Today's MAPOG: Da'Sean Butler.
Big surprise, eh? Like anyone else was going to win it after that performance.
Da'Sean Butler was an absolute star today. Putting together what was one of the best single half performances in WVU history, the senior leader helped the Mountaineers turn a 16 point, second-half deficit into an easy, going-away 19 point win. As bad as the first half was, the second half was a sparkling jewel, sparked by Butler, but also with solid contributions from Ebanks, Jones, and Mazzulla. But it was still DaDa's show.
9-16 FG, 7-7 3pt, 8-8 FT, 6 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 St, 33 Points. And one big wow from me. Like, really big.
This from a team -- and player, considering he didn't score for a 16 minute stretch -- that looked lost and generally disinterested in the first half, not to mention early parts of the second half. ESPN's scoring chart will better illustrate the dire circumstances this team faced:
At one point in the second period, it was 38-22 bad guys. From then on, the Mountaineers outscored the Red Storm 57-22. That's a 35 point difference. Really, I am running out of words to describe just how impressive a job Butler and WVU did coming back from those early setbacks. Just a great win after a horrific start.
It will be a very short turnaround for WVU, as they have only two days of snowstorm-affected travel and rest before playing Villanova in the Coliseum on Big Monday. There will be so many different variables in that game. One, as already mentioned, potential travel problems for both teams. Two, the Wildcats got spanked today at the hands of Georgetown. And third, how will the home crowd react after all that's transpired in the past few days?
Regardless, it will be a huge opportunity for the Mountaineers to grab a share of 2nd place in conference, and potentially 1st depending on the results of tomorrow's Syracuse-Cincinnati game.
But, until then, let's just enjoy the force that was Da'Sean Butler today. Well done, sir. Well done.