New Weight Room Set to Mold Future of WVU Basketball - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

New Weight Room Set to Mold Future of WVU Basketball

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MORGANTOWN -

As the WVU basketball teams move into their new practice facility, they will begin to play with their new toys.

The coaches will mess around in their offices, figuring out the right placement for everything they brought over from the Coliseum. The players were fill their lockers with a variety of sneakers and workout clothes and see what their new practice court is all about.

And Andy Kettler will bask in the light of his new weight room.

The WVU strength coach is getting used to his corner of the new facility, one complete with all the equipment he could use and access to anything else related to the team he hopes to whip into shape in the coming months.

Whether you are a workout enthusiast or an interior designer, the first thing that pops out when you step inside the Steve Antoline Family Weight Room is the view out the back. Windows that span the entire back wall and two stories show off a patch of forest and the Monongalia River directly behind the area where the players will get in their bench press.

"This right here is, to me, maybe the best part of the room," Kettler says as he looks out the windows. "Pictures I've sent to other strength coaches and the few that have seen it have just been really impressed with the design and the equipment and everything put together."

It is certainly a step up from the more dungeon-like feel of the area in which Kettler has been working since he came to Morgantown.

The only "natural" light feeding into that room came from windows above that allowed people in the Coliseum Club to look down on the lifters. Now it hits the weight room all over. On a sunny day, there would be no need to flip the light switches to the on position.

But of course, while it may add something to the ambiance of the nearly 3,500 square foot space, the view is not going to be what gets the players into shape.

The weights will do that, with Kettler's assistance.

Both the floor and many of the dumbbells and plates have the Flying WV logo on them or the words "Mountaineer Strength." The customized equipment is a small addition, but the aesthetics cannot be overlooked when it comes to drawing in potential recruits.

All of the workout areas have been designed in such a way that the machines can be used by the shortest of athletes (Linda Stepney is just 5-foot-7) or the tallest (Aaric Murray, Pat Forsythe and Kevin Noreen are each listed at 6-foot-10 or above).

One piece of equipment that has become a bit of a legend at WVU is the treadmill. The Coliseum floor was home to just one of the daunting machines, but the new practice court will hold three. The weight room has four total.

"We have two regular treadmills that we've amped up to 18 miles an hour," says Kettler. "I know people often joke and/or wonder about the treadmills on the court and what we do, so we kicked those up to 18, as opposed to 15 in the old place."

The players, like all WVU students, are off on spring break right now, but Kettler is eager to get them back in his care and working toward improving from what they were able to accomplish this past season.

"We didn't have the year we wanted. I don't think that's hard to see. We've got a lot of young kids and we have a lot of work to do," he says. "It's going to be very challenging, very, very tough, but we're going to find out what these young kids have because we can't afford to go through what we went through this year again."

Kettler and the rest of the staff have specific goals for each individual, but they are more concerned about the whole and bringing a better mentality across the board.

"If you accept the challenge and listen and work hard, you're good. If you fight the system or fight that day, then we're going to have problems," says Kettler. "So we want these kids to really listen and really just pour their heart and soul into this program so we can get things back to where they should be."

The work will take place in a spectacular new facility with the best college basketball has to offer right now.

 

Take a look at Kettler's tour above and be sure to catch the rest of the new basketball practice facility as WVU head coach Bob Huggins takes us through on the season finale of The Bob Huggins Show, airing statewide this weekend and right here on wvillustrated.com on Saturday at 10 a.m.

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