The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

March 24, 2011

HERTEL COLUMN - Things are not always as they seem

MORGANTOWN — With the suddenness of a flash of lightning across a summer night’s sky, basketball season has ended, leaving us with one undeniable life lesson — things are not always as they seem.

Consider, if you will:

A firefly is not a fly — it is a beetle.

And, like the firefly, this basketball season was one that glowed brightly one moment, only to turn dark the next.

The men’s team came into the year as an unknown, expectations down from a year ago when Bob Huggins led them to the Final Four, invigorating national championship hopes, but Da’Sean Butler, Devin Ebanks and Wellington Smith were gone.

The women’s team came in with dreams of challenging for a national championship dancing in their head and with beating Connecticut and winning the Big East as their stated mission.

When the Mountaineers won 16 in a row, it seemed as though all this was possible.

o o o o o

But things are not always as they seem. Consider:

A prairie dog is not a dog — it is a rodent.

A dog is a pet, man’s best friend. A rodent, well, it’s a rat, vermin, and so it went this year.

There was always some kind of soap opera going on with the men, holding them back, be it freshman Noah Cottrill being suspended and leaving the team; Casey Mitchell some days scoring 30, some barely playing, others suspended; or Danny Jennings quitting the team in mid-game.

It was not as it seemed with the Mountaineer women, either, the season starting with point guard Sarah Miles unable to play due to injury and ending with her being helped off the court with a knee injury, her career over along with a season that never reached the heights it should have due to the injuries.

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