West Virginia started off its season with a bang, winning its first 10 games en route to its first Top 25 ranking since March 1998 - the last time the Mountaineers were selected for the NCAA tournament.
Since then, West Virginia (11-4, 1-3 Big East) has lost four of its last five games, including an ugly 73-53 loss at Boston College, when the perimeter-oriented Mountaineers went 0-13 from three-point land in the second half.
Things don't figure to get easier for West Virginia heading into its conference schedule. The Mountaineers are coming off a 70-57 loss to Notre Dame, and figure to have matchup problems against Syracuse's Hakim Warrick when they travel to the Carrier Dome to face the Orange (18-1, 5-0).
Earlier in the year, West Virginia was able to sneak up on opponents because nothing was expected from a team that hadn't made much noise in the talented Big East. But with a national ranking slapped on, the element of surprise was gone.
Keys: The Mountaineers will need to get back on track from long distance to have a chance at upsetting the Orange, who haven't lost a Big East game this season and are undefeated at home.
Look out for: Patrick Beilein. The junior guard has connected on 37.5 percent from downtown.
West Virginia hobbles into matchup at Carrier Dome
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