This Day in Mountaineers History: Jerry West Ties Single Game Rebound Record


December 12, 2011; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors executive board member Jerry West smiles during a television interview during media day at the Golden State Warriors Practice Facility. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

We take a late look at West Virginia men’s basketball after a long day of football recruiting coverage.

It is not often that you think of a 6’3″ forward as being a top rebounder. As a matter of fact, you don’t often think of a 6’3″ forward at all (shows you how much the game has changed over the years). Fact is, in WVU men’s hoops history, one of the top rebounders in school history was a little fella named Jerry West.

That’s right folks, “the Logo” is tied for the school record for single game rebounds with 31 boards on February 6, 1960 against George Washington. West is tied with Mack Isner (February 14,1952 at Virginia Tech).

West did it all at West Virginia, from scoring (2,309) to assisting (261) to rebounding (1,240). It is no wonder he went on to great success with the Los Angeles Lakers.

His game, 53 years ago against GWU, was an example of West’s greatness.

A year removed from their appearance in the National Championship game, West and the Mountaineers had rolled through their Southern Conference schedule to a mark of 17-2 and the #5 ranking in the AP poll. Next in WVU’s path of destruction was the George Washington Colonials.

West and the Mountaineers lit up GWU in this game, building a 10 point lead by halftime and continuing their momentum the rest of the game, on their way to a 101-79 victory.

It was a fast paced game, with the teams combining for 176 shots from the field. Neither team shot exceptionally well, as they combined to make a paltry 56 baskets, leaving quite a few rebound attempts.

It is no wonder then that Jerry West was able to snare 31 rebounds, with so many missed shots in a high tempo match. West’s 31 led all Mountaineers (as evidenced by the record) and accounted for 36.4% of West Virginia’s 85 rebounds.

Yes, WVU had 85 rebounds in this game. Talk about ugly shooting. GWU also had quite a few rebounds, totaling 64.

Jerry West would make it a double-double, scoring 29 points on 7 of 23 shooting from the field.