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BYU HC Mark Pope Praises West Virginia Basketball



Mark Pope West Virginia basketball

BYU HC Mark Pope talked about West Virginia Basketball and coaching at the WVU Coliseum for the first time, following the Cougars’ 86-73 win over the Mountaineers on Saturday night. Pope gave credit to WVU interim HC Josh Eilert, as well as the history of the program.

“What Josh has done has been incredible. I know it’s not a traditional record that West Virginia feels that they [should] have,” Pope said. “You think about all of the turmoil, the change, and then not having healthy bodies. For them to go through all that and beat Kansas, Cincinnati and Texas, it’s pretty special. They’re certainly heading in the right direction. They’re a terrific basketball team.”

“It’s a super special treat for us to walk into this gym. The home of ‘the Logo’ [Jerry West], Rod Thorn, Hot Rod Hundley and this incredible fanbase, it’s super special for us to come in here,” Pope added. “We feel really blessed to have that opportunity to come here and play in this league.”

Saturday marked the first time since 1973 that West Virginia and BYU faced each other in men’s basketball. This was the second time that the Cougars made the trip to Morgantown, W.Va., the first being in 1947. With the win in the first Big 12 matchup between the two, BYU takes over the all-time series, leading 2-1.

Pope currently had BYU ranked No. 22 in the country and sitting at an overall record of 16-5 (4-4 Big 12). Pope is in his fifth season with the program and is looking to get BYU back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2021.

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