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ESPN Bracketologist Joe Lunardi Gives Thoughts on WVU’s New Team



WVU Basketball Joe Lunardi

Joe Lunardi, ESPN bracketologist, released his latest bracketology update on Tuesday. Lunardi commented on West Virginia’s new-look team after retooling in the summer.

Lunardi listed West Virginia as a 10-seed, facing Auburn in Brooklyn.

“When coach Bob Huggins was arrested and charged with driving under the influence in June, the prospects for West Virginia basketball seemed bleak. First came the resignation of the Naismith Hall of Famer. Then came a predictable exodus of key personnel, namely forward Tre Mitchell and guard Kerr Kriisa. But interim coach Josh Eilert went to work — and quickly. He convinced Kriisa, the former Arizona standout, to stick around. He also retained transfers Jesse Edwards (Syracuse) and Raequan Battle (Montana State), while adding late portal pickups Noah Farrakhan (Eastern Michigan) and big man Akok Akok (Georgetown). The same Mountaineers who nearly fell out of our projections in the wake of Huggins’ departure are now at their highest point — a rising No. 10 seed — since the spring. WVU has a legit chance to finish in the top half of a 14-team Big 12, all but assuring another NCAA bid.”

WVU interim HC Eilert and his staff recruited five newcomers after losing some players to the transfer portal during the coaching change in June. Pairing the summer additions with the spring additions and the returnees brings the roster total to 13 and walk on, Ali Ragab.

West Virginia now awaits the waiver decision of RaeQuan Battle from the NCAA. Battle is a multi-time transfer from Washington and Montana State, but has not graduated. Per the NCAA, Battle needs a waiver cleared to compete during the 2023-24 season. If denied, Battle will be eligible for the 2024-25 year. Battle has one year of eligibility remaining.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Bruce Hoff

    September 13, 2023 at 11:15 pm

    Kudos to the coaching staff

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