November 27, 2012

Open Thread: Howard-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 5:28 pm

In something of a sign that Pitt is catching people’s fancy (or that the NHL lockout has some media outlets starved for extra content), a game that would otherwise be subject to only being available on the Comcast-Pitt channel in Western PA (Ch. 188). A game that is a pure patsy game. This game is being picked up elsewhere. SNY (NY/NJ area) and TCN (Philly) are going to offer the game tonight at 7 pm.

This should be an easy win for Pitt. Howard is 1-5. They have lost to Gardner-Webb, West Carolina and Lincoln University (Pennsylvania). Expect a lot of substituting and I will be shocked if any of the starters play more than 25 minutes.

thanks for the info-was just leaving the office when I checked the site

Comment by doczac 11.27.12 @ 5:34 pm

Forgot we were on. thanx. What are we scheduling Buttgers non-con football schedule now !

Who next….North Carolina Central or St. Peter’s ?

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 5:47 pm

Thanks for the heads up. I’m getting it unexpectedly on ESPN3!

Comment by San Diego Panther 69 11.27.12 @ 6:49 pm

I’m sorry, but no one in our starting-5 can create their own shot. I don’t care how many early games we win as a team, but no one who starts on this team can create their own offense. You know who has guys who can? Elite teams. Like Michigan, whose star took over late in the game and buried us.
I’ll always root for the Panthers, and I’m watching the game right now, but watching the ball travel back and forth on the perimeter while Steve Adams continues to suffer from basketball amnesia is really upsetting.

Comment by MikePITT 11.27.12 @ 7:08 pm

I am blacked out on espn3 is the game on fios?

Comment by Dacs 11.27.12 @ 7:16 pm

Howard shooting 70% so far. Tightup boys, mostly in the paint.

Comment by alcofan 11.27.12 @ 7:20 pm

We look bad!!!!

Comment by alcofan 11.27.12 @ 7:26 pm

Really ugly – nothing good except 3 point shooting. Poor rebounding, ball handling, motion against zone, foul shooting, interior defense!

Comment by San Diego Panther 69 11.27.12 @ 7:40 pm

Up 8 at the half but coach can’t be happy. Outrebounded,poor defense.

Comment by alcofan 11.27.12 @ 7:47 pm

that is what happens when you suspend a player
do you think you just put that out of your mind.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 7:52 pm

Adams invisible tonight with 1 rebound,1 blk and 0 pts.

Comment by alcofan 11.27.12 @ 7:57 pm

I am going to catch hell for this when you have a race horse give him his head or to put it another way, dixon must let the kid play his game
right now he is a squre peg who they are trying to fit into a round hole.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 8:11 pm

Anyone else feel it’s a disgrace that a so-called NBA lottery pick has attempted 2, count them, TWO field goals? Are you kidding me?

Comment by MikePITT 11.27.12 @ 8:28 pm

Thanks for telling me its on SNY…
I missed the 1st half…

Comment by Joe D 11.27.12 @ 8:33 pm

You picked a good half to miss Joey boy, lol

Adams has regressed after his 13 point outing at MSG. Oy Vey !

Pitt’s D was 10 times better in the 2nd half, as the Bison shot over 56% for most of the 1rst half.

Patterson continuing his resurgence !

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 8:37 pm

mikepitt it is not adams fult he is trying to fit in the system.
if you put adams on a in a all star game or if he was on a run and gun team like unlv was years ago you would see how great he is .
right now he is a squre peg tryin to fit in a round hole.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 8:38 pm

Adams unique athleticism and running ability is negated in the half court set.

As we saw against Delaware in a transition game, he was able to use this unique ability. I really don’t see why we have to make him the 2nd coming of Aaron Gray or Gary McChee. Let’s make him the 2nd coming of Dirk Nowitzki or Bill Lambeer.

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 8:43 pm

right now it goes something like this watch for fouls you should be here on this spot you should be there do this do that.
it will take time to catch on he is afered to do wrong.
if you want him to look great you say heres the ball play your game dont worry just use your talent,
but that is not dixons way so it will take time.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 8:44 pm

EMel i told you dixon does not know how to use a great player.
and he wont change his system for a star the kid should be on a running team.
insted he will force the sq peg in the round hole.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 8:49 pm

I don’t know how anyone could think Adams is a one and done. Ok, he’s 7′. But he needs so much work, all aspects of his game.

Through 7 games, biggest team weakness appears to be rebounding. Hard to believe with their lineup, but it has not been good against lesser opponents and they were out rebounded by 11 vs. UM.

Comment by Iron Duke 11.27.12 @ 8:50 pm

That team didn’t provide much comp. The lost to Iowa 36-66 and Wichita State 50-69. Heck they even lost to our fav team, Gardner (Del) Webb and Western Carolina. And some college named Lincoln.
They must be so small they aren’t even linked to a team page on Yahoo NCAAB page. lol

Anyway tonite didn’t answer any questions. More of a scrimmage. Still haven’t figured out a way to include Adams in the mix in the half court.
I would think this has to be the #1 priority before we get into conf. play.

For we know we aren’t going to be able to compete with teams with good Centers, with Sleepy in there playing 25-30 minutes.

Hail to Pitt !
VeV !

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 8:52 pm

@frankie ikr

Good thing the kid is from NZ, he doesn’t know anything about other colleges or basketball programs. Unlike KB.

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 8:56 pm

Dixon basically had an 8man rotation…
not good….
Johnson only played 4min.
and 3 players played nearly 30min… Patterson, Woodall, Robinson.

Comment by Joe D 11.27.12 @ 9:08 pm

EMel i am going to go way out a branch and i might get killed but here goes i think when KB starts playing for unlv he will score at least 14 points a game 7 rb or more per game and 3 blocks at least and this kid could do the same in a different system.
if we had both and dixon had built his team around them insted of makeing them fit the team we would have won it all.

i belive if you want to win it all you bild the team around the stars insted of makeing them fit the team.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 9:11 pm

Yea I’m hearing that on the UCLA blogs as well as they have recruited a lot of bigtime players and they either walk or they’re one & done.

Although at UCLA they’ve been fortunate enough to get some bigtime guards who have the ball in their hands a lot. This year’s is Shabazz Mohammed

After Ben’s initial success out there, the natives are getting restless.

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 9:22 pm

What I don’t understand is…..

when you knew you had Adams coming in to play Center this year, why was KB being played at Center last year. Seems to me you would have wanted him to be comfortable at the PF slot and being ready to go full tilt at that position this year. Not have to learn a different position all over at PF, which would have been the case with Adams now at Center.

He was too slight to play Center as well.


Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 9:26 pm

EMel i thought the same but i really dont think dixon knows how to use great players hr has for years won with less talent becuse of a system he cant adjust.
his mind set is every one must fit the team
what you do is get one or two great players and make the team fit them.

but he does it backwards it is his mind set.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.27.12 @ 9:37 pm

Good game for Pitt. Good game for Lamar as well. Nice to see him back in form. A win is a win. All these upcoming games are tuneups anyway until the showdown with Cincy. Plenty of things to tweak until then…that’s actually a good thing.

Comment by TX Panther 11.27.12 @ 9:42 pm

A little fyi for what it’s worth.

#3 Michigan buzzsawed Kansas St. the other night.

Tonight they beat #18 NC St. by 7.

Do I think they’re really #3, of course not.

They have beaten two quality programs though, after we had them beat for 30 minutes and ended up losing by 5.

Gonna be and up and down early as think we’ll see steady improvement as we get into late Jan and Feb.

Comment by Dan 11.27.12 @ 9:43 pm

Joe D, Johnson didn’t play much because of a hamstring issue, didn’t practice this week because of it.

Comment by marcus of schaumburg 11.27.12 @ 9:49 pm

Losses like this the last several years have the faithful in an uproar in Tinsletown.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Cal Poly made some history against No. 11 UCLA on Sunday night.

Dylan Royer scored 18 points and Kyle Odister came off the bench to score 15 points and the game winning free throws and Cal Poly upset No. 11 UCLA 70-68 on Sunday night.

It was the highest-ranked team ever defeated by Cal Poly, picked to finish seventh in the Big West.

Ben, Ben, Ben.

Comment by Emel 11.27.12 @ 10:03 pm

Was at the game. There should be no outrage that we’re not feeding the ball inside enough. We are, Zanna is by far the biggest beneficiary. Adams is pretty clearly still learning the game — he’ll get it soon but for now he’s thinking about every tiny thing he does instead of just doing it instinctively. Once he gets it (it being understanding the plays/rotations of Pitt’s scheme and getting a feel for the speed of D1 b-ball) he’ll start putting himself in position and will produce big time. not yet.

We looked a little sloppy but mostly because playing a team like Howard means playing down to your competition. It was weird pacing. A little sloppy looking but no concerns.

8 man rotation, i guess because Zeigler was out, and no need for Johnson especially if he’s even a little hurt. No use for anyone else we intend to redshit (ie Gilbert). And J.Johnson is gone. So rotation made perfect sense.

Not a lot of people ‘creating their own shot’ but also absolutely no need to. This is a game where you practice your sets, especially when at no point were we at risk of losing control even when we were up by only 1 or 2 pts.

We would greatly benefit from a consistent 3-pt threat a la Gibbs/Ramon, but that guy isn’t on our team. Patterson and Woodall can get hot, but this is the main thing that worries. Everything else critical looks like its progressing well.

Comment by PantherP 11.27.12 @ 10:07 pm

clarification on getting the ball inside — like i said we are, but a lot is through dump offs and stuff, which Zanna is handling OK (better than past years) and Adams is not finding himself in the best place for, so not huge amount of points coming this way. But it is happening. (and Taylor’s scoring prowess hasnt really improved either, but he at least is gettin in defensive position a little bit better….damning with faint praise maybe)

Comment by PantherP 11.27.12 @ 10:10 pm

Didn’t know Johnson was hurt…
That would explain the 8man rotation.

Comment by Joe D 11.27.12 @ 10:21 pm

Was this the 1st game the 1st game that Malcolm Gilbert dressed for?

Comment by xfmrman 11.27.12 @ 10:24 pm

Agree with earlier post about no player capable of creating their own shot. That has been the case for a decade at Pitt, and it’s the reason there are no Final 4 banners hanging at the Pete. Great D and team play are wonderful to watch, but they can only get you so far, and heretofore Dixon has been unable to recruit and/or develop that singular player. Until then, we’re going to get alot of the same results. Only hope for it this year: JJ Moore, but I’m not sure Dixon will ever let him out of his shell to become that guy.

Comment by Antiguafor200Alex 11.27.12 @ 11:14 pm

Great second half. Turned up the defensive intensity that was lacking early on and that in turn created some nice fast break opps. They also did a great job of adjusting to what was basically a 3-2 zone by shot faking and dribble penetrating. Some really nice plays on the baseline by Zanna and Moore. Woodall seemed to recover from shitty Michigan game. Patterson seems to have found his stroke. Robinson played nearly flawlessly. Still some laziness on the rebounding front though. Overall, offense is totally fine. Still some laziness on the rebounding front though.

Steven Adams has a lot to learn. He’s going through the motions on what has been taught to him on team defense and looks like he really just lacks experience and natural instinct beyond shotblocking. He’s pretty much a non-factor in these games until late when things break down. The idea that the coach or the program need to somehow adjust the entire system to let him run free is ludicrous. He simply needs to get better at playing at this level.

This crap about not having a player able to create his own shot- it’s horseshit. It’s the same lame complaint that comes up every year here. This is college basketball. There are very few players who are going to come in and make some kind of ankle breaking whirlybird move that is going to rescue you and take you to the Final Four. This year’s offense looks fine. They just need to get better at handling zone because the level of athleticism and size are intimidating enough for opponents to feel threatened by strict man-to-man…Every team is dying to have a superstar lottery pick that can carry you on his back. Complaining and holding out for that is just going to make your head hurt, not to mention turn up more noise than there already is around here.

Lastly, there must be somebody here from a couple years ago who is cumming in their shorts as Dante Taylor saw what I’m pretty sure were some of his first minutes at power forward in his Pitt career. Apparently, we may see more of it.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.27.12 @ 11:43 pm

Emel, I said the same thing about Dixon playing Birch at center last year…..he should have been looking to this year with Adams but coaches all want to win now (except for the really smart coaches).

I still say Adams will be here 3-4 years….unless he transfers. If he does Dixon will be a Sweet 16 coach forever.

Comment by Jackagain 11.27.12 @ 11:50 pm

Dixon is a really smart coach and Birch is a head case. This we’ve covered a billion times here. And if Dixon is a sweet 16 coach forever, it’s a lot better than caving in because a crybaby doesn’t like the position he’s playing.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.27.12 @ 11:58 pm

ACC may be voting on new members tomorrow. I wonder if Pitt will get a vote? Looks like L’Ville or no one.

link to

Like I’ve been saying, BC doesn’t want UConn in there, and Cincy is just too small….

I heard Katz talking up UConn on ESPN at the half tonight….I can’t believe he doesn’t know about BC.

Comment by Jackagain 11.28.12 @ 12:07 am

SilverpPanther….why isn’t Birch a headcase at UNLV? And were you sad to see Wanny go?

Just wondering….

Comment by Jackagain 11.28.12 @ 12:08 am

Who knows? He’s a year removed from crying and quitting. I’m sure things are different for him in many ways.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.28.12 @ 12:20 am

The zone looks like it will give them problems unless they consistently hit the 3. That means that Woodal and Patterson need to hit their shots. Also need more pushing the ball into the post for an inside out game.

Was at the game and the number of offensive rebounds they give up are mind boggling. they need to work thisout to have a chance against teh top BE teams.

Comment by JP 11.28.12 @ 4:53 am

Looks like its Louisville per ESPN. Good choice. Cincy and UConn still waiting. Now let’s hope the ACC holds. And that contract with ESPN is renegotiated.

Comment by TX Panther 11.28.12 @ 7:00 am

“Building your team” around an 18 year old kid that doesn’t know the game may just be the dumbest theory on basketball I’ve ever heard. 99% of young centers — no matter how talented they are — struggle learning the game. Most of them rely on their size to dominate in high school, so they are raw as freshmen. It’s very rare you see someone like Cody Zeller come into college as a polished big man. And he got to play against his seven foot brothers his whole life.

Howard basically packed their entire defense into the paint, so to think somebody was going to penetrate five guys to get his own shot is ridiculous. Pitt has always done well against the zone because they’re extremely efficient and they crash the offensive boards, which are usually much easier to come by outside of man to man.

The anti Dixon sentiment is perplexing. The guy is flat out one of the best coaches in the country.

Comment by Denny 11.28.12 @ 7:13 am

Glad to see your thoughtful comments! I thought we all agreed that this team would have some brilliant moments as well as some head-scratchers as they grow. Steven Adams is well below expectations but James Robinson is well above expectations. I believe both will be huge contributors in our tourney run this March.
Bottom line is it is still November! After reading the comments last night, I was expecting to wake up to headlines….Coach Jamie Dixon fired for dismal .780 winning percentage!!

Comment by Jason 11.28.12 @ 7:36 am

I actually think we have someone who can create his own shot – Trey Zeigler. Too bad he’s still sleeping it off.

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.28.12 @ 7:53 am

If I hear one more person say that Adams is “learning the game” I’m going to lose it. The kid was, if I recall, the #1 overall center prospect and one of the best overall recruits coming out of high school. Though I obviously never saw him play overseas, it was written that he consistently dominated international competition. He doesn’t need to ‘learn’ how to play basketball.
1 of 2 things is true. Either every scout was flat-out wrong in their scouting of Adams, or he made a terrible mistake coming to Pitt where he will never be able to flourish.
I am the biggest Pitt fan there is, but I know enough to acknowledge when something simply isn’t working out.

Comment by MikePITT 11.28.12 @ 8:03 am

Oh and, for what it’s worth, if Adams winds up transferring or even simply posts a mediocre season, look for ESPN and other sources of sports media to jump all over Coach Dixon and his inability to utilize elite talent once he’s got it. And, consequently, look for top recruits to stay far away from Pitt. I’m truly hopeful this doesn’t happen, but if Adams doesn’t pan out this year, especially on the heels of Khem Birch (who might wind up dominating at UNLV this year), things are going to get ugly recruiting-wise.

Comment by MikePITT 11.28.12 @ 8:05 am

Wow 7 games into the season and Adams is either a bust or an idiot for coming to Pitt.

@MikePITT You don’t understand the situation. Adams played one season in America and didn’t get to play a signifcant amount of AAU ball, which means his experience level compared to the typical Freshman is much lower. He does have to learn how to play with top players night after night. Take Nerlens Noel another top recruit, he’s been playing in big games against big competition for years. He’s averaging 30 minutes per game, 8.6 rebounds and 12.4 points while Adams is averaging 20 minutes per game 6.6 points and 4.4 rebounds, which over the course of 30 minutes would be about 10 points and 7 rebounds which isn’t that far off from Noel. Let’s give the kid some time.

Comment by Wardapalooza 11.28.12 @ 8:14 am

Also, the amount of gloom after a blowout win, in a game in which basically two rotation players couldn’t play, is pretty ridiculous on here even for Pitt fans.

Comment by Wardapalooza 11.28.12 @ 8:16 am

Adams recieved his rating and acclaim because of his potential upside not because of where he is at with his current game. This was noted in every scouting report and discussed extensively here. And the theory about Dixon’s “inability” to utilize elite talent and scare away recruits is only popular with the dingbat football fans here leaning against the car bumper in the stadium parking lot trying to sound smart about basketball.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.28.12 @ 8:26 am

People are completely unreasonable about Adams’ development. For those that think Dixon can’t coach heralded players, what do you think of Boeheim (Fab Melo, age 22) and Calhoun (Alex Oriakhi)? Neither Melo or Oriakhi showed all that much in their first couple years of play. In fact Oriakhi has transferred.

It’s still too early to tell whether Khem Birch will amount to anything, so let’s stop pointing to his transfer as a clear Dixon failure. I also don’t buy the nonsense that Birch couldn’t play center. At the time he was listed as 6’9″. Which is the same height as Talib Zanna and Dante Taylor. Birch is a much better shot blocker than either one. Dixon played Birch in front of both of those guys. No, Birch didn’t have Gary McGhee’s body, but I don’t really recall him being muscled around for the month that he played at Pitt.

Comment by Barvo 11.28.12 @ 8:35 am

@Ward @Denny @Silver … Thanks for bringing a little level headed perspective to an otherwise perplexing and completely unwarranted over the top criticism of Coach Dixon and Adams.

How on earth some of you guys can look into your crystal ball and determine Adams is a bust after 7 games and Khem Birch will be a dominant player after 10 games is mystifying. Maybe you guys can give the rest of us mere humans the winning Powerball numbers for tonight so that we too can enjoy your exceptional predictive skills.

Comment by ECH 11.28.12 @ 8:42 am

Much better second half. I was surprised at the continuing rebounding struggles – that obviously needs to improve. I didn’t know Durand has a hamstring issue – that explains the 8 man rotation. Patterson really found his stroke. Robinson had a couple of big 3’s early when we were basically standing around lifeless. I would have liked to see better rebounding and easier baskets (we settled for too many 3’s last night). Also, would like to see JJ pump fake the 3 and drive hard to the basket. Overall, pretty much what most of us expected. This is a talented yet young team that will have its ups-and-downs. HTP!!

Comment by JAM 05 Pitt 11.28.12 @ 8:52 am

when dixon saw the kid play down under he most likeley said boy he can really run the floor
he saw the kid in thoes games block shots throw down dunks.
in all star games he out played noel.
the NBA scouts were weting there paints over the kid the way he runs the floor.

so all the reasons that dixon fell in love with the kid so what does he do when he gets the kid.

trys to change every thing he loved abought him make him a half court player.

the kid is like a race car that is why you liked him so why are you trying to turn him into a mack truck.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.28.12 @ 8:56 am

Pitt is trying to run as much as ever this year. Robinson in particular is always looking to push the ball in transition. Things bog down in the half court, yes, but they are definitely looking to run more.
Adams is playing “big boy” basketball for the first time in his life. Other similarly projected players have spent years of playing organized high school ball, as well as AAU. As skilled as he may be, things are overwhelming for him, and he’s tentative. That will change. And yes, he is still “learning” to play basketball.
Who knows if Birch will be a head case at UNLV. He hasn’t played a minute yet. And furthermore, who cares.

Comment by JW 11.28.12 @ 8:57 am


Your schtick is really getting to be irritating. You don’t know what you are talking about. I have already explained why you don’t know what you are talking about using facts and analysis. Please stop with your stupid, idiotic, baseless, ignorant, childish, and uninformed critique of Jamie Dixon.

Comment by omar 11.28.12 @ 8:59 am

@Frank Div1 basketball games aren’t Rucker Park games with uniforms. This theory that Pitt doesn’t run is silliness. Pitt will push the ball in transition like any other team. In fact, with the depth of guards with a handle, I expect this will be more true this year than ever.

Steve Adams will HAVE to play the 5 in a half court set. For Dixon not to prepare him for that would be idiotic. Major Div1 Basketball games are won and lost in the half court. If that weren’t true everyone would be playing Paul Westhead-ball. Kentucky excells in the half court. Indiana excels in the half court. Duke excels in the half court. Are you trying to say that Calipari, Crean, and Krzyzewski intentionally turn their thoroughbreds into plodding plow horses? It’s called coaching. And Dixon does it well. In fact he does it better than any other coach to ever pace the sidelines (and a little bit of the court) for Pitt.

Comment by ECH 11.28.12 @ 9:08 am


While you are at it, please learn how to type using punctuation and paragraphs. Reading your posts is mind-numbing for multiple reasons, but the lack of punctuation is usually why I skip them.

Comment by omar 11.28.12 @ 9:15 am

I find it intersting that EMel says the same thing as me but you jump on me and not him.
omar must you attack me becuse i belive different
then you. the last time i checked there was free speech on this post.
but i wont stoop to your low level of child name calling.

bossdawa dan can you help me out with this child
tell him he must act grown up no room for personal attacks.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.28.12 @ 9:19 am

Great to see Louisville will be returning to the Pete on a regular basis…ACC should just grab Cinn and UConn now. All the big conferences will eventually be 16 teams so might as well do it now.

Omar, I ditto you comment to Frank on the punctuation. It’s hard to take any of his comments serious when they appear to be typed by a first grader.

Comment by milobloom 11.28.12 @ 9:24 am


I explained all of the same things to you in a previous thread without name calling. I have seen zero facts or analysis to support your opinion. I disproved your theory last week and, yet, you continue to repost the same opinion.

I was forced to resort to name calling to get my point across. I apologize for hurting your feelings.

Regarding the punctuation remark, this is simply a friendly suggestion.

Comment by omar 11.28.12 @ 9:30 am

Adams will be fine once he realizes you need to move your feet, not just reach your arms out to rebound at this level. My guess is Taylor is eating him up in practice and he should be learning. In the meantime Taylor is finalyy showing some life, and will get major minutes once league starts. Also JJ is showing what Gil Brown was supposed to be. This team has tons of upside, and how it developes will be a great judge on Jamies ability as a coach. Should be a sweet 16 or better unit by end of year.

Comment by Jimbo 11.28.12 @ 9:51 am

Trib reporting….
Louisville to ACC…

Cincy and UConn were considered…
Makes sense… if ACC is only going to add 1 college at this time… makes sense to add Louisville before Big12 grabs them.
Louisville has a long history of good basketball teams and ACC is basketball first mentality.
Big12 nor Big10 will add UConn…

Comment by Joe D 11.28.12 @ 9:55 am

ACC basketball and football just got stronger by adding Louisville and losing Maryland.

Comment by Joe D 11.28.12 @ 10:05 am

ACC just gained a new market. Virginia and Va Tech already have the DC market so losing Maryland isn’t that bad.

Comment by TX Panther 11.28.12 @ 10:12 am

I am glad Patterson had a good all around game, we need him on both ends. Hoping he starts to take guys off the dribble and score some easy baskets or get to the line.

On Adams, it may take a while and I have faith in Jamie to develop him. I guess my question is should Gilbert be playing this year which could allow us to put Adams at the 5, gets another shot blokcer on floor, improves rebounding…

Comment by pittfan92 11.28.12 @ 10:19 am

A few thoughts from the game last night:

*Adams is playing very tentatively. He missed many opportunities to exploit holes in the middle of that 1-2-2 or 3-2 zone that Howard was playing. He needs to be much more assertive in positioning himself and DEMANDING the ball. But even as passively as he’s playing, he attracts a ton of attention and opens things up for others.

*It was great to see Robinson look for, take and hit a few more shots. He has to be a threat or teams will back off him and limit his ability to create. Patterson finally stepped up an knocked down a few threes. That said, Pitt did rely too much on throwing it around the outside then hitting jumpers over the zone instead of getting it inside. Pitt has to do a better job of going inside out against the zone.

*Rebounding, WTF? This team should be a GREAT rebounding team and so far they’re adequate at best. Adams needs to be more aggressive in fighting for position. Dixon said after the game that he was concerned about fouls. When Taylor and Moore play together, Pitt is a small and has trouble getting 50/50 balls. The guards are not grabbing enough boards either. I am confident Jamie will get this fixed.

*Liked that Jamie experimented a bit with the rotation. Moore played some three and Taylor (for the first time I can remember) played some power forward. Depth and versatility are huge advantages for Pitt. Need to get something out of these non-con scrimmages, now is the time to figure out who can play where.

*Liked that Dixon yanked Woodall after FOUR bad plays in a row. In one sequence, he had the ball on the break, missed an open Patterson and took the ball 1-on-2 to the hoop and got rejected. Then he threw a brain dead half court, cross court pass that was intercepted for a layup, then he missed a jumper on a quick shot, then the coup de gras was when he failed to stay in front his man who beat him off the dribble for an easy hoop. Woodall is a nice player, a good leader and can be a valuable contributor, BUT HE IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH TO BE THE NUMBER ONE OPTION on a good team. He will never be consistent enough. Jamie needs to keep him in check and not let him try to do too much. Jamie even called him out after the game saying his defense needs to improve.

*This non-conference schedule is a travesty. They only have one game away from the Pete (against Duquesne at CONSOL) and will be at least a 12 point favorite in every remaining non con game. This team desperately needs some competition. I am concerned that this team is going to get fat feasting on a month of cupcakes. If you want to criticize Dixon, look no further than this BULL S*%# schedule. Getting screwed out of the SEC game hurt, but he still needed to schedule at least one more road game and one more high major. It is going to be hard to make the kind of improvement necessary without playing legit competition.

*Glad to see Zeigler on the bench last night, hope he’s back soon. Pitt is going to need him to play close to his potential to make a serious run in March. He has a ton of ability and has yet to figure out how to use it in the role he’s been asked to play for this team. He needs game experience to figure it out.

Comment by Boubacar Aw 11.28.12 @ 10:46 am

I noticed last night in particular some of the poor rebounding came from poor defensive discipline. Several times a 2nd defender — usually Adams, Zanna or Taylor — came late to attempt a block, leaving Howard rebounders unattended. Poor discipline and communication. Guards weren’t really crashing down to help until second half, either.

Really disappointed in the offensive rebounding, too — only Taylor and Moore have even shown glimpses of pulling some down. That’s been such a staple with the program, that’s certainly where some of the numbers are lost too.

Comment by JW 11.28.12 @ 11:00 am

@Wardapalooza I hope for all of our sakes that your optimism is warranted. In the mean time, here’s what I know. Dixon’s two major recruits before Adams were Dante Taylor and Khem Birch. I don’t think either of those examples are even worth discussing in terms of development, respectively. DO NOT GET ME WRONG! I root hard for the Panthers every single game and I hope that Adams blossoms into a terrific player, sooner or later. I’m just not going to chalk it up to: he’s DEFINITELY going to mature and progress as a ball player. As a Pitt fan I am conditioned to be pessimistic, and that will be the case until Adams proves otherwise.

Comment by MikePITT 11.28.12 @ 12:11 pm

Also, I never said that Dixon can’t coach talented kids. But it remains a fact (for better and worse) that Dixon will not let individual players dictate the system. There’s nothing wrong with that, so long as you’re willing to stand behind it when it doesn’t work out with certain guys.

Comment by MikePITT 11.28.12 @ 12:12 pm

Mikepitt, before dixon we had 1 top recruit in 40 years. Taylor wouldn’t be any better if he played for wooden,and khem didn’t fit here. Adams will be a great player in part because he came here. I like how dixon develops players and the type of kids and teams he produces,in time we will be able to enjoy even greater success. My guess is adams will be part of it so we don’t have that long left to wait. Lose the pessimism and enjoy.

Comment by michael g miles 11.28.12 @ 12:27 pm

You are legendary on here, FRANKCAN, and a good man. No need to defend you. Hope your health is improving. Some posters’ passion spilleth over with unnecessary “style” comments. The bottom line is that we are all Pitt fans and entitled to our opinions, no matter how expressed or typed. Just roll with it.
Jamie Dixon is one of the best coaches in the country, and I think it was mentioned last night that he has won more games in his first 8 yrs than any other NCAA coach to date. Lets be patient and see how he handles Adam’s development. I have faith in Jamie and see Adams getting better as the season progresses. Once he gains strength and uses his size to his advantage, he will be a force underneath. HTP

Comment by Bossdaws 11.28.12 @ 12:53 pm


Dante Taylor is obviously not what everybody expected. But let’s be honest — he is physically limited and is a tweener, even in college. Khem Birch can’t be evaluated because he wanted to go play street ball at UNLV. And you also need to include Blair in the list of blue chip recruits — he was in the top 20 in some rankings.

But let’s look at the guys that have developed under Dixon:

— Gary McGhee
— Sam Young
— Aaron Gray
— Antonio Graves
— Levance Fields
— Ronald Ramon

I could keep going. The one thing with Dixon I think is indisputable is if you work hard and follow instruction, you’re going to leave a much better player than when you arrived.

There are five to ten schools that battle over the top twenty players and very rarely to top ranked kids go elsewhere. If you want to hold that against Jamie, so be it, but I feel lucky to have a coach of his caliber at Pitt.

Dixon isn’t the only coach that doesn’t let individuals dictate the system, it’s every coach. You can’t let kids come in and change the way you coach, because they’re gone in a few years. Some coaching philosophies are more geared toward certain types of player — Calipari and the dribble penetration — but every coach has a system. Dixon runs the motion offense, just like coach K, coach Knight, etc…

Comment by Denny 11.28.12 @ 1:00 pm

Ben howland has been getting some ellite talent lately,how’s that working out? Dixon is a very good coach and the best pitt has ever had, I am more concerned with how we do overall than how we ‘develop elite talent’. We could have hired calipari and I am glad we didn’t.wait and see our day will come.

Comment by michael g miles 11.28.12 @ 1:22 pm

This is just another example of selective amnesia. Forgetting what might counter a pet theory but cuddling tight that which supports it. Chris Taft, Dejuan Blair, and Levance Fields were all major recruits that had superb collegiate careers. Taft’s injuries sidelined his potential, but Blair was an All-American and is in the NBA. Fields graduated as the winningest player in school history at the time and captained the team to the Final 8. James Robinson is a highly touted recruit in his own right. All of these guys started or played and contributed significantly as freshman. And frankly in regards to Adams, he was recruited and signed long before he was on anyone’s radar and it has been in fact because of Dixon’s interest and invitation to play in the United States that Steven has been put in a position to garner the attention he has- camps and a short prep school season. Good on him. But it’s been consistenly noted that his natural athletic ability is his prime attraction. And more to the point, learning to play in a motion offense and learning how to play team defense under Jamie Dixon are considerably better preperation for an NBA career then being let lose to hog the ball and chuck it up.

Lastly, from a pure basketball perspective (not tailgating football dumbspeak) let’s open the floor for someone to come in and explain how an offense works so that an individual can dominate the system and not be “held back”. Please provide examples and explain how the other four players fit into the scheme.

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.28.12 @ 2:09 pm

Fellas, easy on FRANKCAN, he has admitted his typing skills are not up to par with how fast his thoughts go.

One of Pitt’s most loyal sons. Give him a break.

Comment by Dan 11.28.12 @ 3:38 pm

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