Connect with us

WVU Women’s Basketball

WVU WBB HC Mark Kellogg Reflective on Career After Setting Program Record

Published

on

Mark Kellogg and Wren Baker

WVU Women’s Basketball set a program record on Tuesday night, with first year head coach Mark Kellogg reaching the 20 win milestone faster than any other coach as the No. 22 ranked Mountaineers improved to 20-2 on the season. 

Following the win, Kellogg took some time to reflect on West Virginia’s success this season. While he didn’t want to rest on his laurels with a month left in the regular season—and Big 12 and NCAA Tournament runs likely to follow—he did talk at length about what makes this team stand out.

“That’s remarkable in our first year,” Kellogg said of the 20 win milestone. “It means something, but we’ll worry about that when the season’s over.”

In talking about his team’s performance, Kellogg highlighted their chemistry, calm demeanor and love for the game repeatedly.

“When we get on the court, they have a joy about them still,” Kellogg said. “They just really enjoy being around each other, and it’s fun to see.”

Given that it’s his first year with this group of players, Kellogg continually says that he’s learning about them bit by bit. Rather than one moment where their chemistry leapt off the page at him, he’s watching how things take shape over time.

Star shooting guard JJ Quinerly said she noticed that chemistry earlier, thinking they could become a special group during summer practices, but admitted that she still may not have expected a result as strong as 20-2.

Going With the Flow

Kellogg maintained that he’s going with the flow in coaching WVU Women’s Basketball. Because he hasn’t faced many of their opponents in the past or dealt with the cross continental travel that being a member of the Big 12 entails these days, he isn’t worrying about it, instead riding the wave of the Mountaineers’ successful season.

“Some of those things that you can’t control, I’m just not spending time on. My focus is just my group and how we get better. I prepare here just like I’ve prepared at every other stop… It’s just fit, it’s been a great fit,” Kellogg said. “It fits my personality, these players fit my personality, they fit the way we play.”

Kellogg continued to talk about how he and the team meshed, particularly the seamless transition to his new role. That helps him ignore the outside noise, rolling with the punches as the Mountaineers continue to rack up wins.

“Kids bought in, they fit the style that we like, and I think that’s the beauty of it,” Kellogg said. “I’m just kinda almost going along with it a little bit. I don’t know: I haven’t been to some of these places, I haven’t played here, I don’t know how we travel, I don’t know any of that stuff, and I don’t care. I just keep trucking.”

A Fresh Start

Kellogg said that he continues to learn from the Mountaineers’ calm, collected identity, which is a rarity for someone with nearly three decades in the coaching profession—including the past 19 years as a head coach.

“There’s been a beauty to that, honestly, because I haven’t had that in a long time in my career,” Kellogg said. “This team has taught me a lot… it’s been fun. It’s been refreshing, and that’s not always the case as a basketball coach.”

Kellogg took West Texas A&M to a Division 2 national championship game before making the NCAA Tournament or NIT in five of seven years with Stephen F. Austin: this isn’t his first time leading a strong program. In spite of all that success, he said that his time at the helm of WVU Women’s Basketball stands out for much more than their winning ways.

“This is as fun as I’ve had coaching, and I’ve won a lot of games: it’s not just ‘cause we’re 20-2 right now. It’s just because of the character and the kids we have,” Kellogg said. “[My message was] ‘have fun, this is what we all enjoy doing. We’re gonna compete and play hard and get lost in the game.’”

Watch the full Mark Kellogg press conference from Tuesday night below.

 

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Tim Bartlett

    February 8, 2024 at 10:51 am

    Would it be wrong to wish that mark Kellogg was the men’s coach

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get WVSN in your mailbox!

Enter your email address to subscribe to WVSN and receive notifications of new posts by email.

COMPLETE COVERAGE