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Takeaways: WVU Has Window of Opportunity Turn Season Around



Pat Suemnick WVU Kansas
Kelsie LeRose / WVSN

WVU picked up their biggest win of the season over No. 3 Kansas on Saturday night. Let’s look at some takeaways from the game.

WVU Now Has Window of Opportunity

When everyone thought the season was long gone, West Virginia went 2-1 in the last week, beating two ranked teams in Texas and Kansas. WVU still has a lot of work to do sitting at 7-11 but they have improved play on the offensive side of the ball.

The Mountaineers now have a window of opportunity to improve their resume and possibly make things interesting in the Big 12. West Virginia will play two road games this upcoming week against UCF and Oklahoma State, two teams expected to finish at the bottom of the conference. WVU avoids any ranked teams for the meantime until they host BYU on Feb. 3.

Jesse Edwards is expected to make his return to the floor rather soon. Edwards is working on moving his right wrist around again as he warmed up against Kansas on Saturday.

It’s Amazing What Confidence Can Do…

WVU F Pat Suemnick has been playing the best basketball of his life for the last month. Suemnick is averaging 11.3 points and 5.5 rebounds over the past six games. All it took for Suemnick was an opportunity for more playing time, as well as a confidence boost.

Suemnick’s role on this team has changed within weeks and will give Josh Eilert and staff good problems to have when Edwards returns.

“His role is different. We look at everybody but his role is significantly different [from last year]. He played great,” Kansas HC Bill Self said after the game. “I like him as a player a lot because he’s active and he can play the four or the five. He knows who he is.”

Suemnick Motivated After Kansas Overlooked WVU: ‘We Wanted It More’

WVU Needs to Focus on Offense Over Defense

For the entire season, West Virginia has needed to beat teams by playing slow and excelling on defense. Saturday’s win over Kansas proved that this offense can out-score Big 12 defenses and can rely on doing that. West Virginia’s defense is not good enough to be relied on to beat teams, it should be their offense. The Mountaineers have a very talented scorer in RaeQuan Battle, while Kerr Kriisa, Noah Farrakhan, Quinn Slazinski, Kobe Johnson, Suemnick, etc. can be a good supporting core.

West Virginia lost the Oklahoma game due to rebounding but did show a great effort vs. Kansas. But can they be a consistent rebounding team moving forward? This team should just focus on out-scoring their opponents.

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