Morgantown, West Virginia – While the West Virginia Mountaineers are currently 13-4 through the first seventeen games of the season, the team has looked less than impressive during the majority of their victories, and although it’s a bit early to look ahead to the future of this team, the 2022-2023 version of the Mountaineers looks shockingly dreadful.
Following this season, West Virginia will lose seniors Taz Sherman (18.8 points per game), Sean McNeil (14.4 ppg), Malik Curry (8.6 ppg), Kedrian Johnson (4.5 ppg), Gabe Osabuohien (4.6 ppg), Pauly Paulicap (2.8 ppg) and Dimon Carrigan (2.0 ppg).
That’s 55.7 out of 68.9 points per game, or 81% of the team’s scoring this season, lost next season. In addition, that’s also 63% of the the current rebounds lost.
The only players remaining will be Jalen Bridges, Isaiah Cottrell, Kobe Johnson, Seth Wilson, James Okonkwo, Jamel King and Seny N’Diaye.
While talented three star recruits Josiah Harris, Josiah Davis and Pat Suemnick will eventually be contributors for the Mountaineers in the future, it’s extremely unlikely that they’ll be able to step in immediately and perform at a high level.
In addition, Huggins – the ultimate old school head coach – seems less than thrilled with the changing landscape of college athletics. Transfer rules, Name Image Likeness (NIL), the increasingly diva-like attitudes of athletes, etc., are all major annoyances to him.
Although he loves the game of basketball, it’s simply not the same game that he signed up to coach when he became a head coach back in 1980 and at this point in his career, he has nothing left to prove.
At 68 years old, Huggins is likely starting to long for the days of no longer dealing with the grind of the day-to-day responsibilities of running a major college basketball program, particularly when the upcoming seasons are uphill battles as rebuilding years.
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.
But it’s hard to imagine an aging Bob Huggins struggling through a difficult season like he inevitably faces next season. If I had to guess, this year could be Huggins’ last.