The Kinder Garden

OK everyone - take a deep breath. Now, let it out. Feel better?

I hope so. I think we all just need to relax after the midweek loss to James Madison.

I'm not offering any apologies. That was a bad loss, and it will hurt WVU in the RPIs at the end of the season, when I expect JMU will be below the 200 mark.

However, upsets happen. Strange things happen on the road. The key is for the Mountaineer basketball squad to get a couple of wins to counterbalance the effects of the loss to the Dukes. A win over Tennessee, or Syracuse, or Georgetown on the road would go a long way toward doing just that.

I agree with Coach Catlett's postgame remarks that it's difficult to point to any good coming out of a loss, but if nothing else, he should now have his team's attention.

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I'm not sure if I like the idea of Drew Schifino starting at the small forward spot. While Drew is playing well enough to deserve a starting position, playing him at small forward takes him off the front of the 2-2-1 full court press, and also removes him from man to man matchups with opposing shooting guards.

While Lionel Armstead has improved some defensively, he is nowhere near the defender that Schifino is, and we like having that rotation available at the two slot.

The move also weakens WVU from a rebounding perspective - while Josh Yeager isn't a banger, he is 6-8 and jumps well enough to snag a few boards.

I understand Coach Catlett's motivations for making this move, but I'm just not sure how it's going to work out, especially against teams that play 6-7 and 6-8 power forwards. It is nice, though, to have the flexibility to do it, and I want to keep a close eye on the starting lineups for the next few games to see how they get shuffled around. Sometimes, you can't start your best five players, and that may be the case here.

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After finishing a football season's worth of road trips and embarking on a few for basketball, I still havesn't seen any college operations that match WVU's in terms of setups for the media. Oh sure, there are a few things I'd like to change, but overall the facilities, setups, food and service are second to none at the Coliseum and and Mountaineer Field.

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