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THE SHOTGUN THROWDOWN: Taj Thweatt enters transfer portal

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

NCAA Basketball: West Virginia at Texas Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

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

THWEATT TO TRANSFER

Redshirt freshman Taj Thweatt has entered the transfer portal. Thweatt had only played 10 total minutes in three games for the West Virginia men’s basketball team this season. He had just three points and one steal in those limited minutes. Last season, the young forward had four points and seven rebounds in 23 minutes of play.

The loss of Thweatt is not a major disappointment for the Mountaineers. It’s apparent that he had not developed much in his first season-and-a-half at WVU, and this departure could open up future minutes for other young big men, like James Okonkwo and Seny N’Diaye. Head coach Bob Huggins will also be bringing in two power forwards, Josiah Harris and Pat Suemnick, in the next recruiting class.

WVU RETAINS TOP DEFENDERS

Fears of a depleted defense in 2022 for the West Virginia football team were cooled off when WVU’s leading tackler Josh Chandler-Semedo and the team’s top sacker Dante Stills announced that they will be returning next season. The two defenders combined for 146 tackles, over 20 tackles for loss, over eight sacks, three interceptions, and three forced fumbles this season. Chandler-Semedo led the Mountaineers in tackles (including total tackles, solo tackles, and assisted tackles), interceptions, and forced fumbles. Stills led the WVU defense in sacks and tackles for loss. The two stars also shared the nod for the most quarterback hurries this year. The return of Chandler-Semedo and Stills is a relief to many fans because it will help the Mountaineers retain leadership and stability on defense.

WEST VIRGINIA ROUNDUP

  • Despite its recent loss to #14 Texas, the West Virginia basketball team is still receiving votes in the national polls. #1 Baylor is the highest ranking of the seven Big 12 Conference teams that are receiving votes.
  • Redshirt senior Killian Cardinale and sophomore Peyton Hall both finished in second place in their respective weight classes at Chattanooga’s Southern Scuffle. The West Virginia wrestling team finished in seventh place at the event.

AROUND THE BIG 12

AROUND THE NCAA

  • The first College Football Playoff Semifinal game on New Year’s Eve went to #1 Alabama, as the Crimson Tide cruised past #4 Cincinnati, 27-6.
  • The College Football Playoff Final will be a rematch between the Tide and #3 Georgia, after the Bulldogs defeated #2 Michigan 34-11 in their Semifinal game.

ODDS AND ENDS

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