A Journey to 800

Bob Huggins' basketball teams don't lose that often, but when they do - particularly during the holidays - that's when Dr. Jekyll turns into Mr. Huggins, the dual-personality coach his early Cincinnati players used to call him.

"Love-hate relationship, man," WVU assistant coach Erik Martin, who played on Huggins' first Final Four team in 1992, said. "He loved me and I hated him."

It was difficult then for Martin to reconcile in his 20-year-old brain the two conflicting coaches - the guy who could invent new cuss words when he was on the basketball court or the other guy away from it who often barely spoke above a whisper.

It was almost as if those three hours Huggins spent yelling at everything moving in the gym had never happened, or, was being done by someone else.

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Playing Career Huggins was a guard for the Mountaineers from 1975-77.

Following his playing career, Huggins made stops at West Virginia and Ohio State.
1980-83 Huggins was named the head coach of Walsh college in 1980.

Walsh finished 34-1 in 1982-83 and Huggins was named the NAIA District 22 and NAIA Area 6 Coach of the Year.
1983-84 Huggins moved to the Division I ranks as an assistant at UCF.
Huggins returned to Ohio as Akron's head coach.
First NCAA Tournament
The Zips went 22-8 and earned a No. 15 seed, while Huggins was named the Ohio Valley Coach of the Year. Huggins at Akron
The Start of a Dynasty After four years at Akron, Huggins was hired at Cincinnati, where he coached from 1989-05.

He led the team to the postseason each season including 14-straight NCAA Tournaments, and Cincinnati produced 15 NBA players during that time.
1991-92 Huggins advanced to his first Final Four in 1991-92 as his squad went 29-5 and earned a No. 4 seed in the tournament. 1992 NCAA Tournament Recap
1999-00 Huggins posted a 29-4 mark and was named The Sporting News National Coach of the Year.
Huggins went 31-4 in 2001-02 en route being named the ESPN.com National Coach of the Year.
2006-07 Huggins became the coach at K-State and led the Wildcats to 23 wins, its most wins in 19 years.

For his efforts, Huggins was named the USBWA District VI Coach of the Year.
2007-08 Huggins returns to his alma mater as the 21st coach in program history. Following his first season, Huggins signed a lifetime contract with the Mountaineers. Coach Bob Huggins
2009-10 Huggins led the 2009-10 to a Big East Tournament Championship and a trip to the Final Four for the second time in school history. 2009-10 Team Photo
'Press Virginia' Prior to the 2014-15 season, Huggins changed WVU's defense to a frenetic full-court press that was quickly dubbed 'Press Virginia'.

Since then, the Mountaineers have been at the top of the national rankings in multiple defensive and offensive categories.
12/17/2016 Huggins becomes the third active coach in Division 1 to reach 800 career victories with a victory over UMKC. Huggins Reaches 800

By The Numbers

Most Wins - Active

Mike Krzyzewski - Duke
Jim Boeheim - Syracuse
Rollie Massimino - Keiser
Bob Huggins - West Virginia
Roy Williams - North Carolina
Rick Pitino - Louisville
Rick Byrd - Belmont
Cliff Ellis - Coastal Carolina
Jerry Slocum - Youngstown State
Larry Hunter - Western Carolina

Most Wins - All-Time

Mike Krzyzewski - 1980-present
Bob Knight - 1971-08
Jim Boeheim - 1976-present
Dean Smith - 1961-97
Adolph Rupp - 1930-72
Jim Calhoun - 1972-12
Jim Phelan - 1954-03
Eddie Sutton - 1966-08
Rollie Massimino - 1969-present
Bob Huggins - 1980-present

Most Games Coached - Active

Mike Krzyzewski - Duke
Jim Boeheim - Syracuse
Cliff Ellis - Coastal Carolina
Jerry Slocum - Youngstown State
Bob Huggins - West Virginia

Most 20-Win Seasons - Active

Jim Boeheim - Syracuse
Mike Krzyzewski - Duke
Roy Williams - North Carolina
Bob Huggins - West Virginia
Rick Pitino - Louisville

Milestone Wins

Video Tributes

Joe Alexander

Warren Baker

Jay Bilas

Corie Blount

Jim Boeheim

Bob Bowlsby

Gary Browne

Truck Bryant

Linda (Huggins) Burr/Mike Burr

Da'Sean Butler

John Calipari

Mick Cronin

Josh Eilert

Ron Everhart

Curtis Fleming

John Flowers

Fran Fraschilla

Gordon Gee

Tarrance Gibson

Seth Greenberg

Billy Hahn

Larry Harrison

Eric Hicks

Jacque Huggins/Harry Huggins

Jenna Huggins

June Huggins

Jay Jacobs

DerMarr Johnson

Kevin Jones

Andy Kennedy

Melvin Levett

Steve Logan

Shane Lyons

Chuck Machock

Erik Martin

Frank Martin

Joe Mazzulla

Alex Meacham

John Meeker

Terry Nelson

Darris Nichols

Brad Paisley

Rick Pitino

Bill Raftery

Mo Robinson

Alex Ruoff

Jamie Smalligan

Wellington Smith

Juwan Staten

Leonard Stokes

Jermaine Tate

Rod Thorn

Cam Thoroughman

Brad Underwood

Nick Van Exel

Dick Vitale

Bill Walker

Jerry West

Jonnie West

Nick Williams

What They Are Saying

"I've said this many times, I don't think Huggs gets the respect that he sometimes (should). I think he's a fabulous coach. He's been doing it for a long time and doing it at a high level. I don't know how long Huggs is going to go, but he's going to easily get 900 wins, and he may get 1,000. That's unheard of for somebody to get that many wins."

Bill Self Kansas Head Coach

"He's the closest thing to a pure man that I've met in this business. He's quite possibly the smartest person I've ever come across in my life and then he's genuine. There is not an ounce of phony in anything that he's about. Everyone that he's around respects him because of that."

Frank Martin South Carolina Head Coach

"What he's been able to do is incredible. I think he should be a first-ballot hall of famer. His level of consistency really belies conventional wisdom. He's won at a high, high level everywhere he's been. He does it in a lot of different forms and fashions. He's turned West Virginia into 'Press Virginia' based on his personnel and this just speaks for his abilities as a coach."

Andy Kennedy Ole Miss Head Coach

"He's a hall of famer. He's literally one of the great coaches in the history of college basketball and he's not done yet. He's going to win a lot of games. I'm one of Bob Huggins' biggest fans and having worked for him for a year I understand why he's been so successful at every stop of the way."

Brad Underwood Oklahoma State Head Coach

"There are very few that have had the consistent success that Coach Huggins has had. Regardless of where he's been his teams have won. They have won at a very high rate. They've always played extremely hard and that will continue. You've got to last a long time and have great success along the way to accomplish 800."

Lon Kruger Oklahoma Head Coach

"Bob Huggins is intelligence wise for the game of basketball beyond what most people and coaches think. The other thing that makes him special is Bob Huggins loves the game of basketball - what the game means to all of the coaches that coached before him, all of the players that played before him - he is all about continuing to develop the game and having people embrace the game."

Billy Hahn West Virginia Assistant to the Head Coach

"The mind is always working. Even though he might not say a lot, he's very observant and he knows what's going on around him. That's why he's won 800 games and that's why - sooner rather than later - he will be inducted into the hall of fame."

Larry Harrison West Virginia Assistant Coach

"The people always see the rough edges on television and the guy is not like that at all. He's a big teddy bear and he would do anything in the world for you."

Warren Baker West Virginia - 1972-76
West Virginia TV Analyst

"I've known Huggs for a long time and he's kind of been my mentor and everything else over the years and I've probably not made any career moves without talking to him, but I never understood how deep the loyalty ran with his former players until I got here. Everybody comes back. Everybody calls him."

Ron Everhart West Virginia Assistant Coach

"Huggs and I used to have a love-hate relationship. He loved me and I hated him. But that being said, one of his unique traits is it doesn't matter how much Huggs yells at you, screams at you or is talking about you on the court like you are a dog, when practice is over he never dwelled on that."

Erik Martin West Virginia Assistant Coach

"A lot of guys here will ask me what it was like playing for him and I tell them it is the exact opposite of the perception there is of him on TV. He's very soft spoken, very amicable and almost shy in a way until he steps between those lines. He's very good at not bringing his emotions off the floor."

Joe Mazzulla West Virginia - 2006-11

"One of the things that makes him a great coach is he gets those things out of his players even if those players have never done that before. That is a talent within itself beyond just knowing the Xs and Os, which he doesn't get much credit for. That is a talent."

Da'Sean Butler West Virginia - 2006-10

"You could walk right in and talk to him if his door was open. To this day you can still do that. It's love, everything is love. He's super regular. You would never know (he was a famous coach)."

Truck Bryant West Virginia - 2008-12

"It's not fake. You know you're not getting it just so he can make himself look good to the other people around him. It's real with Huggs. What you see is what you get and that's why guys respect him so much. It's a phenomenal feat. He knows his basketball. He knows how to push guys."

Corie Blount Cincinnati - 1992-93

"He was a master at putting game plans together and taking out whatever the other team was doing. If you were going to what you wanted to do it was going to happen in the last five seconds of the shot clock and when that shot goes up everybody will be boxing out or else you will see guys keep running in and our because they will be subbed."

Terry Nelson Cincinnati - 1992-93

"Bob's reputation as a basketball coach is the equal of anybody who is in the hall of fame or has more wins than he currently does. Those of us who have been around Bob, and I'm sure Jim Calhoun, Tom Izzo, Rick Pitino and others would say this, (Huggins) is the equal of these guys even though they are already in the hall of fame."

Fran Fraschilla ESPN College Basketball Commentator

"Bob Huggins is one of the least appreciated elite coaches in college basketball. He was unfairly painted with a black hat early in his career and what was lost amid that was his excellence at taking teams/players and molding them into winners. The loyalty shown by his players and their commitment is a credit to his persistence in maximizing talent."

Andy Katz ESPN College Basketball Writer

"The best example I can give of the brilliance of Bob Huggins is the 2008 Big East Tournament. The Mountaineers beat 15th-ranked UConn in the quarterfinals of the tourney after Huggs decided to go with a matchup zone. West Virginia hadn't played zone all year. Huggins only installed it that morning at a walkthrough in the team's hotel ballroom."

Dana O'Neil ESPN College Basketball Writer

"Bob Huggins has the amazing knack to be able to adapt to different people and different personnel. He can relate to anyone, which is what allows him to tweak his style. Everyone likes Bob Huggins, but his players love playing for him - regardless of style. He's not stuck in his ways because he's always willing to adapt to what he has."

Jon Rothstein CBS Sports College Basketball Writer