The more interaction I have with others, the more I'm trying to decide where I stand on this whole West Virginia thing. Do I think Pitt fans are somewhat bitter about having a great program for nearly a decade and having no Final Fours to show for it, while WVU reached one this year? A little. I know I am.
There are plenty of good reasons for both sides. On one hand, there's the whole 'root for the conference' thing going on. The Big East has struggled and it feels somewhat good to have at least one conference rep in the Final four. Then there are the folks who will root for WVU because of their proximity to Pitt. Along that same line, I think you've got casual fans in the area who aren't huge fans of either school, but always will root for both to do well.
On the other hand, you've got the contingent that won't root for WVU no matter what. Too big a rival for Pitt and when you mix in the fact that Bob Huggins is despised by a number of people, it's easy to root against them. Further, since Pitt hasn't been there themselves, there's even more disdain for the Mountaineers.
I was listening to a radio show today and someone mentioned that WVU making it to the Final Four will actually help PITT'S recruiting. The thought being that Jamie Dixon will be able to tell recruits that they can play against the NCAA Champion if WVU would happen to win the title. I think that's a bit of a reach. Recruits already get to play in the Big East, which has had numerous Final Four teams in recent memory and three NCAA Championship teams in Syracuse and UCONN in the past 11 years. I don't think adding one more team will make that much of a difference. The Big East is already widely seen as the best league in the country.
At the end of the day, I can't bring myself to root for WVU. I don't like the team, don't like the coach, and find it increasingly difficult to find even one reason other than the whole conference thing to hope they win a title. And about that whole conference thing - I find it much easier to root for other Big East football teams than I do Big East basketball teams. Big East basketball is already renowned nationwide. The football conference is still trying to gain respect and it's much easier to root for the football side to do well.
Sorry, can't do it.