MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — WVU men’s basketball will play for a season sweep of No. 15 TCU when Big 12 play resumes Tuesday night.
The Mountaineers have strung together consecutive wins for the first time since December. They’re coming off an 80-77 win over nationally ranked Auburn in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge, a result fueled by a 31-point performance from Erik Stevenson. They also won Wednesday at Texas Tech, marking their first Big 12 road win since February 2021.
Meanwhile, TCU is 2-1 since falling to WVU at the Coliseum in their previous meeting less than two weeks ago. The Horned Frogs bounced back from that loss by thumping Kansas at Allen Fieldhouse, and then beating Oklahoma at home. TCU won those games by a combined 50 points.
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But, the Frogs were one of just three Big 12 teams to fall Saturday in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge, losing to Mississippi State 81-74 in overtime.
Leading up to Tuesday’s rematch, WVU head coach Bob Huggins expects his team’s game plan for round two will look similar to the game plan for round one.
“We’re at the point where we’re getting fairly good at what we do, so we’ll probably just keep doing what we do,” Huggins said Monday during a video conference. “I think you can tweak some things, but I think by and large, you do what you do. You do what you’re good at.”
But while WVU’s approach to the matchup will remain the same, TCU’s lineup will likely look different.
Junior guard Mike Miles, who leads TCU in scoring with 18.1 points per game, suffered a leg injury in the loss to Mississippi State. According to a report, the injury won’t end Miles’ season, but it’s unclear when he’ll be able to return to game action.
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While Huggins knows the Frogs will “miss” Miles’ production, he also knows they have plenty of other competent scorers. Emanuel Miller averages 13.5 points per game, while Damion Baugh averages 12.7.
“I don’t think it changes them very much [if Miles can’t play]. They’ve got multiple guys that make shots,” Huggins said. “I watched a bunch of their games yesterday, and when Miles has a bad day, they have a lot of other people who are very capable of stepping up.”
Miles, who is the cousin of WVU guard Kedrian Johnson, led all participants with 21 points in the previous meeting between the two teams. Johnson paced WVU by netting what was then a career-high 20 points.
Beyond possible personnel changes, Huggins expects the Frogs to make some tweaks to combat West Virginia’s defense.
“I’m sure they’re gonna adjust because we doubled all the ball screens the first time, and [TCU head coach Jamie Dixon] made reference to it in a couple of his interviews afterwards,” Huggins said. “I’m sure they’re gonna try to make some adjustments.”
As a team, TCU ranks third in the Big 12 in scoring, averaging 77.5 points per game. West Virginia lags just slightly behind, averaging 77.1.
Meanwhile, the Frogs rank in the top-half of the Big 12 in points allowed, surrendering 65.0 per game. West Virginia, which allows 69.1 points per game, remains in last in the conference in that category.
Notably, TCU is the worst 3-point shooting team in the conference, converting slightly fewer than 30 percent of its attempts. The Frogs went 2-8 from 3-point range the last time these teams met. Auburn made just six of its 19 3-point attempts (31.6 percent) Saturday against WVU.
West Virginia has an opportunity to close out January with its third win over a top-15 opponent in two weeks. Tipoff between WVU and TCU is set for 9 p.m. ET at Schollmaier Arena, and the contest will air live on ESPNU.