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Mountaineer Morning Links: Tuesday (3/25/14) Edition

Women look for Sweet Sixteen berth tonight, more on Harris' departure and a couple of possible landing places, baseball opens up home schedule, Big 12 roundup & more

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Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown, WVU's nationally recognized best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions. We're being brought to you today by Roaring Meg Springhead beer.

What You May Have Missed:

Four Gymnasts Qualify for NCAA Regionals - WVU Athletics
Senior Hope Sloanhoffer and freshman Nicolette Swoboda qualified as all-around competitors, while junior Beth Deal and freshman Alexa Goldberg will compete as balance beam and uneven bars specialists, respectively.

Fleming Named Big 12 Player of the Week - WVU Athletics
Fleming batted .647 (11-for-17) with four runs, one double, five RBIs, two walks and one stolen base in four games.

Sloanhoffer Named Athlete of the Week - WVU Athletics
Varsity Sports Report

Bradley's Experience to Aid WVU Defense - WVU Athletics
Former PSU assistant Tom Bradley now working with WVU D-line.

NCAA Women's Tournament:

Mountaineers to Face Host LSU in NCAA Second Round - WVU Athletics
Senior guard Christal Caldwell had a career-best 26 points in WVU's last outing, to advance to the NCAA Second Round.

WVU gets set for showdown with LSU - Charleston Daily Mail
"It’s going to be a tough game," WVU coach Mike Carey said.

Shooting for the Sweet 16 - Charleston Gazette
WVU women face LSU tonight on Tigers' home floor

WVU women still feeling lack of respect - Charleston Gazette
"We don't get the respect that we should get,'' said Asya Bussie.

WVU poised to battle LSU in second round - Times West Virginian
West Virginia’s victory over Albany in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday afternoon in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center of the LSU campus was anything but a thing of beauty … and that’s just fine with Mike Carey, who is coaching basketball, not judging a beauty pageant.

Neither Bussie nor Plaisance wants their careers to end - Times West Virginian
Some things are very difficult to understand in sports, and one of them is represented by LSU, which provides the second-round opponent of the NCAA Tournament for West Virginia at 9:30 p.m. tonight on their home floor at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge, La.

NCAA women: Mountaineers seek breakthrough on the Bayou - WV MetroNews
No. 2 seed West Virginia hopes to change its 0-7 second-round record during Tuesday night's game at LSU.

Breakthrough Battle - AP/BGN
West Virginia coach Mike Carey would like to think the Mountaineers are due for a second-round victory in the NCAA tournament.

PRESS CONFERENCE: WVU Women Prepare for LSU - WVillustrated
Watch West Virginia Women's Basketball team's full press conference prior to their game against LSU tomorrow in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

WVU Needs Better Showing to Beat No. 7 LSU - WVillustrated
Mountaineers hold off Albany in first round, but Mike Carey knows the challenge ahead is much greater.

LSU Preparing for Strong Guard Play from WVU - WVillustrated
Lady Tigers look ahead to the challenge of facing Bria Holmes and Christal Caldwell on Tuesday night.

The Sweet Sixteen Awaits - Parkersburg News and Sentinel
WVU women looking for second trip

Mountaineers Face LSU in Round 2 - Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register
"First of all, I'd like to just say that I'm very proud of our team and where we're at right now," Coach Mike Carey said.

WVU embraces difficult NCAA tournament - Daily Athenaeum
The 2-seed West Virginia women’s basketball team will have their work cut out for them in the NCAA tournament.

WVU needs 40-minute effort against LSU - Daily Athenaeum
For the West Virginia women’s basketball team, Sunday’s 76-61 win over Albany in the opening round of the NCAA tournament was a tale of two halves.

Furfari: WVU women hope to beat LSU, be it ugly or pretty - Register-Herald
With so many upsets in this year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament, it was breathtaking to see West Virginia hold on for a 76-61 win against Albany in the first round of the NCAA women’s tournament.

News of Note:

Harris to transfer, wants to be ‘closer to home’ - Charleston Daily Mail
Harris and his coach released a statement saying the sophomore has requested and been granted a release from his scholarship so Harris can transfer.

Mountaineers' Harris to transfer - Charleston Gazette
Sophomore guard wants to be closer to home

Offseason stunner: Harris announces he’s transferring - WV MetroNews
The sophomore guard averaged 17.2 points per game this season but said he wants to play closer to home.

WVU’s Harris transferring closer to home - Times West Virginian
Just when you thought things could not get any worse for the West Virginia basketball program, it was dealt another severe blow as sophomore shooting guard Eron Harris, who teamed with Juwan Staten to give West Virginia one of the most dynamic backcourts in the nation, asked for and was granted his release and plans to transfer to a school closer to his home in Indiana.

Harris to Transfer -
There is no way to sugar coat this. Harris' departure is a huge and completely unexpected loss for the program.

HERTZEL COLUMN: Signs of Harris’ departure were evident - Times West Virginian
Those of us in the media had hung a nickname on Eron Harris as he emerged as a mid-season star of the West Virginia basketball team.

WVU Guard Eron Harris Requests Release, Will Transfer - WVillustrated
Mountaineer sophomore makes decision to leave program, head closer to home.

Purdue Appears To be Active In The Transfer Market - Hammer and Rails
A couple of Indianapolis natives could possibly come closer to home in West Lafayette.

Nolan Berry to transfer from Butler - Indianapolis Star
A few players the Bulldogs may pursue in the coming weeks became available Monday: IU's Austin Etherington and West Virgnia's Eron Harris, both of which announced they would transfer.

Pro News:

Shaq, Eger Looking For a Shot - EerSports
Former Mountaineers Pat Eger and Shaq Rowell discuss their Pro Day and the chances they have at the next level.

Around the League (and Beyond):

Throw out those old myths about Baylor basketball - Waco Tribune

Naz Long keeps hitting big shots for Iowa State - The Gazette

Tarik Black's final act not enough for KU - Topeka Capital Journal

Weber a part of coaching rumor mill? - Bring On The Cats

Oklahoma football Q&A: Eric Striker having fun with his new pass coverage responsibilities - Oklahoman (autoplay)

OSU basketball: Cowboys will be different next season — but not necessarily worse - Oklahoman (autoplay)

Horns still in strong position with Trojans QB transfer Max Wittek - Burnt Orange Nation

Monday Morning Manager - Frogs O' War

Dusty Hannahs to Transfer from Texas Tech - Viva The Matadors

Big XII Baseball Notes | Sooners Take Opening Series | Bears In First - Crimson And Cream Machine

What's On Tap:

Baseball Opens Home Season Against Pitt - WVU Athletics
The WVU baseball team will open up the home season against Pitt in a non-conference matchup on Tuesday, March 25, at Hawley Field. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.

(7) LSU Lady Tigers vs. (2) West Virginia Mountaineers - Preview - ESPN
9:30 pm tonight from Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge on ESPN2/3

Video of Interest:

WVU's Jeff Culhane and Meg Bulger preview the second round game against LSU in the NCAA Tournament.

Video of (Dis)Interest:

Miss Throwdown:

Today's Miss Throwdown is a South African beauty. CLICK HERE for today's gallery of Jenna Pietersen.