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May 8, 2013

Okay, so as the match-ups for the ACC-Big Ten Challenge were being leaked this morning, it became clear that Pitt wasn’t going to land one of the heavyweights from the B1G. That’s not surprising. Pitt will not be considered in the preseason as one of the top 5 or 6 teams in the ACC. So, Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan St., Ohio St. and Indiana weren’t going to be likely opponents. Among the best of the rest there would have been Iowa, Illinois and Purdue. But Iowa and Purdue got leaked and their opponents were not Pitt.

So, more and more likely it was going to be a Pennsylvania battle.

And indeed it will be. Penn State comes to the Pete on Tuesday, December 3.

Now the Nits will be better than they were this past year. They have a bunch of decent players coming back from injury, including Tim Frazier.

But, from helping the overall strength of Pitt’s non-con schedule it won’t do much.  So that’s the bad news. Also John Johnson won’t be eligible to play for Penn State for that game.

I’m still relatively happy with the game. There really was no reason for Pitt and Penn State to stop playing basketball. Other than the fact that Penn State was really tired of being embarrassed. Hopefully this will be the spark to renew this as an annual game.

haha…..I guess Ped State signed off on this.
This is akin to playing Robert Morris, but of course Bobby Mo is better, but a huge Pitt win over the Pedo’s will appear bigger in the next day papers to the uninformed.

And it’s all about perception.

ACC 1…..Big Joke …0

Comment by EMel 05.08.13 @ 1:46 pm

I think we are wrong to schedule Penn St. in basketball. We have nothing to gain by scheduling them and they are in a can’t lose anything situation. They get an opportunity and we gain nothing. That is a dumb move particularly in light of the disrespect they have shown our football team for the last 20 years. We don’t need to play them so why should we give their inferior program any chance at credibility gained at our expense. BAD IDEA!

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 1:51 pm

This will be a slight upgrade to their home non conference schedule. Though, if past history repeats (and I think it will) I fear this will be their biggest home nonconference game next season.

No excuse not to start a home/away yearly game with WVU each year as well. If they added WVU game next season to the Pete that would probably give them two ‘sellouts’ which is pretty rare for nonconference games at the Pete.

Comment by milo bloom 05.08.13 @ 1:56 pm

@spirtofsection…Pitt probably had very little say in who they played in the challenge…ESPN and the conferences want TV Viewers and this game will attract them so from their standpoint the game makes perfect sense. I agree though Pitt gains very little in this game if they win..while PSU has everything to gain if they would pull the upset.

Comment by milo bloom 05.08.13 @ 2:00 pm

@ spirit22

We didn’t schedule it, ESPN did.

I don’t like playing the Pedo’s either, however, we’re going to playing them 4 years in a row starting in 2014 or 2015 in football anyway.

Remember when Cornhole made a big deal of adding 2 more Pitt/Ped State football games to the first two that were scheduled.

Might as well give them a beatdown in hoops and again ESPN is insisting and money rules.

Comment by EMel 05.08.13 @ 2:04 pm

I’d rather play some Philly schools for recruiting purposes in the non-con. Like we did in 2011-2012 when we played LaSalle & Penn.

Maybe if we wanted a real test in the non-con, add Temple to the schedule. That would help the RPI. Poor Temple they waited for the like 30 years to finally get into the BigEast for hoops and now after the conf. blowup, they’re in the AAC. That is what you call ……hard luck.

Comment by EMel 05.08.13 @ 2:08 pm

Good….we need 6 more wins against these clowns…

Comment by Jackagain 05.08.13 @ 2:10 pm

Joe Johnson is going to score 27 in leading the upset (if he’s eligibel — can’t remember)

Comment by wbb 05.08.13 @ 2:38 pm

have you noticed we dont have a great team
next year we could lose.

Comment by FRANKCAN 05.08.13 @ 2:40 pm

link to

Big Ten has early rankings of the “best” games.

7th out of 12, not bad, thought it would be #12.

As for the game, if we beat them by 15 or 20 i’ll love it.

If we win by 2 or 3 or get upset, I won’t like it.

I’ll let you know after the game.

Comment by Dan 05.08.13 @ 2:44 pm

clarification — it is John Johnson (who transferred to PSU from Pitt) and he won’t be eligible until after the fall term

Comment by wbb 05.08.13 @ 2:46 pm

Really have no desire to play the Pedos particularly in basketball but as someone said we only have a few to make up in the all time win/loss column. Had we continued to play them we’d be up by 15! Now Hugga Beer, he and his crew can rot! There is a purpose to squeezein them out of the East. Let em play and better yet, let their fans drive to the Middle East, er Mid-West, hey same distance. Match their resources against Texas, Oklahoma, T-Bone pick-it, etc. The Pete is a permanent sell-out for us. We will win our first ACC B-ball championship within 3 years cause of this recruiting class and we will remember all the idiots who were so hostile to JD! H2P! Beat nova! UPone

Comment by UPone 05.08.13 @ 3:21 pm

kane to commit to pitt this week end per

Comment by FRANKCAN 05.08.13 @ 3:21 pm

Get to see Geno Thorpe, did we recruit him?

Comment by alcofan 05.08.13 @ 3:44 pm

Now ESPN gets to dictate who we have to play, where was ESPN when Penn St. decided it wasn’t to their benefit to play us in football? Where was ESPN last year when we didn’t get to take part in the SEC challenge. If we had an AD with half a set of nuts he would insist ESPN get us a real game or tell them to pound salt. This is not to Pitts benefit and if we made enough noise it wouldn’t happen. Instead we just go along and get shit on year after year. Our AD is a loser and so it shouldn’t surprise anyone when we consistently get the short end by anyone negotiating anything.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 3:53 pm

@ FRankcan

No way we lose to Pedo State. Patterson goes for 20 and Uchebo has his first double/double with 17 & 15. JR has 14 and 10 assts. Newkirk has 12 & 6. Zanna will have his usual big non con stats, 16 and 10.

Pitt wins in a rout, 81-55

Comment by EMel 05.08.13 @ 3:55 pm

Why can’t we play Wisconsin and Penn St can play Maryland. Why because our AD doesn’t have the clout/sense/balls to insist on it. Instead our first year in the ACC sees us being relegated to an inferior game that has no benefit to us and risks embarrassment. What has Illinois done or NC St. done that they get better games than us? If you let people on top of you they will crap all over you, and that is exactly where our idiot AD positions us.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 4:26 pm

@Spirit.. Yes, but he still luvs you!

Comment by CompLit 05.08.13 @ 4:35 pm

ESPN can dictate Bball interconference challenges becuase its a made-for-TV event, football schedules are not so its a mistake to compare the two situations. I’m not a SP fan by any means, but I don’t believe he can do anything about this, particularly the first year Pitt is in the ACC. Pitt will have no clout with the ACC for many years, and that would be the case no matter how loud or long Pitt yells. If Pitt wants some say at the ACC meetings, they better start winning . . . . in both Fball and Bball or they will be relagated to the back of the room. Sad to say but afraid it true.

Comment by Taxing Matters 05.08.13 @ 4:40 pm

Why do Georgia Tech, Maryland and Boston College all get better games than us? The answer is because they don’t have an idiot in the drivers seat at those schools. Our basket ball team consistently out performs all 3 of these fellow ACC schools but when it comes time to schedule games against the BiG 10 all of a sudden we get stuck with the doormat team. Instead of getting an upgrade gifted to us in the non-con we get to play in a no win situation against a school that has done all it can to hurt our football program. For almost a century we played every year in football until pedophile Joe decided it wasn’t profitable enough unless we played there twice as much as they played here. Now because of the stupid ACC/BiG challenge we get stuck playing there nobody basketball team in a no win situation when our level of accomplishment would dictate a better matchup. This sucks and is typical of how sorry a job our AD does consistently. We get screwed every time because he is asleep at the switch. How many times would we have to play Penn St. on there court for them to take this idiot off our hands?

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 4:56 pm

Just win Baby!

Comment by gc 05.08.13 @ 4:57 pm

Taxing, I disagree , all SP had to do was say no we aren’t going to play Penn ST., we deserve better and insist on a better matchup or we won’t play. If he makes enough noise the media could even get some mileage out of it, but I’d bet season tickets he didn’t even question it. He probably doesn’t even realize we are getting screwed. Such is the state of his leadership tenure.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 5:07 pm

Pederson is the poster child for the impotent AD. But this game is being scheduled because “Pitt v. Penn State” means something nationally whether the teams are good or not.
The game will draw in our markets regardless, but more sets across the nation, however so slight, will tune in because of the brand.
Not so were it MD…
Common guys…the money is in national sets, not whether the game is number 1 in the Mon Valley.
Now pleezzzeee go out and get your mullets trimmed.

Comment by SFPitt 05.08.13 @ 5:33 pm

Nobody watches Penn St basketball here or anywhere else and Pitt vs Wisconsin would draw more audience than Pitt vs. Penn St. This game is an insult to us based on the fact that BC, Virginia, Md, G Tech all got better opponents. Maryland is leaving the ACC and they even got a better game than us.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 5:57 pm

Spirit, did it ever occur to you that Pitt could have played one of those “better” teams, but on the road? I would imagine securing the home game was more important, and I would expect it to be a sellout – and I’m talking about actual attendance, not just tickets sold. Pederson is an ass, but I won’t condemn him on this one.

Comment by marc 05.08.13 @ 6:02 pm

Your confusing the Penn State basketball brand with “Pitt v Penn State” brand. The 2 are not the same.
Would you rather sell advertising and get 10% of a market of 1 million or 3% of a market of 100 million?

Comment by SFPitt 05.08.13 @ 6:10 pm

Neither I would rather not get stuck playing against a nobody in a can’t win game. I think you probably are right as far as the advertising though and I don’t wear a mullet.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.08.13 @ 6:36 pm


I realize Pederson is the devil and responsible for every negative thing that happens to Pitt. Or at least that is how many seem to view things. But, really. Now you are reaching. And frankly this is the sort of baseless complaint that delegitimizes the valid issues with Pederson’s tenure by making it seem like people just want to blame him for any and everything.

Pederson has no say in the ACC/B1G Challenge. He can provide some input to the ACC Commissioner and/or whoever the ACC has working with ESPN and B1G on this, but this almost entirely ESPN’s call. Just as the Big East had the ability to screw Pitt last year in the SEC/Big East series. All Pitt can do is leave the dates of the challenge open and wait to find out the opponent.

ESPN wants games that draw eyeballs. The conferences want competitive games. That’s why the expected top teams from both conferences are facing each other. That’s why the ACC doesn’t randomly exclude teams from it. They drop the teams that had the lowest RPI, in this case Clemson and VT. Pitt is expected to be somewhere in the 6-10 range of the ACC. Once you eliminate about half the big10 opponents, it really comes down to fitting home-away situations and especially what will make the best TV ratings. A Pitt-Penn St. game will do much better for ESPN than a Pitt-Iowa or Pitt-Purdue.

Comment by Chas 05.08.13 @ 8:51 pm

Pitt/Wisconsin in hoops would be a real snoozer.

Plus we could lose which would be really bad if the only real D1 team we played in the non-con beat us.

This way we can destroy the Pedos and then have all our traditional non-con cupcakes.

Can’t wait to play North Florida & Bethune-Cookman again.

Comment by EMel 05.08.13 @ 7:02 pm

Some of you seem to think the world revolves around Pitt. Maybe we should wait until we are actually in the ACC before we RUN the ACC too.

Comment by RayHpgh 05.08.13 @ 7:10 pm

A warning to all Pitt fans. Penn State has a very good coach and a veteran team returning which will include John Johnson.

Pitt has a bunch of underachievers + 4 new players.

This might not be the “cakewalk” many of you expect.

Comment by Dan 72 05.08.13 @ 7:20 pm

I am offended by the mullet talk! The are defenseless, however exceptionally good deep-fried.

Comment by CompLit 05.08.13 @ 7:26 pm

What someone actually remodeled a Stadium built in 1930? And…..It looks awesome. Gosh, Pederson is a tool.

link to

Comment by Upittbaseball 05.08.13 @ 7:45 pm

In basketball, and I mean this to be factual and sincere, Penn State Sucks!

Comment by Dr. Tom 05.08.13 @ 7:49 pm

Just beat the teams that are on the schedule and I’ll be happy. If Penn State is on the schedule, I’m fine with that. Yes their basketball has improved and hopefully the Panthers will improve as well. I don’t worry about early season non-conference games.

Comment by Justinian 05.08.13 @ 8:33 pm

I agree Chas. Now why the hell do you have to be the voice of reason? 🙂

Comment by TX Panther 05.08.13 @ 9:00 pm

DAN72 i think you are right we wont know what kind of team we have

Comment by FRANKCAN 05.08.13 @ 9:05 pm

Dan72, so we’re supposed to be afraid of John Johnson? What, is he going to be the best cheerleader ever? He’s not eligible to play! Actually, I’d prefer that he play, because he’s a quitter.

Comment by panther94 05.08.13 @ 9:50 pm

I agree with Dan.

Comment by TonyinHouston 05.08.13 @ 10:12 pm

Does anyone remember that PSU beat Michigan this past year. This year especially, it might not be a piece of cake to pay PSU with the very new team at Pitt.

No win situation is how I see this one, so Pitt better win.

Comment by TVax 05.08.13 @ 11:19 pm


Comment by TVax 05.08.13 @ 11:19 pm

If we lose to Pedo State in hoops, that might be the last game I watch next year.

Get serious, we have 3 of our starting 5 back.

Our bench (even a new bench) can beat Ped State by at least 15 point.

Ped State won like 2 games in the Big Joke this year.

I predict a huge Pitt win. On the order of 81-55.

Comment by EMel 05.09.13 @ 12:32 am

Too bad John Johnson can’t play. I would love to see Deandre Kane and Chris Jones reject every shot that little punk would put up. Cause he can’t play PG and he’s a midget at 2G.

And Pitt will do much better than 6-10 in the ACC.
The ACC is not what it used to be. Miami won the conf and the ACC tournament this year and Marquette beat them pretty easily in the Big Dance. Other than Duke & UNC, we will have equal or better talent than the rest of the ACC.
They only had 4 teams in the Dance this year.

Comment by EMel 05.09.13 @ 12:39 am

My apologies. Did not intend to suggest that you wear a mullet; I no longer have the option!

Comment by SFPitt 05.09.13 @ 2:20 am

I agree that while Stevie has done a handful of things that has negatively affected Pitt atletics, he certainly is not the blame for everything bad. But then again, after Wanny and Rhymes with Beano, this site is looking for the new fall guy.

Comment by wbb 05.09.13 @ 6:24 am

Marquette beat Miami easily because they lost their big man the game before, and their PG had the flu for the game. Otherwise, Miami wins; they were a very talented team on a roll.

Pitt will be fine in the ACC so long as Kane doesn’t blow up the team.

Comment by velvil 05.09.13 @ 6:34 am

Since when is the AD not responsible for scheduling of the athletic teams? This is a no win situation for Pitt, and I think it is wrong to schedule it. If we are going to let the ACC and ESPN dictate our schedule then insist they put us in a position where we have something to gain or refuse to play.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.09.13 @ 9:04 am

@spiritofsection22..Since ESPN (and other’s) starting paying absurd amounts of money to broadcast college sports to the conferences, that’s when.

I understand you are upset with Peterson about other issues (which is fair game) but this is not one of them.

Comment by milobloom 05.09.13 @ 10:50 am

@spiritofsection22. Didn’t you read the friggin’ post that Chas sent to you?

The AD is NOT in charge of outside scheduling, since they started having all kinds of crazy tournaments, and conference challenges that are all made for television.

Even the Hawaii tourney’s, the Madison Square Garden tourneys, the tourney in Puerto Rico etc. etc.

If you get invited to one of those, you don’t tell them who you’ll play.

As for the conference, hell, we’re not even offically in until July 1, and you want us to start telling them who and when we’ll play??

How about winning the conference, or at least finishing in the top 4 for a few years before we start demanding to be heard.

Ya, that’s just what we want, to start off in a new conference rufusing to play in the ACC/Big 10 tourney.

It’s well documented that I’m no fan of Smug Smilin’ Steve, but good Lord, give it a rest, this has absolutely nothing to do with him.

Comment by Dan 05.09.13 @ 11:04 am

Dan, it isn’t a tournament It’s a stupid made up challenge. Last year we got screwed out of playing Kentucky in just such an event and this year we get stuck with a game that has no benefit to us and helps Penn St. AS far as the ACC they are lucky to have us and I don’t think we should take the approach that we have to prove our worthiness before we stand up for ourself. This pairing sucks. Did you notice the coaches comments in this mornings Trib? Dixon seemed less than enamored with the assignment while the Penn St. coach was gushing about what a great thing it is. Although I admit SP might have little control over these pairings since he managed to get us screwed last year he should have been on his toes to avoid it happening again. You make it sound like we are some vagrant that the gracious ACC let come in out of the cold. They seem to be taking the same approach with this crappy assignment and I think it sucks. Where is our payday for playing in this no win game? We deserve a game against the upper half of the Big 10 ,but we get this crap instead. I would love a game against Ohio St, if we win we look great if we lose we were supposed to anyway. Instead Maryland who is leaving the ACC gets that game. I notice there athletic director didn’t let them get screwed out of a decent challenge game. Let them play Penn St in a no win situation , I’d rather have the night off.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.09.13 @ 2:38 pm

This game sucks and in noway can help Pitt. Big mistake by ACC. We should never play them in hoops or football.

Comment by frankarms 05.09.13 @ 3:25 pm

JoePa treated us like shit and his attitude still remains, F Penn State. We can gain absolutely nothing but sure can lose a LOT.

Comment by frankarms 05.09.13 @ 3:28 pm

Yes, it’s a made up challenge. Made up by ESPN.
Guess who gets to decide the games???

Yep, the people that made up the challenge, and the people who are paying for the challenge.

Maryland’s AD had no say so in it either.

You seem to think that Pitt is still a perennial top 15 team and a titan of college basketball. This is no longer 2006-2009.

We had a losing season, oh wait, the CBI helped make it a winning season two years ago.

Last year, allthough an improvement, was not a great year by any means.

Ya, we finished fourth, beating no one. Georgetown while they were in a tailspin and Syracuse once.

We got beat by Louisville, Syracuse, Notre Dame in what one could argue was the most humilitating loss Pitt hoops has ever suffered, Marquette twice I believe, along with losses to Cincinnati and Rutgers.

Not to mention, the creme de la creme, blowout humiliation on national tv in the first round of the NCAA tourney.

I’m not sure who you think we are, but, we’re not.

I’m sure they are happy to have us, they have said so publicly.

And yes, I am glad the ACC would have us, otherwise, I’d be looking at a hoops schedule that had SMU, Houston and Central Florida on it.

Comment by Dan 05.09.13 @ 4:03 pm

p.s. If we are the team you say we are, and deserve a top match up, then we should surely beat PSU by 20 or 25, right??

So, how could it be a no win situation?

If we win, we get a win like the other lame non-con’s we play, and with Pitt being so good, as you say, no way we shouldn’t blow them out. Right??

Besides, with the way Pitt schedules non-con games, this will probably be the highlight game!!!


Comment by Dan 05.09.13 @ 4:20 pm

Dan, So you would have me believe that Espn dictates who plays who, and that the conferences and AD’s of the individual teams have no imput. How do you come by this knowledge or is it only your guess? I am not saying we deserve top billing but Penn St. is the bottom of an 11 step ladder. We deserve better and if you are so bothered playing “lame non-con games” I don’t know why you aren’t objecting to the slight as well. How does Maryland get to play Ohio St. as an example? Why do Virginia and Georgia Tech rate better games than us? I think we are getting shafted and being slotted behind teams we have out performed. Witchita St seemed to blow out and humiliate some other pretty good teams besides us by the way,and I’m not so sure this loss was as embarrassing as you make it sound.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.09.13 @ 5:19 pm

@spirit, I love your passion, I really do. I’m be very sincere.

I would just tell you, try to calm down, PITT was NOT slighted.

We’re just getting into the conference, actually we’re not even in it yet.

No, I have absolutely no insider knowledge.

I do know, that if ESPN is paying, they are looking for the best matchups.

Yes, I think there would be some input from the AD’s and coaches.

But minimal. They would only be suggestions.

Who knows, we don’t know that Smug Smilin’ Steve didn’t say, “we’d like a rematch with Michigan”.

How do we know he didn’t say something like that.

And yes, we do have some cache as a basketball power still, I was being a bit hard on us, to make a point.

Come on spirt, it’s like any other job or place, we are the new kid.

Frankly, allthough the Pitt-PSU rivalry is in football only, I would imagine someone at the network probably said something like, “hey, how about Pitt-Penn St.?? They’re football rivals, they’re starting to play again in a couple years, they’re only a couple hours away from each other, why not, how about Pitt-Penn St?”

Spirit, let’s put it this way. In a couple years, if we finish in the top 4 or 5 of the ACC and are ranked in the top 15 again, I will be right there with you if we get stuck playing Iowa or someone like that.

It’s all about the money and match ups and marketing.

Believe me, if we rise to the top 10 again, and beat on Duke and UNC a few times, it will be
Pitt v. Mich St. Pitt v. Indiana, Pitt v. OSU.

Good night my friend, you’re a die hard and I love it!!!

Comment by dan 05.09.13 @ 7:55 pm

I’m going to attribute the nay-saying about this game as a rivalry effect. We’ve wanted to get Penn State back on our schedule. Penn State is predicted to be a much better squad next year. We are still putting pieces together. Don’t count victories before the game is played.

Comment by TonyinHouston 05.09.13 @ 7:57 pm

p.s. Spirit.

Think about this. Clemson, Wake Forest, and Virginia Tech didn’t even get asked to play.

Sure, there hoops are so-so, but Wake and Clemson are charter members.

I’m sure they probably have some fans saying, why do the three new kids get to play in the tourney, why shouldn’t they have to wait.

My point is, I really don’t take it like a slight.

Everything I’ve heard and read, from Swofford, the ACC commish, to other AD’s, and coaches, has all been very pro Pitt, and they are accepting us as one of their own.

Like I said, a few years from now, and we’re one of the top 4 teams and we draw a dog game, then I’ll be right with you.

Comment by dan 05.09.13 @ 8:05 pm

Tony,I’m not counting any victories,just the opposite. What I hate about this game is if we kill them it doesn’t get us any recognition and if we lose we look stupid.

Comment by spiritofsection 22 05.10.13 @ 8:15 am

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