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Eilert ‘On the Fence’ About Starting Jesse Edwards vs. Cincinnati



WVU Basketball Jesse Edwards
Kelsie LeRose / WVSN

WVU C Jesse Edwards returned to the floor for the Mountaineers on Saturday, playing 16 minutes against Oklahoma State. West Virginia interim HC Josh Eilert was asked about Edwards’ progress in returning to his original playing time from the beginning of the season.

“Game conditioning you could tell wasn’t there,” Eilert said on Tuesday. “It’ll be a gradual process. It isn’t going to happen overnight to get him to be where he’s playing the minutes he was playing prior.”

“[Starting Edwards] is something we’re looking at whether that’s time to do that yet or not. I’m on the fence with that one,” Eilert added.

Eilert mentioned it depended on how Edwards did in practice on Tuesday.

Edwards had been out of action since Dec. 16 with a fractured right wrist that he suffered in the UMass game. Edwards had surgery on Dec. 20 and had his brace removed last week and has been dressed for emergency situations against Kansas and UCF. Edwards’ return marked the first time the Mountaineers played with their original roster all season.

“It’s hard to say [the season] starts now but it’s like you finally have everyone that you wanted to have at the start. So it’s in a way motivating for us to be like okay now we get to show that we can do, what we can actually do,” Edwards said. “We’ve had great wins already. We’ve had tough losses already. It’s nice to have the idea that you can finally go at full power. Now it’s up to us to show what we got and try to put behind us what we can put behind us.”

WVU Basketball Still Motivated with Original Roster Finally Back

Edwards is averaging 13.8 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks during his fifth season of college basketball.

Cincinnati thrives off of playing physically and rebounding the ball well. Edwards and WVU’s bigs will have a test to out-rebound the Bearcats. WVU and UC will tip off at 7 p.m. on ESPN+.

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