New WVU Players Adjust To Huggs, College Game

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Entering the collegiate level of play is an uphill slug fest for most prep athletes. But West Virginia's newcomers have combined a willingness to work with the expectations of playing for Bob Huggins, and thus far it appears to be reaping benefits for both sides.

Huggins expressed his pleasure with the preparation of his team, noting that the players have come into the summer drill sessions with the right attitude, and have played and worked hard. That, in turn, has made newcomers like James "Beetle" Bolden, Lamont West and Marshall transfer TyQuane Goard better prepared for the rigors of the upcoming fall practices, when the Mountaineers prepare for a schedule that shows 10 games against Top 25 foes according to one poll.

Bolden, a native of Covington, Ky., just across the border from Cincinnati, speaks to his longtime relationship with Huggins, his experiences thus far in trying to handle the point guard position - both in the half court and going against the press - and his need to gain strength and bulk in the weight room before becoming truly ready to face Big 12 competition. Bolden also notes the difference in discipline and on-court understanding at this level, and his thoughts and expectations for the Bahamas trip next week.

Lamont West, a 6-8 forward listed at 215 pounds, estimates he has gained more than 10 pounds of muscle since working with basketball strength and conditioning coach Andy Kettler. Here, West details his weight room experiences, what attracted him to West Virginia and the long, winding trip he took in trying to gain exposure and get additional scholarship offers.

And finally TyQuane Goard, whose marathon-like journey from Marshall to West Virginia has been well-chronicled, speaks to the difference in programs, his desire to add some muscle to ready for consistent major conference play and the playing and practices styles of the Mountaineers - including his role at the top of the press, which he will model after Jonathan Holton, who he calls a bit wild.

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