West Virginia Men's Basketball 2015 NCAA Tournament Capsule

West Virginia Mountaineers
Big 12 (23-9, 11-7)


Outside of Morgantown, the expectations were not that high for West Virginia heading into the 2014-2015 campaign. The Mountaineers cruised through a pretty easy non-conference slate, losing only to LSU. They did beat Connecticut, which was a big win at the time, and North Carolina State, which turned out to be a nice win. Many still figured when the grind of Big 12 play came around, that WVU would take a pretty big slide. But that was not the case and Coach Bob Huggins picked up some great wins and hung around the top of the standings throughout the season.

Big Wins: 1/13 Oklahoma (86-65), 2/16 Kansas (62-61), 2/21 at Oklahoma State (73-63)
Bad Losses: 12/4 LSU (73-74), 1/17 at Texas (50-77), 2/3 at Oklahoma (52-71)
Coach: Bob Huggins

Why They Can Surprise:
The duo of Juwan Staten and Devin Williams led the way. Staten, a senior point guard, leads the team in scoring with 14.5 points per game. More importantly however, Staten is a superb floor leader who dishes out 4.6 assists and commits just under two turnovers per game. Williams, a 6-9 sophomore, is a monster on the glass and developing into a solid interior scorer as well. Williams does get plenty of help on the glass, especially the offensive glass, from freshman Jonathan Holton. He may not score much in the half-court offense, yet he can score ten points in a game off of offensive rebounds alone. Freshmen guards Jevon Carter and Daxter Miles, along with senior Gary Browne and junior Jaysen Paige, are capable of turning into the third scoring threat if their outside shots are falling.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Things can go bad pretty easily for WVU. This is a team that will create a slew of turnovers, but they do not always take advantage of those opportunities. They are horrible at free-throw shooting, consistently run into foul trouble and take and miss a lot of three-pointers. When the Mountaineers get behind, they tend to get behind and stay there. Four of their seven Big 12 losses were by 18 points or more. Losing to teams like Texas on the road is certainly understandable, but this team is better than losing by 27 points to the Longhorns. If West Virginia falls behind early, they may run out of bodies and miss a lot of shots on their way to an early tournament exit.

Probable Starters:
Juwan Staten, Senior, Guard, 14.5 ppg, 4.6 apg
Gary Browne, Senior, Guard, 7.0 ppg, 1.5 apg
Daxter Miles, Freshman, Guard, 7.3 ppg, 1.0 apg
Jonathan Holton, Junior, Forward, 7.7 ppg, 6.0 rpg
Devin Williams, Sophomore, Forward, 11.3 ppg, 8.2 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Nathan Adrian, Sophomore, Forward, 3.0 ppg, 2.5 rpg
Jevon Carter, Freshman, Guard, 8.5 ppg, 1.9 apg
Elijah Macon, Freshman, Forward, 4.6 ppg, 2.7 rpg
Jaysen Paige, Junior, Guard, 6.1 ppg
Tank Phillip, Sophomore, Guard, 3.8 ppg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.1 (34th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 66.4 (162, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 41.1 (281, 9)
Field-Goal Defense: 46.7 (324, 10)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.6 (143, 5)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 31.6 (281, 10)
Free-Throw Percentage: 65.9 (282, 8)
Rebound Margin: 3.8 (64, 3)
Assists Per Game: 14.4 (61, 3)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.0 (221, 8)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2014    NIT    First Round loss to Georgetown
2012    NCAA    Second Round loss to Gonzaga
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Clemson
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Kentucky
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Morgan State
2010    NCAA     Round of 32 win over Missouri
2010    NCAA    Regional Semifinal win over Washington
2010    NCAA    Regional final win over Kentucky
2010    NCAA    National Semifinal loss to Duke
2009    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Dayton
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Arizona
2008    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Duke
2008    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to Xavier
2007    NIT    First Round win over Delaware State
2007    NIT    Second Round win over Massachusetts
2007    NIT    Quarterfinal win over North Carolina State
2007    NIT    Semifinal win over Mississippi State
2007    NIT    Final win over Clemson

*all team stats through 3/8


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules