MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Bob Huggins left a wakeup call. He told everyone that Kent State was a mighty mid-major.
The West Virginia men's basketball coach was as right as his team was wrong Tuesday morning at the WVU Coliseum.
In a 10 o'clock start - a breakfast sandwich on ESPN's Tipoff Marathon between Morehead State-College of Charleston, and a Maui Classic prelim that sent Belmont to No. 10 Memphis - the Golden Flashes exposed WVU's youth.
In a 70-60 victory in its season opener, Mid-American Conference favorite Kent State made Coach Rob Sendereroff's debut triumphant, and helped Huggins make a point to his team that - this early - it doesn't have enough ready for prime-time players.
"I asked them after the game, 'Are you freshmen or are you players?' " Huggins said.
Starting guard Jabarie Hinds had 13 points in 30 minutes for WVU (1-1), which should have an easier time Thursday night here against Alcorn State.
The other six freshmen combined for nine points, nine fouls, six rebounds and 3-of-14 shooting in 55 minutes.
Should some of them be redshirted? Yes. Can Huggins afford to do that? No. He needs bodies. The biggest thing they have to learn is not to take plays off, the 692-win coach said.
Kevin Jones and Deniz Kilicli combined for 33 rebounds and 26 points with a pair of double-doubles, and their board work - praised by Huggins - was the highlight.
The other veteran, guard Truck Bryant, went 4-of-13, including 0-of-3 from behind the arc, missed 3 of 7 free throw attempts, had 4 fouls (for a second consecutive game), to go with six turnovers and one assist.
Huggins was asked if Bryant, obviously trying to do way too much and forcing most of what he was doing, maybe should have gotten some relief on his 40-minute day.
"And put in who?" Huggins answered.
Senderoff, who starts four seniors, thanked Huggins profusely in postgame remarks for the WVU coach's willingness to play in the ESPN Marathon a day later than the game had been originally scheduled, giving the Ohio school a rare national TV shot.
And although his club didn't take control until the final 15 minutes, it was during the first half that Senderoff thought KSU hung in while being outrebounded 27-12.
"There was a point in the first half I was worried that it might get away from us," Senderoff said of a five-point WVU lead with four minutes left. "We put (point guard) Michael Porrini back in with two fouls.