Then, before Saturday's game, Makayla printed out a picture of Huggins.
"She wondered if she could get Huggs to sign it," Justice said. "Afterward, [Huggins] said 'No, I'm not going to just sign it. Where is she?'"
He found her. She was relieved after her Mountaineers rallied late to win.
"Makayla was exhausted," Pedro said. "When West Virginia was losing, she felt bad for Coach Huggins. When they started winning, she completely changed."
Stop for a moment. And consider that quote as we head toward Christmas Day. Makayla Clark has been battling leukemia. She's been battling chemotherapy. And a kidney transplant. And Down syndrome. And that little heart was concerned that her man, Huggins, would lose a game.
She was rewarded - with hugs from Huggs.
"Coach Huggins embraced her, the other children and their families," Pedro said. "In situations like this, it's not just the children, but the entire family that struggles. To embrace the families like he did was amazing. He's a very busy man. For him to do that was something special."
Huggins might seem like a Grinch along the sideline. But add a Cindy Lou Who and he's a different man. Just like Makayla is a different girl around Huggins. Call it a real Christmas miracle.
"Makayla's mom said it was the best Christmas gift she could have ever been given," Pedro said.
"[Huggins] does a lot of things like this that people don't even know about," Skaff said.
"He knows what's important in life," Justice said. "People are important. He realizes he's in a fortunate position. If he can help, he does. And he's sincere about it.
"The problem is, he doesn't say no to anything. But that's because this state's so important to him, from his mother's [Norma Mae Huggins] Cancer Foundation to a benefit in Mingo County to Remember the Miners. It goes beyond athletics.
"West Virginia has a very special person in Bob Huggins. If a little girl thinks it's important to meet him, he thinks it's important to meet her."
And make a Christmas dream very real.
Reach Mitch Vingle at 304-348-4827, mitchvin...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/MitchVingle.