Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Jamie Dixon's career Big East record

I notice the anti-Jamie Dixon bunch often throws in the fact that Dixon is not as successful as his stats indicate because he pads the winning column with a weak schedule. True, his out of conference schedule could be stronger, to say the least, but in his decade as the head coach he's been in the toughest basketball conference in the country and has done very well against them.  In fact, amazingly well.  

Syracuse 117-55 .680  ---
Louisville  95-45  .678   1 games back
Pittsburgh  115-57  .669  2
Marquette  92-49  .652  9.5
UConn   107-65  .622  10
Notre Dame 105-67 .610 12
Georgetown  103-69  .599  14
Villanova  99-73 .576  18
West Virginia  95-77  .552  22
Cincinnati 66-74 .471
Seton Hall  68-105 .393
Providence  65-108  .376
St. John's 59-113 .343
South Florida 38-102  .271
Rutgers 45-127 .262
DePaul  27-113  .193


  1. Once again, Jamie's teams overachieve during the league, above its talent level. Much can be contributed that there was often a few starters returning while some of the others like UConn and Cuse had to break in new players due to early NBA defections.

    Nonetheless, a record like Jamie's in the BE is nothing to sneeze at

  2. Jamie has a good record if you look at 10 years.
    The issue is the last 2 years and all the turmoil. That didn't happen before.
    Dixon program is not built on 1 and done (Adams and include Birch transfer).
    It seems to be a swing and miss with top recruits lately as they choose other programs.

  3. As mentioned here and elsewhere ... our talent level usually is not the continual 1 and done top recruits that UK, Kansas, UNC, et al produce. Even though they "lose" top guys every year, they usually turn around and reload ... yes, we may have guys play together for 2-3-4 years, but again, these guys are not NBA talents. Accordingly, what we have done is amazing ... it is a function of how JD coaches and squeezes all he can from our players. Every once and a while we get a group that gels and is top-notch (Blair, Young and Fields) .. and you immediately can see the difference. Conversely, you can get a group of guys that don't develop and improve ... this is readily apparent as well. Overall, I think our recruits will get better over time and we will be knocking on the Final 4 door very soon. Hail to Pitt!

    1. For Dixon to get to the Final 4, it will be a combination of:
      Stability, Recruiting, and Luck.
      Yes, Luck. Regardless of how much talent or top coaching a team may have, a little bit of luck is necessary to make that run to a Final 4.

    2. Bingo.

      People forget how much of a crapshoot the Tournament can be. Most winners are the beneficiary of an upset along the way.
      Pitt hasn't had too many of those that I can recall.
      Bradley over Kansas was one (2005), and Kent State (2002).
      In contrast, getting Butler in 2011 was a clear misseed; the defending runner-up was not a 9 seed.

      As for the turnover, that will happen from time to time. There's only 13 or so players on a hoops team. A team can be built and fall apart much faster than in football with 85 players.

      I agree that I think the team overachieves some in the regular season.

      But I also think part of the issue is that Pitt's strategy is sometimes geared more for the grind of a regular season and a best of elimination series. A lot of times, it seems Pitt will allow the more difficult outside shot in contrast to the easy layup, and dare the hot shooter to beat them. more often than not, the strat works and Pitt wins.

      But sometimes, the shooters are hot and Pitt loses. Not a big deal in the regular season where everybody will lose some games, Same thing in an elimination series where you can afford to lose a few games. Except the elimination series doesn't exist in college hoops; it's single game, so if you get burned, you're done.

      It's not the only reason, of course, but I think it's part of the issue.

    3. I agree ... our talent and "team-concept" are built for the long haul, i.e., regular season. To date, we haven't necessarily been built for the win-or-go-home tournaments. If we don't play flat out and/or the other team creates mismatches or is hot, we end up losing. Hopefully, this will change as we start to get "better" recruits. Hail to Pitt!

    4. saw a great article recently (i think on yahoo) about UK having 8 NBA ready guys ready to go each night .. and .. reloading once they leave. Again, another reason why it's tough for Pitt to make F4s ... on another note, seems like Khem Birch may have found his footing .. I know it's early but he is averaging a double-double with 30 minutes of PT. Probably could have similar numbers at Pitt but perhaps not the high minutes ... wish he would have stayed but I think he saw that the team wasn't that good and he didn't want to be part of it .. plus, the style of play (which he and/or his advisors should have known) wasn't what he wanted.

  4. Ok, another question.
    Of all the Big East teams who either was crowned Big East regular season champion or won the Big East tournament.
    How many of them made the Final 4.
    I know Pitt with Dixon was 1st place or won Big East Tournament but, never made Final 4.
    Is Pitt the only Big East champion that crashed and burned in the Tournament?

    1. Perhaps my question was confusing.
      Which Big East teams in the last ten years that either won the regular season or was Tournament champion, Which teams and what year (aside from Pitt several times) did not go to Final 4.

  5. Chris, letting out some frustration?!?! Keep going I am enjoying this! It is everything I have always wanted to say! Well said

  6. Chris - How exactly would you define Dixon's career if he never makes a final 4?

  7. Having short shooting guards, like Ronald Ramon, or shooting guards that cannot hit shots consistently, Keith Benjamin, along with undersized centers, Dante Taylor, does not result in a formula that results in a Final 4 appearance. JD deserves credit for all of the wins, but he also needs to be called out for being the guy that recruited the players. I think that he realized the need to get better athletes with more size into the program and has gone about trying to attract these guys. Finally, lets hope that these new players will be able to shoot free throws better than the old ones, because that is a big part in winning close games and keeping double-digit leads from becoming nail-biters. Thanks again Chris.

    1. As much as I support JD and his ability to get the most from the least ... I agree with your comments that he is the guy that actually recruited the talent, or lack thereof. Is JD reluctant to go after the "top" guys because he is a realist and doesn't think the program will interest them, is he not aggressive enough, a poor recruiter, or is he a bad judge of talent .. or some combination of the above? Also concerning to me is that some of the recent talent never developed under the program. Is this poor developmental coaching, a bad judge of talent or bad luck/timing ? In any case, the situation needs to improve if we are to advance to the Final 4.

    2. For a number of years, we players developed and assistant coaches were hired by other schools. Neither has happened in the last few years. Hopefully Slice will make a difference.

  8. Chris, thanks for the great question, do you have any idea why Pitt's non conference schedule is so pathetic? Does Dixon and his staff think they benefit from scheduling such weak competition? I see nothing that a team, football included, gains by scheduling such weak opponents...thanks again for posts...

  9. I have another measuring stick: I won a LOT more free-lunch bets than I paid from my coworker from Connecticut when Pitt played UConn.

  10. Chris,

    I get what you are saying, but I wanted to respond to a previous point you made about Dixon wanted to right the wrongs of the past two years. My question is, if that is the case, why is Bill Barton still on the staff? The guy has done nothing since he has been here. He has delivered Artis, who I think is a good player, but Pitt was his best offer anyway. Other than that, the guy is a major negative on the recruiting trail. If Jamie is getting serious, I have no idea why he keeps this guy on staff. Is he a really good X's and O's coach or something? From my perspective, the primary job of an assistant coach in basketball is to recruit, which Barton has really failed to do.

    1. I would like to hear Chris's reply on that as well.

    2. I haven't been too impressed with Barton so I don't know what Dixon sees in him. But he's the third best assistant out of three so I don't think he's going to matter much.