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March 9, 2017

Season Finally Ends

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 8:16 am

At least they didn’t go out like Duquesne. Ooof.

There was a brief period in the second half. Pitt had an energy that had all but disappeared before halftime. They were attacking the basket — and forcing Virginia to foul. The defense was showing effort. And Pitt pulled within 2 points barely 7 minutes into the second half.

This from a group that in the first half looked listless as the deficit grew. Whether it was being tired from the night before or simply ready to give-up. The energy from Pitt looked so negative that the ESPN crew of Sean McDonough and Doris Burke openly talked of how everyone at Pitt was ready to move on from this season.

And then Virginia opened things up once more. From the Virginia perspective, it started with a hustle play that created a 50-50 ball bouncing their way.

Pitt had slashed Virginia’s 11-point halftime lead to 46-44 when Isaiah Wilkins tapped a Perrantes miss, back toward the perimeter, where the Cavaliers regained possession. A subsequent 50-50 ball sent the 6-foot-11, 247-pound Salt sprawling over the baseline, and before landing with a thud, he managed to knock the ball off Panthers All-ACC wing Michael Young.

Better yet for Virginia (22-9), Kyle Guy converted Salt’s save into a right-corner 3-pointer.

“I knew if it was off one of our guys,” Salt said, “so I just tried to chuck it behind me, and luckily there was a Pitt dude there, and he fumbled it out. I was pretty lucky, to be honest.”

“Big play,” Cavaliers coach Tony Bennett said. “He certainly didn’t look like he had a chance at it. … Those are momentum changes. We tell our guys, it’s about the heart at this level. Every possession matters, and that one mattered.”

From there, Perrantes, a four-year starter at point guard, seized command. He made back-to-back threes and a drive. He assisted on a Ty Jerome 3-pointer.

There was a little luck. Salt managed to send it backwards, so low that it hit Mike Young’s shins before he could react. And then it bounced out without hitting either Cavalier player that was out of bounds. Still, it was the way Virginia took advantage of the luck that made the difference.

I don’t know that there is much to say at this point. Pitt’s offense wasn’t able to consistently beat the Virginia defense, and the defense has never had much of an answer this year.

Just like the previous game, UVa went 11-22 on 3s (Virginia, on the season was about 39%). Pitt was better from outside then the previous game, but needed to shoot 3s like they did in the upset win in January.

As much as this team frustrated. Seemed downright unlikable at times. As much as we have a coach no one seemed to want. It still stings to see them go out. I still feel bad for the players on the team that did put the effort. The ones that did care.

With the loss, the seniors closed a chapter on their respective careers, a stretch of time that will be dissected, debated and occasionally scrutinized in the coming months and over the course of Stallings’ tenure at the school.

They’ve known for months their time at the school likely wouldn’t end how they would have preferred it to, or at least how they once envisioned it, but in a somber, understated locker room after the loss, it didn’t make it any easier to digest.

“It wasn’t so much about how people perceived us, but it was about how we wanted to go out,” Jeter said. “We didn’t want to go out how we are right now. We couldn’t avoid it, I guess.”

Nope.





Iowa State is now 11-2 since the start of February. TCU played their third game in three days tonight.

TCU beat #1 ranked Kansas an hour from their campus yesterday. TCU will be making their first postseason appearance in five years (CBI). TCU will be making their first NIT appearance since 2005. TCU won as many conference games this season as they had in the preceding 3 seasons.

Pitt has their first losing record since the 1999-2000 season. Pitt had their worst conference record since 1977. Pitt missing their first postseason since 1999-2000.

Dixon certainly looking great compared to Stallings.

Comment by Barvo 03.10.17 @ 9:30 pm

Drew 3 for 3 against Florida this season.

Comment by Barvo 03.10.17 @ 9:32 pm

Drew lost his PG (leading points and assists) and C (2nd leading scorer and leading rebounder) from last season.

Drew > Stallings for sure

Comment by Barvo 03.10.17 @ 9:35 pm

Barvo for AD

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.10.17 @ 9:35 pm

In business, we fire people on Mondays. Patience fellow alums.

Comment by Dan 72 03.10.17 @ 10:02 pm

The Bell tolls on the 13th for Otis !

Comment by Emel 03.10.17 @ 10:10 pm

No. 23 Iowa St trounces TCU 84-63 to reach Big 12 title game

ESPN

Comment by PittofDreams 03.10.17 @ 10:29 pm

We fire on Fridays. Less chance of drama on Friday ajd weekend.

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.10.17 @ 10:32 pm

Former Pitt now TCU Coach Jamie Dixon after the Game…

“I got millions of BUYOUT bucks. I’m back at my alma mater. Man, I’m on top of the world.”

“Big shoutout to all my supporters back in the Burgh!”

Comment by PittofDreams 03.10.17 @ 10:35 pm

I actually prefer to fire people on a Friday as well and normally first thing in the morning.

Comment by Tony in Harrisburg 03.10.17 @ 11:23 pm

@PittofDream I’ll cheer for Dixon in the Post season and for TCU to advance when they play.

You can cheer for Stallings to advance from the couch, to the fridge, and eventually to the sh-tter.

Comment by Tony in Harrisburg 03.10.17 @ 11:28 pm

Tony – You mean to Bob Ton to work and sell Rockports.

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.10.17 @ 11:42 pm

You know I had liked Craig Meyer’s beat for the PG this season. Then he dropped this:

link to post-gazette.com

He apparently buys in to the shadow of Dixon over the program BS from coaching style to recruiting failures used by so many Stallings apologists. Stallings has a history. I don’t understand why so many choose to ignore it.

After the failures next season it will still be Dixon’s fault because Stallings had to bring in so many new guys and it took them a season to sort things out. This truly isn’t going to end for 2 more years. Sigh….

Comment by Barvo 03.11.17 @ 2:39 am

Personally, I’ll still be blaming what happens next year on Kithcart.

Comment by PittofDreams 03.11.17 @ 9:36 am

Barvo, there have been a few posts which humorously posit that local reporters produce puff pieces so they don’t miss out on free sandwiches and cookies. Sadly, there is a shred of truth therein.

Journalism has disappointingly evolved to be much more akin to propaganda than an independent perspective on things. Frankly, that is why blogs such as the Blather have taken hold. Take Chas. Arbitrarily select any his threads and you will find hard facts with editorializations sprinkled in. How refreshing compared to the local rags which do nothing but repeat what the Sports Information Department espouses. Then comes the editor, who most often has his or her own agenda (think PSU) plus a keen awareness of political correctness and by the time it reaches the reader the content is worthless.

The poor sap you are talking about actually thinks he is doing his job. Which, I guess he is if the criteria is dissemination of the requisite party line.

Some major media markets, such as Chicago and the Big Apple have a few traditionalists who would drum Stallings out of town. But Pittsburgh? If you didn’t folow college BB and relied on local reporters, you would think Stallings was a reincarnation of Ray Meyer.

Comment by Wally 03.11.17 @ 9:47 am

Follow Craig Meyer on Twitter and you get a better sense of how he truly feels about the program. Beat writers are an extension of the schools athletic department. The schools grant access and dictate stories. It’s why both papers have similar stories at the same time. Pitt is feeding them propaganda.

It’s also why the most critical articles on Pitt are written by other writers at the papers rather than the beat writers.

Craig is just doing his job within the confines of what he’s allowed to. Once again, you should be blaming Pitt for the information we’re given. Craig is much more honest critiquing the program on Twitter.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 03.11.17 @ 10:17 am

Has Pitt even interviewed anyone for the AD lost yet?

Or is it being left to Herman to conduct the search for the Holy Grail…from Corvallis ?

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 10:39 am

^ AD post ^

>needs some more coffee<

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 10:40 am

Emel – Chris Peak posted an article about a week ago on the search and a candidate that’s popped up but it was behind a paywall so I couldn’t see it.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 03.11.17 @ 10:46 am

Speaking of PG’s…hopefully next year’s additions will be able to shoot Free Throw’s. (kinda important for a PG, you know)

Kittycart was one of the worst I’ve ever seen.
He shot 31% FT’s. Was even worse at FG’s, 30% and was a comical 19% from 3.

Upitt could even hoist up 10 and make 2.

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 10:50 am

~ TT….so apparently naming Tressel early was another media ruse…similar to the Sean Miller ruse.

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 10:54 am

Otis has a history, besides a LOSING history.

Another reason, one has to shake one’s head why the BoT allowed this clown to be hired.

link to anchorofgold.com

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 11:01 am

Id make 5-7 free throws. Easily

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.11.17 @ 12:19 pm

haha upitt…i was talking about 3’s.

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 1:34 pm

Thank God the ACC won’t let their teams participate in that abortion called the CBi. Cause I’m quite sure Pitt would say ok….if we can make a nickle.

Even if it meant getting embarrassed by some no name school in the 1st Round.

L-Ville has played 32 games. Their highest point total of the season, was against Pitt. 106 points….next highest against some D2 school.

Pitt…..headed towards D2 status under Otis !

Comment by Emel 03.11.17 @ 1:39 pm

Emel – it could have been Tressel being rumored. I couldn’t see who it was.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 03.11.17 @ 2:34 pm

Everyday this bum is our coach speaks to zero shits given to our basketball program

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.11.17 @ 2:39 pm

Pitt’s alternate universe at Vanderbilt this year:

link to tennessean.com

Comment by Barvo 03.11.17 @ 3:19 pm

Pitt Baseball shutout again against L’Ville. Comical.

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.11.17 @ 3:34 pm

Interesting story line his morning’s Post Gazette.

Makes the point of some my recent posts concerning Jamie Dixon’s flight from Pittsburgh… of course, minus the BUYOUT bucks.

********
It was that draw and the emotional pull of returning to his alma mater, after all, that prompted Dixon to leave Pitt after years of spurning offers from suitors, including previous overtures from Del Conte.

“It’s not about trying to keep him; it’s about the next step,” former Pitt athletic director Scott Barnes said of Dixon’s decision to leave. “When a guy’s heart and head isn’t in it, you can’t resuscitate that.”

********

Just to make it easy.

link to post-gazette.com

Comment by PittofDreams 03.12.17 @ 6:11 am

Point is… don’t be disillusioned to think Pitt had the “option” of retaining Dixon.

Simply credit Jamie’s Agent for masterminding the PERFECT Getaway.

Comment by PittofDreams 03.12.17 @ 6:15 am

PoD – hoping Stallings has the same agent as JD.

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 7:02 am

POD – I think it was a 2 way street with Dixon, everyone appreciated what he did for the program, but his recruiting struggles (regardless of where you want to place the blame) were wearing on the program, and were obvious to everyone, so it really was the perfect time to go for both sides (Pitt & him). And Barnes’ incompetent effort to handle the transition doesn’t change that fact. Now it’s time to move on. Thankfully, Barnes is gone, now if we could get out of that contract and get rid of Stallings- almost nobody wants him here, and he absolutely must be aware of that.

Comment by 1618mt 03.12.17 @ 7:58 am

It’s not that black and white. Dixon started feeling that way because he felt he wasn’t appreciated at Pitt. By the time he left, it was a two way street. Both Pitt and Dixon wanted a change of scenery. And to be honest, both probably needed a change of scenery. Dixon had the golden parachute of that exodus being his alma mater and Pitt did the right thing by letting him out of his contract as Dixon had earned it. Instead of Pitt taking advantage of an opportunity to pump new blood into the program, they hired Dixon-light. A less successful, seasoned, head coach in a lesser basketball league who was in more of a need of a change of scenery than Dixon was. SMH.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 03.12.17 @ 9:25 am

As we sit home watching almost all other teams play in the post season, what are our options to rebuild. I say few and none except we control attendance.

Comment by Frank MD 03.12.17 @ 10:05 am

Frank MD – options may be few, but one that I suggest you exercise is writing a letter expressing your displeasure with the current men’s BB program. Send it to both the Chancellor and our acting AD, Dr. Randy Juhl.

IMO, they are the two who “could” make a change for the better. I wrote and mailed my letter early last week – both offices received the letter, but I’m not sure if they read it.

I felt better after writing the letter and even better when I dropped them off at the Post Office last Monday.

Better days are ahead for Pitt BB – Barnes is gone and now Stallings must follow…

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 10:18 am

it comes down to dollars and results. why pay dixon millions to be mediocre in the acc when you can get the same results with stallings at a discounted rate.

Comment by goalie44 03.12.17 @ 12:18 pm

plus, the more we spend on bb, the less there is for football.. its just that simple.

Comment by goalie44 03.12.17 @ 12:20 pm

Narduzzi catching a men’s BB game in Pittsburgh and it’s not at the Pete.

link to mobile.twitter.com

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 1:07 pm

Don’t know what Pitt is charging for Season Tickets for Bball. But there are going to be thousands of empty seats in the Pete next year, much worse than this year, which was a Record Low attendance since the Pete opened.

What is the lost revenue?

And add in the ancillary revenue from Food and Beverage purchases, Pitt gear purchases, donations to the athletic dept, etc.

Otis must go, before the Pete is a total White Elephant.

It took a near $200 million dollar investment to make Pitt BBall relevant for a decade.

They won’t be doing that again….anytime soon.

Comment by Emel 03.12.17 @ 1:55 pm

A friend of mine who used to work in the Pitt AD dept tells me the loss next year could be close to $2.5 million IF Pitt averages 6,000 tickets sold per home game next season.

IF Stallings is still the coach, Pitt might average 3,000 per home game. $5 million is a lot of money to lose over and over.

IF the Stallings buyout is even close to $5 million, the math makes sense to cut him now.

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 2:20 pm

Agree EE.

Cut your losses now, before they become epic.

Of course Pitt usually waits until things hit Rock Bottom…before they doing anything drastic.

Comment by Emel 03.12.17 @ 2:47 pm

Pitt cannot afford a half empty Pete giving KS time to prove himself with his players. Pure economics. Cut bait. Find another fishing hole. KS should have been able to prove himself this year. He’s only proven to be a poor representative of Pitt, a mediocre coach on the decline, and ASSCLOWN.

Comment by TX Panther 03.12.17 @ 3:05 pm

Root for ACC teams in NCAA as money is split evenly to all teams even if they are not in the NCAA

Comment by Frank MD 03.12.17 @ 4:49 pm

You guys are all so unfair…come on, Stallings is an offensive genius! Just take a look at the PG article from yesterday:

“Pitt recorded six of the 14 lowest shooting percentages in a half in program history this season”

Oh uh, forget what I just said.

Comment by DD 03.12.17 @ 5:21 pm

I don’t think HCKS was the only coach considered for the job last year. I think he was a desperation hire because all of their top candidates turned down their requests for interviews. What young coaching prospect would want to follow Dixon at Pitt when 11 NCAA tournaments and the best regular season record of any coach in the BE while Pitt was in that conference was considered to be a failure by our moron, one and done, AD? We screwed our selves for years in FB when we fired DW, and we just did the same thing in BB by running Dixon out of town. This university is run like the Cleveland Browns before this season. Clueless morons running a multi hundred million dollar enterprise.

Comment by HbgFrank 03.12.17 @ 5:26 pm

I agree. The Pitt admin runs things like the Clowns. We need to run things like the Pats and Steelers. Therefore you need very strong coaches and a very strong AD. And then an owner thats doesnt mess but sets you up for success. This Pitt admin is run by a bunch of ASSCLOWNS and Nitters. I swear there are Pedos planted in this admin that work against Pitt. Patty needs to tell the BoT that they have marginal say in athletics. Boosters need to shove those Nitters out of the BoT and those that undervalue athletics and what it does to a university’s brand. You cannot have a healthy university without a good balance between academics and athletics. If Pitt wants to be excellent in academics, it must have the same commitment to athletics. There is no reason why Pitt cant be the Stanford of the East and better.

Comment by TX Panther 03.12.17 @ 6:36 pm

Q: Why is coach Kevin Stallings and his team like a possum?
A: Because they play dead at home and get killed on the road.

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 6:37 pm

This one is for Sir Patrick G –

Q: What did Kevin Stallings say after his team won the Championship?
A: Dammit mom, why did you f-ing wake me up? I was having a f-ing amazing dream!

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 6:45 pm

Q. Why was Cinderella such a bad basketball player?
A. Because her “coach” was Kevin Stallings.

I’m done – catch younwhen there is some new BB news in Pittsburgh.

Comment by Erie Express 03.12.17 @ 7:09 pm

KS has a running ass that he refuse to wipe. Over time this ass begins to smell. Pitt needs to wipe its ass clean of KS and find a coach that doesnt have runny ass syndrome.

Comment by TX Panther 03.12.17 @ 9:08 pm

I can’t seem to find Pitt on my Bracket.

Oh that’s right we are coached by Captain Turd.

Comment by Upittbaseball 03.12.17 @ 10:02 pm

Pulled this from an article in the P-G by Ron Cook –

“But this Pitt season was so bad that it almost was unbelievable. Its 4-14 record in the ACC was its worst league record in 40 years. It finished 16-17 overall, its first losing season since 1999-2000. I was at a basketball function a few days after Pitt lost at home by 55 to Louisville and heard prominent former Pitt players talking about how embarrassed they were to be associated with the program because of the players’ lack of fight. They could have included the coach; Kevin Stallings quit on his team that day by getting ejected with 14:27 left. I didn’t have the heart to ask the alums what they thought about Pitt losing to Duquesne in December. They would have wanted to crawl in a hole somewhere.”

That says a lot about the BB program right there. Time to rearrange the rocking chairs on the front porch and remove one of those currently seated on the porch. It’ll look better…

Comment by Erie Express 03.13.17 @ 3:37 am

Who is Pitt’s new AD? I’m out of country and want to get current in Pitt athletics. No NCAA or NIT this year. Ouch!

Comment by MariettaMike 03.13.17 @ 5:50 am

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