Defensive Depth

Although Bob Huggins would prefer that his Mountaineer basketball team play his favored man-to-man defensive sets, it has been multiple zone defenses that have given West Virginia a boost in several recent games.

Against St. John's, WVU employed several different zone looks (some of them cleverly disguised) to slow down the Red Storm. West Virginia held the Red Storm to under 40% shooting from the field in earning another Big East conference win.

WVU also employed its "point drop" defense (which disguises itself as another zone look) in a couple of wins, and most recently went back to the triangle and two (with point guard Joe Mazzulla bulldogging 270-pound South Florida center Kentrell Gransberry) with good success as well.

Although Huggins isn't pleased with the events that caused his team to move to the zones ("We couldn't guard anybody," he said with some derision after the St. John's game), he has to be happy with the way in which the Mountaineers moved effortlessly between the different defense.

In this interview, Darris Nichols discusses the benefits of being able to play several different defenses in quick succession, and shares a bit of a secret about one of WVU's 1-3-1 sets.

Darris Nichols - Windows Media

Darris Nichols - MP3


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