Morgantown, West Virginia – The West Virginia Mountaineers cruised to a relatively easy win last night in the opening round of the Charleston Classic, comfortably beating Elon 87-68.
However, you wouldn’t have known it after listening to Bob Huggins immediately after the game. Huggins, who moved into a tie for 4th all-time in wins by a college basketball coach, was not happy with his team’s performance or effort.
“I’m not trying to make an excuse or blame anyone, but we have 14 guys and they all want to play,” Huggins said. “You’re going to have to be a bit of a realist because they want to play and I understand that. I also understand that when I was growing up in the United States of America, you had to work for what you got. It wasn’t just given to you. That’s gone now.
That’s the way it used to be and that’s the way it’s going to be as long as I’m the head coach here. They’re going to have to earn their stripes and if they don’t like it, they can go ahead and enter the transfer portal.”
Huggins continued: “I’m not trying to be a downer. It’s just realistic. It’s realism. I can go in there and hug and kiss them, but they’re going to come back out the same way tomorrow. The only problem is that they’re going to go against bigger and better players tomorrow. I’m just a realist.”
Huggins then took a clear shot at Oscar Tshiebwe. Although he didn’t mention him by name, it was obvious who he was talking about.
“We lost a so-called McDonald’s All-American because he didn’t like that we were making him do things that were hard and that he didn’t want to do,” Huggins said. “But we’re fine.”
Although Tshiebwe struggled last season with the Mountaineers, he is currently averaged 18.3 points and 18.7 rebounds per game and is an early National Player of the Year candidate with the Kentucky Wildcats.
Huggins is clearly not happy with his team currently and is even less pleased with the current state of college basketball. However, West Virginia is 3-0 heading into the second round matchup with the Marquette Golden Eagles.
The Mountaineers play Marquette tonight at 7:00 in Charleston, South Carolina. If they win tonight, they will advance to the championship of the Charleston Classic on Sunday at 7:30 against the winner of St. Bonaventure and Clemson.