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April 8, 2013

I still haven’t made up my mind who I’m rooting against in this game.

Forget that Big East/ACC solidarity. I’m looking for pain and anguish.

On the one hand, I live in Ohio and seeing Ohio State fans gnash their teeth and try to rationalize how basketball isn’t as important as football — after their run to the Championship game with Oden and their Final Four appearance last year has had them crowing — well, that would just be fun.

On the other hand, the Big Blue Nation that is Kentucky are batshit crazy. To have Louisville and Rick Pitino — in the same year they lose an opening NIT game to Robert Morris — win creates such epic rants and meltdowns all over the internet. It’s just a non-stop festival of insanity.

Obviously, there is no winner for me, without Pitt. But I can take joy in my own way because of who wins.





I’ll be watching the season premier of Mad Men on iTunes instead.

Comment by Shawn 04.08.13 @ 7:54 pm

Chas i am with you on the conference thing. If it helps Pitt to win great, if not don’t care about conference affiliation.

Could care less about Michigan but loathe Louisville and in particular their coach.

Having said the above is GO BABY BLUE AND TAKE DOWN DA VILLE-ANS!!!

Comment by Kenny 04.08.13 @ 8:05 pm

Burke gets away with blatant push-offs while he dribbles constantly

Comment by wbb 04.08.13 @ 8:31 pm

All i care abought now is pitt recruiting a center
and 3 outher good players for next year.
be they jc or transfers or high school senior.

Comment by FRANKCAN 04.08.13 @ 8:56 pm

Is it just me or does Pitino look like a vampire? Just how pale is he?

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.08.13 @ 9:06 pm

Pitt Dad….thought the same thing. He looks dead and like he just got out of coffin. Spikaliscous!!!!!!! Is awesome! Go blue

Comment by Upittbaseball 04.08.13 @ 9:08 pm

Pitino getting his ass kicked by a guy who is even shorter. When a pedestrian guy like Spike takes over a game like this it’s a message from another world.

Comment by Old School Panther 04.08.13 @ 9:09 pm

Pitt Dad/Upittbaseball same here but I will up you guys one. I have been thinking about his vampiresh appearance for the last several years…

Comment by Kenny 04.08.13 @ 9:14 pm

When you get caught cheating on your wife, that’s what you look like!

Comment by Dan 72 04.08.13 @ 9:19 pm

Yep, they tend to drain the blood out of you in one way or another for such things…

Comment by Kenny 04.08.13 @ 9:22 pm

LOL…. He should be on true blood. Dan 72 hahahahahahahahaha

Comment by Upittbaseball 04.08.13 @ 9:22 pm

Huh, I’d like to meet his tailor
A-whooo, werewolves of London!
………

saw a werewolf drinkin’ a pina colada at Trader Vic’s And his hair was perfect
A-whooo werewolves of London .. ah, draw blood!

random lyrics from the late, great Warren Zevon – WEREWOLVES OF LONDON LYRICS

Comment by wbb 04.08.13 @ 9:39 pm

Chas,

You just hit on the number one reason for my college sports choices: I root for Pitt and whoever plays Ohio State. (I hate to admit it, but my best moments from college sports so far this century have been 13-9 and wacthing Ohio State fans lose big to LSU, Florida, etc.

Go Pitt! Go Blue!

(And I really don’t care for Pitino either!)

Comment by Bowling Green Panther 04.08.13 @ 9:54 pm

@wbb – Warren Zevon – great reference

Send lawyers guns and money

What an excitable boy!

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.08.13 @ 9:55 pm

One thing i can take away from this game..is that pit will NEVER…EVER…EVER compete at this level on this stage…EVER!!

Comment by Keith 04.08.13 @ 10:05 pm

I HATE Louisville. Absolutely. Positively. HATE Louisville.

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.08.13 @ 10:25 pm

Really bad clock management by Beilein and Michigan. Little Ricky is going to win. Makes me want to puke.

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.08.13 @ 10:42 pm

well, Big East goes out with a bang … wins both Mens and Womens titles

Comment by wbb 04.08.13 @ 10:50 pm

Got to luv the Big East. Damn it was good conference. 2013 national champs in both men and women divisions. Way to end it on a high note.

Comment by Pitt fan in Atlanta 04.08.13 @ 10:51 pm

Athletes and shooters all over the court, including the benches.

Athletes and Shooters, Athletes and Shooters!!!!

No Stiffs Allowed!!! At any height or position!!!

Athletes and Shooters!!!!

Comment by Dan 04.08.13 @ 10:56 pm

I hate to say it, but I was thinking the same thing Keith stated. Pitt..so close..so far.

Comment by TonyinHouston 04.08.13 @ 11:07 pm

Does anyone know how the tourney dollars are getting handled? Does the catholic/big east keep them or are they carried forward to new leagues.

Comment by Dan 04.08.13 @ 11:22 pm

Great ball game. Two best point guards head to head.

Great shooting, ferocious rebounding, terrific intensity.

Refs for the most part let them play.

I hope Jamie et al are out recruiting.

Great finish for the Big East. Go ACC

Comment by gc 04.08.13 @ 11:34 pm

But I will never root for Duke.

Comment by gc 04.08.13 @ 11:35 pm

WOW! Real basketball, the way it was meant to be played. Beilein is head and shoulders over our coach, Pitino in another class altogether. Only if coach Dixon would have studied under them for a coupla years.

Comment by frankarms 04.09.13 @ 12:02 am

@ gc, what you said, ditto.

Comment by Dr. Tom 04.09.13 @ 6:18 am

What about this kid as a 5th year transfer? Was a reserve at Michigan, but has some ability.

link to buffalonews.com

Comment by JCE 04.09.13 @ 6:49 am

great championship game, and I had the same thought about the talent level on the floor and what we have at Pitt, but don’t forget: Pitt 62 Michigan 67 & Pitt 61 Louisville 64. We played both these great teams tough and if we hit 50% of our foul shots we win at Louisville. All is not lost with Pitt BB. Need a tough, aggressive center and a shooter. Go find ’em Jamie. HTP

Comment by Bossdaws 04.09.13 @ 7:00 am

Bossdaws, we slowed both games down and made them ugly. While, Pitt is a much better offensive team at a quicker pace, there is no way we can compete with the talent and athleticism at the pace this game was played.

Note that Wisconsin, which is the Big 10 version of Pitt, played many of the teams tough also but also bowed out in the first round of the NCAA to an even lower seed than us.

Comment by wbb 04.09.13 @ 7:07 am

You are right, wbb. Those games were ugly compared to the classic we all watched last night. And I am not a fan of Jamie’s slow down ugly style that has been the subject of much criticism here. And I agree we are sorely lacking the talent level of those two teams last night, although we are heading in the right direction with Robinson, Adams (still hurts), Young and Newkirk. But basketball is all about matchups, and we played both these great teams head to head and could have beat both. Just trying to soothe my wounded psyche after another disappointing season. HTP

Comment by Bossdaws 04.09.13 @ 7:36 am

bossdaws–Yes, we did play both of them close. That and some other close games vs very good teams is why Sagarin’s computer’s final rankings out today have Pitt as #11 based on the entire body of work for the season. Sagarin rewards you even when you lose as long as you keep the scores close and competitive vs the best teams.

On another note, Pitt could not have played at that tempo with any hope of wunning because we don’t have the same level of talent–particularly in terms of speed and quickness in the backcourt. Dixon does about as well as is possible with what he has. Recruiting talent and athleticism, not coaching, is Pitt’s main issue, IMHO.

Comment by pitt1972 04.09.13 @ 8:01 am

I’m not sure I was watching the same game as all of you. I thought a lot of it was sloppy, schoolyard basketball. There were times when the refs blew the whistle in obvious play-on situations and other times when fouls or other violations should have been called that weren’t. There were flashes of brilliant team basketball but most of the time I found it painful to watch. And, when Michigan still had a chance at the end but still had fouls to give, I thought Beilein had the wrong people on the floor and managed the clock quite badly. If JD had played the end that way, there would have been many on this board calling for his head.

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.09.13 @ 8:09 am

Pitt Dad — totally agree about Beilein at the end. Although, not sure better game management there changes the outcome.

I don’t want to say that the game was painful to watch, because that brand of basketball does provide for some spectacular moments. I wouldn’t call it a classic either though.

Comment by JCE 04.09.13 @ 8:31 am

jce good find thanks he is tall a maybe.

Comment by FRANKCAN 04.09.13 @ 8:38 am

@JCE – I agree that it might not have changed the outcome. Bui it might have and we won’t know because he didn’t try. I’m just pointing out that I don’t think either he or Pitino are head and shoulders above JD.

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.09.13 @ 8:57 am

Pitt Dad, I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder, whatever that means. I didn’t have a horse in the game and thought for pure entertainment this game had it going on.

To start with you had Albrecht, a bench warmer light it up for seventeen in the first half, with their superstar on the bench. Not sure why they never set any up for him in the second half.

Then Hancock goes crazy and brings Louisville off the mat.

In the second half Louisville’s full court pressure continued to wear down Michigan. Burke played outstanding as did Siva, who was outstanding at both ends.

The difference was the Louisville bigs wanted it a little more down the stretch, Behanen was a beast, Dieng makes a big shot and McGary looked a little lost.

I agree that Pitino outcoached Beilein down the stretch as you might expect. The refs are always going to miss a few but I didn’t think they affected the outcome at all.

The play was ferocious and intense and as high speed as is possible. There were spectacular dunks.

If you didn’t like this one, either you were a Michigan fan or I’m not sure what you would find entertaining.

As for sloppy schoolyard basketball, if this was it I’m all for it.

Comment by gc 04.09.13 @ 9:25 am

@gc – I agree, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I am somewhat a Michigan fan – and I hate Louisville (see my post from last night) – but I didn’t like the way Michigan was playing either. The few things you point out were what I would call the few flashes of brilliance in an otherwise sloppy game.

Michigan not going back to Albrecht had a lot to do with their overall style in the late first half and the entire second half. They generally went away from the first half aggressiveness. Maybe Albrecht was tired since he hadn’t played that many minutes all season. Who knows.

All I know is that the game didn’t really hold my attention. It could be me. Maybe I’m old. Or maybe I just cared more about Louisville losing than I did about Michigan winning.

Comment by Pitt Dad 04.09.13 @ 9:50 am

@Pitt Dad, I hear you, not a fan of either team, but I am a fan of great players and they both were loaded.

Someday maybe we will get a point guard like one of those. The ball handling and the speed they play at is phenomenal. Robinson will be very good, but those guys both have a gear you need to be born with.

Comment by gc 04.09.13 @ 10:41 am

Pitt, it’s recruiting and it’s style of play is all a big ‘Catch 22′.

We can’t play uptempo against the big boys since we don’t have the athletes/shooters like they do.

However you’re not going to get the type of players (athletes/shooters) you need to play that way, if you’re playing ugly halfcourt snailball.

And that is The Catch.

Comment by EMel 04.09.13 @ 1:06 pm

The big winner last nite was a 2 way parlay.

L-ville & the Over. (way over) :-)

Comment by EMel 04.09.13 @ 1:12 pm

Actually I think we had the personel to play uptempo this year.

All these guys are better in uptempo:

Woodie
Zeigler (had best game vs DePaul)
Adams
Sleepy
Zanna (can’t play in halfcourt against better teams)
Moore (had best game vs DePaul)

Big mistake this year with the 10 man deep was not using the rent-a-win season in getting into an uptempo offense and some sort of press defense, thereby making team depth an advantage over conf. opponents.

Here’s an AP piece on Dixon, Rice & Pitt

http://sports.yahoo.com/news/rices-abrasive-nature-apparent-early-071437868–ncaab.html;_ylt=AvHQtBsC6PZTDCteqLvlr_2107YF

Comment by EMel 04.09.13 @ 1:36 pm

I don’t know, allthough it had it’s moments of playground basketball, I saw a lot of offenses being run.

Now, being run at a much faster pace than maybe we are used too.

Their pg’s allready had in mind what they were gonna do before they even got to the half court line.

The teams were very well educated on how their offenses were supposed to work and their role, and though it may have seemed scatter brained, I found them to be highly potent offenses, aggressively running their offenses at the defenses, almost forcing themselves onto the defenses as opposed to getting across the line, then taking 15 seconds or so, to decdie what to do.

Not a veiled criticism at JD either. I understand what we run and we’ll have to live with it.

To me, I saw a couple polished teams running at full bore.

Like PittDad said, eye of the beholder. I’m no expert certainly.

Comment by Dan 04.09.13 @ 2:35 pm

The refs blew 2 violations against Michigan in the 2nd half. Twice the M&B in bounded against pressure and the man who inbounded received the pass back with his last foot out of bounds.
If there weren’t any pressure I would let it go with a warning, but against pressure you have to call it.
I think officiating this year was all over the place.

Comment by SFPitt 04.09.13 @ 5:24 pm

For those that want to read the tea leaves about how close we played Michigan and Louisville, I’d like to suggest that maybe THEY overlooked US. Maybe they didn’t see us as formidable competition, and played DOWN to our level.

I’m not bitter, it’s just that as of late, I’m more comfortable understating our ability, then reading too much into what appears to be a silver-lined loss.

Comment by Lou 04.09.13 @ 6:19 pm

I’m thrilled L’Ville won and not a B1G team. I had to put up with hearing how the B1G was by far the best conference in CBB all year….a flash in the pan.

The announcers in the final were so B1G biased on the calls it made me sick. How could any Pitt fan root for Michigan is beyond me….

Comment by Jackagain 04.12.13 @ 3:29 pm

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