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Men's Basketball to Host No. 23 Louisville on Saturday at 9 p.m.




Jan. 20, 2012

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GAME 20: #23 LOUISVILLE (14-5, 2-4 Big East) at PITT (11-8, 0-6 Big East)

Saturday, January 21, 2012 • 9:05 p.m. ET • Petersen Events Center (12,508) • Pittsburgh, Pa.

MEDIA INFORMATION

Television: ESPN (Dan Shulman, Dick Vitale; Sidelines: Erin Andrews; Producer: Phil Dean).

ESPN College GameDay: ESPNU-10-11 a.m.; ESPN-11-noon; ESPN-8-9 p.m. (Rece Davis, Digger Phelps, Jay Bilas, Hubert Davis).

Pitt Radio: Pitt IMG College Sports Radio Network (Bill Hillgrove, Dick Groat and Curtis Aiken). 93.7 The Fan, 93.7 FM; Satellite Radio: Sirius-113 (Pitt feed).

Internet Radio Broadcast/Live Stats: www.pittsburghpanthers.com.


 

 

Coaches: Pitt: Jamie Dixon, 13th year at Pitt, 9th year as head coach (227-68); Louisville: Rick Pitino, 11th year at Louisville (259-102), 27th year overall (613-230).

Rankings: Pitt: AP-NR; ESPN-NR; Louisville: AP-23; ESPN-21.

Series: Pitt and Louisville meet for the 11th time in series history. The series is tied at 5-5. Pitt is 1-3 in home games vs. the Cardinals and 1-2 in games played at the Petersen Events Center. Three of the series' last four matchups have gone into overtime.

GAME PREVIEW

PITTSBURGH--Pitt plays its seventh Big East Conference game when it hosts ESPN College GameDay and No. 23 Louisville (14-5, 2-4 Big East) on Saturday, Jan. 21. Tipoff is at 9:05 p.m. ET at the Petersen Events Center.

Saturday's contest will be televised nationally on ESPN. Dan Shulman, Dick Vitale and Erin Andrews (sidelines) will announce the game, while Phil Dean will produce.

Pitt will host ESPN College GameDay for the second time in program history. The morning show runs from 10 a.m.-noon ET with Rece Davis, Digger Phelps, Jay Bilas and Hubert Davis. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Admission is free and open to the public. The show will air on ESPNU from 10-11 a.m. ET and on ESPN from 11 a.m.-noon. The pre-game show will be aired on ESPN from 8-9 p.m. ET. Pitt will make its fifth all-time appearance on ESPN College GameDay for men's basketball.

No. 23 Louisville is Pitt's third consecutive nationally ranked opponent. Pitt returns home for three straight games after playing four of its first six Big East games on the road.

Pitt is coming off a 71-63 road loss at No. 1 ranked Syracuse on ESPN Big Monday. The Panthers fell behind 13-0 but battled back into the game, cutting the Orange's lead to four points with 8:36 to go. Pitt outrebounded Syracuse 40-28 and despite shooting just 39.3 percent (22-56) from the floor and committing 14 turnovers, Pitt had an opportunity to gain a road win. Three Panthers scored 10 points: Ashton Gibbs, Cameron Wright and Lamar Patterson. The loss snapped a five game win streak vs. Syracuse and a five-game win streak at the Carrier Dome. Previously, Pitt had won eight of the last nine meetings and 13 of the previous 16 meetings between the two teams.

For the last 12 games, Pitt has been without starting point guard Tray Woodall (12.4 ppg./7.5 apg/2.22 assist:turnover ratio), who suffered a groin/abdominal strain vs. Duquesne on Nov. 30, 2011. His status is probable for the Louisville game.

Pitt has had a variety of players play through and sidelined with injuries including Woodall, Taylor (concussion), Ashton Gibbs (ankle), Cameron Wright (cut finger), Nasir Robinson (knee surgery). Because of the injuries, 11 different Pitt players have started and the Panthers have had six different starting lineups.

Louisville enters the game after dropping three of its last four games. The Cardinals are 2-4 in Big East play and 14-5 overall. Four players average double figure scoring for Louisville including Kyle Kuric (13.0 ppg.), Russ Smith (12.6 ppg.), Chris Smith (10.5 ppg.) and Gorgui Dieng (10.1 ppg.).

Pitt enters the game with a 15-5 record in the Petersen Events Center against nationally ranked teams.

SATURDAY'S TOP STORYLINES

•Pitt is in its 10th season in the Petersen Events Center and carries a 156-16 record (.907) in the arena. Pitt also owns a 65-13 record vs. Big East opponents in the Petersen Events Center. The Panthers have won 62 of their last 68 home games. Pitt has won 27 of its last 31 Big East Conference home games.

•Pitt enters the game with a 15-5 record vs. nationally ranked foes at the PEC.

•Following a loss, Pitt coach Jamie Dixon owns a 42-17 career record.

•Pitt is one of only three programs nationally to win more than 20+ games, 10+ league games and advance to the NCAA Tournament in each of the last 10 seasons (Gonzaga, Kansas and Pitt).

•Over the last 10 seasons, Pitt has been the Big East's leader in overall winning percentage (284-79, .782), league winning percentage (124-50, .713), consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances (10) and most 20-win, 10-win Big East years (10).