Monday, January 05, 2009

Pitt-Georgetown Recap

Did you know that the Georgetown University had a 28-game winning streak at the Verizon Center? The key word of that sentence is "had" after Pitt’s impressive 70-54 win on Saturday. Here are my thoughts of the game from my view in Section 404.

- When showed on the scoreboard, the national anthem singer looked like a frail, old man, who may not even make it through the song. Well, he quickly proved me wrong by belting out the anthem better than David Cook or David Archuleta ever could.

- Speaking of the national anthem, I hate the Baltimore-Washington people who yell "O" during the line "O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave." That is completely disrespectful and tarnishes the national anthem. Stop it!

- As for the game itself, DeJuan Blair is the man. I didn’t see the complete stats until I got home, but Blair had 20 points, 17 rebounds and added 3 assists.

- I noticed during the game that the Panthers seemed to have few turnovers. I was correct as they only had 8, none by point guard Levance Fields, who also had 8 assists.

- The game was tied 40 all when Pitt went on a dominating 17-4 run and closed the game by outscoring Georgetown 30-14.

- DaJuan Summers had 15 points in the first half, but only 7 in the second half, many of which coming on meaningless free throws in the last few minutes. Nice adjustment by Jamie Dixon and the Pitt defense.

- I was expecting big things from Georgetown’s freshman Greg Monroe. The box score shows that he had 15 points, but I barely noticed him.

- The only negatives about Pitt’s performance are the fact that they didn’t get to the free throw line often (only 6 attempts; 3 makes) and the team shot a poor 15.8% (3 of 19) from 3-point range. Jermaine Dixon had two points and was 0-for-5 from 3. That’s our starting shooting guard.

- Gilbert Brown and Brad Wanamaker continue to impress me coming off the bench. They combined for 14 points and 10 rebounds and only 1 turnover while providing solid minutes, energy and defense.

- The recap of the game includes this statement:

In the second half, however, it was Blair who was thumping his chest while chants of "Let's Go, Pitt!" came from the thousands of upper-deck fans who made the trip to the nation's capital.

After living in the DC area for 7+ years now, I feel like it’s time to address this. Were there people from Western Pennsylvania who made the trip to DC for a Saturday game? Sure. However, my guess is that the vast majority of Pitt fans in attendance live in the Baltimore-Washington area. The Post-Gazette ran a three-part series a few years ago about Pittsburghers who moved from the area and included the graphic below about where Pittsburghers moved between 1985 and 1990. Five of those counties listed are in and around Washington. Now, how many people moved from Pittsburgh to this area over the past 18 years? My guess is tens of thousands and maybe over 100,000. How many University of Pittsburgh grads now live around DC? Perhaps several thousand. So that’s why there were 20,000-30,000 Steelers fans at the Redskins game this season. That’s why half of the crowds at Penguins-Capitals games consists of Penguins fans. That’s why there are even Pirates fans at Nationals games. After all of these years, why do announcers and columnists continue to write that Pittsburgh fans travel so well? Well, they do, but the bigger reason is that there are so many Pittsburgh fans already in the area. OK, I’ll get off my soapbox now.

By the way, in the Washington Post recap of the game, Liz Clarke wrote that, "the near-capacity crowd of 19,397 fell largely silent as Blair and the Panthers put the game out of reach in the second half, scoring on all but two possessions during a 14-minute stretch." It seemed pretty loud to me with all of the Pitt fans in attendance. Was Liz Clarke sitting in the locker room or was she even at the game?

Go Pitt!

Oh, one final note. I'd like to thanks Clyde's for being the first bar/restaurant in years for carding me. However, they used a Sharpie pen on my hand to show that I'm over 21 that I still can't get out.


tiny350Z said...

I'm one of the thousands of Pitt alum that moved to this area. The #1 county to be specific. In fact, I think the vast majority of my grad school moves here after graduation.

Unfortunately (no, fortunately), we were out of town for the game, but got to watch it (where I got carded as well!) What I found most impressive were the 43 rebounds we had (compared with their 17.) Great game, I'm waiting for us to move up to #1.

Sean said...

Tiny - Hooray for another person from Pittsburgh who now lives in Fairfax county. The amazing differential in rebounds was definitely a key factor in Pitt's win.

Anonymous said...

I have to say, I still yell (kind of) the "O" in Star Spangled Banner. If it makes you feel better (or worse), in Atlanta, they yell the last word "brave"!

Sean said...

Amy - Do they actually yell brave? I guess it's not as bad as the O since many people are already cheering during the last line and that probably drowns out the brave.

Anonymous said...

My kids took the train down to the Pitt Georgetown Game with their grandfather (my father). After that game they hit the Maryland game at 4:00. Stayed overnight and took train back to the Burg the next night. They were in basketball heaven.