Louisville Card File: Pittsburgh

I’m not sure there is much comfort in this, but Louisville fans now understand there’s a Big East team experiencing a significantly more disappointing season than the Cardinals.

Holy cow, Panthers at the Pete, it was hard to recognize ya.

Jamie Dixon’s squad is truly woeful.

How weird is it that the Red & Black Nation is breathing somewhat easier this morning because of a workmanlike W over the league’s cellar dweller, a school that’s lost eight in a row, and hasn’t captured a league game yet?

Very weird.

Yet, a win is a win is a win. To quote someone significantly more literary than myself.

* * * * *

What fascinates me as much as anything in the aftermath of this game is the future of Kevin Ware as a Cardinal?

He played one minute last night.

After failing to get out defensively on a made Panther trey, The Rick did what The Rick does, he jerked Ware from the game. After which the freshman got in a testy looking shouting match with his coach on the bench.

Seems to me this is where experienced leadership is important. The guys who have been there awhile need to school Ware on the ways of their less than nurturing coach. This, young Kevin, is the way it is. The Rick brays. Get used to it.

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One guy’s opinion is that Russ Smith, despite his current default setting to shoot now and ask questions later, is turning into a really valuable all around player.

Yes he did have 6 turnovers last night, but he also had 3 assists. And 6 steals. The New Yorker has really quick hands, and a penchant to knock the ball away without getting a hacking foul.

I thought his shot selection was somewhat more prudent. Progress not perfection.

* * * * *

Ho hum, another double double by the steadily improving Gorgui Dieng. 13 points on 5/5 from the field, 3/4 at the line. 14 rebounds.

Chane Behanan showed a little more grit than previously. 19 points.

Beleaguered Peyton Siva had 7 assists, almost twice as many as his turnover total. He made a nice drive for a lay in late, when he correctly read a Pitt defensive lapse. And he actually made a 15 foot jumper. He had a great dump off to Dieng for a slam during crunch time.

Elisha Justice was steady. As usual.

And, Kyle Kuric, you know the walk on, lead all scorers with 21. He grabbed 5 boards. While playing with a bad wheel.

* * * * *

As fan Dr. Professor always says, “You look good when you make your shots.”

Indeed.

Louisville fashioned its largest lead of the game, 56-43 with 7:19 to play on 10/12 shooting from the field in the second half.

The Cards hit 55% for the entire tilt. 75% (15/20) from the line.

* * * * *

I rarely have kind words for the incessant cacophonous presence that is Dick Vitale. But I loved when he took time during the second half to rail against Todd Graham, the former Pitt football coach who skipped the program in the dark of night, without properly telling his team. Vitale didn’t mince words.

You go Dick.

* * * * *

Next up: Another Must Win. Villanova. Wednesday night at the Yum!.

– Seedy K

2 Comments

  1. bob
    Posted January 22, 2012 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    I once had a Duke fan say to me “the only reason Louisville beat us was because they scored more points”.

    I hesitant to write that we won because me made our shots, but

    Siva and R. Smith had 10 unforced turnovers, C. Smith has gone back to playing “where am I?

    If we ever stop pissing the ball away we could be good.

    Other than a couple of shots at the end of the game where we would have been better suited to run off some time we did real well.

    A good road win and on the plus side the players have the ability to play better.

    Now if we can just have Pitino let them play.

  2. cbcard
    Posted January 22, 2012 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

    In a fair world Russ had only four TOs.

    One was when a player didn’t come to meet the pass resulting in a TO for Russ when it shouldn’t have been. Another was when Chris didn’t make it to the spot because he was being held and the zebra should have called a foul negating the TO.

    And John Wooden once ran (OK, he probably had someone do it for him) statistics as to how they correlate to wins. He found out, to his surprise amazingly enough, that the single most important stat was shooting percentage. Duhhhh.

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