On an episode of Mr. Belvidere, the character played by Bob Uecker once sang karaoke “My kind of town..Pittsburgh is” The rift on the popular Sinatra tune about Chicago is apt for #20 Pitt Panthers basketball as they own a winning record at DePaul. The Pitt Panthers shot 76% from the field, 83% on three pointers in the first half to build a big 46-35 lead after the first 20 minutes. They won 81-66; shooting 72% for the game (that’s a school record), 64% from deep.
The Pitt Panthers ruined DePaul senior night and improved to 24-7, 12-6 in Big East play. The #20 team in college basketball, they’re riding a hot streak into March Madness. The Pitt Panthers have won four in a row, 11/14 and 12/16. Over the last 12 years, the Pitt Panthers are the Big East leaders in winning percentage, conference winning percentage, Big East championships, Big East Tournament wins and NCAA Tournament appearances.
So they’ll say goodbye to the league in style, as they move on to the ACC.
The Pitt Panthers held DPU at bay for double digits or more for pretty much the whole game. DePaul dropped to 11-20, 2-16 in league play. Taylor Swift is to writing bitter songs about ex-boyfriends what DePaul is to losing Big East conference games. DePaul is now 7-81 in league since 2008. The Blue Demons are part of the Papal 7, no sorry, the Catholic seven who are starting their own conference, and bringing the Big East name with them.
DePaul senior Worrell Clahar fouled out with 2:06 remaining and got a standing ovation. He tied his career-high with 19 points. DePaul coach Oliver Purnell started all the seniors today; which was very classy.
“Eventhough we made some runs, we just weren’t going to outscore them at that clip,” DePaul coach Oliver Purnell said.
“I was disappointed we couldn’t get a win for our seniors, but hopefully we can give them a win or wins in the Big East Tournament. That will function as our NCAA Tournament.”
DePaul will play Rutgers next in the final Big East as we know it tournament. “I do think we match-up against them well, and of course we won the game here,” Purnell said of the match-up with the Scarlet Knights.
Blue Demons junior Brandon Young led all scorers with 22. For Pitt, J.J. Moore had 21 and Tray Woodall had 18.
The Pitt Panthers have a double bye in the tourney yet again.
A Fulbright scholar, author and MBA, Banks has appeared on the History Channel, as well as Clear Channel, ESPN and CBS radio all over the world. President Barack Obama follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB)