With no game until WVU on Wednesday I thought I would look back at the past month and give five thoughts on the team’s play in in general.
- 8-1 on the month all in Big East play, with the only loss against Marquette. The two best wins of the month look to be Nova and Georgetown. Nova’s RPI is 22 and Georgetown’s is 36. Pitt are going to end the month at number 4 in the RPI. This is exactly where they need to be if the case for a number 1 seed in the tournament is going to have any credibility.
- Guard play has been the stregnth of the team. No two games was it more evident than Cinci and Nova. Fields, Benjamin, Ramon, Cook, and Graves are playing good basketball and challenging each other for minutes.
- As good as the guard play has been the frontcourt is a question mark coming down the stretch. Gray has only scored over 20 once this month. He has to play up to the level of competition. Rebounding and defense down low have to get better coming down the stretch.
- Coach Dixon has been doing a great job changing the gameplan and adapting to different situations. When the team was down against Marquette, Dixon tinkered with the line-up and found the hot hand of Ramon to lead the comeback. When down against Villanova, Dixon used Benjamin and Young off the bench to get some defensive breaks. No longer are we a team that just comes at you one way, this team can adapt to different ways teams play us. The depth and variety of talent in the backcourt has allowed Coach Dixon to use many different looks.
- My MVP for January was Antonio Graves his play has been much better over the past month than it was before. He is doing a much better job of taking shots when he gets them instead of forcing the ball. Also he has been taking his man off the dribble and giving the offense another player that can create shots for other players. Hopefully he is going to keep getting better over the next couple of weeks.
All in all this has been a very good month for the team. We still need to get that win over a top 25 team and the race for the Big East could very well go down to the last game of the season at Marquette. I’m really exicited about where this season is going to take us.