"They're nice kids, they really are. I don't have any issues. They're nice, they're cordial, they're good folk,'' Huggins said of his players. "But as soon as school starts I'll find a hell of a lot of those in the library, too. And I don't think they can play, either.''
Again, there are times when this West Virginia team looks like it might be making progress, Huggins said. But as soon as one of those moments pops up, it's quickly replaced by one of these from the EKU game:
"When you've got a guy trapped under the basket, you don't run in there. That might be the dumbest thing I've ever seen in a basketball game,'' Huggins said. "You run in there and triple-team a guy who wasn't going to score over two 6-9 guys to start with and leave open a guy wide open in the corner for a 3? A guy who just happens to be their leading scorer, by the way. And then it happened a second time.''
The second time the mistake was made by someone else, someone who had seen the first player make that crucial mistake from the bench and replaced him because of it. Then he made the same one.
"I was different, I guess,'' Huggins said of his own playing day. "If I saw some guy get taken out of a game for doing something wrong I wasn't going to do that. I might screw up doing a lot of other things, but I wasn't doing that. I wanted to stay in the game."
Perhaps some of West Virginia's problems can't be fixed by simple repetition. The Mountaineers have not shot the ball well all season, but the hope is that the cause is just bad luck. Many of WVU's shooters aren't as bad as they have been and odds are some of those shots will eventually drop.
But as for the dumb mistakes, well, Huggins can't tolerate them, but he does take responsibility for them.
"I recruited them and I've got to fix it,'' Huggins said. "I understand that."
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.
Saturday's 4 p.m. game at the Coliseum will be the fourth basketball meeting between West Virginia and Oklahoma, and the first not played on a neutral floor. A look at the first three: