I Wouldn't Ignore WVU: Bob Huggins Isn't Much of a Fool

Bleacher ReportSenior Analyst IMarch 29, 2010

SYRACUSE, NY - MARCH 27:  Head coach Bob Huggins and Joe Mazzulla #21 of the West Virginia Mountaineers celebrate after they won 73-66 against the Kentucky Wildcats during the east regional final of the 2010 NCAA men's basketball tournament at the Carrier Dome on March 27, 2010 in Syracuse, New York.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

It is good to know a redemptive story is rapidly in the making, removing all the unnecessary toxic stains from a diminishing level of trustworthiness at West Virginia.

Not long ago, Bob Huggins was labeled as a "dumbass" for his stupidity and senseless acts when police stopped him on suspicion of drunken driving.

According to police reports, he was given a field sobriety test and was asked to say the alphabet correctly, but slurred the words in an unusual order.

Near the driver’s side door of his automobile, vomit was seen, making the matter even more suspicious.

His awful troubles of drunken driving happened years after Huggins suffered a massive heart attack.

His severe health problems were caused due to ongoing stress during an edgy and wearisome coaching career.

Throughout the madness of a burdensome career, Huggins has exploded into a crazy madman. 

He has thrown postgame rants and tantrums near the sidelines, all while enduring infractions and rebellious players.

That’s a lot for any coach at the collegiate level to handle, a heavy burden that could turn someone whacko.

“I made a very poor decision that’s reflected negatively on the basketball program and the university,” Huggins said after knocking off Kentucky in the Elite Eight. “For that, I deeply regret it. I take responsibility for my actions. I’m going to do my part to make sure that something like this will never happen again.”

Certainly, he has stayed true to his words.

Six years later, Huggins is now a popular figure in a state where college hoops symbolizes much pride.

Six years later, he’s the newest mentor, uplifting spirit and faith at a lackluster program.

Not too many had enough courage to pencil in the West Virginia Mountaineers, arguably the best Big East program.

Whoever thought West Virginia could outlast Syracuse or Villanova? Each respectively glorified as Big East powerhouses.

For all bracket ownersButler, West Virginia, Duke, and Michigan Statehonestly, weren’t among the favorites advancing to the Final Four.

But either way, the Mountaineers have a date against Duke next Saturday at Indy, creating a brightened romance.          

There are some believers who gather clear insights that Huggins is a rogue or an arrogant idiot.

Sure, he has made a gruesome mistake in the past, mirroring the foolish episodes that almost ravaged his reputation and credibility.

He screams and attacks his players, but his players persisted to the basic protocols of his man to man defensive standards which were beneficial during a remarkable drive to the Final Four.

No wonder West Virginia’s unforeseen chase to the national title materialized and presented sensible belief.

Any team can win by playing physical and defending the ball, a well-known custom the Mountaineers are committed to whenever facing opponents.  

It was easy to forget and ignore Huggins.

Years ago, he toppled because of his arrogance and heinous actions, but why must the nation hold grudges?

None of that unlawful hoopla matters with Huggins, nor does he describe a win as redemption.

Even his players know that he wouldn’t mind amending a decrepit identity, but even more so, he desires winning a national championship.

All that matters is bringing laughter, and fulfilling the aspirations of a good-natured basketball community.

“He won’t say it, but I think he feels a sense of redemption,” said West Virginia guard John Flowers. “No one thought we’d be here and no one thought he’d be here.”

This has been a wonderful tournament, with surprises and bracket obliterators shattering our cleverness regarding a captivating sporting tourney.

And suddenly, an unpredictable activity has formed tremendous joy.

There’s no reason to deny that Huggins is the most lovable coach in West Virginia, despite running a corrupted program at Cincinnati, or recent outbursts at WVU.

Although he has a heated temper, it doesn’t make him a fool, as he advanced the Mountaineers to the Final Four for the first time since 1959.

Huggins hasn’t experienced or tasted a steep championship chase in 18 years.

He has gotten the Mountaineers to a sentimental point, only two wins away from immortality.

For all the Huggins haters, his public issues with alcohol haven’t conflicted with his coaching practices.

Without Darryl “Truck” Bryant, WVU's point guard, sidelined with a broken foot, the Mountaineers have survived with excellent backup plans. 

Credit Joe Mazzulla, who had shoulder surgery that normally sidelines players for a full season. He is playing at his very best and took over the game Saturday against Kentucky.

According to reports, Bryant is expected to return for the Final Four, but honestly, no one really misses the starting point guard.

Mazzulla’s speed and stamina to drive inside the paint for backbreaking layups has been a savior, and the tough, driven Mountaineers have buried an array of threes as well.

Other heroics have come out of the sharpshooting Da’Sean Butler, who has drained three after three after three.

All season long, the Mountaineers were doubted in the Big East and overshadowed.

They weren’t supposed to make it this far, but with much credit given to Huggins, they have. 

He’s not much of a fool.


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