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January 5, 2013

Five or six hours of Pitt kicks off at 11 am with Pitt-Rutgers on ESPN2.

Last year, the team put forth what was probably their worst effort under Jamie Dixon. Something best not mentioned. Forgotten? No. Discussed? No.

Like Pitt, Rutgers is looking for their first win in conference play. They have already had a strange season. Their head coach has been suspended for several games by the school for his antics on the sideline and in practices. Being so out of control at times that his behavior has the school considering his future. To the point where the rumors are that anything short of making the NCAA Tournament could mean his job.

Pitt meanwhile is looking for their own answers. Starting with the inability to shoot.

Not only did the No. 24 Panthers produce their worst 3-point shooting showing in school history, but paired it with a poor performance at the free-throw line.

Pitt went 0 for 10 from beyond the arc and made 15 of 25 free throws in the 70-61 loss to the Bearcats on New Year‘s Eve.

“You‘ve got to make some, and you can‘t get beat from the free-throw line and make no 3s,” Dixon said. “That‘s not a recipe for success.”

Then there is the lack of production from the frontcourt — outside of Talib Zanna. Some of that help has to come from Steven Adams.

I’m hoping that Pitt comes out angry after the loss. It will also be their first real road game. Granted at an odd time, and kids still coming back from their winter break.





anyone who thinks this will be a Pitt cakewalk should think again considering how weak defensively Pitt has been in the backcourt. From today’s Trib:

Pitt‘s focus will be on stopping the Rutgers backcourt of sophomores Eli Carter and Myles Mack, who are averaging a combined 30.4 points a game, after allowing Cincinnati guards Cashmere Wright, Sean Kilpatrick and Jaquon Parker to combine for 47 in a 70-61 loss on Monday.

“Rutgers is guard-oriented. They‘re similar to Cincinnati in that regard,” Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. “They really try to attack you off the dribble. They try to get Carter and Mack going. Their big guys are in there to get them shots, but they‘re athletic. As you see, the scoring is based on their two perimeter guys.”

Comment by wbb 01.05.13 @ 8:26 am

I expect Pitt to win and to show the effort today. I expect some zone today again but then again that zone didn’t work against Cincy did it? If Pitt is to continue being branded as a basketball school, these are the games it must win. However, selfishly I desire a flip flop back to football. I’ll take a win in football today over a win in basketball if it means it helps the brand be football. Football should define this university. Basketball should be just a guilty pleasure. Ideally, I want a well balanced univeristy in all sports and academics.

Comment by TX Panther 01.05.13 @ 8:33 am

It’s a rare occasion when Pitt basketball and football are on TV on the same day. Lets hope both teams garner wins.

Lets go Pitt!

Comment by MariettaMike 01.05.13 @ 9:39 am

Pitt cannot let their guards get in one on one matchups with Rutgers. Team defense, especially help side is the key.

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 10:33 am

How about a trifecta today. Pitt football winning a bowl that ends the season on a strong positive note. Riding that football wave, Tyler Boyd washes into the progam, commiting today to be a Panther. Finally, Pitt basketball wins a hard fought Big East game on the road. One can only dream.

Comment by Bones 01.05.13 @ 10:33 am

The Panthers need to beat the Scarlet knights, a team that opened the season with a loss to the Saint Peter’s Peacocks. The wild antics of Rutger’s coach Mike Rice put him on the sidelines for three games, and my thought is that anything less than a NCAA berth for his team means he will be gone. Today Rice is back. After watching his team being crushed 78-53 by Syracuse this past week, Rice and his charges must figure out what happened during the Orange’s 24-point run in that game. After being competative and actually leading at one point during the first 13 minutes, Rutger’s offense and defense both went south. Syracuse totally dominated by scoring off the transition.

Teams coming off such a dismantaling can be dangerous, and the game will be played at the RAC. Pitt needs to get a fast start and demoralize the Knights early in the game. Guard their guards who are the scorers. Dominate the boards. And get our inside game working as it should. I want to see us score off 3-pointers, and see Adams score well in this Pitt road win. Let’s do it, Panthers!

Comment by PENGUIN 01.05.13 @ 10:41 am

OUCH!

Comment by MariettaMike 01.05.13 @ 11:07 am

Pitt playing awful d and no offense getting utterly schooled by Rutgers guards. Exactly what they could not let happen

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 11:07 am

Yikes. What a start.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 11:08 am

Pitt surrenders early going to the 2-3 and getting killed anyway…this is awful

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 11:09 am

rutgers can’t continue to make every shot and we have to get hot and get rebounds at some point.

Comment by Pitt Dad 01.05.13 @ 11:10 am

Pitt down 10 in a tV To. Maybe we are just not that good! This is the equivalent of the football team immediately getting down by 21 to Miss. No excuses any more. This team has to start playing some serious bball!

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 11:11 am

what is dixon thiniking…staritng wrignt over robinson??..has he lost it

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:12 am

no urgency need to switch up assistant coaches have not been good since Herrion left

Comment by Punxy Panther 01.05.13 @ 11:13 am

When you lack confidence, you stand around and watch. We are doing a lot of watching on both ends of the court.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 11:14 am

someone rebound the fuckn ball!!

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:14 am

or not

Comment by Pitt Dad 01.05.13 @ 11:15 am

From bad to worse to done..pitt down 14. No offense no defense and gettting murdered on the boards…see yuns for football later. I am done.

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 11:16 am

this is sick

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:16 am

We are having difficulty getting an entry pass to the wing 20 feet from the rim.

Big big big trouble.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 11:18 am

omg…has dixon lost it?…is the talent really that bad?

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:19 am

How did we get a 24 ranking? We are terrible to most embarrassing on national TV.

Comment by MariettaMike 01.05.13 @ 11:19 am

Rutgers has hot hand. Pitt needs to settle down. Pass the ball. They look panic stricken.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:20 am

I hope Pitt makes the NIT this year…I don’t see any quality wins for this year from this team.

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 11:22 am

They are cheering Let’s Go Pitt at the RAC :)

Comment by Rieur1114 01.05.13 @ 11:26 am

JJ Moore, coming back.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:26 am

this team does not regound the ball…thats gonna kill us all year

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:27 am

Makin 3′s

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:28 am

He’s played 10 guys already. Way too many, you can NOT get any cohesion substituting guys in and guys out like that.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:29 am

Lucky to be down only 6 AFTER that Horrid Start

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:30 am

emel….agreed..i’ve always kinda questioned his substitutions

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:31 am

On the bright side, Adams won’t go scoreless today.
2-2 FG’s for 4 pts.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:32 am

Patterson and Zanna missing in action.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:35 am

F*ck both of their guards have got off.
Mack didn’t do crap against Cuse, 0 points.

Figures

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:35 am

Another dumb foul by Taylor…

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 11:36 am

Robinson not ready for prime time.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:37 am

Jamie needs game day help. No question. The absence of a Slice or Herrion is apparent.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 11:37 am

wow…we are not good

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:37 am

need more moore.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:37 am

Crap got to get this manageable by halftime, less than 8 points…Cause these boys can’t shoot.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:38 am

Relax guys. It’s our first road game all year!

Comment by TonyC 01.05.13 @ 11:38 am

Nor can they play defense, Buttgers shooting 60% FG

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:39 am

This Pitt team is lazy. Too much standing around. We will not win this game.

Comment by MariettaMike 01.05.13 @ 11:39 am

Tony C….we are starring at an 0-3 start..after road game at g’town wed….so.. no we should not relax

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:40 am

at this rate…i see more transfers…and recrutiment hurting..

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:41 am

There are lots of potential explanations – morning game on the road, Rutgers shooting way beyond their average particularly from 3 – let’s support the team, see what happens in the next 24 minutes and for the rest of the season before we start saying one of the best coaches of the past decade has lost it

Comment by Pitt Dad 01.05.13 @ 11:41 am

Relax, surely you jest. Buttgers was blown away by Syracuse, it was over at halftime, they were down 20.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:42 am

Moore and Woodall only ones to show-up so far.

No defense. Robinson struggling against better competition. Patterson and Zanna need to wake up.

Rutgers needs to cool down.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:42 am

Let’s face it gentlemen, Pitt basketball is rocketing toward mediocrity.

Comment by BATR 01.05.13 @ 11:44 am

We can’t be going into the ACC, with this garbage.

Woody keeps launching, now 2-8, 2-7 from 3

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:44 am

Zanna & Patterson are MIA

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:45 am

I’ve read a couple articles about how pitt is on a spiral downward….this could be true

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:45 am

I havent read that anywhere Keith….got some links?

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:47 am

ok. you guys have fun. I’m just going to watch the game.

Comment by Pitt Dad 01.05.13 @ 11:47 am

well..i guess i haven’t..my buddy has told me bout it

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:48 am

Pitt basketball finally gets talent and just sucks. I don’t get it. I’ll never get it with Pitt sports.

Comment by PatMac 01.05.13 @ 11:48 am

I really didn’t want to start drinking this early, but between the 2nd half against Cincy and the 1st half here….it is actually making me want to watch Tino.

Comment by Pendlum 01.05.13 @ 11:49 am

Ray Graham ruled out with a hammy?

Comment by Mailman 01.05.13 @ 11:50 am

7 minutes between Pitt field goals. Robinson makes pass. How does Moore only play 10 minutes last game?

Jamie better light a fire at half time.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:51 am

ok fellas….pitt is obviousley not as good as we all thought…robinson look overmatched patterson looks lost….where’s the deffense??

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 11:52 am

Patterson needs benched.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 11:52 am

Pitt is shooting 8/26 FG 30%

BUT why ALL THE 3′S 4/15 27% ????

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:53 am

THIS IS crazy almost 60% of our shots are 3′s.

Have never seen that ratio before even when we had Gibbs

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:55 am

Just awful, every phase. Standing around, no movement no emotion, no leaders. If no change in second half, will be back to back years of getting thoroughly demolished by Rutgers. If that’s not an indication of trouble, don’t know what is.

Comment by Iron Duke 01.05.13 @ 11:55 am

Pitt has struggled since Orlando went to Kentucky. Jamie needs to clean house with his staff or Jamie has to go. Watching Pitt play is embarrassing. I’m going for a walk.

Comment by MariettaMike 01.05.13 @ 11:56 am

This could be a real long day, I might go back to sleep. Along with Zanna & Patterson who never awoke.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:56 am

Looks like Mike Rice knows us better than Jamie does.

This is embarrassing, losing to Buttgers and it’s not even close.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 11:58 am

Zanna is nothing more than a waste of a uni. He has little skill at all and cannot create his own shot.Patterson is facing double team’s because he is Pitt’s only threat. Pitt needs to find at least one positive thing they can do well. So far not much.
This team is going no where in 13.

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 11:59 am

“…pitt is obviously not as good as we all thought…”

Speak for yourself.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.05.13 @ 12:05 pm

Chas – you got your blowout! Thank God this team was fired up from last year’s Rutgers blow out, Cannot imagine how bad it would be without that!

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 12:05 pm

The Golden Era is over. Program busted. Wahhhh we should be ranked we’re top 15 team!!! Gimme a break you’re only better than the teams you BEAT

Comment by TonyC 01.05.13 @ 12:08 pm

Pitt has been playing one good half and one terrible half in games so far this year…..lets hope that was the terrible half…

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 12:10 pm

Rice let Jamie give the halftime speech.

Comment by Boubacar Aw 01.05.13 @ 12:15 pm

Much more aggressive.

Comment by Boubacar Aw 01.05.13 @ 12:24 pm

Missed FTs, layups and short jumpers by Pitt making this very difficult

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 12:27 pm

ug ball

Comment by TonyinHouston 01.05.13 @ 12:29 pm

Patterson needs to wake up!

Comment by Jimbo 01.05.13 @ 12:39 pm

This team cannot SCORE.

Comment by frank MD 01.05.13 @ 12:39 pm

Pitt needs to keep being aggressive. 3 point game….

Comment by Pendlum 01.05.13 @ 12:40 pm

Back in the game keep it up. Zanna better, Robinson and Patterson wake up. JJ Moore.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:45 pm

Rutgers cools down, yeah! Pitt D pressure better.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:47 pm

JJ does it all.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:47 pm

Can’t get closer than 3

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:48 pm

Let’s go ALL THE WAY BACK

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 12:52 pm

Need to learn how to win the close ones.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:55 pm

Robinson takes bad shot at crunch time.

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:57 pm

Having no shooters is killing this team…

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 12:58 pm

lack of basic fundamentals in Pitt’s comeback. Rutgers has had7 team fouls for the last 5 minutes and not one Pitt drive to the hoop.
Going to be a very long year in BBall.

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 12:59 pm

Bad call

Comment by gc 01.05.13 @ 12:59 pm

Very bad tech call.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 1:00 pm

we’re a joke

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 1:01 pm

We might have a chance at back to back CBI championships!

Comment by Kenny Powers 01.05.13 @ 1:05 pm

Having no shooters has always killed this team.

Sans Gibb’s soph & junior years.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 1:05 pm

Paul Chryst should consider JD for DC.
It’s Miller Time.

Comment by frankarms 01.05.13 @ 1:07 pm

Trey Z is the man.

Comment by frankarms 01.05.13 @ 1:07 pm

I think we are looking at an 0-4 start in league play.

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 1:08 pm

Put a fork em.

Next….Football with Sir Tino…lmao

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 1:08 pm

Emel and those who know basketball…any positives today? I cannot find a one!

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 1:09 pm

Downed half a bottle of Woodford Reserve. Will the football game cause me to finish it off?

Comment by ECH 01.05.13 @ 1:10 pm

ABT

Comment by frankarms 01.05.13 @ 1:11 pm

Down the stretch Tray Woodall and Lamar Patterson short armed open threes. Woodall misses a layup. Dante Taylor misses a wide open ten footer. Really poor tech call on Talib Zanna. Failure by James Robinson on multiple possessions to defensively keep a man in front of him. Not locking down the glass. It all adds up to another sorry looking L.

Comment by Barvo 01.05.13 @ 1:11 pm

postives???…..we’re a bad team, that is headed for more bad years…so…no positives!!!

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 1:12 pm

lost another “must” have game..guess the next one is “must must” game..

Comment by goalie44 01.05.13 @ 1:14 pm

This team really better wake up.

Comment by frank MD 01.05.13 @ 1:15 pm

Tino pick = 7 for Ole Miss. It’s going to be a long day….

What’s next…..Boyd to PSU?

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 1:15 pm

perfect timing for me to switch over to Pitt losing 0-7. Drunk by 3:00

Comment by Pendlum 01.05.13 @ 1:16 pm

In the words of Boris Karloff referencing The Grinch……..Steeenk, Stank, Stunk!!!!

Comment by Dan 01.05.13 @ 1:17 pm

@Dan72

It ended….

And

Adams actually scored today !

Durand Durand might need to play more !

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 1:17 pm

Well u knew Sir Tino’s interceptionless streak had to end.

Ole Miss has had a month to study all his inadequacies. Oy Vey

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 1:19 pm

The only guy who shot it like he meant it from outside all game was JJ Moore. This team has nobody who can consistently break a defense down with the ball in his hands in the half court. That was missing last year and so far it is missing this year. I had hoped that Lamar Patterson and James Robinson might rise to be that guy this year. So far lacking.

I said it last year and I’ll say it again this year. IMHO Jaime Dixon needs to change the way this team plays. They play for half court offense and end up running the clock down with nothing to show. They don’t convert around the rim, they don’t own the offensive glass, and they don’t knock down shots. They have the athletic talent and depth to play a more up tempo, pressing style. That plays to their strength.

Comment by Barvo 01.05.13 @ 1:20 pm

Time to switchover fellas,

See you on the other side

Onward ^^^^^^^^^

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 1:20 pm

Boyd to anounce in two min

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 1:22 pm

Thanks Emel – I needed that! Stunned by Pitt
s utter futility. At least we can all celebrate Tino’s last game. Over and out.

Comment by Dan 72 01.05.13 @ 1:23 pm

I’m going to preach patience, but this is bad loss to a bad Rutgers team. I don’t foresee Pitt getting anymore McDonald’s Aall Americans if the ones we so get dont pan out. Kids will not want to come here.

Comment by Pittastic 01.05.13 @ 1:46 pm

Even Rutgers has a go to scorer. Who is ours?

Comment by Iron Duke 01.05.13 @ 2:07 pm

2 years of bad basketball by Jaime Dixon. Sean Miller is undefeated FYI.

Comment by Upittbaseball 01.05.13 @ 2:46 pm

Rutgers shot nearly 58 percent from the field (15 of 26), making 6 of 10 from long range.

Pitt shot 32 percent, making only 4 of 14 from 3-point range.

but we only lost the game by 5 on the road, when being down as much as 15, if there is a positive, i guess thats it. If Pitt shoots better and Rutgers isnt lights out from deep in the beginning of the game its a different outcome.

They played a much better second half, but it was just too big of a hole when they struggle to hit shots.

Patterson has just been awful. he has to be better.

With all that being said i wouldnt be shocked if PITT comes out and beats GT tuesday haha

Comment by rhyno527 01.05.13 @ 2:52 pm

I would.

4/14 that was the halftime stat.
they were like 8/29 i think for the game.

When’s the last time Pitt took 29 3′s.
Has Dixon flipped his lid.

Or that means he realizes we have very little inside offense. I could have told him that a month ago. ;-)

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 3:05 pm

Not a doom and gloom guy; was actually high on Pitt hoops entering the year and certainly wasn’t panicking after one down year last season. But I’ve come to the realization that Pitt will most likely never take the next step for a variety of reasons. Throughout this decade run Pitt has had virtually no Mcdonalds all-americans, year and in year out no top flight shooting guards or small forwards, and no lottery picks or NBA talent in general. What Pitt HAS had is plenty of unathletic guards, consistently poor free-throw shooting, early-round tourney exits and just plain old, dumpy luck. I actually think Dixon is a good coach for the style he wants to play. But you need players, and more specifically, top-flite talent at the guard positions. Now, either Dixon is unwilling to go after these types of players, or these kids don’t want to come to play in Pitt’s offense. This post isn’t about wanting to fire Dixon. It’s just a statement of fact. I read post after post about the coaching, the starting lineup, somebody should take more shots, somebody should take less shots, etc. The bottom line is we don’t get the players other schools do, and big-time players win big-time games and get to national title games. Maybe some day Pitt will get the Jeremy lambs, kemba walkers, kyrie irvings, or the raymond feltons of the world. But they haven’t in the past, this current team clearly does not, nor are any of these types of players (or even close to that) are in the pipeline. Sorry for the rant, and sorry to be so pessimistic. God knows this site has plenty of that vibe. Unfortunately, I just don’t see this changing. I’ll still rep Pitt, still watch, and still hope they win. I’ve just learned to lower my expectations based on fact. And so, to recap: Coaches coach, players play, lottery picks and NBA talent get you to tiles games, and elite guard play wins championships. Happy New Year, and as always, Hail To Pitt.

Comment by WorkinOnMyPittness 01.05.13 @ 3:09 pm

If Pittsburgh sports as a whole were a stock, this would be a good time to buy low.

Comment by Vulcan Rob 01.05.13 @ 3:12 pm

I predicted an 0-3 conference start.
You can point to any stat and you will be right. If we did this or if we did that. Sure. Always works that way. Hit 3 more 3′s..blah, Blah blah
This team is not the least bit prepared..not the least.
Adams is not a one and done: He is an 84 inch softie: a puss and his foes know it.
Dixon is a good, not great coach.
Pitt is 1-9 in it’s last 10 conference road games. Much more of this and you can replace “good” with “average”.
Pitt will not win more than 1 road game this year.
I would say road “conference” game but that would be redundant.
Pitt is failing. Quote stats if you want. Here is a clue, the team that loses always loses the scoring stats.
This team is soft and getting softer.
Maybe LaRoche has an opening on their schedule in February, we could play them; but not in the North Hills, we don’t play road games to prepare us.
Here is a clue Jamie: this is 2013, not 2008.

Comment by SFPitt 01.05.13 @ 3:23 pm

I would trade jamie dixon for sean miller…whos with me??

Comment by Keith 01.05.13 @ 4:28 pm

Really?!? Dump Jamie? I wish I knew how to search this site to find all the posts where you guys worried Jamie was going to leave for (insert name of another school here).

Comment by Pitt Dad 01.05.13 @ 4:51 pm

I’ve said it since last year… Jamie Dixon exposed.

He was not the one responsible for making lemonade out of lemons as much as some of his former assistants who are now long gone.

What a poorly coached team.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.05.13 @ 5:25 pm

At the bottom of the BE and nowhere to go but up but will we go up?

Comment by frank MD 01.05.13 @ 6:06 pm

IT is MILLER TIME we suck just like last year
good bye dixon it is miller time.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.05.13 @ 7:23 pm

I just came up for some air, lol

Thank God they make 100 proof Vodka.

Miller might be the answer Frankie, since not only is a good coach (see Xavier), can recruit (see Xavier & Arizona) but he knows the ACC, has some contacts down there after a stint at NC State.

Seems like both Dixon & Howland and the same system they’re running are wearing thin at their various locales. Howland being on a shorter lease since much more is expected at UCLA than Pitt. However we have invested over $300 million in this program since 2001 and it is unfortunately trending downward.

Coach didn’t take my advise last year and bring in an asst. coach who could teach something to benefit this team. (Press defense, zone defense, 1-3-1 trap defense, free throw shooting, transition offense, new offensive sets, etc., etc.) Just as last year, the asst’s are all nothing but “yes” men.

In the corporate world with nothing but “yes” men it invariably leads to stagnation, and a downward trend leading to a downward spiral.

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 7:54 pm

forgot to add after last line (see Wamu)

Comment by Emel 01.05.13 @ 7:56 pm

An 0-2 start is tough but there are reasons for everything and the season is young. We ran into a Rutgers team getting their coach back (our former asst.) after a dicey suspension and they were fired up to show they were still his team! They shot out of their _ss in 1st half, thought Barry Goheen was going to run on the court. Cincy had been shocked into anger by a home loss to UNM a few days prior to coming to the Pete! But we have got to compete. Where is the fire? Compete equals rebounding and defense. Where is the senior leadership? Quite whining about fouls Trey! How are you showing senior leadership with stupid fouls, stupid play Dante? It’s time to shorten the rotation to Robinson, Woodall, Zanna, Patterson and Moore! They only come out if in foul trouble. Enuff with the 10 man experiment Jamie! We could have won both of these last two games if someone would step up and compete. I still cringe at the thought of Woodall missing the front end of the on-and-one vs Cincy! COMPETE TREY dont bitch!UPone

Comment by UPone 01.05.13 @ 8:27 pm

This team is desperately searching for an identity. There are so many fundamental issues – I can’t see them getting to .500. Can’t block out, can’t prevent dribble penetration, seem disinterested at a times, poor passing and zero leadership from Patterson/Woodall. Oh… and Patterson/Woodall are terrible.

Comment by John Ramella 01.05.13 @ 9:45 pm

Looking at the Pitt schedule I see 6 BE wins…7 if they manage to steal one. That’s assuming they can beat Villanova on the road.

And no NHL this year either….

Comment by Jackagain 01.05.13 @ 10:43 pm

There are 3 legitimate division 1 athletes on this team – Zanna, Robinson and Adams. 3 out of 9. We don’t know what Jones can do, because, of course, he is undergoing the patented Jamie Dixon red shirt, and will most likely not be on the team in the fall. And we used to have 12, but we disappeared 2. From what I have seen so far, I cannot believe John Johnson and Malcolm Gilbert could not help this team.

But I know that this not Jamie Dixon’s fault. I know the horrendous defense is not his fault either. As is the pathetic offense. It is all because of malcontents, family ties, loss of top quality assistant coaches, and the alignment of the planets. It used to be because of an injury to Woodall, but apparently that is not the case now. Hell, it is probably even my fault. But certainly not Dixon’s.

The negativity surrounding this program is palpable. Uninspired play. 4 transfers in less than one year. We are now at the point where we cannot even beat DePaul, Rutgers, and South Florida.

So how many more games does Dixon get to drag this program further down? We asked the same question about Wannstedt, and the answer there was “too many.” I fear the same answer regarding Dixon. We are joining the ACC next year, I cannot see a single program, football or basketball, we are better than in that conference. The amazing thing is that I have far more confidence in the football program turning around than basketball.

I have had enough of this sh**, and it starts from the top. A change has to be made there, first. Paul Chryst deserves a few years. But if Sean Miller would ever consider returning to Pitt, and this three ring circus athletic department, we should hire him right after we finish this season, repeating as CBI tournament champions and proudly declaring ourselves the 98th best college basketball team in America. Or even Tim Herrion. Or even Mike Rice. Not to mention a host of other talented coaches who might think it a great opportunity to coach in the ACC, like, perhaps, Brad Stevens. Ben Howland may be run out of UCLA, and I shed no tears about that. But I would even take him back over what we have now.

With the Steelers out, no hockey season, and the approaching terror that grips every Pirate fan thinking about the onset of a new baseball season, I am planning on swearing off sports forever, and taking up classical music to pass the time. Anyone have any suggestions? Bach? Beethoven? Stravinsky? The Strawberry Alarm Clock?

Comment by PO'd Panther 01.06.13 @ 12:44 am

The malaise hovering over the Pitt athletic program starts at the top. Chancellor Nordenberg, who was impressive by suggesting Pittsburgh should annex most of Allegheny County as a means to stimulate growth, much like Houston as done with Harris County, has blinders on when it comes to his A.D.

Pederson’s incompetence allowed an influential alum to award the job to Chryst. Despite the wishful thinking expressed by the perpetual optimists who love to blog here, the overall picture of Pitt football is murky. The guy Pederson wanted for the job, Cristobal, formerly of FIU, was terminated. So we dodged a bullet??

Jamie Dixon is connected at the hip to Pederson. He’s not going anywhere. As long as he keeps his players out of jail and season ticket sales up, Nordenberg and Pederson really won’t care. With the ACC slate of teams coming into the events center, it seems likely tickets sales will be good.

If Pederson cared at all about Pitt fans, he would make the symbolic gesture of allowing the Pitt script uni for one or two games. You see, he won’t even do that.

As fans who are not mega-donors, we are inconsequential. All Nordy and Stevie care about is an infusion of cash from the ACC. Screw the rest of us.

Historically, the odious pair fits right in. Pitt administrations have always equivocated athletic success with academic demise, save for a few decades at the beginning of the 20th century and one golden era 30+ years ago.

Comment by TonyinHouston 01.06.13 @ 8:22 am

I traveled to see the game yesterday again Rutgers, and I am going to share a few observations about this team. Most fans here describe a doom and gloom situation, but here is a little perspective:

1. Lack of Experience

This is an extremely young team that is learning how to play together. Woodall, Taylor, and Zanna were just bit players or not even part of the program during Pitt’s great seasons. Lack of experience shows up the most during conference play and especially on the road.

2. Lack of Confidence

Young players lose their confidence quickly when they do not have success immediately. It is very difficult, nearly impossible, for a coach to help them get their confidence back in the middle of a game. Woodall has a great deal of confidence, clearly, but he tries to do too much when things aren’t going well. He forces shots, forces the dribble and that leads to greater frustration. He’s a better player when he does less and let’s the game come to him. The same is true with Patterson. Last year’s disaster of a season is still a scab; it’s fresh in their minds. Adversity becomes a “here we go again” mentality. Success breeds confidence, and if you haven’t had much success, confidence is harder to come by.

3. Coaching

WE HAVE A GREAT COACH. That was visible yesterday, despite the slow start and despite the loss. Mike Tyson said that everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth. That’s what happened yesterday. The plan was to get the ball inside to Adams and Zanna. On the first offensive possession they did that, and Adams got a layup. Rutgers’ guards played Pitt’s guards so aggressively, playing them well above the three point line, entry passes were made that much more difficult. When they couldn’t get the ball inside, they panicked, took poor shots, and turned the ball over. Rutgers was then able to get easy baskets in transition, giving them supreme confidence on offense. At the beginning of the second half, though, Pitt adjusted and took what the defense was giving them. Robinson, Patterson, and Woodall began to drive to the basket, drawing help defenders, and creating easy layups for Zanna and Adams. That was GREAT coaching. Rutgers was on the ropes for the entire second half. Pitt, unfortunately, just ran out of time. Dixon got his team calmed down and seemed to emphasize taking what the defense gave them, and it worked. They got more confident, and as a result, played with greater energy, which translated to better defense, too.

The tone on here is overwhelmingly negative, but I came out of yesterday’s game feeling better about them. We are all watching a team that is learning how to win. All young teams go through this; it is a process. Not only that, they are learning what kind of team they have to be in order to win. Against Michigan and Cincinnati, they started well but finished poorly, which is why they lost. Yesterday, they finished strong. All is not lost, a little patience is needed, but they are getting better.

Thanks for staying with me. H2P.

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 9:52 am

At what point… four losses, five, six… do you come to the realization that this basketball team is not good and there’s little Jamie Dixon seems capable of doing to change things?

Comment by PittofDreams 01.06.13 @ 10:03 am

PittofDreams,

He did change things yesterday in the second half. They are a good team, just young and lacking confidence. Let them learn.

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 10:15 am

Keep in mind that Rutgers itself is not a good basketball team.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.06.13 @ 10:27 am

I understand you, but time will tell. Have patience, my friend. Let them learn. What was Michigan this time last year?

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 10:32 am

If this were the pros Dixon would be fired today. He LOST 10 of 11 Conf. games. That’s a disgrace.

Comment by Upittbaseball 01.06.13 @ 11:41 am

Well, it isn’t the pros, so be glad for that. Losing is no disgrace. It’s how teams/people do that can be. This team has always fought, never laid down. That says something, even in defeat. This team is 10-3, folks. There are two months left. Let’s not jump off the Clemente Bridge just yet.

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 11:55 am

We won 10 games cause we played NAIA caliber teams.

Comment by Upittbaseball 01.06.13 @ 12:00 pm

The team needs to learn how to finish the close games. Knight, Krauser, Fields, and Wanamaker could do it. Robinson and Woodall need to learn how. Woodall is the most disappointing being a senior. But, the keys have been handed to Robinson.

Last year Patterson helped at the end of the season, probably the best passer on the team. He also needs to step up. So far, the opposing guards have finished, ours have not.

If they figure it out we will be ok if not….

Comment by gc 01.06.13 @ 12:54 pm

Taking it on the chin from Yahoo/Rivals NCAAB page

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/ncaab-the-dagger/week-barometer-good-pitt-results-weren-t-promising-184914097–ncaab

That link might not work, but we need some more comments on there it’s pretty lame, like only 12 comments.

Comment by Emel 01.06.13 @ 1:33 pm

Don’t have a lot of turnaround time.

Next pending disaster is Tuesday at 9pm

@Georgetown. Probably is on National TV.

Coach has got to figure out who can play and who can’t. No player seems to show much consistency at all from game to game. It’s like a team full of Gilbert Browns.

Oy Vey !

Comment by Emel 01.06.13 @ 1:38 pm

@PantherChris

Read your post it all seem quite rational & logical. Any very calming. However……

Btw we’re 12-3….we’re going to need as many w’s as possible if we want to return to the CBI. :-)

I disagree about our youthfulness. Other than Robinson & Adams, the other players are ALL seasoned veterans. Woodie has been playing for 4 years now, Robinson & Moore for 3, Zanna 2 or 3.
Taylor for 4. Zeigler is 3rd year player after starting for 2 yrs at Central Michigan. Up to this point Durand Durand hasn’t played much, but could be playing more since he might be one of our better outside shooter.

But to say this team is young, it is not.

What it isn’t is, it hasn’t improved, nor has it shown any of the traditional PITT toughness under the boards.

All the big men are finesse players and are “soft”. So soft they were out rebounded by a bottom tier BigEast team 31-21.
So soft they had ZERO blocks, even though a 6-2 guard was consistently dribbling into the lane and launching shots. Even though Miles Mack is 5-9 and took 7 shots. NO BLOCKS.

We did make a run at the beginning of the 2nd half but that was more due to Buttgers turning the ball over on 6 of their first 7 possessions(wasn’t really due to any ball pressure) and even though they ONLY scored 6 points in the first 12 minutes of the 2nd half, WE STILL COULDN’T TAKE THE LEAD. 6 points in 12 minutes.

This was against a team who should have had their confidence at a low ebb since Syracuse had absolutely just destroyed them a couple days earlier. The game was over at halftime.

This was Buttgers, not Cincy, not Michigan, but Buttgers !!!

Comment by Emel 01.06.13 @ 2:01 pm

And Cincy is not all that.

Yesterday:

St John’s 53
@ Cincy 52

Like I posted before this is a down year for the BigEast imo. Syracuse lost at home to Temple, Cincy now has lost at home to St. John’s and New Mexico who got trashed both before that game (by South Dakota State) and after the Cincy game( lost by 20 to St. Louis,another A-10 team).

Not like St.John’s is great or anything, they were 8-5 going into the Cincy game with losses to Murry State, San Francisco (?), NC-Asheville, and Villanova.

Georgetown lost as well yesterday to Marquette. At Milwaukee, so we’re going to catching them coming off a loss, just like the Cincy game and just like the Rutgers game. Yikes.

Comment by Emel 01.06.13 @ 2:14 pm

@PantherChris
You learn how to win by winning, not by losing.
The reality us that the strategy of playing NAIA teams out if conference has not worked. Whether it is anyone’s “fault” is entirely beside the point: it hasn’t worked.
Taylor is a senior, Woodall a senior, Moore and Paterson juniors.
This team is young, but not so young as to lack experience.
We are 1-9 in our last 10 road conference games.
That is pathetic and we are about to go 1-10.
Results matter in NCAA hoops. Our results suck.

Comment by SFPitt 01.06.13 @ 2:48 pm

Patterson needs to sit, Moore needs to start. Woodall needs to step the f@#$ up. They need to rebound and run.

If this season goes south, I do think Dixon’s position needs to be reconsidered. He needs to develop the talent he has and he’s not doing it.

Comment by Carmen 01.06.13 @ 3:01 pm

Emel,

Thanks for correcting me on 12-3.

You are greatly overstating our “seasoned” veterans. Woodall is the only one in this program who has been a significant contributor on a winner. Taylor, Zanna, and Moore were bit players in 2010-2011. Robinson is a freshman. Nasir graduated last year. Zeigler was not part of a winning program at Central Michigan, either. His father got fired, which is how he ended up at Pitt. Also, Central Michigan isn’t exactly the Big East.

Also, don’t disrespect Rutgers like that. My wife and I were treated very well there yesterday, even with wearing all of our Pitt gear. It makes you sound like our neighbors to the south. Be better than that.

Thanks for the comments. Good discussion.

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 3:07 pm

Meant Patterson not Robinson, lol

Comment by Emel 01.06.13 @ 3:34 pm

PantherChris, thanks for the game report and being reasonable/positive in your assessment. This blogs basketball experts forget 94-99 when we were in the wilderness with Ralph Willard and Cummings was basically on his own 1-on-5! Jamie Dixon is a great Coach. Best record in the BEast & 10 consecutive NCAA invites. Have an off year and ur a bum according to a pack of spoiled fans too good to support their team at the CBI Tourney. Where they beat God’s gift to the world Butler on the way to a championship. Ok clear the bandwagon, get off. When this team with a freshman point guard, Zanna & Patterson get used to being starters and we finally have Moore playing major minutes with the starters we will turn the corner. Had hoped Woodall would compete hard and set an example with smart play. Given his Rutgers post-game comments maybe he’ll step up! GO Panthers! UPone

Comment by UPone 01.06.13 @ 3:58 pm

Thanks, UPone. I do remember the bad days, all too well.

Comment by PantherChris 01.06.13 @ 4:20 pm

SFPitt said we were possibly going to start 0 and 3 and I thought he was way off. Call me too optimistic but I still think we are going to beat Georgetown.I have to admit at this point that this team has me worried.I thought by this point we would be getting the ball inside consistantly and both Adams and Zanna would be scoring and rebounding in volume. Why this team refuses to get the ball to Adams as a priority is a mystery to me. How anybody on our schedule so far can out rebound us is an afront to good sense. If we are going to play stupid I guess we shouldn’t be surprised when we look dumb. I can live with losses but stupidity offends me. I had to quit watching this team last year for several games because they were so bad it hurt to watch.This year I was sure coach Dixon would fix things,but what happenned at Rutgers looks a lot like what turned my stomach last year.Did anyone at Pitt ever hear of a lob pass. Lord have mercy you a 7′ center with arms that reach halfway to the moon. Give him the ball until they start triple teaming him.Zanna get in low in case he misses and if anyone gets in your way put some of that NBA body on them til they learn to get out of your way.In short quit pretending to be a cute team throwing long distance prayers and playing patsycakes down low and get nasty,agressive and flagrantly mean.I remember when Pitt played such agressive D that you could lose an eye. Where has that attitude gone? I can live with losses and if I wanted to watch girls play the tickets are a lot cheaper.You guys sucked at Rutgers and Coach Dixon you should be ashamed because I have seen you do way better work.You are being way too easy on this underproducing group of hotdog wannabees.This team is getting worse not better as the season progresses,what kind of caoching is that?

Comment by spiritofsection22 01.07.13 @ 12:26 pm

Honestly, I don’t get the attitude that because this was once a really bad team that now there should be no complaints about mediocre to bad play. Of course the players are to blame to a certain extent for hoisting up so many 3s, failing to get to the hoop, and getting pushed around on the blocks. But the coach bears some/a lot of responsibility as well.

I am not seeing players develop. There are hints of it here and there. Patterson took a big step forward at the end of last season but has not carried that over, for the most part, to this season. Moore shows flashes and then gets 10 minutes of play the next game. Zanna has developed, but by his third year in the program he should be starting to do these things or shouldn’t be playing Div. 1 hoops. And going back to last year, Nasir Robinson spent 4 years on this team and NEVER learned how to shoot a jump shot! How is that possible?! How can a coach stand by and watch that?

The teams for the last 2-3 years have been largely passive on offense, insufficient on defense, and have lost their toughness. A good bit of that has to come back to the coach. He has got to the right the ship, and quickly.

Comment by Carmen 01.07.13 @ 3:10 pm

We need to get our five best players on the court for offensive purposes. Zanna, Lamar, Woodall, Robinson & JJ. Hard work and effort should provide decent defense while JJ & Lamar must cut loose on the rebounding BIG TIME! Lamar needs reps and he does not understand his roll. He needs to be returned to Brad’s old role of dealing the ball like the end of last year. JJ has accepted the role of sixth man, thank you for being the team player. But he is the best offensive player on the team and should be a starter who does not come out of the game accept when in foul trouble. Who is better offensively?? Cam- no way, Zeigler- please! Jamie you cant get blood outta a turnip! With that starting five playing heavy minutes,good offense,decent defense and pretty good rebounding, we can beat anybody in the BEast! UPone Go Pitt

Comment by UPone 01.07.13 @ 3:12 pm

UPone, The only problem with Adam’s offensive game is the only time he gets the ball he is standing at the foul line with his back to the basket.I like his chances of scoring from within 10′ of the basket better than anyones but it never happens because no one gets him the ball.Zanna has a midrange jumpshot and should be easily rebounding Adam’s misses but there aren’t any misses because he never gets the ball. The rest of the teams talent is ok but these two can actually play if not star at the next level.Meanwhile Rutgers outrebounds us by double digits. Dixon needs to get his head out of his butt and make them get the ball inside until other teams force us to throw it out bcause of triple teams.I don’t care if we screw up at first it can’t be any worse than what I saw Saturday.Read my lips “we are not a good 3 point shooting team”

Comment by spiritofsection22 01.07.13 @ 3:54 pm

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