Huggins: Bridges improving after redshirt year

Gold and Blue Nation

Head coach says homegrown forward is more physical, “assertive”

A former winner of the Bill Evans Award could be a player to watch this season for WVU men’s basketball. 

After redshirting during the 2019-20 campaign, Fairmont Senior product Jalen Bridges could become part of head coach Bob Huggins’ rotation this season. 

Huggins thinks that redshirt year was important for Bridges’ development, saying the rangy forward is more physical and has shown improvement in nearly every facet of his game.

“He’s really done a good job in the weight room,” Huggins said. “He has gotten stronger. He’s playing so much more assertive. I thought at the end of last year, he was one of our better offensive rebounders.” 

Bridges, who was named the top prep basketball player in West Virginia in 2019, was a lethal scorer in high school, averaging more than 21 points per game. He still showcases that scoring capability, according to Huggins. 

“He’s a 6-foot-7 —maybe 6-foot-8 now — guy who can make shots,” Huggins said. “He can make shots, he can stretch the defense, and he’s gotten much better defensively.” 

Bridges played in four consecutive state championship games at Fairmont Senior, winning two titles. Though he sat out last season, he was named to the Academic All-Big 12 Rookie Team. 

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