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It's Been Nice Knowing You, Joe

The draft order is set and ESPN guru Chad Ford has released his first mock draft. In it, Joe Alexander is projected to go 13th to the Portland Trail Blazers. With this news, we can 99.99% bid adieu to the WVU career of Alexander -- and that's not a bad thing.

By going in the lottery, Alexander provides a huge boost to the recruiting efforts of CBH. Sure, we've signed a potential top 10 draft class, but now WVU -- not just Huggins -- can put players in the NBA. If Alexander succeeds, suddenly young players across the country are pretending to dunk like a WVU alum. Soon enough, we have two or three top 25 players in each class.

It's been a long time coming for a WVU player to go early in the NBA draft. Hell, when Gordon Malone is your last player drafted, you know something isn't exactly right. Seeing Alexander in New York would be a proud moment for all WVU fans.

Sure, he has another year of eligibility, but I doubt anyone would argue with Alexander's decision. This is something very different than Slaton or Dingle or Reynaud. Those guys seemed to leave simply to leave. While eventually we'll get over the saltiness from those departures, there'll be no such feeling with Alexander.

Alexander could very well be the sleeper in the 2008 NBA draft. At the beginning of the year, he was barely on NBA radar screens. Now many teams consider him a potential lottery pick.

If you've come from nowhere to a potential lottery pick -- like he has -- you jump at that opportunity.

And if (and when) he makes that jump, Charley West and all WBGV will be wishing him the best of luck.