Like the Idea of Playing in Charleston, Hate the Execution - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Like the Idea of Playing in Charleston, Hate the Execution

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MORGANTOWN -

With no major professional sports franchises in West Virginia, the Mountaineers are THE team in the state. That is why the idea of playing a couple of games every season in Charleston is a good one. It makes perfect business sense. Why not bring the product to WVU fans in that part of the state?

It is a good idea, but poorly executed. The Charleston Civic Center provides an old fashioned atmosphere. More than 10,000 fans can pack the building. It can get pretty loud in there when those 10,000 plus fans are yelling. However, this old fashioned building has old fashioned equipment.

There are two WVU basketball games played in Charleston every season, one against an out of state opponent and one against Marshall. Rarely do these games go off without some sort of technical difficulty. Tuesday night it was the buzzer. It got stuck on occasion and during parts of the first half, an air horn was used in its place. In previous years, there have been lengthy delays to fix a shot clock or a rim, etc.

It was also a poor showing to see that nobody was put in place to wipe up wet spots on the floor. Typically you will see kids of all ages tasked with that responsibility. Referees were doing that in the game against Morehead State.

In the past there have been complaints about dead spots in the Civic Center floor. Those can finally be left in the past as the game Tuesday night was the first to be played on a brand new Civic Center floor.

Rarely do high major division one basketball schools play in venues without video scoreboards, or scoreboards that list the five players for each team on the floor with stats. The electronic boards on the side of the Civic Center were not even working Tuesday night and they typically run ads or promotions of upcoming events.

The Civic Center could be a good place to play with some of those upgrades. Keep the old fashioned feel with some new fangled additions.

Despite these constant issues, the players and coaches say they enjoy playing there.

"I like playing here," Head Coach Bob Huggins said. "I like being able to play in this part of the state where people can see us."

"The atmosphere was crazy," Freshman Guard Aaron Brown said. "It was a packed house with everyone in to support us. It was great. This is my first time here, but I loved it. The crowd was great and we played well and got the win."

"I love it," Junior Forward Deniz Kilicli stated. "I just hate the rims here. The first half rim, I hate that rim. I can never make a foul shot there. Other than that, I love it around here."

Like it or hate it, the Mountaineers will be back at the Civic Center for the annual Capital Classic against Marshall on January 18, 2012.

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