Bob Huggins has served as a mentor to many coaches. Most notably, Mick Cronin who has been the coach of Cincinnati for more than a decade.
Huggins and Cronin coached against each other in the Big East Conference. Another former Big East coach is Buzz Williams, who is now at Virginia Tech.
Williams coached against Huggins when he was at Marquette and the two have faced off in recent years as the Hokies and WVU basketball team have met up in the out-of-conference schedule.
Williams may not have realized it when Virginia Tech was recently playing Duke, but he pulled a Bob Huggins move when addressing the crowd. Caught on video, Williams took to the scorers table and grabbed the microphone to tell fans to stop “cussing” and throwing objects onto the court.
Huggins did the same thing when West Virginia played Pitt in 2010. After questionable call by the officials, West Virginia students serenaded players and officials with some off-color language and began throwing a few objects onto the court.
Infamously, Huggins grabbed the microphone, walked out to mid court and declared, “that’s stupid.” It was stupid on the fans’ part, but brilliant by Huggins to restore some order. People listen to Huggins — his players, fellow coaches, national media and fans. Williams doesn’t quite have the pull of a legendary quote like Huggins, but it definitely took some moxie to get out in front of the crowd and call out those who were not obeying the arena rules.
It mist be hard for a coach to take time away from the game to do something like that. Their sole focus should be on winning but sometimes outside factors take over and cause a distraction.
Williams also has another tie to a West Virginia incident. This was in his younger days when he was closer in age to a college student. Following a Marquette win against the WVU basketball team in Morgantown, Williams danced his way across the Flying WV while Country Roads was playing inside the WVU Coliseum.
The WVU students sitting behind the ESPN broadcast table took offense and flung soft objects at Williams. It was a bad call on the part of Williams, as well as the students.