Morgantown, West Virginia – Bob Huggins deserves to remain as the Head Coach of the West Virginia Mountaineers for as long as he wishes. One of the very best to ever roam the sidelines, Huggins will be given the power to make the decision to retire when he’s ready to step down.
A few months ago, I would have guessed that Bob Huggins’ career was coming to a sudden end. Declining health and age, I thought, would have finally caught up to the greatest coach in West Virginia basketball history. And then…Huggins was recently photographed looking tanned, slim, youthful and rejuvenated! This Bob Huggins – the one who looks like he spends time listening to old rock ‘n roll records while smoking pot in his basement – can coach for another 5-10 years.
In two years, following the 2021-2022 season, Huggins’ contract allows him to continue to coach or take a position within the athletics department. According to a press release by West Virginia University, “Under the agreement, following the 2021-22 season, Huggins will assume a five-year Emeritus status within the WVU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics, which concludes June 30, 2027. He will be involved in public relations and development activities in addition to other duties assigned at that time by the Director of Athletics. Huggins could defer his term of Emeritus status and continue to serve as head coach beyond 2021-22 with a mutual agreement between Huggins and the Director.”
Two years from now, Bob Huggins – who turned 67 last week – will be 69 years old. Although several coaches have coached well into their late sixties, early seventies, Huggins is not in the superior physical condition in takes to continue for much longer.
Huggins, who currently sits at 5th all-time in wins with 881, will almost certainly pass 900 wins next season and could potentially pass Roy Williams and Bob Knight. Only Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski and Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim are likely out of reach for Huggins.
Although two more outstanding seasons coaching teams loaded with talent and potential to win a national championship is the perfect way for Huggins to go out, I don’t think he’s ready to retire. A cushy position in the athletic department where he can oversee the team and add valuable insight seems like a perfect fit for the aging Huggins, but that position can wait.
Bob Huggins, rested, in better health and down approximately 40-50 pounds, can coach the Mountaineers well into his 70s, and what a treat that will be for West Virginia fans.