Truck Bryant? Huggins had to keep him on the floor shooting because Cottrill wasn't around. Nor was 6-5 Dalton Pepper, a rather prolific 3-point shooter who left the team last year to be closer to his ill father, who resides near Philadelphia. Pepper sat out this season and will play for Temple next season.
Much should change next season for WVU. It might be a bit harsh, but the biggest addition might be the subtraction of Bryant. Many of his decisions weren't only destructive to the team's chances in any given game, but also set bad examples for his young teammates.
But back to the team competition. Next season the ideal situation for Huggins would be to start 6-10 transfer Aaric Murray at power forward and an improved Kilicli at center. If, however, Kilicli won't listen to Huggins, the coach will have the ability to hold the player's feet to the proverbial fire.
Murray can play center. Noreen will be back. Pat Forsythe should return after a back injury and a redshirt season. And don't forget about incoming 6-9, 230-pound rock Elijah Macon of Huntington Prep. If Kilicli won't listen or improve, Huggins can find him a seat on the bench. (Word is, however, Murray's passing ability will help Kilicli.)
There will also be competition in the backcourt. Juwan Staten, the Dayton transfer, will challenge (and probably win) a starting spot. Recruit Terry Henderson will have to give the Mountaineers an outside shooting lift. There's recruit Eron Harris.
WVU starter Jabarie Hinds will have to improve his game. Ditto Gary Browne, who showed much hustle but still needs work.
Players like Keaton Miles, Aaron Brown, Rutledge and fan favorite Paul Williamson will have to improve and fight for spots and playing time.
That's a plus for Huggins. It's the competition within his team lacked this season. Which is why, when you consider the circumstances, one has to consider a 19-14 season and NCAA tournament appearances a success.
Reach Mitch Vingle at 304-348-4827, mitchvin...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/MitchVingle.