November 20, 2013

Open Thread: Lehigh-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 2:51 pm

Sorry about the site being down for a few hours. Hosting company had some problems today.

Looks like DVR delay tonight due to work. So just a brief window to toss this up for the game.

The game is on ESPNU at 7:30.

Chas, Must be the huge volume of people trying to get on–sort of like the Affordable Health Care website.

Comment by OPFIM 11.20.13 @ 5:16 pm

haha….that would be more than 200 then !

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 5:34 pm

Zywiec Porter. Polish behemoth at 9.5 ABV…and for $1.75. Sweeeeeet!

Comment by SilverPanther in NYC 11.20.13 @ 7:18 pm

Just thought of this. In 2-3 years we will know if The Affordable Care and Head Coach Paul Chryst are successful. Ok now let’s win a basketball game.

Comment by OPFIM 11.20.13 @ 8:15 pm

shooting lights out

Comment by gc 11.20.13 @ 8:24 pm

how boring!

Comment by wbb 11.20.13 @ 8:30 pm

@wbb There’s nothing boring about watching our boys play extremely well, albeit against Lehigh. I’d MUCH rather watch Pitt basketball perform at a high level than, say, watch Pitt flounder against UNC. 10 times out of 10.

Comment by MikePITT 11.20.13 @ 8:33 pm


BTW, NC court upholds ACC $52M lawsuit vs MD.

Comment by wbb 11.20.13 @ 8:36 pm

When is Pitt’s first “tough” game? Anything in pre-season?

Comment by Lou 11.20.13 @ 8:40 pm

I’m a big fan of the scoring depth on this team. It seems like there are 3 or 4 guys who can score 20 and no one will bat an eye.

Comment by Justin 11.20.13 @ 8:45 pm

they play Texas Tech next week in Brooklyn. Not a Top 25 team but much better than what we have seen. Coach is Tubby Smith

Hope we shoot like this away from the Pete

Comment by wbb 11.20.13 @ 8:46 pm

@wbb – They didn’t ‘uphold’ it, they just didn’t let Maryland toss the case out. It’s going to be litigated.

Comment by MikePITT 11.20.13 @ 8:53 pm

tomato … tomato

Comment by wbb 11.20.13 @ 9:38 pm

Great open thread. I feel like I was at the game.

Comment by CNorwoodAZ 11.20.13 @ 9:43 pm

I’ll take 23 and 14 from Zanna.

Comment by Wardapalooza 11.20.13 @ 10:22 pm

Best Pitt team since DeJaun Blair and Sam. Expecting great things from this team.

Comment by Pitt Fan In Atlanta 11.20.13 @ 10:26 pm

ACC doesn’t look to imposing based on some early results.

Belmont defeating N. Carolina
BC is 1-3
Twerps are 1-2

Dayton 82 @ Georgia Tech 72
N. Carolina Central 82 @ NC State 72

After living down here for 20 years, this isn’t the ACC of the 90′s. Far from it.

PITT should be one of the 4 top teams.

Syracuse, PITT. Dukies, Tarholes.

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 11:18 pm

You can tell this early….Pitt Fan in Atlanta.

The Wannamaker, Brown, McGhee was a #1 seed.

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 11:19 pm

At the Top of the ACC standings, where we belong !

link to

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 11:21 pm

Z with the Double/Double, 23 & 14 monster game.
Got to work on the D though, opposing Center had 20 pts. Career high for Z, cudos are in order !

Lamar another nice outing, 17 & 5 & 4
Good effort off the bench by Durand Durand 15 & 5
(Five 3 pointers, bombs away)

* only a combined 5 points from the starting backcourt although ~~
* JR did have 11 assts, no turnovers.
* PITT didn’t cover.
* outscored in 2nd half 35-30

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 11:32 pm

Hey we’re a basketball school now, we need more posts than this ! Ridic ….

Comment by EMel 11.20.13 @ 11:33 pm

I’ll post after we play someone. I don’t see how anyone can give us much credit for these wins so far. Watched the HU game and IMO we didn’t look great. Savannah, Fresno, Howard and now Lehigh – Ridic…!
Not saying this team doesn’t have potential, but way too early to judge. Looking forward to TT and Cinn games and we had better not screw up the PSU game. That happening on Dec. 3rd would ruin my Christmas.

Comment by TVax 11.21.13 @ 12:21 am

I attended the game tonight and have attended all but the first exhibition. I am currently thinking that this might be the best all around shooting Pitt team that I can recall. I believe Johnson, Patterson, Young, Wright and Artis had one or more threes. Johnson was on fire from the arc in the first half. Zanna hit three or four face up jumpers. Robinson didn’t really score tonight but his shot looks much better. Wright still has an awkward release, but he is getting air under his shot and it actually now has correct rotation.

This team plays much more quickly on both ends of the floor. The ball is rarely stuck on offense. There is rarely the sense of dread as the shot clock churns. Lots of help on defense and active hands. Occasional traps.

The only serious concern that I have about this team remains interior size. As Emel noted, Kempton had a lot of success against Zanna and others inside tonight. Randall has more bulk, but not as much jumping ability. Don’t know whether Uchebo will play this year. Nwanko plays hard, but don’t expect to see a whole lot of him during conference play.

Hopefully this all endures into the conference schedule. I too am wondering whether the ACC is quite as powerful and the media day hype led everyone to believe. I am looking forward to watching it unfold.

Comment by Barvo 11.21.13 @ 12:28 am

Emel, You need a new bookie. They covered my -18. Lol.

Comment by CNorwoodAZ 11.21.13 @ 12:47 am

Don’t mean to sound too critical but lets face it we’ve seen this dominance in the preseason from Zanna, sooooo? JR doesn’t look like a shooter, much like last year. OK, I’ll take a 0 turnover, 11 assist, 26 min game most any day from my point guard. Cam looks improved but he needed to improve, no? Lamar has already looked great and then also disappeared, deja vu all over again?

That said, I really like Young so far and our backcourt size is nice. Oh, to think what we could be with a 7 footer named Adams.

I feel good about this year but I’m not feeling like top 4 in the ACC. If they continue to improve and get some senior leadership ON THE COURT in conference play, then it will be a fun year. H2P!!!

Comment by TVax 11.21.13 @ 12:52 am

I’m definitely excited for this year. We have offensive firepower. As far as defense goes, maybe we should embrace the zone even more with the rule re-interpretations.

Comment by panther94 11.21.13 @ 12:53 am

@ TVax

Didn’t see the game very well tonite, as the cocktail lounge I was out, had some other forms of entertainment. ;-)

Question for you, did you see any Dribble Penetration from JR tonite ?

Agree with you about Z, we’ve seen this before, we can only hope he see’s the conf. games as non-con games as well. Since they will be sort of.
You know, new opponents, etc.

ACC isn’t that good, they haven’t had more than 4 NCAA bids for several years. They wouldn’t again this year without the 3 BigEast teams.

Comment by EMel 11.21.13 @ 1:39 am

well they might have had 5 last year. Forget if both UVA & NC State made it.

Comment by EMel 11.21.13 @ 1:40 am

It is not that hard to figure out that Center is the “Weak Link” with this team.

Comment by PittofDreams 11.21.13 @ 6:24 am


Watched most of first half and the answer is not enough to make me believe. It was pass first and dribble drive a distant second. I don’t mind if that is what is available, yet if this team continues to shoot outside well, it needs to be a closer balance of those from JR.

All teams will need that guy with the rules changes this year on defensive touching. And of course there will be nights with cold shooting from the outside.

Comment by TVax 11.21.13 @ 7:05 am

JR had 11 assists and 0 turnovers. Hard to complain about that stat line.

He said after the game that he took what the defense gave him. If the defense plays off him and gives him the open shot, he’ll take it and make a fair share. If they give him the dribble drive he’ll take that.

His role on this team is orchestrate the offense and play good defense. Pitt doesn’t need him to score 20 points a game.

The question remains: When defenses tighten up in March and don’t give you anything, does Pitt have anyone who can win a one on one battle? TBD.

Comment by Boubabcar Aw 11.21.13 @ 7:27 am

Zanna and Patterson, not as much, have both done disappearing acts offensively. However, they are fifth year seniors.

Great basketball teams win the close games, we won’t know how good they really are till they play some.

There does seem to be a different look about this team. They are faster and more confident, we will see how well it holds up.

Randall and Young adding rebounds and Artis is shooting well. With Newkirk, a very strong freshman class. If Uchebo and Mostrella, work out, next year could be OK.

Comment by gc 11.21.13 @ 7:50 am

I do like being critical of JR after he has 11 assists and 0 turnovers.

Not having a legit center isn’t as big as a deal as it used to be. I’d take good PG and wing play over good center play all the time. That being said, if Adams was on the team Pitt would be a National Title contender.

Boubabcar Aw, are defenses even going to be able to tighten up that much in March with the way games are being called now? I think that is why Dixon has worked more on the zone than ever before.

Comment by Wardapalooza 11.21.13 @ 7:54 am

It is hard to criticize this team so far …. yet, as we know, the jury is still out. We’ll know a but more next week.

Boubacar, I agree. We have seen both Robinson and Zanna have great pre-seasons only to fall off come conference time. I have no doubt they will be more consistent this year but …

Young and Artis show much promise, but they are freshman so they are likely to be inconsistent. We do look to have a little more depth than we usually do … they are definitely positives but again, we just don’t know for sure at this point.

Comment by wbb 11.21.13 @ 7:55 am

Sagarin has us 4th in the ACC, 19th overall, with a strength of schedule of…335

link to

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.21.13 @ 8:00 am

Emel – You know who the coach at Dayton is right?

He’s a good kid and has climbed faster than Sean. Wish him the best.

Comment by Upittbaseball 11.21.13 @ 8:40 am

I saw dribble penatration by Newkirk which really impressed. Zanna is perfect at center and it is the one position that can hide his lack of natural creativity and use his strengths.

Like the up tempo offense but defense will always be a casaulty with it.

Having said all that….let’s wait until we play a legit opponant before dubbing this team a top
ACC contender.

Comment by Dan 72 11.21.13 @ 9:09 am

@Boubabcar: No. Unfortunately we do not have a one-on-one takeover guy, and Jamie seems to refuse to recruit one. That’s what separates the elite teams from the good ones, and I maintain we’ll never make that jump until Jamie realizes that.

Comment by MikePITT 11.21.13 @ 10:50 am

Newkirk will just get better… you can see his talent.. but it will be sometime till it all comes together.

Comment by Snala The Panther 11.21.13 @ 10:53 am

MikePitt, I could be wrong but believe Mostella is the one-on-one guy who may take us up a level. But you are correct, the one thing Pitt has lacked is that onw guy who can really take over come crunch time

Comment by wbb 11.21.13 @ 11:00 am

@ upitt

I’m guessing you mean Sean’s little brother, Archie.

He like big bro has a coaching stop in Ohio before……

Comment by EMel 11.21.13 @ 3:42 pm

@Mike Pitt, You make it sound so easy, like as soon as Jamie realizes it we can just get one at the Giant Eagle. Not only do you have to find one that wants to come here, he has to fit with the rest of the team so they play together. One could argue that we had one last year named Steve Adams. How did that work out? If it was half as easy as you make it sound everybody would just follow your championship formula. Duke has a one and done go too star this year and they have already lost one. Kentucky has 6 of ‘em. and they lost too. It isn’t that easy.

Comment by spiritofsection22 11.21.13 @ 4:48 pm

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