The Red Raiders probably aren't very good but anytime that you beat a Tubby Smith team by 23 points you're doing something right. It was the toughest competition of the season thus far for the Panthers and they responded with their best performance. Before anybody downplays this performance too much, the Panthers were an 11-point favorite.
1. This team may have more talented players than any team Jamie Dixon has ever had. I'm not saying they're the best team he's ever had because he's had other teams that had excellent players. But there isn't a bad player on this team.
2. Lamar Patterson has always been a good player but there was something in all of us that thought he should probably be even better. Maybe tonight was the start of that as he had a career high 23 points on 8-13 shooting. That included 4-7 from three and 3-3 from the line. He also chipped in 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 steals, and a block.
3. Talib Zanna was 1-4 from the line and Derrick Randall was 0-2, but Patterson, James Robinson, Cameron Wright, and Mike Young combined to go 15-15 from the line. Young is 11-13 on the season while Patterson is 15-18, Robinson is 15-16 and Chris Jones is 7-7.
4. Robinson had 9 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 turnovers. Not only is he shooting 93.4% from the line he also has 20 assists to 6 turnovers.
5. Zanna was in foul trouble throughout, something he just can't do, and had 3 points and 3 assists.
6. Wright chipped in with 12 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, and a block. He's quietly having a nice season averaging 9.4 ppg and 2.4 spg. He also has 12 assists and only 4 turnovers.
7. Young only had 6 points and 4 rebounds but you can tell that he's going to be a very good player very soon.
8. Durand Johnson continues to be instant offense with 6 points on two 3-pointers. He also had 3 rebounds.
9. Randall was 0-3 from the floor and 0-2 from the line, plus he had 3 fouls, but he did get 5 rebounds and that's really why he's there anyway.
10. The other three young guys, Josh Newkirk, Jamel Artis, and Jones, all had flashes of very good talent. Newkirk was expected, and he did have 5 points, but Artis and Jones have been pleasant surprises. Artis contributed 4 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists. Jones had 8 points, including 2-3 from three.
11. Pitt had only 8 turnovers in the game and out rebounded Texas Tech 33-30. They shot extremely well going 48.1% from the floor, 43.5% from three, and 76.2% from the line. They also had 9 steals and 3 blocks. The Red Raiders shot 38% from the field.