Good luck to the coach. Rarely does that work, but, then, rarely does a Mountaineer basketball coach do so after taking a team to a Final Four. So who knows?
What struck me as funny was Huggins' line that those with tickets choosing not to attend "give your tickets to somebody else. I hear all the time about people who wish they could come to the games. Well, there's a whole bunch of them out there. Call Jerrod [Calhoun, the school's director of basketball operations]. He'll figure out who to give them to."
I'm sure Jerrod appreciated the heck out of that.
I've checked it out, and Antonik and those at WVU Press did a wonderful job presenting the Mountaineer hoops history from the first game in 1904 through last year's run to the Final Four.
It's available locally and online for $39.95.
A couple of final words on the South Charleston football mess.
While I usually find it distasteful when those from high schools run to their local judges for relief from SSAC decisions, I couldn't help but feel some sympathy for those at South Charleston.
The hope from here is the Supreme Court decision backing the SSAC will prevent the annual statewide athletic parade to the courts. In retrospect, those at South Charleston should not have challenged the athletic governing body's ruling. The SSAC's decision might not have been correct, but the move to challenge via the courts backfired on the Black Eagles. It potentially cost the team a state championship when the decision was made to allow the four to participate.
The sympathy is there, though, because Kanawha Circuit Judge Carrie Webster ruled the four Black Eagle players in question could participate in the Class AAA semifinal game against Brooke. They did. The Supreme Court then said Webster was incorrect. Yet South Charleston took the hit. One would think if a circuit judge says it's OK to play, it's OK to play.
More than that, though, there's sympathy for the kids, parents, teachers, etc., at the school who supported the team throughout the year but had no part in the twist. For those coaches who had nothing to do with the call to play the four. And for the players, especially the players, who did no wrong, worked hard all year and reached what they thought was their goal.
In that vein, it was heartwarming to take a call on Thursday announcing the Black Eagle team will be participating in South Charleston's Christmas parade, which begins this Saturday at noon.
The team will be honored afterward at the Oakes Field gym. Mayor Frank Mullens will make presentations. A bonfire will be held.
Let's hope the fire warms the hearts of those still bitter over the turn of events, and the hurt experienced by so many there goes up with the smoke.