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West Virginia On-Pace For Worst Rebounding Team in 15 Years

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Jalen Bridges grabs one of WVU's only 17 rebounds Feb. 26 against Texas. Sean McNeil saw 31 minutes of game time against Texas in Morgantown. (WVSN photo by Kelsie LeRose)

It is clear that this year’s West Virginia team has dealt with rebounding issues. So much so that they’re on-pace to becoming the worst rebounding team in program history since 2006-07.

West Virginia has grabbed 32.4 rebounds per game in 29 contests this season, which is 307th in the country as of Monday. Fifth-year senior Gabe Osabuohien leads the team in rebounding, averaging 5.5 per game. It has been a collective effort from every player on this year’s team, as nine players average over 2.0 rebounds per game. WVU has seen highs in rebounding, like 38 rebounds against Elon or 36 versus Kansas State. But the team has also seen their lows with 17 against Texas over the weekend and 18 against Pitt.

The Mountaineers are 2-9 when they pull down 29 or less rebounds in the 2021-22 season.

Flashback to 2006-07 when former head coach John Beilein was running the program. West Virginia averaged 30.6 rebounds per game, which was 308th in the country. Rob Summers led the team in rebounding with 4.6 per game. Frank Young, Joe Alexander, Alex Ruoff, Da’Sean Butler, Jamie Smalligan and Darris Nichols were all within the 3-4 rebounds per game range. Against Arkansas on November 26, 2006, the team collected just 18 rebounds in a 71-64 loss.

This West Virginia team ended up winning the NIT Championship, in which was Beilein’s last season at WVU.

If the Mountaineers want to turn their season around towards the end of the season, they’ll have to out-rebound their opponents.

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Ethan Bock is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in journalism at WVU. He currently is an intern with the Final Fourcast podcast. Ethan has covered WVU football and men’s basketball for the last year. He is from Cincinnati, Ohio.

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