First off, I want to thank Chas for the opportunity to lower the credibility of his blog by allowing us to post here. My name’s Pat, I’m one of the writers over at The Incline, a relatively new blog covering all the teams in the Burgh, even the Pirates! Stop on over and say hi. It truly is an honor to post here on Pitt Blather, especially since we only started our blog about two months ago.
But enough with the infomercial and ass kissing, lets get back to Pitt and PSU renewing their series. A few days have passed since the announcement, and I don’t know about you guys, but I’m still pretty pumped. The media has been all over the story, and new Pitt head coach Tom Bradley shared a few thoughts on the rivalry. Wait, what? He isn’t our coach? Has someone told WTAE? Anyway, his thoughts:
“People want us in Philadelphia and New York and over here and over there, and it’s a push-pull for (athletic director Tim Curley), and that’s obviously a tough job.”
Easy there, Tommy boy. Those Nitters think pretty highly of themselves, don’t they? Why would they schedule Pitt, a longtime rival in the same state, when they could play Temple in Philly? It must be really hard being so popular.
And this is what drives me nuts about Penn State fans. They love constantly reminding you of their great team, school, and coach. Unfortunately, their team loses big games and can’t beat Iowa, the school is in a cow pasture, and the coach, well he’s old. Most fans and writers assumed that Paterno was hands-off during the negotiations, considering the games are 5 years away, and he’s like really old. But that hasn’t stopped some Penn State fans/bloggers from grasping at straws to protect their coach and question the media’s coverage:
“By all accounts, Paterno has been as active in the last few months as he’s been in a long time. He’s been walking up to miles per day, and he’s been Skyping with high school recruits. There’s little reason to believe he holds any more or less power than he has at any point in the last decade while the series has been on hold.”
Miles a day. Miles!
“That leaves the Pittsburgh media in a no-win situation. They can’t argue, at least logically, that Tim Curley and Penn State the athletic department overpowered Paterno to make the series happen, nor can they argue Paterno has been standing in the way now that the series has been announced under his watch. Of course, that won’t stop them from trying, but their credibility is gone.”
Ok, I’ll try and logically argue that Curley overpowered Paterno (although I don’t know how many people are saying the AD “overpowered” him). The conversation goes like this:
Tim: Joe do you plan on coaching until 2016?
Joe: Probably not.
Tim: Ok, we’re going to play Pitt then.
Joe: Have you seen my glasses?
I’d say that’s both logical and probable.
As promised, a few basketball notes to round things out.
Tough times for NBA prospects trying to prove their readiness could be good news for Gil Brown, Brad Wannamaker, and Gary McGhee. With the NBA lockout looming, summer camps and leagues have been cancelled, forcing teams to focus on players who need less development. Jay Bilas is high on Wannamaker:
“I like Brad Wanamaker a lot,” Bilas said. “He does everything. He doesn’t do anything great, but he does most everything well. I think he can make a roster.”
The consensus seems to be Wannamaker and Brown could go somewhere in the 2nd round, while McGhee will likely be an undrafted free agent.
As for the new crop of recruits starting their careers at Pitt, the summer leagues are vital to their development. Provided all recruits qualify academically, they will start summer classes on Monday and join their new teammates at the Pittsburgh Basketball Club Pro-Am at the Sportsplex in Green Tree. Coach Dixon doesn’t anticipate any issues:
“We think everything is fine,” Dixon said. “We don’t anticipate any problems.”
Was that worth quoting? Probably not.
If there’s an NBA lockout the summer league could see a boost in talent. That talent could include Dejuan Blair, Aaron Gray, and Sam Young, and should be make for some entertaining and fan friendly games. If you have the time, head down to Green Tree. There is no price for admission or parking at the Sportsplex. Hooray for NCAA regulations!
Again, thanks for reading, I look forward to babysitting you Blatherites (Blatherarians? Blatherfolk?) while Chas is on vacation.