In honor of Zeke from Cabin Creek, WVU is enshrining former all-everything Jerry West with a bronze statue outside of the Coliseum in a ceremony Saturday before the Seton Hall game. In exchange, West has donated an additional $800,000 to the university to be used for basketball scholarships and a study area for the basketball team.
A West Virginia native, West was named All-State high school from 1953-1956 and All-American high school player in 1956, when he was also West Virginia Player of the Year. He averaged 32.2 ppg that year. Thereafter, he played for our very own Mountaineers in an illustrious career in which he averaged 24.8 points and 13.3 rebounds per game. He then went on to play, coach and manage in the NBA. (via Wikipedia)
The statue was sculpted by West Virginia artist Jamie Lester, who is also responsible for the West Virginia quarter and MLB Hall of Fame busts for two guys from some irrelevant baseball team. Unfortunately, the final version of the statue was not free from outside influence. The sports fanatic Lester followed the NFL playoffs closely. Consequently, he was continually bombarded with Peyton Manning interviews, games and commercials and has admitted that subconsciously it affected his work, especially around the neck of the statue.
The statue provides a great defense for WVU when they elect to name the Coliseum and/or floor after John Beilein instead of Jerry West in an smooth contract negotiation tactic recommended by some unread blog.
As follow up pieces, Jamie Lester is reportedly working on a three dimensional recreation of Pittsnogle's tatoos and a 15' replica of Frank Young's facial hair.