Morgantown, West Virginia – Although the West Virginia Mountaineers are 9-1, including a win over the then-15th ranked Connecticut Huskies, they are struggling statistically in many key categories.
The Mountaineers are currently shooting 60.3% from the foul line, which is 346th out of 350 eligible teams in college basketball. The worst foul-shooting team, Sam Houston, is shooting 55.6% from the foul line.
“I think it shocked everybody that we kept going up there and missing,” Bob Huggins said after West Virginia’s victory over UCONN. “They figured maybe one of them would go in, maybe they’d bank one or something.”
Huggins continued: “There’s only one way you fix it, and that’s you go in and work on it. I think at least most of them will.”
Foul shooting is not the only area in where the Mountaineers are have major difficulties. Rebounding, the area that Bob Huggins’ teams typically excel, has had major issues this season.
West Virginia is a shocking 343rd out of 350 college basketball teams in defensive rebounds with 21.2 per game. In addition, the Mountaineers are 240th out of 350 in total rebounding in the nation.
“I would say we’re not a very good,” Huggins said about the team’s rebounding after West Virginia’s last game. “I think, before, I said we were horrible. We’ve gone from horrible to not very good. That’s something we start practicing with every day. It’s hard for them to rebound if you got your back and you’re behind them. We’ve gotta continue to work on proper blocking out.”
Despite these areas of concern, West Virginia is off to a 9-1 start and has lots of room for growth. With better free throw shooting and improved rebounding, the sky is the limit for the Mountaineers. If this continues, West Virginia is going to have a very difficult time competing with Big 12 teams when conference play begins.