WVU basketball fans react to first game without Bob Huggins

Published: Nov. 6, 2023 at 10:22 PM EST
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va (WDTV) - WVU Men’s Basketball played their first game of the season on Monday night in what was an emotional night for some fans.

This was the first game in 16 years that Bob Huggins was not on the sidelines for the Mountaineers.

Some fans shared their favorite memories of the legendary coach and what they hope for this season.

“I’m just going to miss him man, sitting on a barstool. I mean, no other coach does that. I mean, he was just a unique coach. He embodies West Virginia.”

“Some of the things he would say, his charisma, how he would interact with the fans, some of the things he would say, the wrath and how you would act. That probably be the best.”

In July, WVU announced that Huggins was relived of his duties as head coach, stating that he had resigned, although Huggins denied that claim and wanted his job back but was not reinstated.

Prior Coverage: Bob Huggins officially resigns from WVU basketball

This news of Huggins leaving deeply affected the entire fan base.

“It was disappointing. I mean, since I was a kid watching WVU basketball, he’s always been coach, and he’s great at what he does. He’s always great with the fans.”

“It was really heartbreaking. I’d love to have him back now.”

But now, WVU basketball starts a new chapter with Josh Eilert taking the head coaching reigns, and fans say they understand this year will be challenging but they hope for the best.

“A new coach always starts out slow, and I think that’s what he’s going to do, but then he’ll pick back up like in the middle of the season and get us together.”

“Oh, it’s great as, as most of WVU fans know, a new head coach in anything means zero expectations. So we can go in pretty much on a solid foundation saying ‘Hey, we hope for the best, but if it doesn’t go the way we planned, then that’s okay.’”

Other fans have a bit higher of expectations, even though the Mountaineers finished last in the Big 12 Conference last season.

Some fans see a brighter future ahead.

“Over 17 wins and at least make the NCAA tournament.”

“I don’t really know the head coach that well, but I really have faith in the assistant coaches, so I’m hoping.”

WVU won their season opener Monday night against Missouri State with a score of 67-59.