West Virginia's Kevin Jones Lighting It Up

        Not living up to his lofty expectations was becoming a habit for the 6'8" Mountaineers forward. As a sophomore and junior, Jones excelled as an inside-outside scorer, but never took over games like his talent suggested. Instead, he relished the role of hiding within the supporting cast of Da'Sean Butler, Devin Ebanks and Casey Mitchell amongst others; he seemed to lack the fire and aggressiveness that scouts had hoped. But the hoping is over. It's time for those who doubted the senior to come forward and recognize his talents.

        At 6'8" Jones is undersized for a 4-man, but is versatile skill set more than makes up for that. In his last season playing for Bob Huggins, he is showing the fight to mix it up inside and on the glass, but also the ability to step outside from 15 or even 20 feet out. On the year, he is averaging 21 points (up 7.9 from a year ago) on an accurate .565 field-goal mark (up 11.9 percent) and collecting 11.9 boards per game, second in the nation (4.4 more than last season). West Virginia stands 9-3 overall, with 8 Jones' double-doubles, including his monstrous 28-point, 17-rebound performance in the loss to Baylor in overtime, playing 43 minutes; against Baylor's frontline that features two potential top-five picks and two more later round draft picks is extremely impressive, and will likely be the best performance by anyone against that frontline all season long. And for that, Jones' talents and potential need to be recognized as a potential late-first round pick when the senior exhausted his eligibility at the end of this season.

By President - Corey Ruff - 12-24-11