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January 20, 2013

Finishing UConn

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 2:03 pm

It seemed like it could have slipped away in the second half. Adams was in foul trouble and didn’t play the final 6+ minutes. And while the box score might suggest that Taylor wasn’t much of a drop-off (fewer rebounds and blocks but more points and less turnovers), Adams’ defensive impact was huge. His blocks had the effect of keeping UConn wary of going inside as much as they wanted — yes, even as Ryan Boatright appeared to spend the second half continually driving to the lane. Adams had their frontcourt wary of going all the way to the rim. They didn’t want to challenge him.

Taylor was not that intimidating presence. And after a Napier 3 next three offensive opportunities for UConn had them going right into the paint after Adams departed. That said, Taylor came up huge in a way that Adams cannot. He drilled both of his freethrows with under 3 minutes left and Pitt clinging to a 2-point lead.

Pitt’s overall freethrow shooting still looks weak (17-23), but when you look at who took FTs and their general numbers it is hard to say that Pitt left much more than 2 points on the table (Zanna 1-3, Patterson 4-6). But in a way that reminds me of Dixon excusing the poor FT shooting of the Page/Brown teams of his first couple years, Pitt “made them when they had to.” Pitt all six FTs in the final 3 minutes to keep UConn from being able to snatch the game.

James Robinson came up exceptionally big in the final minutes. He drained all 4 of his FTs in that final 3 minutes and hit a huge 3 after UConn had tied the game at 58.

Robinson‘s 3-pointer came on a pass from Dante Taylor, who spotted him open in the right corner after running a pick-and-roll with Lamar Patterson.

Connecticut coach Kevin Ollie couldn‘t complain.

“We played our percentages there,” Ollie said. “He‘s a good player, and he stepped up and hit a shot.”

Ollie spent 13 seasons in the NBA, so he‘s used to seeing one of the oldest tricks in the playbook. What he wasn‘t happy about is that when the Panthers ran the play again, Taylor took a pass from Woodall and popped a 15-footer.

“We got beat on a pick-and-roll,” Ollie said. “It‘s the toughest thing to guard. That‘s why Malone and Stockton ran it for so long.”

It was the smart percentage by Ollie. Give Ollie some credit for knowing what the Pitt players were and weren’t doing. Robinson had really been scuffling on the offensive end for the last few games. His shots hadn’t been falling. His confidence in his shot looked shaky. He still had the trust of his teammates.

“That’s what he does,” senior captain Tray Woodall said. “He’s a patient player. He’s poised in clutch situations. This team has trust in him. A lot of people don’t have trust in a freshman like we do with James, but he’s instilled it in us. We’ll definitely go to that guy, and we know he’ll be ready when the time comes.”

Robinson’s 3-pointer came right after Connecticut rallied from a 13-point halftime deficit to tie the score at 58-58. Ryan Boatright, who scored 16 of his game-high 20 points in the second half, made a 3-pointer to cap a 15-6 Huskies run just 27 seconds earlier.

Robinson had been struggling. He was shooting 29 percent in Big East games; 14 percent from 3-point range. Coach Jamie Dixon benched him for a game at Rutgers two weeks ago, and his production in other areas had slipped considerably in recent weeks, too. He was coming off a game at Villanova where he did not make a field goal.

Still, it was no surprise to his teammates when he confidently stroked the shot that stopped the bleeding and got the Panthers headed back in the right direction. After Robinson’s clutch shot, Pitt finished on a 9-3 run over the final four minutes.

“He’s always wanted to take the big shot,” junior guard Trey Zeigler said. “Even in practice, at the end-of the-clock situations, he always wants to take the shot. It wasn’t a surprise that he wanted to take the shot. And he knocked it down for us.”

He is still having some struggles. It seems that his passes are slower lately, almost telegraphed at times — leading to more turnovers. The reality is more likely, that he is learning the difference between playing mid-majors and Big East quality teams. He has to make stronger passes or more will get picked.

It seemed that Pitt was going to run away with this game. Not simply because they raced out to a double-digit first half lead. They didn’t let up. Not at the end of the half — like they did against Michigan and Cinci where they gave up some quick and easy baskets to cut the lead. They didn’t let up to start the second half. You knew UConn wasn’t going to keep missing as many shots as they did in the first half. I mean, yes, Pitt played some great D, but UConn missed some wide-open chances.

Pitt kept the double-digit lead for 8 minutes into the second half. UConn whittled it down over the next 8 minutes to tie the game. You could feel the angst among Pitt fans that this game was going to be blown. But Pitt’s defense stiffened. They denied the lane for Boatright. They forced UConn to use clock to find a shot. Then denied second chances by getting the rebounds. And on offense, they bled the clock and finished.

They showed that they have been learning.

That‘s when Pitt showed what it has learned from home losses to Cincinnati and Marquette. Led by freshman point guard James Robinson, the Panthers showed patience and poise for a 69-61 victory over Connecticut in the final Big East regular-season meeting between the rivals.

It was the first league win for the Panthers (15-4, 3-3) at the Pete, this one coming one week after an overtime loss to Marquette. Where Pitt needed a last-second 3-pointer to tie that game, the Panthers took control of this one from the outset and didn‘t let it slip away.

“You like to finish every one,” Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. “But we‘ve lost a few, and when you lose, you remember those ones a little more. (Connecticut) made shots. They made plays to get back and tie it up. But down the stretch I thought we came up with the rebounds. I thought we defended well and hit free throws and got a couple of big jump shots.”

“In the games that we lost, we let it go at the end,” said Pitt forward Lamar Patterson, who scored a team-high 14 points and had five assists. “We made a little change and fought through and got the victory.”

This was the first time Pitt has won back-to-back Big East games since the beginning of last February (WVU and Villanova). It’s also the first win at the Pete for Pitt since before Christmas.

If you are looking to find a reason for pure confidence in this Pitt squad. That they are moving to be a force the rest of the way. No. It’s not there. There are too many issues, and not enough time for that.

If you are looking to see signs that this team is learning. Is improving. Is getting better, than it was 2 weeks ago. Or even last week. Well, I think the signs are pointing that way. It’s not going to be easy with this team.





Yeah, I thought the free throw % was kind of weak too, initially. After review of the box scores, I changed my mind somewhat. I sure would like to see a solid 70+% going forward though. That is what is really needed down the road and into the tournaments. Getting ouled at the end of a close game and how the fouled players respond at the free throw line, makes the diffence between wins and loses against the good teams. In any case, good win for Pitt.

On antother subject, were there any football recruits at the game yesterday?

Comment by Dr. Tom 01.20.13 @ 2:34 pm

Gotta say when it was 58-58 and JR got the pass from Sleepy, I was like no, no, no, wrong guy shooting. But JR drained it. Despite his recent sluggish play the kid has loads of confidence, which is a requisite for taking a crucial shot like that. That again showed when he drilled the two FT’s a little later in the game.

Spot on analysis Chas, without Adams in the middle, the defense was reminiscent of last year’s matador defense. Coach really needs to recruit another Center pronto for next year as a backup. And I hope just a backup one, who knows.

JJ is taking too many 3′s and what’s worse is, he’s only making 26% of em. Whereas he’s one of our better FT shooters at 85% so Coach needs to drill it into his head to drive more to the hoop, for an easier shot or a trip to the FT line.

We really need to find some consistency in one or two players who will score 15+ ppg, as it’s a crap shoot every game trying to find points.

You can’t expect Sleepy to make such huge plays at the end of every game. Nor JR to drain a 3 pointer. Woodie, Patterson & Moore should be making these plays at the end of the game.

Ok it’s off to Providence, not a real easy place to play despite them being a below average team, however just our luck they will be coming off a home win against Villimanilli 69-66. They have a Guard who averages 22 ppg and 2 forwards who both average over 14 ppg. These 3 play the vast majority of minutes (35+) at their positions. One of the 14ppg players is 6-10, 245 lbs. However he is known to get into foul trouble, so it would be good if we get him out of there before Adams.

This will be a stiff challenge for Kiwi Steve.

Comment by EMel 01.20.13 @ 4:14 pm

Absolute carnage in the Top 20-25 this weekend.

Almost half of the Top 25 lost this weekend,
eleven (11) to be exact.

Uconn received 70 votes in the last AP poll, bringing them in at #27. Pitt got a couple votes, so we should now claim all of Uconn’s votes, lol.

So Saturday’s victory was indeed a huge win for Pitt and it’s climb back to the upper tier of the BigEast. I don’t see any great teams in the BigEast this season. As Marquette (who we should have beat) and L-Ville both got beat yesterday.

So while this isn’t a great Pitt team, there are no great teams in the BigEast and for that matter the nation as I see it. The new number one will probably be Indiana, who just lost to unranked Wisconsin, so maybe not, but just struggled mightily with an average or below average Northwestern team today. We hung with #5 Michigan as a very inexperienced team.

This year’s Big Dance as I see it, is the most wide open I can remember, as I just don’t see any really elite teams out there. So if we keep improving and Adams can get more touches and therefore more points, who knows.

Comment by EMel 01.20.13 @ 5:14 pm

FYI’s

Pitt’s RPi is now #55 (before conf. play started it was #58, so that hardly has budged despite non-con rent-a-win victims)

Pitt’s SoS is now # 97

Pitt’s victory over Uconn was our first over a team in the Rpi Top 50 this season (which is why it was sooooo huge) Uconn is #28 Rpi currently, was top 20 before the game.

Comment by EMel 01.20.13 @ 5:27 pm

Kenpom.com

Has Pitt at #9.

Don’t know how we grade out so high on that, but there it is.

Comment by EMel 01.20.13 @ 5:32 pm

is that the same poll that still has ND as 1 in FB?

Comment by wbb 01.20.13 @ 5:52 pm

wow falcons were up 17 to zip and from that point forward were outscored 28-7.

Talk about a choke.

A star is born with Kaepernick.

Comment by EMel 01.20.13 @ 6:05 pm

There was a comment made that Adams is a pretty good with his free throws in practice. If so, then there is hope that he improve in that regard. I thought he played an excellent defensive game and really shut down the middle. Not bad stuff for a freshmen playing in the Big East. He also had some terrific blocks. It will be important for him to stay out of foul trouble, which sometimes difficult to do, as physically as the playis, in the Big East.

Comment by Justinian 01.20.13 @ 6:21 pm

Great way for Pitt to end out the UConn rivalry…as for Pitt looking forward, it could be worse….

“This is not what I‘ve built a career on,” Huggins said. “We let them do what they want to do, throw it where they want to throw it, drive it where they want to drive it. We just do the most unexplainable things I‘ve ever seen.” ~ Huggins after losing to Purdue. LOL

Comment by Jackagain 01.20.13 @ 6:22 pm

That was a weird football game. Kaprnick did well. There will be Pitt representation for sure as Andy Lee continues to be a force! Okay, maybe not a force. He is a solid punter though!!!

Any other panthers in the big game other than our next DC?

Comment by dhuffdaddy 01.20.13 @ 6:26 pm

Pitt’s top recruit, Mike Young, played on ESPN2 today. Did anyone see him?

Comment by wbb 01.20.13 @ 6:32 pm

was at the game, Dr.Tom. Last game, when Tyler Boyd and some others moved into the zoo, they were with Coach Chryst behind the hoop where the media sits. I thought I saw some recruits and maybe an asst coach at the UConn, but I didn’t see Chryst.

Comment by Bossdaws 01.20.13 @ 7:13 pm

I read every last word as well as Dokish’s pessimistic take.

But from someone who actually played great hoops for Pitt I heard this is a team to be reckoned with.

If only they are let loose.

Comment by steve1 01.20.13 @ 8:26 pm

I prefer to take it one game at a time. HTP! Beat the Friars.

Comment by panther94 01.20.13 @ 8:53 pm

Nice write up Chas. They did make the free throws when they had to ice the game. 2nd half defense was still a concern though. Too many guards get hot on this team late in games. In games of yesteryear, you could count on Pitt’s relentless D wearing the opponent down and the opposite happening – not so much the last couple of years. I still think this team needs Moore to find his stride. If they can get him started they could become that “force” you believe is ultimately going to elude this team.

On a side note, Dante has his limitations and has never lived up to expectations, but I’ve enjoyed seeing him accept his role on this team. Despite his “Sleepy” moniker the kid has never had bad body language and is always the first on the bench to cheer on his team. I was happy to see him help ice the game down the stretch.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 01.20.13 @ 8:57 pm

Ugly scene in Foxboro where a player gets knocked out and fumbles the ball. Pileup right beside him while he’s flat on his back and hands in the air. I love football, but that didn’t sit we’ll with me.

Comment by panther94 01.20.13 @ 9:09 pm

Well, not we’ll.

Comment by panther94 01.20.13 @ 9:10 pm

Tossing, agree about Sleepy

panther94, agree about that play

both of your comments mirrored my thoughts. Would love to see Sleepy have a decent final year, and glad that player for the Pats is OK (not paralyzed)

Comment by wbb 01.20.13 @ 9:16 pm

Especially, when the refs had signaled Baltimore ball almost immediately. 10 players staring at the pileup and 3 trainers standing by Ridley. Not a good scene.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 01.20.13 @ 9:44 pm

well, if the new DC is Jackson, Tomsula or Austin, we won’t find out for at least 2 more weeks.

Comment by wbb 01.20.13 @ 9:47 pm

Had Pitt blown the U Conn game after blowing a big lead I’m sure it would have been Tino, Steve P and Fraud G’s fault-not sure how but it would have had to have been.

Comment by OPFIM 01.20.13 @ 10:41 pm

How would Pitt football history have changed if Walt Harris moved Palko to safety, and let Flacco pitch?

Comment by alcofan 01.20.13 @ 10:52 pm

Dockish from panther prey is wrong if he thinks jackson should be pitt next DC .
jackson is the asst db coach not the db coach there is nothing in his background that says is ready to be a DC on any level.

the outher 3 names i could live with they have the experence to be good DC but not jackson.
as far as i can see he is a frend of chryst that is all

and like i said he is not even the db coach just the db asst his helper not the man.
austain or tomsula make sence jackson does not.

if it is jackson i hope he does well for our sake
but he has done nothing to make him a DC LOOK IT UP HE WOULD BE A REAL SHOT IN THE DARK.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.20.13 @ 11:16 pm

alcofan–puleeze!!-It didn’t and wouldn’t have happened back then no matter who was the Pitt coach. Flacco wasn’t even close to as good as he eventually became and Palko was by far the better the better college QB at that point in time. Therefore, had Walt Harris been as dumb as you suggest he could have been, Pitt would have lost more games than they did by playing Flacco over Palko.

Comment by pitt1972 01.21.13 @ 12:00 am

Agreed 72.

Comment by panther94 01.21.13 @ 12:12 am

donatell 49s dfensive coach

Comment by paul shannon 01.21.13 @ 8:27 am

glenville wv grad above

Comment by paul shannon 01.21.13 @ 8:50 am

I will avoid the temptation of focusing on our next DC and focus on hoops.
Pitt goes to the Donut Center on Tuesday. Momementum lasts right up until the opening tip. Providence, epi-center of all things Big East evil, comes off a home win against “Nova”.
This game can and will be lost if we come out as we did at Rutgers. 2 halfs of solid hoops is what is required.
Providence scored 45 points in the 2nd half against Nova. They also lost to some bads teams.
This is a must win for Pitt…all hands on deck and use our depth to wear their donut butts out!

Comment by sfpitt 01.21.13 @ 9:01 am

Hey I was glad they were able to close out the UConn game. There are still issues but you learn to walk before you run. I think it was a big win. Now they have to follow it up in Providence and against Depaul, to really get things back on track.

Comment by Justinian 01.21.13 @ 9:29 am

Take them one at a time. A win at Providence gets us over 500, keeps the momentum going. A loss puts us back in the hole. With Louisville and Syracuse coming up. All Big East games are tough. If we don’t play hard Depaul can beat us.

Let’s hope we can stack some wins.

Comment by gc 01.21.13 @ 9:59 am

I was hoping there would have been a new DC siting at the game.

Comment by TX Panther 01.21.13 @ 10:09 am

TX PANTHER jackson would be a bad pick look up his coaching record i dont see mutch to it.

any of the outher 3 would be better.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 10:37 am

Again don’t knock Greg Jackson until you give him a look.

Charismatic with an impressive playing and coaching resume.

At some point everyone who’s ever succeeded got that opportunity to step up and show what they can do for the first time.

Not to say it should be Jackson. But when you take a closer look he far outshines some of the other names being tossed around.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.21.13 @ 10:49 am

donatell has been d coor

Comment by paul shannon 01.21.13 @ 11:01 am

Regarding UConn…

One of the least-talented UConn teams of recent memory. A couple of good guards but that’s about it.

Understand that UConn got hit with some academic challenges that resulted in a few key players being lost.

Saturday, it was Pitt’s big men surprisingly getting the rebounds. This says either UConn’s big men left a lot to be desired or Adams and Co. have actually turned an about face in the rebounding department.

Leaning toward the former.

This means Dixon’s rebounding revelation as detailed last week in the Post Gazette is still yet to be tested beyond Villanova.

Witholding excitement until Pitt plays a team with athletic big men who either force Adams, Zanna and Taylor to step up or give Dixon a chance to prove his strategy employed against Villanova can work against someone else besides Villanova.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.21.13 @ 11:24 am

pittofdreams you did not look up his record or you would not say that.
and the outher 3 far out shine him one was even a DC IN THE PROS TWICE THE OUTHER IS A DB COACH NOT A ASST DB COACH and was a dc at FL even if only for one year.
and the outher was a DC IN CANADA FOOTBALL PLUS
THE DL COACH FOR SANFRAN and he to is charismatic.

jackson out shines none of them look up his coaching record before you post that stuff.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 11:29 am

Frankcan, who are you’re big three? Let’s be sure we know who we’re talking about.

Comment by PittofDreams 01.21.13 @ 11:36 am

FRankcan, I agree the others are more qualified but Chryst is probably going to hire someone he is comfortable with — not sure if I agree with that since I certainly wouldn’t want a bunch of yes men for a staff

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 12:22 pm

I vote for Dick LeBeau! We just have convince him to move to other side of the South Side practice facility.

Comment by Justinian 01.21.13 @ 12:46 pm

pittodreams
T Austin was DB coach at wake forest DB coach
at seattle seahawks DB coach for az cardinals
florida DC secondary coach for baltmore at present.

jim tomsula DC for berlin thunder head coach of
rhein fire San Fran interim head coach and now
DL coach of san fran for years.

Tim Lewis DB coach at pitt DB coach of steelers
DC of steelers DC coach of new york giants
now secondary coach of falcons
that is the 3
and they all out shine jackson who is a asst to the DB COACH HE IS NOT EVEN THE db COACH he is a helper
and if he is are DC IT WILL BE BECUSE HE COACHED WITH CHRYST LOOK AT HIS RECORD HE HAS ALL MOST NO RECORD.
you would have to wonder abought that pick
if it is him i hope he does well but it would have me worryed a lot.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 12:52 pm

Orlando, Elko and Austin would be my top 3.

Comment by TX Panther 01.21.13 @ 12:53 pm

TX Panther if he wanted orlando he could have had him weeks ago it has to be some one in the peo play off that has to be the reason we dont have AC bye now.
but i all so liked orlando and he would be better then jackson.
let us hope it is austin jackson has no experence
if he is the pick it would be like catching lighting in a bottle if he is any good there is all most no record it would seam a bad pick.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 1:20 pm

Frankcan, I thought like you are at first also, but I’m not sure Chryst isn’t just watiing to interview someone from the pro’s. May end up picking one of them, but may end up picking someeone he has already interviewed as well. I think Chryst is nothing if not patient. By the way, saw Dorian Johnso was upped to a 5 start by Rivals.

Comment by marcus of schaumburg 01.21.13 @ 1:24 pm

Marcus of schaumburg he has interviewed no one yet
it is like dockish said there are sites that make there money bye posting what coach is talking to who and had he talked to some one thay would know
no he has not interviewed any one yet.

so it must be some one on a team in the super bowl i just hope it is Tomsula or austin and
not jackson.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 1:34 pm

Frankcan, think about that for a moment. Hasn’t interviewed anyone? That wouldn’t make much sense unless he’s assured somehow that one of the pro’s is going to take the job. And if that’s the case, then he has basically interviewed him. Werner reported last week that the staff was doing interviews but he didn’t have any names. I think Chryst is just better than most at keeping things quiet.

Comment by marcus of schaumburg 01.21.13 @ 1:50 pm

Since the Atl Falcs are now out of the play-offs, maybe the DC will be Tim Lewis?

Comment by DobieGillis 01.21.13 @ 2:03 pm

There is no evidence of any interviews. He may well have had telephone conversations, or even visits, that have not been reported publicly.

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 2:04 pm

Marcus of schaumburg think what you want but i go to the same sites dockish does.
if he was talking to any one they would know.
has he and one man in the super bowl had a talk
i bye that and neather are saying any thing yes i will go for that but if he had interviews with outhers the sites would know .
they even know who is hired in div 3 and the JC
schools.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 2:10 pm

Dobie gillisi think tim lewis is out becuse of what you just said atl is out of play off and he was not hired.
i think it is some one from san fran or balt.
most likey san fran and most likely jackson
but i hope not look at jackson record he has not even been the db coach just a asst.
i dont know why any one would think he ready to be a DC
look it up and compare it to these outher names and tell me you honestley would hire him as a DC
may be for a high school or a div 3 team but not pitt.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 2:20 pm

Anyone watch ‘Columbo’ last night?

Comment by Dan 01.21.13 @ 2:48 pm

frankcan, FWIW, I do agree with you. It would be a major jump from an asst DB coach to a DC. Chryst hired the ex PSU WR (forgot his name) last year who was just an assistant staffer for the 49ers — but he is the WR caoch not the coordinator. The one plus for Jackson is that he is a Miami native and a LSU alum, so he may have ties to the southeast.

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 2:49 pm

Frankcan, would you agree that they wouldn’t touch Leavitt?

Comment by marcus of schaumburg 01.21.13 @ 2:59 pm

Wbb the miami thing and lsu thing is good
but i fear it is like you said before a yes
man he has worked with before,

let me put it this way lets just look at the mans record and if he had not worked with chryst
do you think he would be hired on his record alone if he had coached at iowa insted of wisconsin.
i dont think he would even be looked at as a DB
coach yes he would as a DC NO.
I would hire him as a db coach but not as A DC.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 3:02 pm

The Fan is reporting that Bill O’Brien is going to Clairton tomorrow to get Boyd to change his mind.

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 3:09 pm

MARCUS leavitt sound good but he has no ties to
pitt or wisconsin or chryst
besides chryst does not seam to want any one on his staff who has more experence then him or eho has been a big time DC OR OC or ex head coach
who might know more then him look at his hires i think he is to new to want some one like that around.
even if it would help him.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 3:13 pm

i could see boyd changeing his mind foe MS or
ohio state but not penn state still some from pitt should go up there and stay with the kid take him to a all day lunch.
bring him to pitt for a 4 week vist.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 3:19 pm

What will obrien promise him? His own shower stall? Pedo State is toxic and obrien won’t be there to see Boyd graduate. So really what is he promising. Pitt has got some very good quaterbacks coming in. State Penn is on probation and there is no way they are getting off the sanctions anytime soon. Maybe if obrien throws in a real live girlfriend?

Comment by TX Panther 01.21.13 @ 4:28 pm

O’brien is going to offer him visiting rights to see Uncle Jerry. And perhaps a front row position in next year’s Pedo vigil for Pedo Enabler Joe.

:-)

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 5:57 pm

After that piss poor defensive performance in the Sayonara Sunseri Bowl,

PC better bring in a real defensive coach, not some guy who is going to get “on the job” training at Pitt’s expense. One is plenty. haha

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 6:00 pm

I feel certain we will be in a tough game at Providence. Traditionally they always give us a game.They are good at their best and woeful at their worst We are very good at our best and not quite as sorry as them at our worst.This is another good test for our gradually improving team,and I am a little encouraged by the fact that we have won 3 of 4 with the loss having an excuse (Woodall). I still think Adams is the key to any real future to this season.He could sure use a breakout game before we get into the harder part of our schedule.It was nice to see JR step up off of some criticism of his play.

Comment by spiritofsection22 01.21.13 @ 6:25 pm

EMel if it is jackson it will be on the job training it might work out but based on his record i would not hire him for DC .
MAY BE DB COACH . but not DC look him up there is not mutch to him there are a lot of outhers out there with way more experence.
he will be a risk.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 6:26 pm

Providence has done Pitt no favors. Pitt needs to beat them badly on their farewell tour of the Big East. Providence is one of the freeriders of this conference made strong by the football schools until Providence ruined it. Georgetown and st johns might have gave the Big East respect in the early years but it was destined to fail when conference survival depended on football and Providence was blind. The Big East has not been providence for Pitt. I am glad Pitt is in a conference that values football and has schools with football programs.

Comment by TX Panther 01.21.13 @ 6:41 pm

Back to “Sleepy” for a sec. His facial resemblance to Sleepy Floyd (at least in my mind) was the only reason for the nickname.

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 6:45 pm

for those who may care about what Mike Young did on ESPN2

link to cardiachill.com

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 6:52 pm

Wbb thanks a good read we will need him.

Comment by FRANKCAN 01.21.13 @ 7:04 pm

@FRankcan

lol I believe you bro, if you say Jackson has no experience…..he has no experience. And you are right, if this guy isn’t even a DB coach, just the asst. DB coach….he shouldn’t even be considered for the DC job. Let some other school/team pay him to learn his ABC’s. This is PITT we’re talking, not some schlepp program.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 7:17 pm

Also looks like he just woke up, most of the time.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 7:27 pm

Was looking at Sleepy’s career stats, ikr.

While he’s not come close to McDonald’s All-American hype, he’s been nothing but consistent in all 4 years at Pitt.

Averages around 4.5 to 5 ppg and 4 to 5 rpg.

So while he’s been consistent, he’s not improved much either. Or another way of looking at it.
His talent has not been realized. Shame cause he seems willing enough.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 7:34 pm

Important week for Pitt weeks (aren’t they all,lol)

Pitt teams of the past always took care of business against teams they SHOULD BEAT. Providence & DePaul fall into that category. And that category is BigEast bottom dwellers. If this team has any hopes of being a top tier BE team this season, we must win these next two games. And convincingly would be even better.

The Friars lost to the Creepsters of Creepy Valley, so we SHOULD REALLY HAMMER THEM.

Just because of that fact alone.

HTP
VEV

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 7:40 pm

If I’m coach I would double this Bryce Cotton kid who averages 22 ppg and effectively take him “out of the game”. You hold him to 10 or so points, and you should win this game easily.

He’s only 6-1, if you’re going to play him man up, put Wright at 6-4 on him.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 7:45 pm

Remember, Taylor was a face-up power forward in HS and Pitt turned him into a back to the basket center. Also, his knees and back have affected him greatly.

Comment by Joe Bull 01.21.13 @ 8:03 pm

Just as long as all ten keep on attacking the basket we’ll be fine.

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 8:16 pm

Hoyas up 34 -21 at the half. Cooley looked absolutely terrible, bull in a china shop.

Can’t wait to take ND on.

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 8:25 pm

Yikes.

After beating #27 Uconn, I thought we’d pickup a few more AP votes since Uconn had 70 votes last week. And we had 2 votes last week.

Inexplicably Pitt received even less votes this week (after 2 wins/week). Yes even less than 2,,,,we got 1 vote.

Didn’t expect us to be in the Top 25, but I did expect we’d get like 50 votes or so.
lol we got 5 votes in USA/ESPN after getting Zero last week. Polls are indeed a strange animal.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 8:31 pm

Cuse eked by Cincinnati 57-55 on a last minute lucky shot at the Carrier Dump.

Not impressive at all at home, Cincy controlled the tempo all game. Like I said, no great teams in the BigEast this year, nor the Nation.

Comment by EMel 01.21.13 @ 8:34 pm

Emel I think looking at the Penn St game is ancient history and does not give any indication as to Providence now. I think we will do well to simply win at the Friars homecourt.I also think that if we rebound and play D we should br fine.Our team still has some bad games ahead though,we are young and by no means complete.

Comment by spiritofsection22 01.21.13 @ 8:48 pm

Hoyas stop attacking, sound familiar?

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 8:53 pm

Back on the attack, back up by 13.

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 9:06 pm

So quiet in S Bend. Ha!

Comment by steve1 01.21.13 @ 9:15 pm

looks like Notre Dame needs an imaginary 3 point shooter who also block shots and rebounds, and who doesn’t contract leukemia until April

Comment by wbb 01.21.13 @ 9:17 pm

good stuff wbb. If we beat Providence tomorrow, we will be tied for 4th in the conf. Moving on up, hopefully.

Comment by panther94 01.21.13 @ 9:46 pm

BTW, Depaul beat Providence by 10 on the road.

Comment by panther94 01.21.13 @ 9:49 pm

wbb, The 3 point shooter/shot blocker will go well with all the Notre Dame imaginary Alumni!

Comment by Justinian 01.21.13 @ 9:49 pm

Agree spiritOS22

However they lost to Brown as well.

We really need to trample the Friars in our last visit to the home of the BigEast, Providence RI.
As I don’t see us ever scheduling them in the non-con. We already play Duquesne.

Kick some ass !

Comment by EMel 01.22.13 @ 12:57 am

Looking forward to tonight’s game…but boy it has we worried…a lot to lose for Pitt tonight (and not much to gain).

Providence can really shoot the 3 well and has good guards…that normally is not a good thing for Pitt.

Comment by milobloom 01.22.13 @ 8:08 am

Pitt is a 6 point favorite, which has been the kiss of death. Cinci, Marquette, and Rutgers were all 6 (or so) point dogs.

Comment by Boubacar Aw 01.22.13 @ 8:23 am

The game will begin at 0-0 and vegas only sets the line where the money that is being bet tells them to put it so they make money.
I am out of the prediction business, but know that pitt has to take every possession seriously and play like there is no tomorrow.
Our best basketball has been played away from Pgh.
Hang your hat on that if you get concerned.

Comment by sfpitt 01.22.13 @ 9:21 am

Not to be cynical but our worst BB was also played away from Pittsburgh at well…first half at Rutgers.

I’m not predicting either anymore; just worried about the matchup….(there superstar guard had missed a lot of early season so Providence is playing better than their record shows right now.)

I like this team a lot and hope they show how good I think they can be tonight.

Comment by milobloom 01.22.13 @ 9:29 am

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