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January 12, 2013

Open Thread: Marquette-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 10:13 am

So, has Pitt started to find its footing after getting smacked in the mouth by Cinci and Rutgers? Was Georgetown more along the lines of what can be expected, or was it simply that the Hoyas were the perfect match-up for Pitt? There is an awareness that they have to show that was the norm.

…Dixon has been emphasizing to his players why they were so successful against Georgetown. He said that is the key to building a winning streak.

“We want them to recognize why,” Dixon said. “We watch film to show them what they didn’t do well, but we wanted to watch film of why they did things well, show the things we have to continue to do and improve on. There are not many wins like that on the road. We have to see how we respond to it on Saturday. Marquette won two close games that speaks to how good they are.”

Marquette (11-3) brings a 2-0 Big East record into the game after home victories against Connecticut and Georgetown. The Golden Eagles beat Connecticut in overtime and Georgetown by one point.

Pitt also has the looming issue of a back-loaded schedule in the conference. So they can’t afford the luxury of having off-games against teams in the middle and bottom of the conference. Cinci and Rutgers used up the quota.

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Revisiting Cristobal

Filed under: Coaches,Football,Hire/Fire — Chas @ 9:12 am

I’ll keep this short. No really. Last year in the search for the next Pitt football coach it appeared to come down to Mario Cristobal or Paul Chryst. I was leaning more towards Cristobal because of how far he had brought FIU in just a few years plus his recruiting ties to Miami and actual head coach experience.

The big negative against him were the suggestions that he really wanted to stay in the Miami area. That at the least he was just using the interest as a way to improve his money from FIU. The fact that he would likely bolt at the first chance if the Miami job (his alma mater) came open.  It seemed to me that too many were using that as primarily in light of the nature and brevity of the Fraud Graham tenure. Especially in relation to Cristobal’s wife.

Well, fast forward a year and FIU inexplicably fired Cristobal after one down season (that included a lot of injuries). And the FIU firing makes less sense when you realize they replaced Cristobal with Ron Turner. About the only thing that explains the stupidity, is that FIU AD Pete Garcia is the same guy who thought hiring Isiah Thomas to be a college basketball coach was a good idea.

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