That’s storied Oak Hill Academy, not Oak Hill High School, so it’s a huge game for Mountain State Academy and WVU commits Noah Cottrill and Deniz Kelicli. Your own Charley West, along with a rather large contigent of Mountaineer fans, will be making the trek down to Beckley to observe.
UPDATE: Back from the game. Quick grades:
Deniz Kelicli = Eh.
Noah Cottrill = Eh+.
There is definitely talent in both of these kids. I have no doubt that Huggins will turn each into big-time players. But last night, you could obviously tell that a lot of work will be needed.
Cottrill has a much more refined game, but that’s to be expected for a guy that, even though he’s younger, has been playing in the states for his entire career. He played, though down most of the game, with a lot of intensity. Some great passes and fast breaks he ran were basically ruined by teammates. That can be enough to take someone’s mind out of the game, but Cottrill stayed with it. He’s quick, but a little more quickness could take his game to the next level. The shot is there, no doubt about that. Against a team like Oak Hill, when your own teammates weren’t doing a whole lot to help, I though Cottrill still more than held his own. He didn’t dominate, but you can tell he’s capabale of exactly that.
Kelicli, on the other hand, struggled. He’s an absolute beast as far as size goes, but his finishing was sorely lacking. Many times, he would make a strong move to get to the rim, only to botch a layup or get blocked on a weak attempt. Huggins will teach this young man how to finish strong, which from his build, won’t be too tough. His touch wasn’t quite refined yet, either, but these are things that can come from more time in the United States system. He’s got the size and athleticism to be a very good player — his upside is much higher than Cottrill’s. It’s just good that Huggins is the guy to get him there.
So while last night wasn’t exactly the show I was hoping it’d be, I still came away with a decent impression of both. But, as always, my main thought is: thank God for Huggins.
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