WVU Hustles to Prepare for Pitt

West Virginia will have to make the most of limited preparation time today as they get ready for Tuesday's invasion by the number 5 ranked Pitt Panthers.

"We had a tough loss, and now we have only one day of preparation to get ready for one of the best teams in the country," head coach John Beilein said on Monday. "We'll try to get after it today and be as prepared as we can be."

The Panthers, unlike Georgetown, have several different threats that make them difficult to prepare for, even under the best of circumstances.

"It's pick your poison against Pitt. They pose problems in so many different ways," Beilein noted. "We'll have to guard a bunch of different talented players. I think the change in preparation from Georgetown, where the focus was on Sweetney, will make it even more difficult."


Beilein continues to espouse a strategy of not looking at wins and losses, but only at improvement levels.

"I'm not looking at the win-loss thing. We have a bunch of young men and a coaching staff whose focus is on improvement. I'm very pleased with them and with the fact they have never given up. They are willing to sacrifice to improve - that's the thing I am most pleased with."

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Beilein is looking forward to a possible sold out house on Tuesday evening, but as usual is concerned about the effect it will have on his players.

"It's going to be fun, but I worry more about how it will affect our guys than Pitt. Pitt has cagey veterans. They've just been to Georgia, they've been to Rhode Island, they've been to Rutgers. They may be more accustomed to a rowdy crowd than we are."

Beilein's concerns may be well founded, as the Mountaineers haven't exactly been playing to packed houses at home so far this year.

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Beilein also refused to be caught up in the controversy over Georgetown coach Craig Esherick's tirades about the perceived double standard in the the way officials call plays concerning Hoya center Mike Sweetney. Esherick maintained that fouls against Sweetney often aren't called due to his size.

"I only coach one team at a time. We do have to be more physical. My teams have never been knows for being very physical. I've looked at the tape, but I didn't look at them from the standpoint that Craig Esherick did. Whether we fouled him or not is up to the refs. We played hard, as hard as we can."

Classy answers like that are becoming the expected norm from Beilein, who is giving Mountaineer fans a great deal to be proud of during his inaugural season at WVU.

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