March 10, 2007

This is just an abbreviated early start. I have some morning offline duties before basketball all day. Back later.

Mike Ruth at the Card Chronicle has an excellent rundown — he doesn’t like Higgins and Burr either, so it isn’t just grumpy Pitt fans.

The sense from Louisville is that this was the Cards in the second half reverted to the way they had been playing before they showed up in Pittsburgh a month ago.

From the first dribble in the second half, this looked like the U of L basketball team we saw before it got the religion about sharing and protecting the basketball.

This looked like a perfect video for U of L coach Rick Pitino to show to his players for the rest of the weekend to prove to them that even though they won seven games in a row, they don’t have it all figured out.

Not when they kicked away an 11-point halftime lead against Pittsburgh in the Big East Tournament semifinals in Madison Square Garden last night. Not when they started the second half by missing six of their first seven shots with five turnovers.

One thing all Louisville partisans agree is that this was a jarring reminder to the Cardinal players not to believe their press-clippings.

Well, Pitt is now in the Big East Championship game for the 6th time in seven years.

Some are blase about it: “It is the day before Selection Sunday and that can mean only one thing: Pittsburgh must be playing for the Big East championship at the Garden. It’s practically a rite of spring.”

Others snarky, ” The perennial bridesmaids and preseason No. 1 pick to win the conference, Pittsburgh will be playing for the conference title for the sixth time in seven years after it outlasted Louisville last night in the second semifinal at Madison Square Garden, 65-59.”

I have only found your site recently and would like to say that is one of the best Pitt sites around. Balanced analysis versus the typical “Blue and Gold Colored Glasses” or “We stink” sites.

I also agree the Louisville site’s write up gave a very good synopsis of the game and the Card’s miscues in the second half.

After seeing that Higgins and Burr were the refs I thought for sure we would be done, but was shocked to see the Cards had 23 fouls to our 13.

It truly is amazing that for 6 of the last 7 years we all have been busy watching the BET finals to see the Panthers.

Comment by Panther84 03.10.07 @ 9:39 am

So, anyone interested in chattin’ about seeding? Obviously, the winner of tonight’ game is a 2 seed. What about the loser? With the Wazzou and A&M losses last night, we would have to move into the 2 seed slot. Do you think we could hold it, even if we lost? These last two wins give us 4 wins against the current RPI Top 25, which is not too shabby. We have six against the Top 50 (damn you SU for dropping to 51!!). So, whaddya think? Have we done enough already for a 2?

Comment by RyanSilverSpring 03.10.07 @ 9:56 am

A predicted two seed for Pitt really means the selection committee will give us like a four. They do it every year.

Comment by Eric R 03.10.07 @ 11:50 am

You have to love it when we outshoot a team 31 to 4 from the line, and the opposing fans are complaining that we *still* got jobbed by the officials!

Does anyone know where we can find the officiating assignment earlier in the day? I can’t believe its not listed on any sports betting website – i would think that it is important information.

If we win tonight, I think we will have locked up a 3 seed, with a chance at a 2 seed. If we lose, we’re guaranteed no better than a 3, maybe a 4. Don’t put it past the “committee” to screw us again. Ignore all that ‘bracketologist’ garbage – he is like the pollsters, bump up the winners, drop the losers – whereas the committee makes no sense at all. Sometimes they care how a team finishes, sometimes they don’t. We have no chance at a 2 with a loss no matter what he says, cause georgetown will have beat us 2 of 3, and refer back a couple years to uconn and us – when the committee came out and said ‘we bumped pitt down to a 3 seed cause it wouldn’t be fair to put them on the same line as uconn.’

According to the stat *they* created – we should be a 1 seed. Oh, i forgot, they…uh, i mean it is just a tool.

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 12:00 pm

[…] Pittsburgh and Louisville bloggers weren’t especially happy with the officiating last night, either. Looks like it was Higgins and Burr at it again. […]

i agree with stuart, the committee has mysteriously dropped us a line or two these past few years. i think whoever wins the game tonight gets a 2 seed, whoever loses drops to 3. but i wouldnt be surprised to see them drop pitt to a 4 if we lose.

Comment by matt 03.10.07 @ 12:15 pm

Got my ticket, Section 221. See you at Stout.

Comment by steve 03.10.07 @ 12:16 pm

Remember – those Pitt teams that we feel got unreasonably dropped in the seeding played an awful non-con. This team’s profile is the strongest it has ever been because of the non-con. According to ESPN, our SOS is 6 and our RPI is currently 4. Even if we lose, it is going to be difficult not to seed us on the 2 line. However, what worries me is that Memphis is currently slotted as a 3 (awful conference strength, obviously), but I fear that the committee might be hard pressed to not give them the 2 if they win the Conf USA tourney.

Who knows – the easiest thing to do is win tonight. Then, we should be a lock #2.

Comment by RyanSilverSpring 03.10.07 @ 12:29 pm

OffTopic from deadspin: See the ex Penn State player get jammed up for getting an “escort”? Good. F Penn State.

link to

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 12:39 pm

Memphis is more likely to get a 1 than a 3 seed: see last year. They may fall to a 2 seed. But a 3 will never happen, they are the committee’s darlings.

Ryan – save yourself some grief, don’t assume a win tonight means a 2 seed. Assume it means a lock on a 3 seed, and then you can be pleasantly suprised if we get a 2, and won’t have to complain and be pissed when we get jobbed as a 3.

If we lose, substitute 3 and 4 in above paragraph.

Remember its a bunch of turds in a couple of hotel rooms deciding this, not rocket surgeons. Nothing says they have to make sense.

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 12:45 pm

We win, we are a 2. We lose we are a 3.

Comment by TMGPanther 03.10.07 @ 1:02 pm

Anyone watch gameday? Digger could choose any team to talk about in the country, and he chooses to talk about how Jeff Green and GU is going to bury us. Dogs us at EVERY chance he gets. F him, again.

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 1:27 pm

Stuart, digger followed up later on by picking us to win tonight. Based on the love he gave to Green i didn’t expect him to pick us. Typical Digger. He loves to be on all sides!

Comment by TMGPanther 03.10.07 @ 2:08 pm

I missed that, after i threw up in my mouth I switched over to the Pens game. Way to take a stand…what a bitch.

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 2:24 pm

Lavin is still mad Howland got him fired, he dogs Pitt. Majerus still made we beat Marquette, dogs us too. Besides half of Digger, does ANYBODY think we’ll win?

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 2:45 pm

I don’t know about you guys but I’d rather have us come into the game as an underdog. I’d also like to see Dixon execute a variety of defenses to disrupt the Hoyas.

Comment by MoE 03.10.07 @ 4:19 pm

I like our chances tonight. If we lose, we are a 3 or 4…4 being a long shot(I hope). We can beat Georgetown and although we probably cannot take Green out unless he gets into foul trouble, we can annoy the crap out of Hibbert. If we win…we can do no worse than a 3. If we win and both us and the Hoyas finish as 3’s then I will be renting out garden tools and assorted Medieval weapons to all PITT fans. Half price for the shears and the crossbow comes with free bolts.

Comment by Panthoor 03.10.07 @ 4:55 pm

According to the betters, we ARE an underdog. Gtown favored by 1 per Sheridan’s odds on USA today.

Comment by fred 03.10.07 @ 5:13 pm

We’re dogs by 2 or 2.5 everywhere i look.

I like renting weapons…


Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 5:20 pm

I just realized that means Higgins had to fly 1400 miles, sleep, and get to a game in 14 or so hours. Luckily he does not appear to be awake during games, so fatigue was not a factor.

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 5:35 pm

Burr did the Wisconsin/Illinois game, so hopefully the officials won’t be a factor tonight without either of these clowns…30 min til gametime….

Comment by Stuart 03.10.07 @ 8:32 pm

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