As West Virginia basketball signee Patrick Suemnick watches the Mountaineers play on television, the JUCO player just wants to bring toughness to the team. The Green Bay native is ready to become the next “glue guy” at WVU.
“I’m just someone who’s going to be versatile, bring energy,” Suemnick said to WV Sports Now. “I think the toughness that you normally see with a Bob Huggins team, that’s something I think I can bring back and restore. Obviously, we have guys like [Pauly] Paulicap and Gabe [Osabuohien], but we’re going to be losing a lot of that toughness.”
Suemnick is playing this season at Triton College, where he has helped the Trojans to a 27-4 record, winning their region in the NJCAA. The future Mountaineer is averaging 12.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.7 steals and 1.0 blocks through 29 games. Suemnick has had plenty of games where the 6-foot-8 forward has recorded multiple steals and blocks.
Suemnick has always used motivation to get through life, even if it is just words being said. When visiting schools, Suemnick would be brought into the film room. Every college’s pitch was that it’s where they watch March Madness and hang out. This would drive Suemnick crazy, as the competitor in him wants to play in March Madness, not watch it with teammates in the film room.
“That part of visits always hurt me,” Suemnick said.
It was a whole other story when Suemnick visited Morgantown. When the coaching staff brought Suemnick into the film room, he was rolling his eyes as he was waiting for the same pitch. But then, he found a difference that WVU had from the other schools.
“I got to West Virginia and they go, ‘this is where we’ll scout the team we play in March Madness.’ I was like, ‘yes, it’s over!’ This is what I needed,” Suemnick said with enthusiasm.
Now, the once-Robert Morris transfer is now one game away from playing for a national championship at the JUCO level.
“This year has been great for us. We are sitting at 27-4 right now,” Suemnick said. “It was our goal to make it down to Hutchinson for our national championship. As it sits right now, we are one game away. We’ve been making that dream come true.”
Suemnick committed to West Virginia in October and signed with the team in November. By doing so, it has taken a lot of pressure off of the forward this season at Triton and has turned it into motivation.
“Just being singed helped me a lot, it helped me be a better teammate,” Suemnick said. “In JUCO, a lot of times everyone is just trying to get their own so they can get out of there. Every day, I try to think how I’m getting ready for the Big 12. Every move that I make and every rep in the weight room has to translate to the Big 12. That’s my biggest motivation.”
Suemnick will have two years of eligibility starting next season but wasn’t hesitant to mention that he will have another year due to the COVID eligibility rule.
Motivation has fueled Suemnick, which has led him up to this point in his life. But it looks like Suemnick will be a candidate for a fan favorite by the West Virginia faithful once his toughness shows on the court.