Before Wednesday's Capital Classic, the oddsmakers made West Virginia a big favorite in its matchup with in-state rival Marshall.
And why not? The Mountaineers had won at Georgetown. They were coming off a big home victory over Purdue. At the end of last season, they were playing in the Final Four.
Marshall? Well, it had a nice record, but it simply hadn't figured out how to win on the big stage.
Led by the Little General on the sideline - new coach Tom Herrion - and the other Little General on the floor - Damier Pitts - the Thundering Herd stunned No. 21 WVU by a final of 75-71 before another packed house at the Civic Center.
At the beginning, it seemed like just another Capital Classic. Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and Sen. Joe Manchin were in the house. As always, there were more coat and ties in the joint than at the Golden Globes. It was played before members of the state's House and Senate.
Also, as always, it was close. And sloppy. And hotly contested. But then it turned into something special for Marshall fans.
It turned into Herrion's first signature win - John Hancock style.
One got a hint early of what was to come. Marshall was working harder. It was playing smarter.
There wasn't much payoff for the Thundering Herd, however, for a while. Starter Johnny Thomas went down. The game seemed stuck at an 18-18 tie for ages.
Then the momentum moved to MU. A Pitts trey. Dago Pena finished off a fast break. WVU jacked wild 3s.
The end of the first half summed up the surge. Pitts calmly hit a 3-pointer. Casey Mitchell's desperation shot as time expired for West Virginia was blocked.
Mountaineer coach Bob Huggins was fuming. Someone suggested the ER crew be placed outside the locker room.
This time, though, his fire and brimstone didn't work. Not against Herrion's elixir. MU opened the half with an alley-oop to Shaquille Johnson. The Herd moved out to a 24-point lead as WVU looked dazed and confused.
WVU did rally. Mightily. It's what one would expect in the Classic. It probably didn't make Huggins' ride back to Morgantown any sweeter, though. He saw Mitchell on a breakaway, doinking a dunk attempt at 14:16.
He saw Mitchell come back and hit three free throws - before DeAndre Kane sliced to the basket and collected a foul on John Flowers.
He saw, more than likely, his team's new Top 25 ranking swirl down the drain. Backup center Kevin Noreen, coming off surgery, wasn't the only one limping out of town.
Meanwhile, the Marshall team and fans celebrated. (They even won the cheerleader hold-up-whatever-it's-called competition.)
The Herd played well.
It played spirited.