Bob Huggins Sits One Shy of 700 - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Bob Huggins Sits One Shy of 700

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MORGANTOWN -

If only Monday night's win had given WVU a 9-1 record this season rather than its current showing of 8-2, there would have been quite a celebration at the Coliseum.

Instead, the ninth win of the year will likely come in Las Vegas in a game against Missouri State (7-3) on Thursday night away from the home crowd. If Bob Huggins can guide his Mountaineers to a victory in that matchup, he will have notched 700 wins in his career.

As of now, he sits at 699 and even though his players may be acutely aware of the approaching milestone, they don't believe the head coach is paying it any mind.

"Not at all. Honestly, I don't think Huggs even knows he has 700 wins, to be honest with you, unless somebody brings it up," says senior guard Truck Bryant. "He just comes out here everyday and just pushes us to the max to try to get us better."

Bryant and fellow senior Kevin Jones have been with Huggins for 83 of those wins and learned immensely through nearly four years with the future hall of fame coach. They chose to play for him for a reason and with a conference title and Final Four appearance under their belts, that decision has paid off.

"He was the main reason why I came to this university and just to see him reach that milestone is great and just to be here when it happens is a great experience for me and like I said, hopefully we can get it for him on Thursday," says Jones. "We're not looking too far ahead. We've still got a day of practice tomorrow and then get rested for Missouri State."

That mindset is precisely what Huggins wants from his players and it's what he will carry with him in the coming days and beyond. He isn't coaching these games to reach milestones and reflect on them. He will have plenty of time for that when he retires.

"Honestly, I don't think about those things," says Huggins. "I've never done this for any other reason than I enjoyed doing it, I enjoyed working with young people, I enjoyed watching guys grow. I saw it as an opportunity that you can help people."

Huggins believes a big part of his unwillingness to seek recognition and acclaim is a result of his father's humility. He notes that his father's name can be found in hall of fames around the state of Ohio, but he would never put together and send out his own resume. It just wasn't in him to self-promote.

If reaching this milestone means West Virginia is one step closer to becoming a team that can compete in league play and make a postseason run, then he wants it more than anything. But not for himself. He wants it for the young men who make up his roster.

He points out that along with all the wins, there have been quite a few losses, too. When Huggins was approaching 600 wins back in 2007, a friend called him prior to the game against Canisius and reminded him that over 200 losses accompanied the success.

Huggins has 255 losses at this point in his career.

"I've done this 30 years," he says. "You do it 30 years, you better win some games or you're probably selling insurance."

There may come a time down the road when Huggins takes on his investment in various charitable foundations full time, but for now, he's still just as focused on coaching his team to a win against Missouri State as he would have been in year one of his career.

Whenever he loses that, he'll know it's time to hang up the track jacket for good.

"I've always said when the point in time comes that I don't think I can give them everything that I have, then I'm going to quit. I'm not going to cheat them," says Huggins. "I don't want to go out being a bum. I want to go out letting people know that I went out doing everything that I could possibly do."

In 699 games, everything he could possibly do was just enough. On Thursday, he can make it 700.

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