- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 23, 2008

In Day 4 of the tournament at Verizon, we discovered who has the easiest job in the gym — the West Virginia mascot. It requires him to a) not shave, b) carry a musket, c) wear a hat and d) look like Davy Crockett.

But this fella pulled it off well during the Mountaineers’ wins over Arizona and Duke.

The best part about the job is he gets a courtside seat. …

It’s amusing to see the arena feed of the CBS coverage beforehand. They do their pregame run-through of graphics and camera shots leading to tipoff. A West Virginia student manager was on screen for Bob Huggins’ graphic (years at West Virginia, career record, NCAA record), and Duke assistant Steve Wojciechowski was on-screen for Mike Krzyzewski’s graphic. …

As if the NCAA isn’t moronic enough for not allowing any kind of post-touchdown celebration in football, the referees have spent more time than they ever should telling the team’s benches to sit down. Way to rob any emotion from the game, guys. …

Fresh off scoring his 60th goal in a come-from-behind win over Atlanta on Friday night, Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin sat in the first row of section 120 with Caps captain Chris Clark. Please shave, Alex. …

Selfless act of the day came from West Virginia center Jamie Smalligan. He text-messaged coach Bob Huggins on Friday night saying, “It’s a better matchup if I don’t start.”

Added Huggins: “How many teams have guys like that?”

Smalligan, who started the previous 35 games, played only five minutes because Duke doesn’t have an inside presence.

Ryan O’Halloran

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