"It was definitely a special moment," said Jones, who with Truck Bryant and Deniz Kilicli are the only current players who played in that game.
"We didn't know it at the time, but looking back on it now, that moment was really pivotal toward our success the rest of the year. You don't want to come out and repeat the same mistakes anymore."
Huggins doesn't have to give the speech, or some variation, these days. Jones, Bryant and Kilicli protect the image they helped to craft. They make sure the younger players understand what they were once made to understand.
"When you have a bunch of young guys, they can kind of get bored of you talking to them over and over about the same things," Jones said. "But when me and Truck come in and express to them what these Big East games mean, I think they get it a little better."
The Huskies (12-3, 2-2 Big East) are the 49th ranked opponent Huggins has faced in his five seasons at WVU. This one comes 55 hours after the tip against the 22nd game and seventh win against at top-10 team.
Success in the league requires a special focus and sometimes a reminder from the guy in charge.
"The thing about it is you have so many opportunities," Huggins said. "In some leagues, you might get one a year. In this league, you have them seemingly every night out. And the ones not in the top 25 probably ought to be. We lost to Seton Hall (14-2). If Seton Hall's not a top 25-team after what they've done, I don't know who is.
"We just get so many chances in this league. You can't get down and you can't too up. You've got to maintain an even keel."
The Huskies, who beat Wagner, Florida State, Harvard and Arkansas in non-conference play, have lost two in a tow in the Big East. They were beaten Tuesday by Seton Hall and lost 67-60 Saturday at Rutgers.
UConn is No. 7 in the RPI and ranked seventh in RPI strength of schedule. The huskies are led by sophomores Jeremy Lamb (18.9 pointer per game) and Shabazz Napier (14.1).
The Mountaineers rebounded from their Seton Hall loss with a 21-point win at Rutgers and a fifth straight win against Georgetown, each time with the Hoyas ranked. WVU is No. 15 in the RPI with the nation's seventh-hardest schedule.
"We've been up and down sometimes and we've got to get more consistent, but when we play like this, I think we're very tough to beat," Jones said. "I think we can beat anybody in the country if we give the same amount of effort and play like this.
"We're to the point now where we've got to keep moving forward and getting better."