By Kyle Lovern
On Tuesday morning the Big 12 basketball coaches held their teleconferences and WVU head Coach Bob Huggins talked about his team.
Huggins was asked if he felt that the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs were a good influence on players watching their successful play in the recent championship series against the Miami Heat.
“They play the game the right way,” Huggins answered. “Passing and sharing the ball - it’s their overall team attitude.”
“They cheer for their teammates,” Huggins said. He said if Coach Greg Popovich takes a player out of the game to talk to them, they don’t “pout and sulk.”
“Teams like that are a lot more fun to watch,” he said.
Most fans agree that the Mountaineers depended a lot on the 3-point shot last season, but Huggins hopes that his team will be able to score more in the lane this season.
He was asked about sophomore Devin Williams and his improvement. Williams finished strong in his freshman season. He led the team in double-doubles.
“We want Devin to be more consistent,” Huggins said of the 6’9” power forward. “He needs to be more consistent. He could average a double – double. Dev is in the gym consistently and is working on his 15-foot range jumper.”
“We think he can be more versatile,” Huggins added.
Huggins went on to say he feels this roster will be able to bounce the ball and to get into the lane more consistently. “We need to score with our back to the basket,” the WVU coach stressed. “Elijan Macon will help with that.”
The muscular 6’9” Macon will become eligible after sitting out last season. He will be a freshman this season and provide toughness, with inside scoring and rebounding.
“He will help a lot,” Huggins added.
The Mountaineers will be led by senior point guard Juwan Staten, an All-Big 12 first team member. He will be a Player of the Year candidate this season in the conference.
“We just need to try to get better and better as the season goes on,” Huggins concluded. “We need to give a good effort. I think they will improve.”
Mountaineer fans are hoping so and for a return to the NCAA tourney next March.
(Kyle Lovern is the Sports Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 304-235-4242, ext. 33 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)