Scouting the Miami/West Virginia Matchup: WVU Coliseum, 7 P.M.
When the West Virginia Mountaineers take the floor tonight at the WVU Coliseum (7 p.m., ESPN2), they will face a Miami roster full of unfamiliar faces and new contributors. But for one Mountaineer, tonight’s contest against the Hurricanes may very well feel like another day on the playground.
Darryl “Truck” Bryant, one of the team’s most talented guards, will be facing off against childhood friend and former AAU teammate Durand Scott for just the second time in their collegiate careers. Bryant and Scott, two members of a self-named clique titled “F4L” (Family 4 Life), also include former UConn guard Kemba Walker and Drexel standout Chris Fouch among their tightknit group.
Though they will be forever connected by the “F4L” tattoos they share, Saturday night’s game will be business as usual for two of the more talented guards in college basketball.
Bryant, averaging 15.2 points per game in his senior campaign for the Mountaineers, keys an offensive attack averaging just over 77 points per game through seven contests in 2011. Fellow senior and Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team selection Kevin Jones (21.3 points per game, 11.7 rebounds per game) is a 6-foot-8 forward who leads the charge for a team ranked No. 22 nationally in rebound margin (+8.2).
The Hurricanes, who edged out the Mountaineers 79-76 in last season’s contest at the BankUnited Center, return only two active scorers from their 2010 battle with West Virginia. If Miami plans to leave the WVU Coliseum with a similar result, they’ll need to limit opportunities for Bryant (20 points last year) and Jones (14 points, five rebounds).