November 19, 2013 at 10:40 pm #12266
How KenPom sees it……………..
LU ranked 181st
PITT ranked 12th
Pitt wins 80-62
LU jumps from the frying pan into the fire in tomorrow night’s contest. The Panthers are 3-0 after blowout wins over three far lesser foes posting W’s by 33, 21, and 32 over Savannah State, Fresno State and Howard, respectively. No game was in question as you would expect when going up against the 338th worst set of opponents in terms of “Strength of Schedule.” Coach Dixson’s biggest challenge out in Pittsburgh today might be mental………how to keep his players from thinking Lehigh is but another “lamb being brought to slaughter.” On the flip side, Coach Reed must figure a way to keep Pitt in check or at least Pitt’s three “bigs.” They are:
#42 Zanna 6’9” 230 lb. RS Sr. .692 FG% and .833 FT%
# 2 Young 6’8” 245 lb. Fr. .692 FG% and .778 FT%
#11 Randall 6’9” 240 lb. Jr. .615 FG% and .750 FT%
The three seldom walk away empty handed whether shooting or rebounding (21.1 rpg combined) the ball. TK and Company may not face a tougher trio this season or perhaps ever. Key to any upset hope we might have would be to limit the damage these three might cause inside and hope the Pitt 3’s aren’t falling.
As for our ability to put the ball in the net, we might better be thinking “long range.” Pitt is the 14thth best in the country at limiting the opponent’s 2 point shot with a .376% “against” shooting percentage. To complicate matters further, we’re off to a slow start (team .333) in landing the ‘3.” While MM, AP, and JC have done their part, the usually reliable SC (.376 last year) and CS (.396 last year) have let us down combining for 3 of 21 (.143). Maybe they hit their stride tomorrow night.
Behind the scene………………
Read Pitt Coach Dixon’s comments following their blowout win over Howard, 84-52. The Panthers shot 81% from the field in the first half opening up an insurmountable 48-24 lead over the Bison of Howard. They ran out to a 19-1 lead (sound somewhat familiar?) and never looked back. Pitt had ten with double-digit minutes and entering the scoring column led by Petterson (6’5/225) and Young (6’8/245) who combined for 31 points on 11 for 15 shooting.
ESPNU @ 7:30pm, Wednesday, Nov. 20thNovember 20, 2013 at 2:18 am #12272
Would love to see Lehigh start a big lineup and open up in zone, packed around their bigs. Pitt destroyed us on the glass last year. Won’t happen, but we can dream.November 20, 2013 at 3:42 am #12273
St. John’s 67
(C. Ayers 25 pts., 5 boards, 1 steal)November 20, 2013 at 3:42 am #12274
St. John’s 67
(C. Ayers 25 pts., 5 boards, 1 steal)November 20, 2013 at 4:03 am #12275
I watched Bucky tonight. They are playing at a completely different level than we are, at this point. Bigs are skilled AND strong in the paint, they’re shooting well, look very controlled and confident. I paid extra attention to boards on D – night and day difference from us. They find somebody, put a body on ’em, get the arm back to stay in contact.
Just checked the box, and they out-rebounded St. Johns 35-32 who were clearly bigger and more athletic. Bucky ate a BUNCH of shots, as we did vs. Houston, so I think it’s a fair comparison; Johnnies had 13 blocks.
I honestly think Bucky might have beaten Minny or Houston. They look very, very good. I haven’t seen BU yet, but they better be damn good if they plan to win the PL.November 20, 2013 at 10:57 am #12276
Also watched the entire Bucknell game. Bison went cold due to up tick in Red Storm defense and got pushed around a bit at the end, but all in all I was very impressed from start to finish. Shot selection, poise, handle, boxing out……and confidence. And another Patriot league upset that got away. But most noticeable to me: the defensive rebounding contrast between Bucknell and us is dramatic. You have to think the coaches are concerned as much as we are about this issue. Tonight may not be the best gauge of progress on the boards, but hopefully we give it a better go.November 20, 2013 at 1:39 pm #12277
experience counts and early on, it’s showing. Give us time. It’s early. We will improve. A common refrain, for sure, but one that applies. At least, I hope it does.
First, congrats to the Bison of Bucknell for their showing last night against the Johnnies of SJU. Awesome! You did the PL good. Ayers was sensational. So, too, for the most part were the others in the starting five. Which, by the way, was comprised of 1 graduate student, 2 seniors, 1 junior and 1 sophomore. Great depth and talent. In fact, the roster as a whole comes in with 1.81 years of playing experience which is third best/highest in the PL and surpassed by only CU and Boston U. For comparison purposes, I give you Lehigh. Against Houston we started : 1 senior, 1 junior and 3 freshmen (yeah, I counted JC as a freshman…maybe we should be a “freshman +” if there was such a category). That stat earns us an 8th place ranking in the PL in terms of years of playing experience and ahead of only Navy and Army.
Most of us want W’s but too often forget they come with time and experience. Wasn’t it nice to witness CJ (sr.), HG (sr.), GK (sr.), AD (jr.) and CS (so.) do what they did last year? Hang in there, our time will come.November 20, 2013 at 2:22 pm #12279
Right on the mark, 65. Hopefully, that experience is the biggest difference. I allow myself to get over-amped about our new talent. I have to remember that these guys are gonna need some time to develop as players and as a team.November 20, 2013 at 2:58 pm #12281
I do not place tremendous value on experience but certainly there is some benefit. I put more value on a 22 year old versus an 18,19 year old. Give me a 22 year old senior that has never started a game over 90% of 18,19 year olds that have never started a game and I will beat you 9 out of 10 times. I believe this explains the parody that has existed in college basketball in the last 10 years. For the most part in my opinion it is due to mid-major programs playing with 4th and 5th year seniors, while major programs are playing with freshman and sophomores. The greatest win in Lehigh history does not happen if the star players at Duke are Juniors and Seniors. Bob Hurley’s senior laden Duke team beats 95% of mid-major programs by 40 no matter who is on their roster.
November 20, 2013 at 3:15 pm #12283
- This reply was modified 6 years, 11 months ago by pafan11.
Most of us want W’s but too often forget they come with time and experience. Wasn’t it nice to witness CJ (sr.), HG (sr.), GK (sr.), AD (jr.) and CS (so.) do what they did last year?
I agree with this, but let’s not forget Bucknell graduated 3 1,000 point scorers and an NBA draft pick as well. I think that there is a mentality and toughness difference between Bucknell and Lehigh (and the rest of the PL). The Duke win was great, but that was the only win over a high major that Lehigh had during the 4 years of CJ, Holden, and Gabe.
By comparison, during Muscala’s four years and so far this year, Bucknell has beaten Penn State, Purdue, George Mason, LaSalle (2x), Richmond (2x), and Arizona. There were a number of other close calls in there as well against Stanford, Missouri, St. John’s and more. Lehigh’s win was bigger because it was Duke in the tournament, but we all know Bucknell has been there as well (twice). I think that there is a mental barrier that Bucknell seems to have crossed where they expect to win these games, and Lehigh isn’t there yet. Hopefully that is another part of the “youth” issue at Lehigh that will change with time, but it is definitely another area of growth this team needs.November 20, 2013 at 3:21 pm #12284
Going to watch game on the U tonite.No expectation of a win ,for me just looking for effort,combinations on the floor and not seeing a bunch of deer in the headlights moments.November 20, 2013 at 3:23 pm #12285
As of today,after watching BU,Bucknell and Cross,we have a ways to go yet.November 20, 2013 at 3:44 pm #12286
I watched Cross against Sacred Heart on the PL stream, and wasn’t impressed. They seemed totally unable to seal the deal against a lesser team. I did not see their game against UNC, which might have given me a different perspective.
The only other PL team I’ve watched is American, and I was unimpressed there, too. I haven’t watched them yet, but it looks like Army has been kinda disappointing so far.November 20, 2013 at 7:01 pm #12295
Not to be too pessimistic about this game but IMHO, it is a matchup nightmare. Their guards pressure the ball all over the court. They play very tight along the perimeter. CJ had a very good game statistically (7 of 11 from the field) but only managed to get 11 shots off and he worked really, really hard for those. Don’t expect many open 3s tonight unless we can penetrate and they overpursue. In the frontcourt, the are bigger, stronger and more experienced. They are technically the best rebounding team I have seen. They anticipate well, establish their position well and attack the basket rather than waiting the ball to come down to them. Hopefully our bigs will learn something tonight.November 21, 2013 at 12:56 am #12300
Just watching FL. TK watches ball loses man on D. CB only one to box out CB working inside.LU D a,tive but Pitt taller,heavier, well coached.
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