Pitt Basketball: 2018 City Game Open Game Thread (Pitt v. Duquesne)

Pitt Basketball:  2018 City Game Open Game Thread (Pitt v. Duquesne)
Well it isn’t what it used to be, but it’s still the City Game. Here is the history of this storied rivalry, because those who don’t know history are bound to repeat it.

The basketball series was first played in 1932. The cross-town rivalry between the two schools intensified quickly, and the development of bad blood between the two schools on the basketball court and in the boxing ring led to the cessation of series following the 1939 game until it was renewed in 1953.  The rivalry reached its peak when both schools again found themselves members of the same athletic conference, the Eastern 8 from 1976–1982.  (It was renamed the Atlantic 10 Conference following the 1981–82 season).  During this period, the head coaches of Pitt and Duquesne, Tim Grgurich and Mike Rice respectively, were alumni of their schools and had played against each other in the 1960s. There was genuine dislike between coaches and players, and during these contests fights frequently broke out between players, and sometimes among fansWikipedia

Lets Go Pitt!  Beat Duquesne!


Flipped Another Recruit: Win One for the Gipper

Flipped Another Recruit:  Win One for the Gipper

Say what you want about Pat Narduzzi’s recruiting, but the man has a knack for flipping recruits.  I haven’t kept count but it seems like he flips at least two a year, which feels like more than any coach since I’ve been following Pitt Football (dating myself here, but that would be 1997).

Well folks, he’s flipped another one, at least in my book.  Rivals Three-Star Recruit Will Gipson had committed to Ball State until earlier this month, when he re-opened his recruitment.

Notably, Gipson did have one other P5 offer, which was from Rutgers.    Howard, Ball State, Toledo and Miami (OH) round out his offer sheet.

Sounds like Pat helped Gipson, who is from nearby Aliquippa, get a firm handle on the benefits of staying home.

“Honestly, I felt like this was the best choice for me,” Gipson said. “I didn’t want to go too far from home.

“Coach Narduzzi was the one there that really recruited me,” said Gipson. “I know a lot of the players there.”

The word on the street is the Gipson has good speed, running a 4.5 forty and is a playmaker for the Quips.  He did catch 51 balls for nearly 1500 yards and 20 TD’s his senior year, so he can clearly break the game at the Triple A level in Pennsylvania.

I haven’t had a chance to watch Gipson’s film yet, and I can’t stream it as I am on a plane right now, but I’ll add some analysis on that later.

We’ve had two other successful WR’s that were former WPIAL players:  Downfield blocker extraordinaire Aaron Mathews and of course Tyler Boyd.  If Gipson lands somewhere between those two, that would be a solid addition to our team.  Welcome to the Panthers Will!




ACC Championship Game Prediction Thread

ACC Championship Game Prediction Thread

Well, here we are.  It’s the eve the ACC championship game, against the mighty Clemson Tigers, right in their own backyard (or close enough too it).

You would have to be delusional to think we have a snowball’s chance to win this one, and Las Vegas agrees.

Pitt is  26.5 point underdogs according to at least one source, and Clemson outclasses us in every position (except fullback!)

But this is college football folks.  And while ESPN gives Clemson a 95.7% chance of victory, that leaves a 4.3% chance for us.

350Of course it means that 30 young Pitt men will have to play an absolutely perfect game.

And Clemson would have to play their worst game of the season.

But stranger things have happened.

Like the time Appalachian State beat Michigan in 2007 (App State was 33 point dogs)

Or the time Temple beat Virginia Tech in 1998.  (The Owls were 35 point dogs)

Or who could forget the time when lowly Stanford, coming off a 1-11 season took down #2 USC.  (This was also in 2007.  Stanford was 40 point dogs, and that game is commonly listed as the second biggest upset in the last 25 years.)

But these were not championship games.  They were September and October games, when anything can happen and teams are frequently overrated.

It is unlikely that Clemson is overrated.

Still, there may be some magic in the air on Saturday night.  Or maybe in the rain, if the weather forecast holds true.

At -26.5 a Pitt win would be the second biggest upset of the year from a point-spread standpoint, and certainly the biggest upset in ACC championship history (or any Conference championship history for that matter).

So go ahead, predict a win you Pitt optimists.   Just know that by doing so you are probably locking in a jinx.

Personally I’d rather be proven right and pleasantly surprised, and most predictions are going to have Clemson scoring a lot of points in a revenge scenario.

In that light, I originally posed the prediction that realistic side of me believed to be right.  Then I read my post and was immediately depressed.  I am spending too much money and traveling too far to not be able to cling to a shred of hope, no matter how small.  Nobody is giving us a chance and there is nowhere to go but up, and if there  is one thing Pat can do on gameday it’s get the guys fired up for the big one.  Lets see if we can’t make some history on Saturday because our fan base certainly deserves it.

Hail to Pitt and I’ll see you in Charlotte.




ACC Championship Week: Bits and Pieces

ACC Championship Week:  Bits and Pieces

Just a quick one tonight because I have a job that takes way too much of my time, but want to give you football fans something new to comment on.

First, even though we had a disappointing loss last week, we are still going to the ACC Championship, and this is pretty damn cool.  Regardless of what the betting line is.

Second, For those going to Charlotte, there is a Pitt POV tailgate hosted by our brother Fran (LastRowofSection4).  Find us at 118 South Church Street.  It will run from about 3:00 until 4:30.

4:30 is when the official Pitt Alumi event @BB&T Stadium starts.  You need to pre-register by tomorrow.  Get your ticket now by clicking this link.  They are $25 and include two drink tickets.   Should be a great way to tune up for the game.

Speaking of the game (prediction thread to hit on Friday so hold off on those please), here are some game notes: