Still, WVU defended very well for the first half and outrebounded the much bigger and more agile Bears throughout the game. The turnovers were minimized and the whole thing might have enjoyed a different outcome if the Mountaineers could just shoot the ball effectively.
Yet there was a 1-for-13 stretch when Baylor took permanent control of the game, 21 misses on 29 attempts in the second half and missed shots and questionable decisions in the final minute.
Huggins tried to prevent all that and made quite the change the day before the Baylor game. The Mountaineers installed a new offense that relied on ball screens, handoffs and drives.
"I've tried everything other than put a peach basket up," Huggins said. "It gave us better movement, but it's the same old thing. We haven't done a good enough job making shots. We got shots."
The screens behind forwards set up good shots, from the 3-pointer Eron Harris made to start the team's scoring to the one he missed that could have given WVU the lead with 20 seconds left to play. The Mountaineers also put Baylor into tricky positions and took advantage with drives by guards when the defenders came up too high and entry passes to forwards when the Bears were pinned too deep.
"We tried to get our bigs away from the rim," guard Juwan Staten said. "When we post our bigs, teams tend to sink their bigs down in there. When we're running motion, their bigs tend to slack off our bigs and sit in the paint.
"We tried to get a lot of movement and involve their bigs in a lot of pick-and-rolls, a lot of dribble handoffs to get them away from the rim. We got some movement and got some dribble-drives and open shots."
It made for easier offense, and though the baskets were not there, the shots were, and the handoffs and drives eliminated the needs for too many passes. WVU (13-15, 6-9 Big 12) had just 10 turnovers, the fewest in a month. Only two shots were blocked by a team averaging more than twice as many.
That'll matter against the Jayhawks (24-4, 12-3), who are No. 3 nationally with 6.6 blocks per game and lead the nation in field-goal percentage defense (35.5), both thanks in large part to center Jeff Withey.
And if the latest doesn't work?
"He's not going to just lie down and sit in practice, just an hour-and-a-half practice, and get out," Kilicli said. "That's not going to happen. He's going to try and find plays and people to get us some buckets and defense. We work everything, but we just can't do it. We can't execute on defense, we can't execute on offense. We just can't do it."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.