February 6, 2016

Open Thread: Virginia-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 9:27 am

12 pm start time. Syndicated on ACC Network or ESPN3

Bleeping hell. For whatever reason the local channel that carries ACC Network in Cleveland is going with BC-Louisville. Unbelievable.

Pitt is a home dog in this one. Virginia has had some bad games, but more often than not they have been nearly as good as expected.


January 31, 2016

Open Thread: VT-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 2:49 pm

ESPNU at 6:30.

Sorry, I’ve had to work insane hours this weekend, and today is no different. DVR delay for me tonight.


January 27, 2016

Still basketball season, people. I know the new football schedule came out for the ACC yesterday. And seeing that Clemson game on there is a bit of a sight. But, this is basketball.

7pm. The assorted RSNs — Root Sports Pittsburgh, NESN, Fox Sports South and plenty of others.


January 23, 2016

Open Thread: Pitt-FSU

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 12:03 pm

Time to see how the team really responds to a bad home loss. They said the right things about needing to get out and play from the opening tip. To playing better defense. There’s more than just hints about changing things in the backcourt.

Not sure how much of the last part will actually be seen today. Pitt plays a FSU team that needs to lean more on its backcourt. Damon Wilson has shown much promise, but he is also prone to committing a lot of fouls in short bursts of time.


January 20, 2016

Smacked About

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 8:01 am

Pitt football recruiting target Damar Hamlin was there and even ventured into the Oakland Zoo to mingle in the second half. So that was good.

After that…

I’ll leave it to the players and coach to sum it up.

Panthers forward Jamel Artis said containing Barber was tough, but he explained that the larger issue was how the Wolfpack pushed them around and did whatever they wanted inside.

“They were tougher than us,” Artis said.

“They hit us first from the start of the first five or six minutes, and it is tough to come back from 25 points. We let ourselves down, we gave the game up. This was a lack of toughness. This is a sad loss.”


“We got what we deserved,” Pitt coach Jamie Dixon said. “Disappointing, bad loss for us.”

By the time the Panthers recovered and fought back, it was too late.

“We didn’t do anything well,” Dixon said.



January 19, 2016

Open Thread: NC State-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 5:27 pm

8pm start time. The game is syndicated by the ACC Network or ESPN3. Coverage kind of sucks for this one.

This is Pitt’s third game in less than a week. Could be kind of ragged.

NC State is still winless in the ACC. Mind-blowing with the talent on the roster, but that’s what you get with Mark Gottfried. Recruits like he’s at UCLA. Coaches like it’s DePaul.


January 16, 2016

2pm at the Pete.

ESPN3 or plenty of RSN options including Root Sports Pittsburgh, Fox Sports South, Fox Sports North, YES and NESN.


January 15, 2016

Burn the Tape

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 8:33 am

That was an amazingly bad performance by Pitt last night. A real team effort to be that bad as a team. Last time I can recall such a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad performance by a ranked team? Well, Michigan State ranked #6 losing to a sub-.500 Iowa 43-36 in 2008 is still my lodestone in such things.

Every facet of the game saw Pitt stink. 12-20 on free throws? 60-friggin’-%? 1-11 on 3s. 13-38 anywhere else. Nothing inside. Nothing out. Just the occasional mid-range jumper.

Players were afraid to shoot. Sheldon Jeter and Sterling Smith played 47 minutes and only took 3 shots (all misses). Ryan Luther somehow took five shots in 10 minutes. The box score is a monument to a miserably played game.


January 14, 2016

9:05 pm (or so) on ESPN. Karl Ravech and Seth Greenberg have the call.

One of the nice things about Jamie Dixon being at Pitt this long, is that he has actually relaxed and come close to being comfortable with the media. He’s never going to have the charm and ease of a Rick Pitino, John Calipari or Bruce Pearl; nor is he cantankerously amusing like a Jim Boeheim.

But he is more relaxed these days. He seems to have his tongue planted firmly in his cheek for half his responses to questions.


January 10, 2016

Peak Offensive Efficiency Over ND

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 1:46 pm

You knew it couldn’t be sustained. You knew ND would throw counter-punches. That it wouldn’t stay a blowout. But man, the ride was something and ultimately satisfying way to spend some time.

Here’s the thing about this game. This was not an up and down the court game. This was actually one of Pitt’s slowest games with only 65 possessions and adjusted Tempo for this game was 63 ($ wall), Pitt, per KenPom is about 68.0 in adjusted tempo (possessions/pace per 40 minutes). Notre Dame is an even slower tempo team than Pitt. And like Pitt, they operate at high efficiency on offense. This game was almost an absurdist example of offensive efficiency.


January 9, 2016

I don’t really get that worked up about whether Pitt has played a true road game to this point or not. Syracuse has done this for years, and has managed to keep their head above water. After all these years, there are still no numbers supporting or disputing whether playing a tough schedule or more road games helps or hurts a team. It just comes down to the team itself.

This game isn’t getting much in the way of national buzz, as ND has been slightly disappointing to this point. They are a good team, but they have lost to teams like Alabama and Monmouth.


January 6, 2016

Open Thread: GT-Pitt

Filed under: Basketball,Open Thread — Chas @ 5:55 pm


It’s on various RSNs including Root Sports Pittsburgh, Fox Sports South, NESN, Fox Sports West and others.

Georgia Tech has struggled to rebuild under Brian Gregory. Check that. They have just struggled. As a coach on a warming seat, he has added transfers (traditional and graduate) to his roster. Unlike Pitt, four of their transfers are starters.


January 4, 2016

Setting Jamel Artis Apart

Filed under: Basketball,Players — Chas @ 8:28 am

In the overall development of Jamel Artis as a player, forcing him to play out of position last year may have been one of the best things for him and the team this year. It was a move out of necessity, and the lack of meaningful depth inside was painful for much of that year.

Unlike small forwards of previous years, Artis had been forced to play inside on both ends of the court, rather than operating on the wing or somewhere on the perimeter in his development. This has been a key difference is his offensive game, from say Durand Johnson or J.J. Moore.


January 2, 2016

A true buy-a-win game to finish the non-con.



Not much to say about this one in advance, other than it won’t help in the RPI (if you are actually worried about such a thing at this point).

Other than the obvious win, I’m hoping that Jamel Artis, Mike Young and James Robinson play under 25 minutes each.

December 31, 2015

Wearing Down a Zone

Filed under: Basketball — Chas @ 9:22 am

Syracuse has never played with a deep bench. They have always relied heavily on a starting five, with maybe two — three if lucky — players off the bench. This year, Syracuse only goes about seven deep after Moustapha Diagne failed to qualify academically (Pitt is now actively pursuing the power forward).

Pitt forgot for large swaths of the game to exploit the lack of depth, and especially the soft gooey center of the zone, but came back to it late in the second half to retake control of the game and get the win, 72-61.


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