"I definitely learned games aren't won during game day," he said in March. "They're won during the offseason. I wasn't working as hard as I should have been."
The Mountaineers at least have options to fill Murray's place and productivity, but Huggins said using the newcomers isn't merely a matter of necessity.
"I'm not sure they weren't going to figure in before this," Huggins said. "One thing we lacked a year ago was some consistency. I think what those guys bring in is consistency and work ethic every day. At least you can play them and know what you're going to get. We haven't necessarily had that."
The 6-7, 215-pound Holton averaged 17.5 points and led all of junior college with 14.1 rebounds per game last year at Florida's Palm Beach State College. He also shot 39.6 percent from 3-point range. The 6-9, 230-pound Dibo wasn't much of a rebounder, but was second-team All-America at Casper (Wyo.) College. Dibo averaged 18.2 points and shot 41.9 percent from 3-point range last season.
The 6-8, 220-pound Adrian, the 6-9, 225-pound Watkins and the 6-8, 250-pound Williams are all slightly different from one another.
"Devin was going to be if not the best rebounder, then the second-best rebounder, regardless of who was here and who wasn't here," Huggins said. "I think the phrase now is Nathan is a stretch 4 (power forward). He's a pick-and-pop guy. Brandon is more of a guy who needs to fly around to block shots, rebound the ball and run like crazy - he can run."
Huggins could have eight new players in the fall. In addition to the six signed players, WVU has a commitment from Baltimore point guard Daxter Miles, though there are questions about how valid that commitment is and whether Miles will ever qualify. Murray's departure creates another spot, but Huggins said he won't sign someone late "who's not going to fit in with what we're going to do. We went through that experiment and it failed."
Whether it's six, seven or eight, it's still a large number of players, though not as many as he added in 1993, when Cincinnati made the Final Four. The nature of the changes might not be as dramatic as they were in 2000, when Kenyon Martin became the nation's best player while Pete Mickeal accepted a sidekick role, sophomore Steve Logan understood his All-America honors would be waiting for him and coveted freshmen DerMarr Johnson, Kenny Satterfield and Leonard Stokes did what they were asked.
"I think in every situation, no matter the amount of returning guys or what, it's about guys who are willing to accentuate the positives and stay away from their negatives," Huggins said. "When you're good, guys do that. When you're not good, guys don't do that."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.