Wrapping Up Big East Quarter Finals Preview

Posted on March 11, 2010. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Okay, I am batting ZERO through the afternoon games of the quarter finals, so I am ready to redeem myself in the evening session.  

But there’s one problem . . . when it comes to Pitt, I’m a homer.  So I have to pick them.  No way around it. 

Even though the Panthers were embarrassed in South Bend during the regular season by a Harangody-less Notre Dame team, I have faith tonight.   Why?

Easy.  Revenge.

The Irish were desperate for a win with their NCAA tournament hopes on the line when these teams met during the season.  They shot at a ridiculous clip in the first half against Pitt.  Every time I turned around, Tim Abromaitis – which sounds like an STD to me – was tickling the twine.  He infected the vaunted defense of the Panthers, that’s fo sho.  But Pitt regrouped to win its last three and if I know this team, I know they play well with a chip on their shoulder and Notre Dame left a sour taste in their mouths.

Not to mention, Madison Square Garden has been good to the Panthers this decade, with Pitt going 24-10 and playing in seven of the last nine Big East championship games.  So . . .

Pitt wins 68-62.  I know.  You’re shocked . . .

******

Will Huggy Bear look like this tonight? We'll see . . .

In the final game of the night, West Virginia and Bob Huggins face his ex, Cincinnati, for a spot in the semis.  Mick Cronin has the Bearcats scraping and clawing their way through the Big East tournament, winning their two games by a total of four points.

But that ends here. 

Why? 

The Mountaineers have three guys – Butler, Jones and Ebanks – who score more than Cincinnati’s leading scorer, Lance Stephenson.  Even if WVU struggles shooting early, they have too much offense for the Bearcats to overcome.

Plus, the basketball gods want a Pitt – WVU semi-final game.  It’s as simple as that. 

West Virginia wins 73-66

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Jamie Dixon Named Naismith National Coach of the Year

Posted on April 7, 2009. Filed under: Basketball, NCAA | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

DON’T BE COY, JAMIE . . . Wait, yes, be COY! 

Congratulations to Naismith National Coach of the Year, Jamie Dixon of the Pittsburgh Panthers.  A 4PM news conference is scheduled at the Peterson Events Center to make the announcement that one of the nation’s top honors in college hoops is being awarded to the Pitt Panther’s head coach. 

University of Pittsburgh Panthers Head Coach Jamie Dixon

University of Pittsburgh Panthers' Head Coach Jamie Dixon

During his six years as a head coach, Jamie Dixon has won more games (163) than any other head coach in NCAA history has in their first six seasons and led the Panthers to the Elite Eight for the first time in 35 years, tying a school record 31-wins in the 2008-9 season.  Not to mention achieving the program’s first ever No. 1 national ranking, and first ever No. 1 NCAA tournament seed.  I’d say he’s deserving . . . Not that I am biased or anything . . .

The award is voted on by the basketball journalist members of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. 

“Pittsburgh had a tremendous season and much of that success goes to Jamie and the wonderful coaching job he did with this team,” Gary Stokan, Atlanta Tipoff Club president, said in a statement. “During his six seasons he has built a solid program that continues to produce wonderful results, both on and off the court.”

Jamie Dixon beat out Jeff Capel of Oklahoma, Trent Johnson of LSU and Bill Self of Kansas.

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