By: Ashley Conley
It’s Valentine’s Day and WVU fans across the country may need a few extra chocolates and/or flowers to ease the heartache that stems from a complete meltdown last night against the Kansas Jayhawks on national television.
This Valentine’s Day we sit broken hearted because of a 14 point lead in Lawrence squandered.
— Jeff Ruff (@jeff_ruff) February 14, 2017
Happy Valentines Day to all WVU fans awakening & feeling like the Wizard of Oz Tin Man: “Now I know I’ve got a heart, because it’s breaking”
— Jeff Kessler (@JeffKesslerWV) February 14, 2017
Members of Mountaineer Nation watching the game from home probably had questions like these on their mind during WVU’s epic calamity:
- When was the last time WVU consistently made free throws in crunch time?
- Does anyone remember how to rebound?
- Is Nathan Adrian’s hair in his eyes? Can he even see?
- Why does life have to be so tough?
WVU held a 64-50 lead with less than three minutes to play. Thinking the game was out of reach, The Rock Chalk faithful began filing out the doors. Seeing as the Kansas audience had just broken a Guinness World Record for loudest indoor sports crowd ever, TV announcer Dickie V went on one of his famous “I-Can’t-Believe-It!” rants.
— FanSportsClips (@FanSportsClips) February 14, 2017
I bet those fans wish they would’ve stayed. They would’ve loved what came next.
Like we’ve seen from a Bill Self-coached team so many times before, the Jayhawks did the impossible by storming back from a 14-point deficit. Kansas outscored WVU 21-7 in the final two minutes of regulation. As for the overtime period, well, it basically went like this:
- Kansas three-pointer
- WVU missed free throws
- Kansas three-pointer
- WVU missed shot
- Kansas made free throws
And so on.
What made this loss so lousy is that the Mountaineers defeated themselves. WVU outplayed Kansas for a majority of the game, outlasted some terrible officiating, and had the game won. They just couldn’t hold onto it. And Kansas is just that good.
Heartbreaking losses have become the norm for WVU lately (i.e. Oklahoma vs. West Virginia), but Mountaineer fans still have a lot to cheer about.
WVU defeated Kansas earlier this year and they have a handful of other marquee wins on their resume including one against Baylor (then ranked No. 1) and a road win over then-No. 6 Virginia. Although the chances of winning the Big 12 are slim to none (Kansas is on course to win a 13th consecutive conference title), the Mountaineers will make the NCAA Tournament and they still control their own destiny.
Me: Don’t break your TV, it’s just a game.
Inner me: Go find the hammer. pic.twitter.com/lodMoHGjSY
— WVU (@StrictlyWVU) February 14, 2017
If I have kids, do I let them be WVU fans?
Reason against: recurring heartbreak
Reason for: if I have to suffer through it, so should they
— Matt Walker (@M_Dub_12) February 14, 2017
Death, taxes and Kansas basketball at the Phog – things that are inevitable and brutally disappointing.
Cover Image: Denny Medley – USA TODAY Sports via wvmetronews.com
Ashley Conley is a senior journalism student at WVU. She aspires to become a writer or reporter in the sports industry upon graduation. You can follow her on Twitter @ashleyconleyyy.