Bob Huggins joined some elite company.
No. 12 West Virginia used a 37-4 first-half run to cruise to a 112-67 victory over UMKC, Huggins’ his 800th career win.
Huggins is the 10th head coach to reach 800 wins and only the third to achieve that milestone at his alma mater, the others being Jim Boeheim at Syracuse and Adolph Rupp at Kentucky.
“Those are big names,” Huggins said. “Those are guys that I said when I first got to go to the Final Four, I’d sit in the lobby all day and all night and just watch them. I’d watch how they interacted with people and just sat there thinking that one day I want to be like that. One day, I want to be one of them.”
Huggins is the second college basketball coach to achieve the 800-win milestone this week as former Villanova coach Rollie Massimino did it this week as Keiser defeated Trinity Baptist 77-47 on Wednesday.
Huggins was presented with a jersey with the number 800 printed on it by West Virginia athletic director Shane Lyons following the game.
“Thank you Shane, but I don’t think I could’ve fit into this even when I played,” Huggins said.
Among Huggins’ 800 wins are two Final Four appearances (1992 with Cincinnati and 2010 with West Virginia), four Elite Eight appearances, seven Sweet 16 appearances and 10 conference championships.
“Eight-hundred wins. How do you pick one?” Huggins answered when asked for his favorite win. “I can’t do it. I like beating Cal (John Calipari) but that’s way more than one.”
Nathan Adrian led seven players in double figures for the Mountaineers (9-1) with 13 points. Daxter Miles Jr. and Esa Ahmad had 12 points each. Elijah Macon led West Virginia with seven rebounds and Jevon Carter had six assists.
“He has a lot of pride in this state and a lot of pride for the game of basketball so you really can’t hide that,” Adrian said when asked of Huggins’ emotions after the game.
The win was the highest scoring output for the Mountaineers this season.
LaVell Boyd led the Roos (7-6) with 14 points.
The 45-point defeat is the worst for UMKC this season beating their 43-point defeat at Kansas earlier this month.
This is the second time the Kangaroos have played in a milestone game this season. Their loss to Kansas, 105-62, on Dec. 6 was Jayhawks coach Bill Self’s 600th career win.