As a resident of West Virginia I always have compared West Virginia University to the University of Louisville. They both have the same type of fan base, more bad fans than good and questionable coaching decisions have been made in the past. However, I will say I have always looked at Louisville as rotten down to the core, whereas I can still find some good at West Virginia University.
Like Louisville’s fan base, it seems to be the younger ones who make the bunch look bad. Traveling to Morgantown for a game against Marshall with the marching band (yes, I know. I am a nerd) resulted in drunken fans attacking me, mooning me, and even throwing their beverages on me just for wearing the color green. Approach anyone in that gaudy yellow with caution if they look of a young age.
So if you are looking to start a warm and fuzzy friendship with a West Virginia fan while you are in Cleveland, look toward the older crowd, who might be friendlier.
With an Elite Eight on the line, I was not surprised to see trash talk from my WVU friends. However, what did surprise me is how neutral the W.Va media remains. There are three main papers in West Virginia — The Charleston Gazette, Daily Mail, and Herald Dispatch — and each of them realize West Virginia’s place in this game — The underdog.
(Most likely showing respect to the amount of West Virginia residing Kentucky fans) They each have applauded Kentucky’s success this season, and noted that WVU will need a perfect game with the Cats off their game to pull out the win. This is a fresh breath of air for me, as throughout the season it has just been media saying how overrated Kentucky is.
So for those of you who like to read what ‘the enemy’ is saying here is a little break down of who you should follow on social media and a few articles on what they are saying so far:
The Charleston Gazette: Mountaineers a different breed of underdog
Dave Hickman: @dphickman1
Mitch Vingle: @MitchVingle
The Charleston Daily Mail: WVU hopes ‘ugly’ game can translate to win against Kentucky
Mike Casazza: @MikeCasazza
Chuck McGill: @ChuckMcgill
The Herald-Dispatch: WVU gearing up for UK
The Dispatch doesn’t have a WVU beat writer, because Huntington is all about the Herd. However, you may remember Grant Traylor from the Wiggins announcement. Follow him at @Grant Traylor. You can also follow another Huntington great, @KeithMorehouse.