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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  • 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.

  • Rick55

    Those of you who praise Wannie to the skies then say maybe he should transfer out because Huggins sucks are forgetting that Wannie transferred TO WVU to play under Huggins.
    He has never even breathed a word about any desire to transfer again or shun Coach Higgins.

  • TruthTeller

    I am tired of " We are just young" excuse. If you are so young then why don't you have the energy to rebound, guard and attack? Huggs need to stop using excuses because when he uses those excuses the players buy into it and feed off of it using it as an excuse to be lazy. There are a lot of teams that are young and they are going to be playing in March. Stop using lame excuses for not being well prepared and giving a poor effort. Sick and tired of the excuses. Oliver Luck needs to put his foot down. When will Luck do anything about this? When WVU is only selling ten tickets for their games? Wake up Mr. Luck!!

    • WSC

      35 year Mountaineer fan here! If a coach can't give an interview that get's his fans excited, how can he motivate young men! I have never in my life as a mountaineer been so bored in the coaching staffs that I no longer even watch! I started watching Huggins the other night, darn, I couldn't even watch the whole interview! Same old stuff! Love Bob Huggins, BUT???????????

    • Charleston

      TT: If you are tired of the "we are just young" excuse, then I guess you are not going to accept the fact that we" also lack depth with regards to our front court presence" argument?. These aren't excuses, but rather facts. Can you not accept the fact that we did improve from last season? I am not asking you to accept mediocrity, or to not set your standards high, but come on, give this team a break. They did improve.

      • Aaron

        What's with this fascination of "blaming" someone?

        The last time I checked, basketball was a team game in which players compete against each other and one team wins while another loses. It's not life and death and no crimes have been committed so I'm really not sure why some are obsessed with "blaming" someone.

        In all honesty, the obsession seems a bit unhealthy.

      • mad hatter

        who do we blame because we are young, and who do we blame because we are limited in depth?
        Well sports fans, the ceo is none other than bob huggins, he hired the assistants, and he recruited the players.
        This is "his team" , fix it bob has failed,, he's living in the past, bragging about the good ole days at Cinn... sad.

        • Charleston

          Record in 2013 = 13 -18
          Record in 2014 = 17 -14.......

          MH: Which record is better?

          • Charleston

            BH: From your clarification, then which record is better?

            Record in 2013= 13-19

          • Charleston

            Ahem..... regular season record. Thanks for the clarification.

          • BH

            2014 record: 17-16

  • aquarius

    huggins is not going to be fired, this year, next year or ever. he is a hall of fame coach who has performed better at his job than most posters on this article. 740 wins, 5 ncaa tournaments with wvu and a final four. he's not going anywhere....which hopefully we wont be able to say for the trolls who regularly populate these articles.

    so, the big question to me is, what will the trolls do now that basketball season is over. spring is coming so i'm thinking they can go back to pulling wings off flies....walking their pet rat and so forth.

    • WSC

      And he knows it!

    • Mister Man


    • Greg

      What will the trolls do now that basketball season is over? They'll start complaining about Coach Mazey and the baseball team that's what. Gotta have something in their lives to detract them from their own pitiful lives.

      • Aaron

        Given that most of these rubes have proven they don't understand football or basketball, I can't imagine they know any thing about baseball, a far more intricate game.

      • mad hatter

        keep on drinking the kool aid,, love you guys who accept mediocrity.

  • RPP

    After two frustrating years in basketball and football, I must reassess whether I will continue to contribute to the athletic department.

    • GoEers

      Good! Go join the big green club. They could use a big time 50.00 donor like yourself.

    • Mister Man

      Do the same for your posts and we'll both be happy.

  • MIke

    Man, You people are all gloom and doom, were you talking like this last week after we beat Kansas? NO you were loving the team. What did everyone expect, We are YOUNG, we came out of nothing to make it this far this year. We have no one graduating, we are going to be a force next year. And whats up with everyone calling for Huggs head, are you kidding me, who do you think would replace him? Damn he loves the state, promotes it more than you or I, and is getting things rolling. Relax, Rome wasnt built in a day! Lets Go

    • Whip

      There is this prevailing notion that the head coach must be a cheerleader for the state of West Virginia and some how this is important to retaining the job. The coach at WVU represent the basketball program and the school nothing more. Wining with kids of character, and showing class on off the court are the most important requirements of this job. WVU had all this in John B. But John left because he knew the powers that be wanted Bob Huggins. John will also be a hall fame coach one day. Was he a cheerleader for the state? No, but he was a coach who won with kids you could proud of, and class that represented the state better than anyone before or after. All accomplished without waving the state flag.

      • Aaron

        John Beilien left because that's what John Beilien does. Look at his history. His longest stint was at Le Moyne, where he stayed for 9 years. From there, his tenure has included 5 years at Canisius, 5 years at Richmond, 5 years at WVU and he's been at Michigan for 7 years.

        There have been rumors of him leaving Michigan since he arrived. If he retires at Michigan it will be because he got old and no one else wanted him, so that's where he finished his career. I liked the guy but he was never going to retire from WVU. He was the 2nd choice to clean up the mess left in the wake of the Jonathan Haggart scandal and came in to specifically clean up that mess.

        He did a great job of it and was rewarded handsomely with a contract from Michigan. The truth of the matter though is that he was looking before Michigan offered. He tried to get the NC State and the Indiana job but neither could get his buyout worked out. I like the guy and appreciate the job he did at WVU but I by no means believe he walked on water. You may not like Huggins but there's no reason for revisionist history.

        • Whip

          You do not know John Beilien, that is obvious from your post. Those who were lucky enough to know coach Beilien understand what a great coach he was at WVU and continues to be at Michigan. He took over a program that was a train wreck....rock bottom. He was not even the first choice, but took the job and succeeded. He looked for other opportunities because that what successful people do. Plus why would anyone want to work for Eddie? Significant supportors of the program, with the help of the then current
          governor were pushing hard for Huggins return. Is it any wonder he left? No he is not a water walker but may turn out to be one of the most successful coaches in WVU history. By the way, his picture and list of accomplishments are in the new training facility. No bad for a guy that was portrayed as having a tail and pitch fork when he accepted the Michigan job.

          • GoEers

            John Beilein was a great coach. He will end up being one of the most successful coaches in WVU basketball history, but he will be right behind Coach Huggins. Coach Huggins took WVU to 5 straight NCAA Tournaments. He won a conference championship and went to the Final Four. Those are facts and they cannot be disputed.

          • Aaron

            I was not questioning Coach Beilein in any way. I was stating facts, including the fact that he did great work at WVU. Your tirade aside, everything I said is true, including the fact that the leaves as evidenced by his 6 jobs in 30 some years of coaching.

            Personally I would have preferred to see him Indiana because I don't like Michigan but I'm happy for his success.

            Anything else?

          • Ninth Gate

            +1 and +1 again.

      • mad hatter

        whip , you're right on

      • Ninth gate


  • jay zoom

    hopefully his decision benefits him to the fullest. Staying at WVU another year in my opinion is not an option. this team will be in the same boat at the end of the 2014-2015 season as long as their in the big 12 and the current coach and A.D. are in control. THANKS OLLIE as William said go staten go

    • rock solid

      @ j zoom/williuum You both suck stump water and have IQ's smaller than a gerbal. Our kids are good players and good students. There were just not enough of them to play inside and out every play of every game. For the good teams it was like they got to play five guys and WVU only had three. Just not winnable that way. Help is coming to the team this fall, Staten will be here, he isn't even close to NBA ready, and if all of our dreams are answered, jzoom/ Willuum will no longer be polluting our atmosphere by being around.

  • william

    Go Staten Go, get as far away from "Sweatsuit" Huggins as you can.
    If you come back, this coach will set you far back.
    Some of the new players coming next year have a lot of BAGGAGE!
    It will be a BIG MESS next year and a circus with Huggins and his recruits!

  • Matt

    If he's smart.....he'll be back.

  • JT

    The transformation Staten has undergone from last year is nothing more than astonishing. I'd love to see him back next year but wish him well in any decision he makes.

    • Charleston

      Agreed. I believe he did state awhile back that after the season he would inquire of his draft status, but nothing is certain. I believe I've heard that this years draft is heavy with guards, so it wouldn't hurt him to stay a year to work on/polish his skills (eg long-range shooting to name a few). I guess we'll find out soon.

  • Mike

    We'll win again and be a top 10 team when we start 5 Statens, in different shapes and sizes.

  • Col.klink

    When Harris,Henderson,Brown and Dibo are on the floor our defense is horrible. Harris and Henderson talks the talk, but thats all they do. I really believe Huggs should consider stepping down.

  • Aaron

    Kevin Durant stated after watching Marcus Smart that there was little doubt Smart could start in the NBA this year. If Marcus Smart is a dead lock starter in the NBA, there is little doubt that Staten could find a team. Perhaps he may not be drafted but he could land a team via free agency.

    The only facet of his game that is lacking is quality 3 point shooting but the rest of his game is suited to the NBA, particularly his mid range jump shot. In fact, that quality which he is so good at is one of the rarest of commodities in the NBA. Very few guards possess the quickness to drive past a defender and then ‘stop and pop.’ It’s a lost art but Staten does that as well as anyone in the NBA.

    The other commodity he possesses that I believe will make him successful, in life as well as the NBA is his willingness to work hard for success. In two years under Coach Bob Huggins he has improved a dramatically and if he does declare for the draft, he has tremendous upside.

    There are a lot of if’s facing next year’s team but none is more vital to WVU’s success next year than if Juwan Staten returns for his senior season.

    • mad hatter

      thank you captain obvious

      • GoEers

        It's always nice to see the Marshall fans out in full force. I guess they aren't too worried about the 11-22 record posted by their beloved Herd. Mad hatter knows all about that as he is a Cabell Count resident and takes his screen name after a bar in Huntington.

    • Hillboy

      I was under the impression that Staten benefited greatly from the college rule change that limited body contact. The NBA is way faster and more physical. I'm not convinced at this time that what he does at the college level will transfer to the NBA.

      • Aaron

        I would suggest you go see him play in person. You would be surprised at what you might learn.

  • Hop'sHip

    Sensing Juwan's frustration and after reading Allan's piece on Kane earlier this week, I can think of another option for him if the NBA one isn't right. I think he graduates this spring and thus would be free to take his skills to another program in better position to compete next year. Surely there is a team out there loaded at every position other than point guard, similar to Iowa State was? Maybe Iowa State? Could he transfer within the conference?

    • Charleston

      If he did transfer, I believe there is a clause that would prohibit him from transferring in conference, HH.

      • Aaron

        I don't think that woukd apply as he will have his degree. As far as I know the only reason he could not transfer is if West Virginia offers the same masters degree of which he would pursue another university. If however West Virginia doesn't offer a masters he is seeking than he can transfer and play next year.

        • Charleston

          The NCAA, conferences and universities have strict rules about transferring. Players need to be released from their current programs before they can talk to other schools. They can be restricted from transferring to certain universities, usually those in the same conference. There's the mandatory season to sit out upon transferring, too.


          • Charleston

            MH: Get a grip, buddy. I wasn't aware of his academic status, as well as you are aware.

          • Aaron

            It doesn't matter what year you are in if you have a degree. Clint Trickett was a red shirt sophomore when he graduated from FSU, hence his immediate eligibility at WVU.

          • mad hatter

            charleston, how in the world can you get so mixed up, you should leave the important issues to those who know what they are talking about.

          • Charleston

            Correction: Isn't he an academic junior?

          • Charleston

            I understand the graduate exemption, but isn't he a junior?

    • Aaron

      I had the same thought coming driving in to work this morning.

      • rock solid

        Aaron: You can drive????

      • Worm

        Aaron, you are old enough to drive...could have fooled me. Based on your post's I thought you were pushing 9 possibly 11.

      • TW EAGLE

        you're posting at 6:17am and saying that you commuted to work ? the timing of your postings says you are probably an 11-12 year old home schooled little boy . . . you can't post from a coal mine , and if you owned your own business , you wouldn't need to commute , at least not at 4am in the morning . . . DUH , splain to me son , the time stamp on your postings says much more than the drivel you post in unending blather . . . ? . . .

        • Aaron

          Sorry old dude, I feel no need to explain anything to you. Just be thankful for the education and be on your merry way.

          • Aaron

            What part of be on your merry way do you not understand Mama?

          • TW EAGLE

            you finally got something right , explaining BS & lies only digs a bigger hole . . .

      • mad hatter

        if , in fact , he will graduate this spring, he should transfer asap,, huggins isn't the right coach to hone his talents.
        Staten credits his dad with his improvement over last yr,, wonder why he never mentions fix it bob.

      • rekterx

        There are certainly coaches out there that are better to play for if you are a guard.

        I never considered him transferring as an option. But now that you guys bring it up the possibility is very interesting.