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THE SHOTGUN THROWDOWN: Bob Huggins Becomes Fifth Winningest Division I Men’s Basketball Coach

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Good morning! This is the Shotgun Throwdown, your daily West Virginia sports roundup.

NCAA Basketball: Pittsburgh at West Virginia Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome, By-Godders, to The Shotgun Throwdown, WVU’s best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor, and daily distractions.

HUGGINS KEEPS CLIMBING

There was excitement in the air in the WVU Coliseum last Friday night, as the West Virginia men’s basketball team defeated Pitt, 74-59, in the Backyard Brawl. The game was sold out and a great showing by the WVU students helped push the game’s attendance count over the Coliseum’s capacity.

Not only were the fans excited to see their Mountaineers dominate their biggest basketball rival, but they also enjoyed seeing their legendary head coach, Bob Huggins, earn his 902nd career win which moved him into fifth place on the NCAA’s all-time Division I win list. Huggs is currently tied with the retired Bob Knight for fifth.

Huggins will move into fourth all-time with his next win. He has a chance to reach that milestone when WVU returns to action on Thursday against Elon in the opening game of the Shriners Children’s Charleston Classic South Carolina. Huggs would be tied with former North Carolina coach Roy Williams at that point, but Williams retired after last season which gives Huggins a chance to pass him altogether with one additional victory.

If Huggs moves into fourth with 904 Division I wins, it may be a while before he reaches another milestone. Former UConn coach Jim Calhoun is in third with 919 career victories, but he is currently coaching at Saint Joseph in Connecticut, which is a relatively new Division III program. Current Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim is in second with 984 career wins and Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski is well ahead of everyone in first with 1,173 victories, but he is retiring after this season. Do you think Huggins has a chance to move into third or better on the all-time wins list?

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL SEASON OPENER

The #22 West Virginia women’s basketball team will start its season against Saint Francis tonight in Morgantown. The Red Flash is 0-2 this year, following blowout losses at Temple and Kent State.

WVU is returning four of its five primary starters from last season’s fantastic 22-7 campaign. The Mountaineers also have three fifth-year seniors, three true seniors, and three juniors to give them plenty of experience on the court. Head coach Mike Carey will rely on that depth and full-court defensive pressure to win games this year.

WVU’s season opener is set to tip off at 7:00 p.m. ET and will be streamed on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.

WEST VIRGINIA ROUNDUP

  • The West Virginia men’s soccer team has earned the #11 seed in the 2021 NCAA Tournament and will receive a first-round bye. The Mountaineers are 11-3-4 this season, but recently suffered a surprising loss in the semifinals of the Mid-American Conference Tournament. WVU will host the winner of an opening round match between Virginia Tech and Campbell.
  • Kansas put on a show this past Saturday night with its upset win at Texas, so the Jayhawks will get to play another night game when West Virginia travels to Lawrence on November 27th. The game will be nationally televised on FS1. The Mountaineers did not get to host a Big 12 night game this season.

AROUND THE BIG 12

  • The #9 Baylor men’s basketball team improved to 2-0 on Monday morning with an 89-60 win over Nicholls State. Freshman guard Kendall Brown had a double-double for the Bears with 13 points and 10 assists. He also had eight rebounds.
  • The BU football team also won its last game with a 27-14 victory over #8 Oklahoma. The #13 Bears were able to defeat the formerly undefeated Sooners by shutting down freshman quarterback Caleb Williams. Williams had to be replaced by sophomore Spencer Rattler, who he had replaced as the starter earlier in the season.
  • The Oklahoma State hoops team cruised past Prairie View A&M on Sunday, 72-59. The Cowboys were able to play 15 different players, and junior guard Keylan Boone came off the bench to lead the team with 12 points.

AROUND THE NCAA

  • After trailing at halftime, the #23 St. Bonaventure basketball team rallied to beat Canisius 69-60 on Sunday. West Virginia could face the Bonnies at the Charleston Classic in South Carolina this weekend.
  • What many people thought could be an upset loss, turned into a blowout win for the #4 Ohio State football team. The Buckeyes kept their College Football Playoff hopes alive with a 59-31 win over #19 Purdue.
  • A strong second half helped the Florida men’s basketball team upset #20 Florida State, 71-55, in Sunday’s Sunshine Showdown. Senior forward Colin Castleton led the Gators with 15 points and 16 rebounds.
  • The East Tennessee State men’s hoops team traveled down to Knoxville on Sunday. #18 Tennessee dominated the meeting, 94-62, thanks to 23 points and eight rebounds from junior forward Olivier Nkamhoua.

ODDS AND ENDS

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