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Monday, July 23
Team preview: West Virginia Mountaineers

Returning Leaders
Points: Armstead 14.3 ppg
Rebounds: Moss 7.9 rpg
Assists: Lyles 5.4 apg
FG %: Moss 50.9%
3pt %: Armstead 39.2%
FT %: Armstead 82.1%

00-01 Stats: West Virginia | Big East

The lowdown
2000-01 record: 17-12; 8-8 in Big East (5th in West)
Final Ranking: NR
Postseason: Lost to Richmond 79-56 in first round of NIT.

Three Questions for 2001-02
1. Who will replace Calvin Bowman's presence inside, his production and his leadership? Will the Mountaineers have an intimidating force to lean on when the game is tight?

2. Can Jonathan Hargett live up to his lofty expectations? He's a sure-fire starter and a good bet to be the primary option. But he can handle that right out of high school? What about Drew Schifino and his ability to be an impact player? He, too, comes in with some hype.

3. The Mountaineers have a nucleus of Lionel Armstead and Tim Lyles but can they coexist with Hargett, or will the Mountaineers just go small, keep everyone on the court and make sure the chemistry is solid? West Virginia's best lineup might be small and quick.

Three Key Facts
1. While the Mountaineers enjoyed a 17-win season and trip to the NIT, they have plenty of room to improve. West Virginia ranked 13th in the 14-team Big East in turnover margin. They also finished 13th in points allowed. Only Virginia Tech gave up more points in conference play.

2. With Calvin Bowman gone, look for 6-8 Will Moss to step into a more focal point of the office after averaging 10.7 points and 7.9 rebounds a game.

3. Lionel Armstead, an undersized shooting guard, averaged 14.3 points per game last season.

Andy Katz's Scenarios
Best case: The Mountaineers once again mount an NCAA Tournament campaign for a bid late in the year and get in this time.

Worst case: They can't get the inside scoring they need, hover above .500, but miss the cut and end up in the NIT.

Key Players Returning
Player Yr. Pos. Ht./Wt. Comment
Lionel Armstead Sr. G 5-11/170 PTS: 14.3 | REB: 3.2 | AST: 2.3
Tim Lyles Jr. G 5-11/190 PTS: 11.5 | REB: 3.6 | AST: 5.4
Chris Moss Sr. F 6-8/221 PTS: 10.7 | REB: 7.9 | AST: 0.9

Key Losses
Player Pos. Ht./Wt. Comment
Calvin Bowman F 6-9/211 PTS: 17.6 | REB: 9.7 | AST: 1.1

West Virginia Signings
Player Pos. Ht. High School/College
Jonathan Hargett G 6-0 Prince George County, Va./National Christian Academy
Tyrone Salley F 6-7 Meadowbrook/Richmond, Va.
Drew Schifino G 6-3 North Bridgton/Bridgton Academy/Penn Hills, Pa.

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