Chip Shots

by Jim Buzzerd

Basketball items

The biggest question surrounding next season’s West Virginia University basketball team is just who will be on it. We know Derek Culver, Emmitt Mathews and Jordan McCabe won’t be returning. We know Gabe Osabuohien plans to use his free year allowed by the NCAA due to COVID19 and return next season. Last week Taz Sherman announced that he too will use the NCAA’s free season and return. Now we wait to hear from Miles McBride and Sean McNeil who, along with Sherman, were weighing their options with the NBA.

McBride has been invited to the NBA Combine June 21-27 in Chicago. If he does well and gets positive feedback he will likely not return. It’s anybody’s guess what McBride will do if the feedback is less than stellar. Nothing has been heard from McNeil yet, but the view from here is he is not NBA ready, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t entertaining thoughts of playing professionally overseas.

Sherman announced Tuesday afternoon that he will be using an additional season of eligibility at West Virginia for the 2021-2022 season. “I was just trying to figure out what the best decision was for me and my family,” Sherman said on Citynet Statewide Sportsline. “Ultimately the decision came down to that and wherever the best opportunity may be, if I was to leave or come back.”

“We are thrilled to have Taz back for another season of Mountaineer basketball,” Huggins said. “He went from scoring five points a game in his first season with us to scoring more than 13 points per game last season. Taz explored his options in a professional manner, while finishing his bachelor’s degree in May. Taz is a leader on and off the court, and he will provide us with veteran leadership this season.”
Huggins and staff has also added three transfers to next season’s roster. The latest is Pauly Paulicap who previously played at DePaul and Manhattan.

Paulicap, a 6-foot-8, 225-pound forward from Elmont, New York, will be a graduate transfer and have one year of eligibility remaining. He attended DePaul in 2020-21 as a graduate transfer and played in all 19 games with 15 starts. He had a season-high 20 points against Marquette with six rebounds and three blocked shots. Paulicap had two double-doubles on the season with 16 points and 16 rebounds against St. John’s and 15 points and 10 rebounds at Seton Hall. He totaled 24 blocked shots with at least one rejection in 15 of 19 games. In the Big East final statistics, Paulicap ranked second in offensive rebounds (2.6), sixth in blocked shots (1.3) and 17th in rebounding (6.1).

Paulicap joins Dimon Carrigan, a 6-foot-9 forward from Boston who played the last two years at Florida International, and Malik Curry, a 6-foot-1 guard from Wilmington, Delaware, who played the last two years at Old Dominion as transfers in the 2021-22 class. They will join incoming freshmen Kobe Johnson, a 6-foot-4 combo guard from Canton, Ohio and Seth Wilson, a 6-foot-3 combo guard from Lorain, Ohio.