Panthers host Cardinals in Big East matchup

The #16 Pittsburgh Panthers(14-2)(4-0) will play host to the Louisville Cardinals(12-5)(3-1) on Saturday at The Petersen Events Center at noon on ESPN360.com. This is Pitt’s first time at home since taking down DePaul on December 28th. Since then the Panthers have defeated two ranked teams(Syracuse, Connecticut) and Cincinnati, all on the road. People are starting to notice that the Panthers are a true contender for the Big East Championship. Pitt should not get ahead of themselves though, these are the kind of games they must win to space themselves out in the Big East race and put them near the top.

Louisville is fresh off the heartbreaking loss to #4 Villanova on Monday night and is looking to put Pitt on upset alert. Samardo Samuels and Edgar Sosa lead the Cardinals in scoring and are both major threats. Sosa can hit the three and has great basketball smarts. He is a senior and wants to have a strong season. Their coach, Rick Pitino, is 2-0 at the Petersen Events Center and is looking to go 3-0. He can do do it if they can run on the Panthers early, but I don’t see that happening.

Since it is the day before the game I’ll give my pick right now. I think Louisville will try to press to get a lead on Pitt. It will be a success to an extent, but Pitt will start to beat it after a couple of attempts. Pitt’s gurads will be too much for them to handle and the bug men for Pitt will have a good day rebounding and boxing out. It will be close but I’ll give Pitt the win:

Pitt 66, Louisville 61

Sophomore Ashton Gibbs looks for the assist @ Syracuse

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