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Sleeping With The Enemy: Pitt of Love

I have officially moved on from the loss to Nova.  As far as I'm concerned, last year's team, utterly devoid of heart and spunk, loses that game by 80 points.  Of course, heart and spunk and 50 cents will buy you a NY Post, and heart and spunk do not come with a bench.  Here at Casual Hoya we're bringing you everything you've ever wanted to know about Pitt ahead of our game tomorrow night.  Special thanks to Chas Rich at The Pitt Blather for providing us answers to our penetrating questions.  After you're done reading this, be sure to click here to see our answers to their questions.  Chas, this Miller Lite's for you.

Did you know Bret Michaels was from Pittsburgh?  Doesn't that actually make you think the city is a bit more casual? via


CH: What can Georgetown expect from this year's Pitt squad?


Erp. Excuse me. Let me try that again. Pitt played a game with New Hampshire in the Non-con where they led 15-7 at the half and won 47-32. Personally, I am hopeful that between G-town and Pitt there is a shot to match that -- though I am disappointed to see that the Hoyas' adjusted tempo/pace is a blistering 67.0 (228th) to Pitt's more laid back 64.1 (311th). Slow it down you maniacs.  (Casual Note: Adjusted pace?  What is this dude talking about?)

Who are the best scorers? Rebounders?

The best scorers are guards. Ashton Gibbs and Brad Wanamaker regularly lead the team.

Rebounding for the first time in ages is not as dependent on one big guy inside. No Blair. No Gray, Not even Ontario Lett. Gary McGhee is the starting center, and does lead the team in rebounds but guard Wanamaker is right there. Unlike past years, Pitt really sends everyone after the boards. It's a function of no dominant big guy and generally being undersized. No player has an average above 7 rebounds/game, but 4 players are over 5 per game.

I sort of would like to see what would happen if a guy like Roy Hibbert was still around. It would almost be like gnats swarming around him. Possibly just as annoying.

The Invasion continues after 'The Jump':

I have 2 anterior cruciate ligaments. DeJuan Blair has none. Please discuss your reaction to Blair's slide on Draft day and his play for the Spurs thus far. Please include how it was possible for virtually every NBA GM to pass up this guy even though it was apparent to anyone who watched college basketball that he is better than Hasheem Thabeet.

Hey, how is DaJuan Summers doing with Detroit?

It does validate what Bill Simmons has always said about NBA front offices having no balls. All those teams were spooked by his medical report. And as far as the lottery goes, I get it. I even understood the hesitation up to roughly the 20th pick. Then it was moron time.

The teams drafting late in the 1st round had a chance to pick up a guy that would help them immediately. Provide depth for playoff teams and could quite frankly take a reasonable chance considering the failure rate of draft picks. (Casual Note: I believe they don't teach sentence construction at Pitt, so please bare with us.)  Really. Just look back at NBA drafts in the Aughts and look at the guys taken late in the first and early in the 2nd. So few pan out and those that do generally do it with another team a few years later. So if you took Blair, and even if he only lasted a couple years before the knees went, he most likely provided more help than anyone else they could have drafted immediately.

Falling to midway through the 2nd round was flat insane. Then as soon as the Spurs drafted him, it was everyone and their mother realizing how stupid they were. The truly comical thing was the blogosphere -- college basketball and NBA -- were all going insane that night when Blair slid. No one could believe it. Mainly because, you know, they were looking at his actual production.

Courtesy of my compatriots at the NBA part of FanHouse, is a guide to excuses from teams for passing on Blair.

As for Thabeet, he's getting fewer minutes and producing less than another rookie on the Grizz who went in the second round, Sam Young.

Did you know Michael Keaton was from Pittsburgh?  Doesn't that actually make you think the city is a bit more casual? 


It's Saturday night in Pittsburgh! Where are all the cool kids going? On a scale of 1-5 with 1 being Washington DC and 5 being Las Vegas, please rank where Pittsburgh falls as a party town, and tell us something we don't know and might find interesting.

Crap. I graduated from Pitt in '92. I'm not from Pittsburgh. I have kids and now live outside of Cleveland. You are so asking the wrong guy about this stuff.

From what I do know, you can never go wrong by heading to the Southside. The scale you are talking probably puts Pitt much closer to 1. Maybe a 0.5.

What's up with Pitt's fast start this year? I thought that after losing Blair, Young, and Fields, this would be a rebuilding year? Is Jamie Dixon that good of a coach?

No way any of us saw this start coming. My feeling was that Pitt could still make the NCAA Tournament, but it would be close. A pure bubble team. This team will still take a stumble at some point in the Big East slate. There is just no way a team this young can't.

That said, yes Dixon is that good of a coach. He refused to lower expectations and has really figured out things with the team. There is a framework but he has adjusted the system to fit the personnel. It is so odd to see Pitt as more of a perimeter team. There is no pure point guard and the front court is undersized. Yet it is working. They are exploiting mismatches and getting better.

How many times have you walked outside in Pittsburgh and seen the sky a color other than gray?

Depends on how much I've been drinking.

Why is the Pitt student section called the Oakland Zoo? Shouldn't it be the Pittsburgh Zoo?

Well, aside from the fact that the Pittsburgh Zoo would have objected and probably filed some stupid suit over the name being trademarked?

Pittsburgh has these things called neighborhoods that have their own names. You would think someone who has a school named for a section of Washington D.C. would understand the concept, but I understand it may confuse you. Pitt is located in a neighborhood called Oakland. Follow? (Casual Note: No. This is just impossible to follow.)

As a Pitt fan - would you rather see your school compete in the Big East or Big Ten?

Ohhhhh. I don't think there is enough time for this.

I'm happy in the Big East, especially for basketball. I prefer East Coast. The rivalries are all there (aside from Penn State). The money, though, from Big 11 affiliation would be too much to turn down.

There is this, I think regardless of what happens, this will only accelerate the eventual split of the Big East between football and basketball-only schools.

Dave Wannstedt or Craig Esherick - who has the better mustache?

Not even close. Wannstedt. Plus, outside of Georgetown fans who else really -- I mean really -- remembers an Esher-stache?

'Stache this, Dave Wannstedt.


Please compare and contrast the hair-care regimens of Jamie Dixon and Pauly D from "Jersey Shore." Which do you think looks better?

Um, yeah. Did I mention I'm old and have kids? I don't have the energy or time to even pretend to keep up with most pop-culture phenomena.

I have heard of the show, but have never seen it.