currently unranked teams (Penn State, Northwestern and Minnesota), and that alone suggests they're capable of losing to almost anybody even if they beat almost everybody.

In other words, who's scary good?

Who scares you?

Though neither Kansas nor Kentucky made the Final Four last season, both were intimidating outfits heading into March Madness. Nobody wanted any part of those rosters, and it was a major surprise when the Jayhawks and Wildcats were eliminated early. This March nothing will be a surprise. Any of the one seeds could make the Final Four or lose in the opening weekend. Granted, the former is more likely than the latter. But I've seen enough so-called elite teams lose over the past week to know nothing is guaranteed.
Posted on: February 7, 2011 11:53 pm
Edited on: February 8, 2011 12:10 am

That's what a No. 1 seed looks like

Did you see that Monday night?

Did you see what Kansas did to Missouri and what Pittsburgh did to West Virginia? I hope you did. Because if you did you'll understand why both schools are probably headed toward No. 1 seeds in next month's NCAA tournament, and why both programs are basketball powers that won't disappear as long as Jamie Dixon and Bil Self are in charge.

Kansas beat Missouri even though its top prospect, Josh Selby, is sidelined with a foot injury.

Pittsburgh won at West Virginia even though its leading scorer, Ashton Gibbs, is sidelined with an MCL injury.

A team playing without a key player typically struggles, at least against a quality opponent (and especially on the road). But the No. 2 Jayhawks looked unbelievably sharp in a 103-86 win over No. 19 Missouri, and the No. 4 Panthers were just as tough as ever -- and way tougher than the Mountaineers -- in a 71-66 win at No. 25 West Virginia. It was impressive stuff and a testament to Self and Dixon's ability to plug reserves (like Mario Little) into key roles and continue without really missing a step.

No Selby?

No problem.

No Gibbs?

No problem.

Kansas and Pittsburgh both turned in the type of performances that enhance the opinions of believers and convert any remaining skeptics. More important, they each added another quality win to their bodies of work -- the type of quality win that figures to help them earn No. 1 seeds on Selection Sunday.
Posted on: February 6, 2011 4:24 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 4:36 pm

Pittsburgh's Gibbs out with MCL injury

Pittsburgh junior Ashton Gibbs has an MCL injury that's expected to sideline him for at least 10 days, Panthers coach Jamie Dixon told CBSSports.com through a school spokesperson on Sunday.

Gibbs is averaging 16.3 points per game for the fourth-ranked and Big East-leading Panthers.

He will definitely miss Monday's game at No. 25 West Virginia and probably miss Saturday's game at No. 12 Villanova.

Travon Woodall will handle the point guard duties in Gibbs' absence. The 5-foot-11 New York native is averaging 6.7 points and 3.6 assists in 20.4 minutes per game. He's scored in double-figures five times this season.
Posted on: December 20, 2010 7:44 pm
Edited on: December 20, 2010 7:52 pm

The Poll Attacks

It was wrong to rank Cleveland State last week.

Now it's inexplicable.

Let's do some Poll Attacks.

Associated Press poll: Cleveland State got 15 points in last week's AP poll and just one this week, which means everybody who was voting for the Vikings despite the fact that they had no notable wins stopped voting for them after Saturday's double-digit loss to West Virginia. Except for Steve Deshazo from the Free Lance-Star in Virginia. He had Cleveland State 25th on his ballot this week despite the fact that they -- stop me if you've heard this before -- have no notable wins ... and a double-digit loss to West Virginia.

Seriously, what has Cleveland State done to be ranked?

The Vikings aren't propped up by preseason expectations (like Memphis and Baylor), and they haven't done anything in the season (like UCF) to warrant votes. All they've done is beat bad teams and lose by 11 points to West Virginia. And yet Steve has the Vikings ranked 25th.

And do you want to know the best part?

He didn't rank West Virginia at all.

You know, West Virginia, the team that just beat Cleveland State by 11.

You know, West Virginia, the only good team Cleveland State has played.

Coaches poll: I used this space last week to compliment the coaches and their very reasonable coaches poll, and it took them exactly one week to revert to idiocy. No UCF? Really? I'll be honest, I didn't think the Knights would be good this season, either. I mean, they've never really been good. But at some point -- and that point is now -- you have to credit teams who have success, and UCF has been successful.

The Knights are 10-0.

They have a win over a Florida team that's ranked 19th thanks to wins over No. 11 Kansas State and Florida State. They also have a win over a Miami team that's beaten West Virginia and Ole Miss, and played No. 17 Memphis to the final minute. In other words, UCF is undefeated with two quality wins, and that should be enough to get ranked.
Posted on: July 24, 2010 3:50 am

Source: Huggins hospitalized after fall

LAS VEGAS -- West Virginia coach Bob Huggins suffered four broken ribs and was hospitalized Friday after falling into a coffee table inside his Las Vegas hotel room, a source told CBSSports.com.

The source said Huggins -- who suffered a massive heart attack in 2002 -- was held overnight for observation, but stressed that the incident wasn't heart-related. According to the source, Huggins is expected to be released Saturday, at which point he will return home to West Virginia.

Huggins is in Las Vegas for recruiting purposes.
Posted on: July 24, 2010 3:46 am
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Posted on: April 12, 2010 12:40 pm
Edited on: April 12, 2010 12:44 pm

Two more Big East stars entering NBA Draft

The Big East is losing two of its best underclassmen.

Syracuse's Wesley Johnson (according to the Syracuse Post-Standard ) and West Virginia's Devin Ebanks (according to sources) are making themselves available for the NBA Draft. Neither is expected to withdraw by the deadline. Both will make formal announcements later this week.

Johnson was a finalist for most National Player of the Year awards after averaging 16.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. He's a projected top 10 pick. Ebanks averaged 12.0 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. He's a projected first-round pick.

The NBA Draft is June 24 in New York.
Posted on: April 4, 2010 3:08 pm

Source: MRI confirms torn ACL for WVU's Butler

INDIANAPOLIS -- Da'Sean Butler's knee injury is worse than West Virginia initially believed.

A source close to the program confirmed to CBSSports.com that an MRI performed Sunday showed Butler has a torn ACL, sprained MCL and two bone bruises in his left knee. This means he'll require surgery and be unable to workout for franchises before June's NBA Draft. The CBSSports.com First Team All-American is projected by most as a second round pick, but this development could leave Butler undrafted.

Butler collapsed in the second half of Saturday night's loss to Duke. He yelled in pain while lying on the court, which led to Bob Huggins holding him and caressing his face in one of the more moving moments of this NCAA tournament. WVU officials said they believed it was only a sprained MCL after the game. But they learned it is much worse Sunday.

Butler averaged 17.2 points and 6.2 rebounds this season. He was the MVP of the Big East tournament.
Category: NCAAB
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