One game, of course, is not going to determine West Virginia's future. But by the same token, every game counts.
"We understand that we need every game," said point guard Juwan Staten, who has spent the past month playing his way into All-Big 12 consideration. "We need to play as hard as we can play, every play. We need to get a lot of loose balls and we need to really lock down on defense because we feel we can score with any team.
"Sure, winning feels good, but we've got to look forward to the next game. We can't get too high on ourselves and then go out and play flat against Texas because we really want that game."
It's not going to be an easy game to get, though. The Longhorns are the fourth consecutive Top 25 opponent WVU has faced and one of the most surprising teams in the country. A year after suffering through a rare losing season, Texas is on the verge of its 14th 20-win season in coach Rick Barnes' 16 years in Austin. Since opening Big 12 play with losses to Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, the Longhorns have won eight of nine, including an 80-69 win in Morgantown on Jan. 13.
Texas just routed Marcus Smart-less Oklahoma State 87-68 Tuesday night in a game in which sophomore point guard Javan Felix had 27 points and made six 3-pointers. The Longhorns are athletic and balanced, with four players averaging between 10.9 and 13.1 points.
The only question mark for Texas is the availability of their leading scorer and most experienced player. Jonathan Holmes missed Tuesday's game with a knee injury and he and his 13.1-point scoring average are considered questionable for tonight.
Huggins fully expects Holmes to play.
"Everybody gets healthy for us,'' he said. "We're the Ernest Angley of college basketball.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.