WVU basketball: Offensive push will come in unique ways

MORGANTOWN, WV - NOVEMBER 15: Jevon Carter /

Under Bob Huggins, the WVU basketball team puts its best foot forward on defense, as opposed to offense. If the defense can get stops, the offense will find its own way.

That was certainly the case on Friday as the WVU basketball team grinder out a win against Oklahoma State. The Mountaineers employed their strong defense, but were matched by the aggressive style of Oklahoma State.

Maybe West Virginia took some ill-advised shots, because it was shooting a halfway decent 43 percent from the floor. Some shooters just went cold, like Jevon Carter who was 2 for 10 on field goals. But, the Cowboys put the Mountaineers in somewhat odd positions. They turned over the WVU basketball team more than most teams do as it coughed up the ball 18 times.

West Virginia shot better in the second half than it did in the first going from 37 percent from the floor to 52 percent. The Mountaineers needed to get shots in any chance they could. They turned into a more aggressive offensive team in the second getting more points from secondary sources.

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With Carter not able to pour in his average of 17.7 points per game, Teddy Allen stepped him to bring up his average of eight points per game. Allen scored 15 points and did so the hard way. He fought to drive the lane and get the tough points against a solid defense.

But Allen wasn’t the only one going beyond the call of duty. Sagaba Donate just missed out on a double-double with 13 points and nine rebounds. He only missed two field goals and went an impressive 5 of 6 from the line. That’s another way that the WVU basketball team can manufacture points. West Virginia went a solid 27 of 32 from the foul line.

Long been a team that struggles to make the freebies from the line, the WVU basketball team must have realized that those points would come in handy in this tough Big 12 road game. OSU wen to the line 36 times, which isn’t that much more than the Mountaineers. In most cases, the opposing team will head to the line more frequently than the WVU basketball team. So when it’s fairly even, West Virginia needs to mark down its opportunities.

Next: All-time WVU basketball team

Nothing will be easy this season for the WVU basketball team. The Mountaineers have a target on their back because they are currently the best team in the Big 12. In order to make that target smaller, the WVU basketball team needs to make the shots its given each game.