Of course, the other thing that would help the Mountaineers even more would be if they could shoot like they did in those final eight minutes. Outside shooting - and even inside shooting, for that matter - has been an issue all season for WVU. In road games at Texas and Iowa State in the past 10 days, WVU started 0 for 13 from 3-point range each time.
But against the Longhorns West Virginia made shots when it mattered and rallied to win in overtime. After that 0-for-13 start at Iowa State, the Mountaineers made nine of their last 11 3-point attempts.
A few things might contribute to better shooting today against Purdue. For one, freshman Terry Henderson will likely return after missing the Iowa State trip because of back pains. Huggins said Henderson is practicing again.
Another would be Humphrey, the senior transfer from Boston College who was supposed to have given the team a shooting spark this season. It hasn't happened. Going into the Iowa State game, Humphrey hadn't even played since Dec. 22 and was shooting 30.7 percent from 3-point range when he did play.
But then with Henderson out and outside shooting needed, Huggins first tried Aaron Brown and then Humphrey. Humphrey caught fire, making three 3s in four attempts.
"Let's be honest, he didn't make shots early in the year,'' Huggins said. "He's put a lot of time in and kind of fixed a couple of things that were giving him problems.''
If Humphrey continues to shoot the ball well, he could be a huge asset for a team that ranks among the worst in the country in both 3-point and overall shooting.
"He's got to play,'' Huggins said. "We've got to be able to score the ball.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.