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February 17, 2018

Pitt is not a deep-pocketed SEC or B1G program. Can we all agree on that? There is no Michigan Money Cannon to fire. There is no crazed, big-money booster that will cut a check in exchange for more influence like at Auburn. Pitt also does not subsidize the athletic department on the back of the students or from the academic side of the university (Rutger, UConn — how are things going?). Nor is the athletic department about to take out ridiculous loans that put them so deep that they will head to conferences they don’t fit (What’s up, Maryland?).

Pitt is a fiscally conservative athletic department that is only now starting to receive the full share of ACC revenue. This is only year four of being in the ACC, and Pitt did not leap into full cuts in year one. They also had moneys to be paid to the Big East/AAC upon departure. To say nothing of the new outlays required to be a part of the ACC.

If Pitt wants to fire Stallings after two years, and hire someone with any sort of pedigree/upside; Pitt will need to have a lot of boosters coordinating the cash.


February 12, 2018

0-ACC looks more likely every game.

Sorry about the lack of open threads. Big family visit this past week into the weekend. Upside is that I didn’t get a chance to watch either game. More then a little bit of an indictment of the state of Pitt basketball when they guy running a blog devoted to Pitt football and basketball had no urge or desire to carve out time to watch two Pitt basketball games. Didn’t DVR it. Not even checking the phone for updates.

Two weeks ago I would have (and even might have) said that Pitt can’t/won’t fire Kevin Stallings after two years.


January 3, 2018

In an otherwise predictable loss by Pitt to Louisville, there was the added bonus of Coach Kevin Stallings getting into it with a fan or two near the end of the game.

During the second half, with the game well out of reach, Stallings reacted to a fan near his team’s bench who the Pitt coach said was saying “something bad” about his players. At a certain point, Stallings responded, according to various reports, by saying “At least we didn’t pay our guys $100,000.”

“We’re down, the game’s over with; you don’t need to insult kids that are out there trying to fight hard and do their best,” Stallings said after the game. “I should have chosen some different words, but I’m not going to let people take shots at our players.”

When asked, the second-year Pitt coach declined to elaborate what the fan said about his players.

“That’s enough,” Stallings said.

I know, color me shocked as well that a coach who has a history of outbursts that get caught on a mike did so once more.


May 22, 2017

This is so stupid.

It has been seven weeks since Cam Johnson made it known that he was transferring from Pitt as a grad transfer with two full years of eligibility left. To no one’s surprise the process of finding a new home has been a slow one.

A long-armed, tall guard who shoots better then 40% on 3s. From a Power conference. He was going to be in demand. And he was. Teams like Arizona, Kentucky, Oregon and others all contacted him. He took plenty of visits.

It was clear that Johnson was looking to play at a big name school where he would get plenty of exposure.


May 10, 2017

Stallings Has A Plan

Filed under: Basketball,Coaches,Stallings — Chas @ 7:30 am

Just before the weekend, articles were published following a sit-down with basketball head coach Kevin Stallings. A transcript of the interview was also put out on Saturday, to help flesh things a little further.

This is Stallings at his best and worst as far as a public figure. He is candid, open about a lot of things and doesn’t hide behind as much coachspeak. That same honesty, though, can make him come off like an ass, and someone who puts the blame everywhere but on himself.

[Editor note. I had this drafted on Sunday, I swear. But I kept revisiting, and adding to it. SO much to chew on in this.Just posting it at this point before I do more revisions.]


December 10, 2016

2:30 PM on CBS Sports Network (hope you can find it).

Jamie Dixon looms over this game more than I want.

I’ve been doing my best to stay off that topic for a few reasons. I’d rather just focus on the season when there are actual games taking place. It’s not fair to the team and Kevin Stallings. I’m trying to give Kevin Stallings a chance to do things his way and not let too many biases influence how I see it. Constantly harping on what I think Dixon would have done. Or projecting comparisons is just not going to do any good. It’s a very polarizing topic, especially when it comes down to the players on the Pitt roster and talent. It very much has a Walt Harris-Dave Wannstedt vibe to it. Only without the hometown bias Wannstedt enjoyed.

But today. For this game. The topic is rearing its head.


September 29, 2016

Basketball Head Coach Kevin Stallings is a disciple of UNC Coach Roy Williams. So it is no surprise that Stallings wants his teams to be playing at a faster pace. That has long been a hallmark of Williams’ teams at Kansas and UNC.

Pitt will attempt to up the tempo this year, and the media got an early glimpse this week.


March 29, 2016

Post-Stallings Intro

Filed under: Basketball,Coaches,Stallings — Chas @ 5:15 pm

[Still on vacation in Houston, so this took a little time to get done.]

So are we reaching the acceptance phase? Seems that the media is at least getting there. Probably easier to get there with this then Jack’s now being called, “Jim’s.”

For how ever long Pitt leaves it up, you can peruse the press conference at your leisure. If you view the press conference in two pieces, you can say that one was very good at handling things and the other was a bit of a struggle.

Kevin Stallings seemed to do a good job up there with his prepared remarks and answering questions. He got a bit choked up talking about leaving Vandy and of his former players. He gave respect to Jamie Dixon and the standards he set that he needs to meet and surpass. (more…)

March 28, 2016

This Really Happened

Filed under: Basketball,Coaches,Hire/Fire,Stallings — Chas @ 10:44 am

Very grateful that my father and brother-in-law keep stocked bars with some truly excellent bourbons and scotch. Though, I’m pretty sure I’d be drinking any rotgut when Saturday night went to hell.

I don’t know what to say. I was keeping my expectations low, simply because looking at the landscape of college basketball and the coaches out there. I just didn’t see any homerun hires. Solid ones? Sure. Medium risk, high reward? Even that. But this? Never saw it coming.

As usual Pitt kept a tight lid on things until the very end. And oh, what an end.


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