AMES, Iowa - When the comeback ended Wednesday night and the game was over, Bob Huggins arrived at a conclusion, too.
"I'm done," he said.
Maybe that was the moment speaking and not the 20th winningest coach of all time. Label it temporary insanity. After all, hadn't Huggins been doing the same thing again and again this season all while hoping for a different result from his sixth West Virginia team?
Something was screwy when the 69-67 loss to Iowa State was history. It sounded like forwards Deniz Kilicli, Aaric Murray and Dominique Rutledge, each a starter at points this season, were in the past while guard Matt Humphrey, a guy who hadn't played since Dec. 22, was the future.
But maybe this was reality, since the team is 8-8 overall and 1-3 in the Big 12 Conference.
Maybe Huggins, pushed and pulled in so many directions by constant miscues and consistently ignored instructions, was speaking the truth when he said he was tired of leaning on Kilicli, Murray and Rutledge only to fall down.
Maybe Humphrey and other guards will play if WVU is to get out of neutral.
"We're going with a small lineup," Huggins said. "I'm not doing it anymore. I'm done. They've had ample opportunities, over half the season now. How can it be worse? We're 1-3. How can it be worse?"
Wednesday's first half must be dismissed as easily as Huggins appears to have dismissed the first half of this season. There was nothing wrong with the opening 20 minutes, but the game was decided by one run and defined by another in the second half.
The Mountaineers were their typically tepid selves on offense in the first half, but they played defense and rebounded. They were crushing the Big 12's best rebounding team on the boards and pacing the league's top-scoring team well below its average.
Then the second half started and the Cyclones flipped the script and forced Huggins to make his own edits. Iowa State went from up three points to up 18 and was having its way dribbling, passing, scoring and rebounding.
Huggins called three timeouts before his team scored three baskets.
"They ball-screened and our bigs didn't do anything, honestly," Huggins said. "It was our bigs. They were supposed to hedge hard and they didn't hedge hard. They just kind of stood there in the lane."