WASHINGTON, D.C. — Two weeks ago Juwan Staten said he would evaluate his draft status once the season ended. But when the end came too soon for his liking Tuesday night, he felt it distasteful to ponder an NBA future.

“I’ll make a decision and talk more about that later,” Staten said after Georgetown ousted West Virginia 77-65 in the NIT. “Right now that’s kind of the furthest thing from my mind. I’m kind of upset about the game that we just played.”

“I’m not really thinking about (the draft) right now.”

Five days removed from leaving the Big 12 tournament with a sprained ankle, Staten returned to his typically explosive self, attacking the lane in a 23-point performance. He played 38 minutes, right in line with his season average, while contributing seven assists and attempting his first 3-pointer in nine games. It went in and helped West Virginia to a 33-30 halftime edge.

That’s where the game turned for the Mountaineers, who gave up the lead three minutes into the second half and never regained it, being outscored 47-32.

Coach Bob Huggins’ postgame lecture lasted more than a half-hour, but Staten boiled down the message to this: “As a team we have a lot of growing up to do.”

The point guard seemed to concur, frustrated by his team’s incapacity to stop Georgetown’s second-half surge.

“If you lose a game, let’s lose a game with everybody coming in the locker room dead tired and knowing that we fought to the end and gave it our all. But that’s just not the feeling that we have after this game.”

Staten was sore, and it had nothing to do with his ankle. Despite four wins over teams seeded sixth or higher in the NCAA tournament, despite a four-win improvement over 2013, and despite exceeding some external expectations, this wasn’t fulfilling to Staten. Especially the final month. After a sixth defeat in eight games, he wasn’t up for spraying sunshine on a season he found unsatisfying.

“It’s over, and these are things we all hate—the speech at the end, the sad faces and knowing that we’re going to have to sit at home and watch everybody else play.”

Now fans naturally wonder whether they’ll see Staten play for WVU next season. That’s the biggest offseason question facing the program. And in the too-raw aftermath of Tuesday night’s loss, he wasn’t offering a hint.

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Comments

  • An actual athlete

    Neil, if we didn't have but 1 or 2 D1 players we wouldn't win any games at all. The bashing of coaches and administrators is shameful. For all of this inside knowledge you people seem to have, you don't know much about the games themselves or what it takes to play them. The overwhelming contrianism of most of the posters is pathetic. If your all so knowledgeable then grab a whistle and coach somewhere otherwise shut up and support your school and teams.

  • Jb

    Y'all have no clue what your talking about jus hating but when we are good you guys say nobody can beat us but when they let you down you hate on them real fans NOT buncha cry baby punks that jus complain I guarantee you couldn't go out there and finish with that record in the big12

  • Tim C

    Staten stays for his senior year and he'll go in the 1st round of the NBA draft. He goes this year and he is a second rounder at best. That's a lot of money left on the table. He needs to develop his 3 pt shot, improve his FT shooting, and learn to distribute the ball a little more efficiently. He works on that facet of his game and he is a top five pick next year. He is that good. I hope he returns for selfish reasons, because with him at the helm we will be a beast next year. Without him, we will need to develop Jevon Carter a lot faster to improve upon the PG position. I wish Wannie the best whatever he chooses, he gave his all for us this year and he needs to be applauded for that.

  • Concerned

    Correct me if I'm wrong. First of all, loved coach b. but he didn't go to the final 4 with his players, he went to the elite 8. And possibly the most important player on that team (salley, u know, the guy who had the blocked shot and dunk to win the opening round game) (not sure on Daris) was not his recruit. Huggins did go to the final 4, mostly with b's guys but not all. People forget that ebanks, truck, and not sure but possibly kj were Huggs recruits. Can't give all the credit to coach b and none to huggs. Has he struggled since, sure, but so have lots of coaches. There's more parity in the game now than ever before.

    • Aaron

      The final four team was about half Beilien recruits, half Huggins but most will credit Huggins and the way he coached defense for the success of that team.

  • mad hatter

    my guess is that 3 players either are run off , or chose to leave.
    One of two of the non qualifiers won't be here next yr..

    staten will transfer
    watkins will transfer or be forced out.
    noreen will be asked to play as a non scholarship player
    and it's a toss up on who else leaves, maybe Williams.

  • TW EAGLE

    have no fear Mountaineer fans .. . . staten will be chosen First overall in the next pro draft(LOL) . . . losing staten will just mean coach Huggins will have one more scholarship to offer in his next group of all-American BB'ers who will finally "get" his coaching style , play perfect D , and shoot the lights out every game night - so good this next group will be , that the will all head to the pro league after only one year of coach Huggins tutelage . . . WVU's subpar play the last two years has been the fault of the assistant coaches . . . YES , our HOF coach delegated too much authority to his helpers , in recruiting and in game preparation . . . NOW , with lessons learned through painfully inept play , Huggins is ready to reassert his unsurpassed acumen at "teaching" winning basketball . . . look out ncaa D-1 BB , WVU is gonna sweep not only the XII , but right to the final four !

  • mad hatter

    after watching bob's post game news conf. , looks like 5 or 6 of them will be run off again this yr... one thing for sure, we're going to stay young ,and huggie will again have a good excuse for mediocrity, and Luck will back him all the way... go eers.

  • mad hatter

    Losing our last 6 of 8 certainly creates no mom. going into next season, in fact, it's a huge downer after beating undermanned Kansas.
    If i were Staten, i would run as fast as i can from huggins and this team,,, this team is jut like last yr,, full of egos and absolutely no heart.
    This team is definitely a reflection of the HC.
    The future certainly looks dims for both wvu BB and Fb , with the lack of leadership we now have.

  • pghmountaineer

    Juwan, Whatever you decide we, all appreciate the effort you gave for the team this past season.
    On behalf of Mountaineer nation, THANK YOU!
    Here's one fan that hopes you stay. It gives me hope for next year knowing that you would be on the floor.
    God Bless You!

  • justin

    my question is just how good is this team going to be next year?

  • jay zoom

    huggins didn't earn his hall of fame status at WVU' these type of coaches lose some of their skills as time rolls and as of right now huggins has lost most of his. THANKS OLLIE

    • Concerned

      Most win in single year ever at wvu. Big east title. Final 4, sweet 16. 5 straight NCAAs. Lottery draft pick, othe players played in NBA, etc. yep, it's been a terrible 7 years. Oh yeah, thanks Ollie. Wink wink.

  • William

    To Juwan Staten -
    It will be a BIG MISTAKE to come back next year and play for "Sweatsuit" Huggins!
    This coach has taken many players to a lower level.
    The only thing Huggins loves about WV, is that big paycheck - $70,000.00 a week.
    What a outrageous amount of money!
    HUGGINS HAS BEEN A BIG FAILURE AT WVU.

  • neil

    The problem is we do not have many D1 players. How many WV players would play at other schools? maybe, 1 or 2

  • ole sasquatch

    I knew we were getting in trouble when it looked like Dibo was going to try to put the game on his shoulders in the 2nd. half. That's is why we have Staten and he must take control when we get in trouble. Staten will be back next yr. along with everyone else and it looks good.
    The person responsible for guarding the Georgetown player who got 32 pts. certainly did not do their job.
    I think most of the time you have to have 2 substantial bigs in there at the same time. We don't even start that way. Maybe next yr. our defense can stay in front of the person they're guarding as opposed to backing up and troting along their side. That way they will be in position to block out and actually get some rebounds.

  • john

    Staten came to play all year long. Whatever is best for him is what I want to see him do! As for WVU, Huggins and his staff should now be on the clock. Either we go to the NCAA Tourney next year or Huggs should be let go. Unlike the football team Huggs has the best facilities in the country, gets paid a very nice salary, and hasn't produced much since Beliens Players all graduated and that is just a fact. I thought for a time this year we had turned a corner but truth is it was very minimal improvement over last year.

    • Mister Man

      It's because of Huggins we have upgraded facilities.