If the game is close at the end, Marshall likely wants Damier Pitts (85.1 percent), Tirrell Baines (79.7) or Johnny Higgins (79.1) at the line. Under no circumstances does it want Nigel Spikes (41.7).
In a clutch situation, West Virginia wants Casey Mitchell (86.0) or Truck Bryant (80.3) on the line. Joe Mazzulla (58.5) would be iffy, as was the case when he went 1-for-6 in the second half in a win over Purdue on Sunday.
And then there is the absolute wild card for the Mountaineers, John Flowers.
Flowers was at the line at the end of that Purdue game on Sunday with 1.5 seconds to play and the Mountaineers up by three. When he made the first, coach Bob Huggins told him to miss the second so that Purdue could not set its offense.
"I told John to make the first and miss the second and he said I was going to screw up his free-throw percentage,'' Huggins cracked after the game. "And this from a guy who is a 40 percent career free throw shooter. And I'm going to screw up his percentage?''
Well, the fact is Flowers was near 40 percent (43.8) to start his senior season. As a freshman (38.0), his free shots were often comical.
As a sophomore (44.4) and a junior (49.0), they improved only slightly.
But as a senior, Flowers is shooting 74.0 percent (that miss did lower his percentage, but only by one-tenth of a point) and has made some big ones for the Mountaineers. Were he on the line at the end of Wednesday's game, almost no one would be overly nervous.
And besides, he hasn't missed a free throw against the Herd since 2008, going 2-for-2 in each of the last two seasons.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com.