West Virginia men's basketball: 3 keys to the 2012-13 season

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1: New league, new venues

The Mountaineers will compete in the Big 12, and even though Bob Huggins spent a year at Kansas State and has some familiarity with the league, his team will need some time to adjust. The Mountaineers were successful in the Big East but now travel will be a little longer and there will be different styles of play to adjust to. Of course, the flip side of that is some of those teams will have to adjust to the Mountaineers as well.

2: A new team

The Mountaineers have two transfers who are eligible to play -- Juwan Staten from Dayton and Aaric Murray from LaSalle -- who are expected to have a big impact immediately. But it might take some time for them to settle in and find some chemistry with the players returning from last year. Murray should have an easy transition because he was at the school and practiced with the team last year. If these two have the impact that Huggins is hoping, then the Mountaineers should go back to the NCAA tournament for the sixth time in a row under him.

3: Taking another step

Guards Jabari Hinds and Gary Browne were freshmen last year and each had some growing pains. But they got better as the season wore on and they have, by all accounts, had good offseasons, so they need to take the next step to stabilize the backcourt. West Virginia also has forward Deniz Kilicli returning. He has slowly improved each year but he needs to become a more consistent offensive presence and improve his defense.

wvusports


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