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Men's Basketball Picked to Finish Third Among 16 Big East Teams




Oct. 22, 2008

 

PITTSBURGH—The Pitt men’s basketball team was selected by league coaches to finish third among 16 teams at the Big East Conference’s annual media day Wednesday morning at Madison Square Garden. Additionally, senior forward Sam Young earned preseason First Team All-Big East honors. Young and preseason Big East Player of the Year Luke Harangody were the only two players to earn unanimous First Team All-Big East accolades.

 

In a vote of league coaches, Pitt finished third with three first place votes and 200 total points. Connecticut was picked to win the league title with 214 points and nine first place votes, while Louisville finished second with 205 points and three first place votes. Following Pitt’s No. 3 ranking, Notre Dame placed fourth (195 points/one first place vote), Villanova fifth with 153 points and Marquette sixth with 146 points.

 

A Clinton, Md. native, Young earned Associated Press All-America honorable mention honors following a junior season which saw him lead the Panthers in scoring (18.1 points per game) and set the school’s single season scoring record with 668 points. The Big East Most Improved Player Award winner, consensus All-Region selection and Naismith and Wooden Award nominee, Young became just the seventh player in school history to earn All-Big East First Team honors. In mid-March, he led Pitt to its second all-time Big East Tournament title and earned Big East Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors after averaging 20.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.5 blocks during the Panthers’ four contests at Madison Square Garden.


 

 

 

During his three-year collegiate career, Young has scored 1,194 points (11.2 ppg.), grabbed 487 rebounds (4.6 rpg.) and blocked 79 shots. He has registered six career double-doubles and notched double figure scoring 63 times in his 107-game career. In 2007-08, he scored over 20 points in 15 games and set a school-record with 36 double figure scoring games.

 

Pitt Head Coach Jamie Dixon along with seniors Young, Tyrell Biggs and Levance Fields represented the Panthers in New York City.

 

Pitt will host its fifth annual Basketball Fan Fest and Intrasquad Scrimmages on Sunday, Oct. 26 at the Petersen Events Center. The event will highlight the Pitt men’s and women’s basketball teams and feature autograph sessions, team scrimmages and various fan-oriented events. Admission is free to this family-oriented event. Free parking is available in the OC Lot. Doors open at 12:30 p.m.

 

Pitt will enter the 2008-09 season ranked as a consensus top 10 team. Pitt returns three starters, each of its top three scorers and seven of its top 10 players from a squad that captured the Big East Championship, finished 27-10 overall and advanced to NCAA Tournament play for a seventh consecutive season. Seniors Sam Young, Levance Fields and Tyrell Biggs all return to the squad along with sophomores DeJuan Blair, Gilbert Brown, Brad Wanamaker and Gary McGhee.

 

Pitt opens its season with two exhibition games at the Petersen Events Center: vs. Seton Hill (Sunday, Nov. 2 at 4 p.m.) and vs. LaRoche (Sunday, Nov. 9 at 1 p.m.). The Panthers will host their second annual Alumni Game prior to the LaRoche game at 11 a.m.

 

2008-09 PRESEASON BIG EAST COACHES POLL

 

Place

School (First Place Votes)

Points

1.

Connecticut (9)

214

2.

Lousiville (3)

205

3.

PITT (3)

200

4.

Notre Dame (1)

195

5.

Villanova

153

6.

Marquette

146

7.

Georgetown

141

8.

Syracuse

139

9.

West Virginia

121

10.

Providence

99

11.

Cincinnati

91

12.

Rutgers

53

13.

Seton Hall

50

14.

St. John’s

44

15.

DePaul

43

16.

South Florida

26

 

First place votes in parenthesis

 

2008-09 PRESEASON BIG EAST PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Luke Harangody, Notre Dame

 

2008-09 PRESEASON BIG EAST CO-ROOKIES OF THE YEAR

Greg Monroe, Georgetown

Samardo Samuels, Louisville

 

2008-09 PRESEASON ALL-BIG EAST TEAM

*Luke Harangody, Notre Dame (Player of the Year), F, Jr., 6-8, Schererville, Ind.

Deonta Vaughan, Cincinnati, G, Jr., 6-1, 195, Indianapolis, Ind.

A.J. Price, Connecticut, G, Sr., 6-2, 181, Amityville, N.Y.

Hasheem Thabeet, Connecticut, C, Jr., 7-3, 263, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

DaJuan Summers, Georgetown, F, Jr., 6-8, 241, Baltimore, Md.

Terrence Williams, Louisville, F, Sr., 6-6, 210, Seattle, Wash.

Jerel McNeal, Marquette, G, Sr., 6-3, 200, Country Club Hills, Ill.

Kyle McAlarney, Notre Dame, G, Sr., 6-0, 196, Staten Island, N.Y.

*Sam Young, Pittsburgh, F, Sr., 6-6, 215, Clinton, Md.

Jonny Flynn, Syracuse, G, So., 6-0, 185, Niagara Falls, N.Y.

Scottie Reynolds, Villanova, G, Jr., 6-2, 195, Herndon, Va.

 

2008-09 PRESEASON ALL-BIG EAST HONORABLE MENTION

Jeff Adrien, Connecticut, F, Sr., 6-7, 243, Brookline, Mass.

Earl Clark, Louisville, G/F, Jr., 6-8, 220, Rahway, N.J.

Dominic James, Marquette, G, Sr., 5-11, 185, Richmond,Ind.

 

*denotes unanimous selection

 

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