Noreen Looks To Be A Leader For WVU - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Noreen Looks To Be A Leader For WVU


The West Virginia University men's basketball team lacked leadership throughout its most recent season. As a result, the Mountaineers finished the year with a 13-19 record.

That season just ended, but already one player is beginning to take on the role of a leader.

"We are not settling for anything under 20 wins next year," Junior Forward Kevin Noreen stated. "This program is not used to that and Coach Huggins is not used to that and frankly it is unacceptable."

Noreen spends countless hours in the gym putting up shots and working on his game. He intends to lead by example, but also plans to speak with his teammates when they return from spring break.

"It starts when we get back from spring break and jump back into workouts," Noreen stated. "We will have some team meetings and get on the right page and move forward."

Noreen wants his teammates to follow his lead and get in the gym throughout the offseason. He recalls those kinds of characteristics from some recent NCAA tournament teams at WVU.

"I want to set that example," Noreen explained. "By doing that, I think guys will see what needs to be done this offseason to get back on track. I was here my first year with Joe Mazzulla, Kevin Jones was a Junior, Truck Bryant was around and those guys were winning. I saw what they did and I saw their example. I am going to try and show our new guys and our Freshmen and Sophomores what it takes."

Noreen is not the most athletic or strongest player on the floor. However, he gets results by playing as hard as he can when he is on the floor. That is another characteristic he hopes will rub off on his teammates.

"The mentality is to play as hard as you can for as long as you can and get a break," Noreen said. " If we just do that, it keeps coaches happy. Listen to them, do what they say and play to the best of your ability. Playing hard is probably the most important thing to Coach Huggins."

West Virginia closed out the season losing seven straight games. It all came to an end with a loss to Texas Tech in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament in Kansas City, Missouri.

"After that loss to Texas Tech, guys were fed up and want to start winning," Noreen said. "We haven't had sit down meetings yet. I am going to do that after we get back from Spring Break. I want us to get the mentality that what we lost this year is not going to happen again."

Noreen is saying the right things, but saying it and doing it are two different things. He plans to hold his teammates accountable throughout the offseason.

"We need to make sure we are on time and where we need to be when we need to be there," Noreen stated. "We need to play hard in open gym and show up to Coach Kettler's weights. The offseason will set the tone for what Coach Huggins expects of us. We need to have our mindset on nothing less than 20 wins."

Former players like Da'Sean Butler and Alex Ruoff have said they see real talent on this team. The key is putting it all together. Should that happen, reaching 20 wins is not out of the question. But making it all come together falls on the players and Noreen realizes that.

"Right now we are with a group of guys who haven't experienced success yet," Noreen said. "I think we are very hungry to get back to at, at least I am. I want to get guys on the right page moving forward. I know Coach Huggins will demand a lot of us this offseason and he expects us to be champions. We have to prepare like we are champions."

Perhaps one key ingredient missing from the 2012-2013 WVU basketball team is already in place for the 2013-2014 season. That ingredient is leadership. It could be the one ingredient needed to bring this team together.

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