WVU Sports with Tom Bragg

VIDEO: WVU basketball update with Bob Huggins

Not the full interview, but here is a clip from today’s session with WVU men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins.

The Basketball Tournament opens play today, and if you haven’t heard of it before and consider yourself a sports fan you should check it out.

Here’s how it works: Teams organize around the country and apply to play, if they get in they are slotted into a bracket — pretty standard tournament stuff. The catch is the winning team gets *$2 million* to split. Teams are made up of mostly former college players, and this year a group of West Virginia basketball alumni decided to get involved.

John Flowers did the heavy lifting and is listed on the team’s roster as a player/general manager. The rest of the roster, including the coaching staff, is a list of names sure to bring back fond memories for Mountaineer fans. Let’s take a look at the roster according to the TBT website:

Players
John Flowers
Nate Adrian
Joe Alexander
Truck Bryant
Da’Sean Butler
Kevin Jones
Jaysean Paige
Tarik Phillip
Juwan Staten
Devin Williams

Coaching staff
Jarrod West – head coach
Billy Hahn – assistant coach
Dave Tallman – assistant coach
Greg Richardson – assistant coach

Pretty good team, no? When we got to speak with Bob Huggins a few weeks ago, I asked him what he thought of Best Virginia’s chances in TBT this year. The veteran WVU coach seems to think they have as good a shot as anyone.

“I really like it because they basically have a point guard and then four guys who can play multiple positions,” Huggins said. “It’s very similar. I just did a deal for John Flowers and I think it’s very similar to our Final Four team. Wellington Smith was our big at 6-foot-7. [Devin] Ebanks was 6-8 I guess. They were all interchangeable. You could switch everything because they could all guard. We just had Truck [Bryant] and [current Boston Celtics assistant coach Joe] Mazzulla alternate at point guard, and those were the only two worried about a switch happening. Joe Alexander, I was down there two days ago and Joe’s talking about how to guard ball screens — all the calls they’re going to make and that stuff. It’s fun watching and it’s fun having them around. A lot of them come around anyway, but one of them said, ‘Man coach, I should have came back here every summer.’ They have their own locker room, training room. They’ve got a guy who has worked for two NBA teams that knows what he’s doing working in the weight room. It’s perfect for them. They’ve got a hot tub, a cold tub, we’re going to put a sauna in for them — not just for them but for our other guys too. They’ve got everything they need [in Morgantown]. They can come here and rehab, they can come here and lift, they can come here to be in the gym and work out. It’s great for our guys to go in and see them working.”

Best Virginia will play in the Richmond Regional, with play there opening next Friday. BV’s first-round game is against a team of Old Dominion alumni called “Seven City Royalty” and will stream on ESPN3. The former Mountaineers have a pretty tough draw in the bracket. If they can get past the team of former ODU players, there is a likely clash with Overseas Elite in the second round. For those unaware, Overseas Elite has won TBT and it’s $2 million prize four consecutive years and features at least one familiar face — former Marshall and Iowa State standout DeAndre Kane.

 

First-year West Virginia University football coach Neal Brown met with the media after his larger press conference Tuesday morning during Big 12 Media Days at AT&T Stadium. Here is the video from that session:

Same deal as yesterday. The Big 12 is posting video from the larger press conference the coaches are doing on stage, and I’m sharing those here are they are uploaded. I’ll list them in the order they spoke.

IOWA STATE – MATT CAMPBELL

WEST VIRGINIA – NEAL BROWN

 

BAYLOR – MATT RHULE

 

KANSAS STATE – CHRIS KLIEMAN

TEXAS – TOM HERMAN

 

Checking back in from Big 12 Media Days at AT&T Stadium:

After the festivities on the field were finished for the day, members of the media were invited to a reception at the stadium and while there I had the chance to pick the brains of several Fox Sports college football analysts — former Colorado quarterback Joel Klatt, Bruce Feldman (who doubles as one of the great college football writers for The Athletic) and former Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart. Audio from those interviews is below for your listening pleasure.

Joel Klatt:

Bruce Feldman

Matt Leinart

Hi gang. The Big 12 is doing everyone a big solid and posting video of the coach press conferences on its YouTube channel. I’ll share those here throughout the day as they get posted.

KANSAS – LES MILES

 

TCU – GARY PATTERSON

 

OKLAHOMA STATE – MIKE GUNDY

 

TEXAS TECH – MATT WELLS

 

OKLAHOMA – LINCOLN RILEY

Bob Huggins met with the media today in Morgantown after West Virginia’s first practice session ahead of next month’s team trip to Spain.

Here is a (very long) video from that session:

AP PHOTO

It’s preseason speculation time in college football — that means all-conference teams and polls will be trickling out. The Big 12 announced it’s all-conference team on Tuesday, and the preseason media poll is due out Wednesday afternoon.

I filled out a ballot for both, which I’ll share below. First let’s look at the preseason All-Big 12 picks.

Continue reading…

Last week I reached out to my Twitter followers to see how people think the Big 12 will shake out this season. I was asked to submit a preseason poll to the league (which I will share once the poll is released in two weeks), but in the meantime I thought this would be fun. I took all of the (serious) submissions I received in the replies to my tweet and cobbled together a very unscientific preseason Big 12 poll.

I took all the submissions — 10 of them in total — and assigned points to teams based on where the reply had them ranked. So, 10 points for a first-place vote, nine points for second place and so on.

The results (with first-place votes in parenthesis):

  • 1. Oklahoma (10) – 100 points
  • 2. Texas – 87 points
  • 3. Iowa State – 77 points
  • 4. Oklahoma State – 67
  • 5. TCU – 63
  • 6. West Virginia – 40
  • 7. Baylor – 36
  • t8. Kansas State – 35
  • t8. Texas Tech – 35
  • 10. Kansas – 10

 

*taps mic* Is this thing on?

I’m back from a week of vacation away from work and ready to hit the ground running. Today, media members got the chance to chat with a few West Virginia University football players to check in on how the summer is treating them so far. Here is what offensive lineman Josh Sills had to say.