Jan. 11, 2013
GAME 17: MARQUETTE (11-3, 2-0 Big East) at PITT (13-3, 1-2 Big East)
Saturday, January 12, 2013 Noon ET Petersen Events Center (12,508) Pittsburgh, Pa.
Television: ESPNU (Beth Mowins and Tim Welsh; Producer: Todd Kulis).
Pitt Radio: Pitt IMG Sports Network (Bill Hillgrove, Dick Groat and Curtis Aiken). 93.7 The Fan, 93.7 FM; Satellite Radio: Sirius-85 (Pitt feed), XM-85 (Pitt feed).
Internet Radio Broadcast/Live Stats: www.pittsburghpanthers.com.
Coaches: Pitt: Jamie Dixon, 14th year at Pitt, 10th year as head coach (251-80); Marquette: Buzz Williams, 5th year at MU, 5th year overall.
Rankings: Pitt: AP-ARV; ESPN-ARV; Marquette: AP-ARV; ESPN-ARV.
Series: Pitt and Marquette meet for the 16th time in school history. Pitt is 8-7 all-time vs. Marquette, including wins in four of the series' last five matchups. In the last meeting, Marquette claimed a 62-57 win over Pitt on January 14, 2012 at the Bradley Center.
PITTSBURGH--Pitt (13-3, 1-2 Big East) returns home to the Petersen Events Center to host Marquette (11-3, 2-0 Big East) for a Saturday, January 12 matchup. Tipoff is at noon.
The contest will be nationally televised on ESPNU with Beth Mowins and Tim Welsh making the call. Todd Kulis will handle production.
The game marks the first of two matchups between the two Big East rivals. Pitt plays at Marquette on February 16 before Pitt departs the Big East Conference for the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Following back-to-back losses to open Big East play, Pitt responded with a 28-point victory (73-45) at No. 19 Georgetown on Tuesday night. The 28-point victory represented Pitt's second largest Big East road win in school history. Pitt led by as many as 30 points late in the second half. The Panthers held Georgetown to only 45 points on 35.1 percent (13-37) shooting and outrebounded the Hoyas 30-23. Talib Zanna led the Panthers with 15 points and Tray Woodall contributed 11 points and seven assists. Pitt jumped out to an early lead en route to a 15-point halftime lead (37-22). Pitt improved to 1-2 vs. nationally ranked teams on the year.
Pitt has accomplished its 13-3 record with total team effort while utilizing a 10-man rotation. All 10 of its players are averaging 3.8 points or more and all 10 are playing at least 11.1 minutes per game. Through its first 16 games, Pitt has outscored its opponents by a plus-20.6 margin, shot 50.6 percent (446-881) from the floor and outrebounded its opponents by plus-8.3 boards per game. Pitt has forced 14.3 turnovers per game and totaled 112 steals for a 7.0 steals per game average, numbers that are uncommonly high for the Panthers. Pitt has also dominated the inside, having outscored its opponents 594-328 in the paint. The Panthers' bench also has outscored their opponents by a 426-214 total. Additionally, Pitt has assisted on 67.0 percent (299 of 446) of its total field goals.
In the latest NCAA statistical rankings (as of Jan. 6, 2013), Pitt ranks among the nation's top-20 teams in eight statistical categories: 5th in scoring defense, 6th in scoring margin, 10th in field goal percentage, 3rd in assists per game, 1st in assist:turnover ratio, 2nd in fewest turnovers per game and 13th in turnover margin.
Marquette enters the game with a 11-3 overall record and 2-0 Big East start after opening Big East play with consecutive wins over Connecticut (82-76 in overtime) and Georgetown (49-48). Coach Buzz Williams' squad is anchored by Vander Blue (13.2 ppg.), Davante Gardner (12.9 ppg.), Junior Cardougan (9.6 ppg.) and Jamil Wilson (8.8 ppg.).
Pitt has won 15 of its last 16 home games. It recently completed a 15-game home win streak, which ties for the seventh longest of its kind in school history. Pitt owns a 69-17 all-time record vs. Big East Conference opponents at the Petersen Events Center. Pitt is also 101-3 vs. non-conference opponents at the Petersen Events Center. Pitt has also won 122 of its last 126 home games against regular season non-conference opponents. Since the Petersen Events Center opened in 2002, Pitt owns a 49-1 record in November non-conference home games and has a 48-1 record in December non-conference matchups.
Pitt has won 81 of its last 113 games and 86 of its last 119, 230 of its last 304 contests, 96 of its last 147 Big East regular season games and 140 of its last 151 non-conference games.
SATURDAY'S TOP STORYLINES
Pitt hosts Marquette after registering its second largest Big East road victory in school history, a 28-point win at Georgetown on Tuesday.
Pitt has won 15 of its last 16 games at the Petersen Events Center. Pitt recently completed a 15-game home win streak.
Pitt is in its 11th season in the Petersen Events Center and carries a 174-20 overall record (.897) in the arena. Pitt is also 69-17 all-time vs. Big East opponents at the PEC. The Panthers have won 80 of their last 90 home games and 31 of their last 39 Big East Conference home games.
Over the last 12 years, Pitt has been the Big East Conference's leader in overall winning percentage (308-90, .774), league winning percentage (130-59, .688), Big East Championships (six), Big East Tournament wins (20) and NCAA Tournament appearances (10).