Battling through the flu, Miles Jr. has gutsy game 113

When it comes to Gatorade, it seems Daxter Miles Jr. is rather patriotic.

Red Gatorade, white and blue — it mattered little to him.

“I drank all the flavors pretty much,” he said Saturday, after the 15th-ranked WVU men’s basketball team ransacked Kansas State, 89-51. “It didn’t matter. I think I drank them all.”

Gatorade, a lot of chicken noodle soup, a ton of rest, a couple of trips to the hospital to receive IV treatment and maybe catching a few NBA games here and there on TV: That’s life with a bad case of the flu for Miles.

Truth be told, he was not magically healed by Saturday. He didn’t practice the day before, only watched from the sideline and took in what he could.

His interview session after the game was shortened, because WVU officials understood Miles was just not feeling great at all.

The same could be said for James “Beetle” Bolden and Lamont West, who were also feeling the effects of the flu.

Bolden and West did practice Friday, but Bolden did only after spending four hours in a hospital also receiving an IV treatment, while West was shut down during Thursday’s workout.

Just how bad it got was seen minutes before the game with Miles, who visited the trash can sitting behind the Kansas State bench and, well, let’s just say he made a deposit.

And then another one, before coughing up a lung into a towel.

“That’s good for him. That’s a character builder,” WVU head coach Bob Huggins said. “I kind of like watching that.”

None of the three — beginning with Miles — ever thought of sitting this game out.

“No, I knew I was going to play,” Miles said. “I don’t like losing. It wasn’t too hard for me.”

In all seriousness, you could go back over the past four seasons and find a ton of games where Miles had 20-some points or made a great defensive play or finished with five or six 3-pointers

Miles had seven points, four assists and two rebounds against Kansas State — and it might have been the most remarkable game he’s had in a while.

It was gutsy, to be sure, as there are stories that can be found throughout the country on how unique this particular flu season is.

“Honestly, I really don’t feel good right now,” Bolden said after the game, in which he contributed 13 points and three

3-pointers. “I didn’t feel good [Friday]. I’d do anything to be out there with my team, if I could help, I surely would go out there. I don’t want to let my team down. I want to be out there fighting with them.”

Then throw in WVU working on a different defensive style that held Kansas State to its lowest point total of the season.

Miles played it to near perfection during his minutes on the floor.

“I thought he played the defense pretty well and he just sat there [in practice] and watched us,” Huggins said. “He never took a rep. He hasn’t taken a rep since the Kentucky game. He’s been in the hospital.

“I don’t know if it’s miraculous, but he’s such a good athlete. He has a good tendency to get back in shape better than most people.”

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