Under-The-Radar No More

West Virginia might be young, but it sure plays up to its opponents.

On Saturday, the Mountaineers were able to play up to and even out-play at times No. 9 Georgetown in a 74-62 victory at the WVU Coliseum.

Now, it has proven in Big East Conference play that it shouldn't be taken lightly.

"It's a good win against a heck of a team that's extremely well-coached," said WVU head coach Bob Huggins.

The Mountaineers were able to get contributions from their young players – and it had to have them in this game.

Forward Deniz Kilicli was in foul trouble throughout just about the entire game. He missed the final 12 minutes of the first half and was called for his fourth foul in the second half with more than six minutes to play.

That forced junior college transfer forward Dominique Rutledge into the game, and he was able to spell Kilicli.

In addition, freshmen guards Aaron Brown and Gary Browne gave just enough offense when needed to beat a top 10 team.

Senior forward Kevin Jones and senior guard Truck Bryant were all but spectacular in the game. Jones controlled the first half, and Bryant handled the second half, it seemed.

When one of the two are hitting, WVU is hard to defend.

"Teams might be taking us lightly, because we have names that they don't recognize," Jones said. "We're young, but we're talented."

The Mountaineers had yet to beat a ranked team this season before this game, so this one meant a lot for confidence.

West Virginia had already found out that it could play with some of the best teams in the country. It hung tough and forced overtime against then-No. 6 Baylor last month and defeated an underrated Kansas State squad already.

To be able to do it in Big East play, however, is a bit different.

The Mountaineers' younger players have realized through the first four games of conference play that it is a different animal.

"You get an opportunity [for a top 25 win] almost every night out," Huggins said. "We get so many chances. In this league, you can't get down and you can't get too up, either."

Since 2009, WVU is 5-0 against Georgetown and only two of those wins have come at home.

It seems as if Huggins has the advantage over Georgetown head coach John Thompson III and always out-coaches him.

Add another one to the list, as Huggins continues to do his best coaching job at West Virginia – and maybe ever.

Just remember, three months ago this team lost to Northern Kentucky in an exhibition.

"We just take it one step at a time," Jones said. "This was definitely a good resume builder at home." Today, it beat No. 9 Georgetown.

Now, the Mountaineers are no longer under the radar, so let' see how this team responds.

"I hope they don't start to realize [we're a good team]," Jones said. "As long as we can give this type of effort, we're going to be fine … I think this could be a national championship team, and I'm not just saying it because I'm on it."


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