Well, West Virginia was due for one of these games.
After defeating #1 Kansas last Tuesday and nearly taking down #2 Oklahoma on Saturday, the Mountaineers looked lethargic and uninterested in their 56-49 defeat to the Texas Longhorns on Tuesday night at the Coliseum.
The shooting numbers in this game were some of the worst you will ever see for a top 10 team in the country. West Virginia shot 19-61 (31.1%) from the field, 3-21 (14.3) from three, and 8-23 (34.8%) from the free throw line. After watching that performance, it's pretty amazing that they only lost by seven.
Even the press, the one thing this team relies on most, was ineffective. The Longhorns committed only 8 turnovers and forced 11 Mountaineer turnovers with their own pressing style.
Despite all of this, West Virginia trailed by only three at the half and the Texas lead never reached double-digits.
The only player who appeared to have the type of energy needed to win was Jonathan Holton. Holton was a beast on the boards, pulling down 8 offensive rebounds and 14 overall. He also added 10 points. Devin Williams was the only other double-figure scorer, also picking up a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds.
Jaysean Paige had probably his worst game of the season, unable to get into the paint and shooting 2-12 from the field. Daxter Miles and Jevon Carter were a combined 3-17.
Javan Felix led the Longhorns with 17.
The Mountaineers won the rebounding battle 49-33 and had 24 offensive rebounds. The result? TWENTY more field goal attempts for West Virginia. They just could never take advantage of the second chance opportunities.
You can view the full boxscore here, but I'm not sure why you'd want to.
On to the notes:
- The weather and Morgantown traffic again affected a WVU opponent's ability to get to the Coliseum. Texas arrived about an hour late. I'm assuming that's why there were plenty of good seats available, too.
- This was West Virginia's first home loss of the season. They are now 9-1 at the Coliseum.
- Kansas State is currently beating Baylor. West Virginia may have missed an opportunity to be in sole possession of first place in the conference.
- It's time to end the Jonathan Holton three point shooting experiment. In his career (including his one season at Rhode Island), Holton is 34-180 from three. That's 18.9%. He may make them in practice, but it doesn't translate to the games.
- This doesn't have anything to do with tonight's game, but this interview with Bob Huggins is really interesting. And to think, a sizable percentage of the WVU fanbase was ready to get rid of this guy a couple years ago.
Next up for the Mountaineers is a trip to Lubbock to take on Texas Tech. The Red Raiders are 12-5 overall and 2-5 in conference, with wins over Texas and TCU. The game tips at 1:00 PM EST and will be televised on ESPNEWS and WatchESPN.