130 thoughts on “Roundball: Pitt at Northwestern Open Game Thread

  1. How much chance do you think the Fsu/Indiana game will bleed into the beginning of the Pitt game ?

    Wouldn’t be surprised it goes into Overtime…and we miss most of the 1st half. Typical

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  2. Pitt held scoreless for the first 5 minutes. Down 7-0

    Snooze fest

    Put the freshman class in and let them cut their teeth. The vets look lyke last year’s team.

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      1. NW lost their best player from last year’s team.

        NW clearly improved though coaching and development.

        Pitt, not showing any improvement.

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  3. Pitt shooting an unbelievable 11% FG…2 for 18. They can’t possibly be that bad. NW is projected to be the last place in the B1G.

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  4. We are back to the Mr. NBA show. He’s just terrible.

    We have zero transition offense, no inside presence, erratic shooters, no strong rebounders, limited size, and spotty defense, and some questionable coaching.

    Other than that, we are great.

    Other tha

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    1. Hughley was taken out because he picked up his second foul and Capel didn’t want him to pick up a third. He’s a talented kid, but not ready to compete at the ACC level.

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  5. Does anyone coach on this team? You never ever jump into a three point shooter. A foul anytime. We were blessed we couldn’t see the game til now. Been watching 3 minutes and have seen 4 egregious fundamental mistakes.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It is hard to watch Johnson with the hot dog layup attempts when a simple layup will do. Now an air ball on a foul shot.. Horton starts out cold so they bench him. I don’t understand this team.

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  7. Pitt opened the game 3 for 25. I’ve never seen a rec team do that. Just a suggestion…would our shooters please wait until we have at least one player under the basket before we pump up another miss from outside.

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  8. Once again they don’t have a reliable center. No inside scoring and no transition scoring. Where is Hugely? I honestly felt they’d be better this year.

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  9. One thing you could always say about Jamie Dixon was that he got the most out of his players. Jury remains out on Capel.

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  10. Hugely is being disciplined for not reporting in shape and not attending his weight sessions. In other words…he’s lazy. X has really been out of control. Does anyone know any news on getting Nike here?

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    1. Nike is not a PG….he’s a 2 guard. He avg’d about 1.5 apg over the last 3 years. He’s basically another Horton. That is not going to help this team…devoid of PG’s. Capel didn’t even recruit a backup PG let alone a starting one. That’s just incredible, when one thinks about, cause he knew, like most knew on this board….X man is not a PG either.

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      1. He played some point…..right now I’d take a reasonable facsimile of point guard. But….we don’t have a 2 G that can shoot so there’s that. Never seen so many bricks.

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  11. I don’t think we can blame this one on not being able to attack a zone. I don’t think Northwestern has been in a zone defense all night.

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  12. Just what Pitt needs… another lazy player in Hugely. X man is a PG who refuses to play like a PG. He plays out of control and doesn’t think assist first. Unfortunately he can’t be benched for another PG.

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    1. If he was being disciplined then why was he the starter for the first two games? Was there an article on that or are you making stuff up?

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  13. That was a huge 4th foul on X man…he was leading the comeback, playing good for him.
    The 3rd foul on him was such a ticky tack foul.

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  14. Hugley could be the next Dante Taylor. At this rate. he wont get any playing time in ACC games.
    Except maybe the other scrub teams like us.

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  15. This is probably not going to end well for Pitt, but I have to say they showed energy and no quit.
    Need to work hard on our shooting. Perhaps uptempo ball is the answer for Pitt.

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  16. NW an extremely well coached and well schooled team. Shooting 89% from the FT line. This game was over when Pitt went 3 for 25 to start. Improvement tonight for Pitt! Great trap set by Capel ..Pitt within 1

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  17. Pitt with its only lead … by 1. Pitt wins!!! H2P. Huge improvement and great athleticism by Pitt.
    But Capel won this game w his strategy. Fouled the correct player who missed both…then Pitt reset their defense to not guard the inbounder while the refs fooled with the clock. Inbounder for NW as completely fooled. What an upset!! Maybe best comeback I’ve seen since #4 for Pitt hit a 3 to win at the buzzer to beat WVU.

    Liked by 9 people

  18. hard to listen to what Dan72 writes here about this Pitt team and JC

    but he is right on about 99% of it

    somehow they overcome after an embarrassing first half that I’d guess ESPN wished they hadn’t televised this one at all…..
    ….second half more than made up!!!!!!!

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  19. Let’s be fair. Gotta give X his due. No way we win that game without his return. Champ was Champ. But X pulled this team to the win.

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  20. Champ with 20 rebounds. A first for Pitt since Blair maybe. Pretty good company.

    You guys are tough on this team and their Coach. Especially X – I hope he continues to improve. If the freshmen improve game by game, we might be half-way decent by season’s end.

    I found it interesting and encouraging that the 17-year old Jeffress was in at crunch time.

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 4 people

  21. Pitt is a tough team when they go up tempo and press half court. I’ll bet Capel has em start inthat uptempo play to avoid another 3-23 next game.

    Monday I couldn’t sleep as I was so bummed over the Steelers. Tonight I’m the same because I’m so excited for this team and their prospects. Wonder what tomorrow will bring with Pitt Football??

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I haven’t watched a game yet. Which FR will be an impact player this year?

    I quick look at the stats show Jeffries with the most minutes, Hugely second.

    Also, is Terrell Brown hurt or has he been passed up by Coulibaly and Hugely?

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  23. It amazes me the psyche of the fans after a 1 point win as opposed a 1 point loss, especially when it was evident that two not very good teams played. I mean, face it! When you start out 3 and 25 from the field but end up winning, you are not playing against 1973 UCLA or 1976 Indiana.

    But the good news is that both of the teams are among the youngest in the NCAA and should grow. And the young guys definitely grew up a bit in the 2nd half.

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    1. The key is, Pitt is improving. The key to their future, is that they keep improving. They were a 5.5 point dog and they won. Sometimes teams start out rusty on both sides, it happens. A win is a win.

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  24. dan72, it may be true regarding tempo, but it’s also clear that Pitt made adjustments in the second half which led them to score 50 points and win. The overwhelming statistical difference-maker was rebounding, 54 to 34. And moreover the replacement of Horton by Jeffress; Jeffress only had 7 points, but that’s a far cry from Horton’s 0-5, and Jeffress appears to be the better defender as well. Pitt also moved the ball a lot better in the second half. Horton will no doubt make some shots for us and have some good moments in the future, but he’s looking a lot more like Murphy than Wilson-Frame, so here’s to hoping the joke of an organization called the NCAA gets their act together and Sibande becomes eligible.

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  25. Jeffress played 33 minutes, Horton played 7. Horton may remain the starter but my team on the floor at crunch time is:

    Johnson 1
    Toney 2
    Jeffress 3
    Champagnie 4
    and whoever is playing well at the 5

    (always subject to change of course)

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Sorry for the guys that turned that one off early last night, I was almost one of them.
    Their pressure defense starting in the second half started the turn a round. Slowed NW down
    and changed the pace of the game. I also noticed much more intensity and sharper passing from Johnson.
    The shots started to drop unlike the first half where nothing would go in. I wish Brown would pick up some of Coulibaly’s intensity. Hugeley is going to be real good and is already making a difference. What a game from Champ. Jeffress and Femi are difference makers as well.

    What happened to their big guys in the second half when they dominated in the first and how did Champ get 20 boards off them? He just knows where to be. Toney, a little quiet for him but very solid especially defensively.

    Sure hope they can build off this one and that some one tells them to wear their facemasks on the sidelines.
    This team needs everyone. Hope this is something they can build on.

    This game was reminiscent of a Dixon win. What a comeback!

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  27. Watched the entire game. NW is a typical B10 team. Big guys good around the basket but not that athletic everywhere else.

    The kids showed more athletic ability and that won the game. Hope we can continue that as the ACC BB teams are not like B19 teams. H2P

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  28. This game showed me that Capel can coach. Been a while until I saw that.

    Good win for Pitt. A huge pick me up in confidence. Wins also give you more energy for the next game. And practices don’t feel like practices.

    A win like this early in the season can help guide the ship to calmer waters. I’m afraid that a loss last night would have steered the ship into rocks.

    This is the prove it year for Capel. I expect a big jump from last season.

    Pitts top 3 players can be special when they play together and bring their A game. Consistency and unselfishness are the keys.

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  29. Here’s a little montage of comments by a good friend and basketball guru, danh72. My comment is made in jest and not meant one bit to poke fun.

    “Pitt w 7 missed shots and 4 TOs to start. The slaughter is on…..12-3 NW

    They’re that bad. No point guard no inside game. Just pumping up off balance 3s and missed layups. No talent…..horribly coached.

    Does anyone coach on this team? You never ever jump into a three point shooter. A foul anytime. We were blessed we couldn’t see the game til now. Been watching 3 minutes and have seen 4 egregious fundamental mistakes

    Pitt opened the game 3 for 25. I’ve never seen a rec team do that. Just a suggestion…would our shooters please wait until we have at least one player under the basket before we pump up another miss from outside.

    I’m afraid if I watch much more of this, my eyes will explode! Just awful basketball.

    The next Pitt player I see set a pick will be the first%! You can’t get open in the ACC by just running around.

    We are getting killed at the foul line. Every time we get close, we make a mistake.

    NW an extremely well coached and well schooled team. Shooting 89% from the FT line. This game was over when Pitt went 3 for 25 to start. Improvement tonight for Pitt! Great trap set by Capel ..Pitt within 1

    Pitt with its only lead … by 1. Pitt wins!!! H2P. Huge improvement and great athleticism by Pitt.
    But Capel won this game w his strategy. Fouled the correct player who missed both…then Pitt reset their defense to not guard the inbounder while the refs fooled with the clock. Inbounder for NW as completely fooled. What an upset!! Maybe best comeback I’ve seen since #4 for Pitt hit a 3 to win at the buzzer to beat WVU.

    Pitt is a tough team when they go up tempo and press half court. I’ll bet Capel has em start inthat uptempo play to avoid another 3-23 next game.

    Monday I couldn’t sleep as I was so bummed over the Steelers. Tonight I’m the same because I’m so excited for this team and their prospects. Wonder what tomorrow will bring with Pitt Football??”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Dan, LOVE you buddy but wouldn’t want to watch any game with you, you really wear your heart on your sleeve. Although you’re entertaining as hell to read your comments during games 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Love reading Dan’s comments during a BB game.

        FIrst, I always learn something for the old coach.
        Second he wears his heart on his sleeve.
        Good stuff.

        Here he is watching a Steeler game… or perhaps any of us watching a PItt game:

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  30. Thanks Ike….I cannot be dispassionate when watching BBall! My comments were dead on at the time of the game they occurred. Xman had his best game ever and truly was the catalyst for the win. When X. Plays well, he reminds me of Carl Krauser. CK had the worst looking shooting form I’ve ever seen until I saw X but there’s no one I’d rather have the ball at the end than Krauser.

    NW was a lot like St Francis in the way they moved the ball.

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  31. Dan was correct in that the first half was truly awful at the offensive end. Such poor decision-making leading to lots of tough shots.

    But when you finish the game on a 13-4 run, good things can happen. 😊

    X is maddening, but he does have some special talent. And was it my imagination of did X’s release on 3-pointers look a bit better last night – slightly higher maybe???

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. The takes on the basketball team are unbearable. 2018 class was desperation but the foundation for now. We all know what happened with McGowens and X is what he is. At least Toney developed into a leader. 2019 class found a star. 2020 is a top 20 class and will be the true foundation of the program beginning next year. Need to keep building on the top 20 class but it takes time to get a culture started and learning how to win. Capel is building the program just fine. He took over a program that really could not be much lower. He took shortcuts in the past and he paid for it. He’s going to do it the right way, now. He’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Pitt had basically become Depaul. Minus about 5 coaches or cheating, Pitt was not going to be a quick fix. I know people see Nike as just a MAC kid but Pitt needs a 4th scorer and he’s it. 8-10 points a game is all they need from him and he can do that. Start Jeffers over Horton, make Nike the 6th man spark and spot play Horton. I don’t think it’s a great team and it will be a frustrating season with some flashes. I do like the future, however, for the first time. I was not as high on this team last year as some. I think the expectations last year have set the tone for this season from a critical standpoint I don’t think it really applies.

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  33. Dan has forgotten more hoops than I will ever know and even he thought Pitt would not get within 10 points and the game would be over by halftime.
    When X plays within himself Pitt plays well..when he doesn’t…YIKES. Unwatchable.
    Mark Packer on the ACC Network said this morning he turned the game off in the first 10 minutes.

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  34. It is too early to give up on Horton. He needs to get with the flow and feel a part of this team. I would keep starting him and see if the player they all talked about last year comes out.

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  35. I think Horton is fine. He is just at the position with the most upside behind him. I think he definitely has a role on the team, however. I’m confident his shot will become more consistent.

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  36. I think we all got a bit excited at the end of the game, and Dan is no exception. Dan, you are our “go to” person for understanding of what is happening on the court! 🙂 I think also that this team found its defensive capabilities last night, and realizes that it was defense that won this game. I can think of at least 4 lay ups that Pitt missed (3 by X man) that could have made it not so close.

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  37. Overlooked.(and I don’t think anyone mentioned it)…was the play of Femi O. When X-man had to go out, the freshman came in and didn’t make any major gaffes, didn’t take any stupid shots. Had 3 assists.

    In fact he got the steal on the baseline doubleteam of a NW player and immediately fed the ball into Champ….to get the assist on the next to the last Pitt basket.

    Kid can give you some length on the outside and glad to see he is recovering nicely from his broken arm. Plus he’s from Brooklyn, so that restores, along with Champ, also from Brooklyn…so restoring Pitt’s NY connection.

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  38. Considering the kid Femi only played 7 minutes. 3 assists in 7 minutes is pretty impressive. And those 3 assists represented 25% of Pitt’s total assists(12) for the game.

    He might have earned himself some more PT…..long athletic guards can give you a lot of advantages.

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  39. For any here who haven’t witnessed a game like last night live at the Pete, maybe because you live too far away, you can take that feeling you had at the end of the game and multiply it by 10. Especially the old days: packed house, ears ringing from the crowd noise, standing and cheering until the last player disappears out the hallway. Doesn’t happen very often but it makes all those other games worth it. I highly recommend it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sometimes old Fitzgerald Field House was shaking so much and the stands swaying…it felt like it might tumble down the hill from it’s perch.

      Who can forget the night, the giant fish got thrown out on the court, after a particularly bad call while playing the Hoopies.

      And of course the lid almost blew off….after ‘Send it in Jerome’.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dearest Buzz Ridl.

        I lived in Tower A Room 506 in 1970/ 1971 (my freshman year as a mechanical engineering student), An upperclassman named Charlie who lived on my 5th floor threw the fish on the floor!!! I was at the game. i think the “Pitt “News” asked for people to name the perpetrator.

        It was so cool back in the Buzz Ridl era; I was a Pitt Freshman and due to my demographics in the Pitt dorm system I was a part of it … I never turned Charlie in.

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  40. Yep Dan is the real deal and he really knows his basketball. Passionate doesn’t begin to encapsulate the coach in him. Anyone remember Moe Becker from the 70’s, Dan reminds me of him.

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    1. Oh good. Don’t be alarmed when you see and hear an enormous C-5 Galaxy fly over. And a parachute dropping down. I’ll bring the bourbon, if you provide the ice ! ha

      Liked by 1 person

  41. Liked by 1 person

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