Panther Country

Being part of a school during March Madness is like nothing else I’ve ever experienced. I know that’s just freshman inexperience talking, but really…this is going to be a magical run, whether it’s Sweet 16 or Final Four. I was walking down Forbes Avenue tonight and one of the bars had painted “You’re in Panther Country” in the window. I then looked up and saw the University of Pittsburgh logo lit up on the bridge to Lawrence and Posvar, and I think at this point more than any other in the last few months, I felt an extreme amount of pride in my school and my team. I really feel bad for my friends who are at schools with inferior sports teams (my friend Andrew at Northwestern comes to mind) who really just don’t get to experience this same sort of emotion. I really felt like a Panther more than at any other moment, and watching this team really instills in me that same emotional mix of pride, joy, and love.

Now that I’ve gotten my emotions out of the way, today’s game was a complete joke. Oral Roberts was completely overmatched, and today’s game showed us absolutely nothing about the Panthers, other than that we’re taking this tournament seriously. Great 18-0 run early in the first half, and really just put it in 3rd gear and cruised the last 25 or so minutes. The only concerns were fouls on the big men- DeJuan, Tyrell, and Sam all picked up at least 3 fouls, but I think a lot of that was due to the small statue of the Oral Roberts frontcourt. While they were tall, none of them really had any bulk, so a small shove by anybody in our frontcourt sent them sprawling to the floor. Saturday’s game against MSU, a much more physical team, will be a different story. If they’re going to call those fouls on us, they’re going to certainly call a similar sort (and amount) of fouls on the Spartans, and the game will go much more smoothly.

Great job by the Panthers to not really relax in this game, but it was even greater that we didn’t have to overexert ourselves like another Louisville- even though the starters played a good deal of minutes, they weren’t exhausted by the end, and should be in great shape for Saturday. Game ball today goes to Levance for putting on an offensive show, but I also have to give great props to Gil Brown. It seems like he’s going to be our “x” factor for this tournament- if he plays well, we have a great ceiling. I wish I could have seen more from Brad today, just to get the “First NCAA Game” jitters out of the way, especially up 20 points, but i’m sure Jamie had a reason to not play him. This team is clearly ready to play, and I feel bad for the team that Michigan State has to play on Saturday. This could really be the year. We’re in Panther Country now.

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3 Responses to “Panther Country”

  1. jaymill Says:

    If Levance keeps shooting how he did agianst ORU we’re going to be an extremely tough out. It add a huge dimension to our team.Only problem I had was Blair’s foul trouble. That CANNOT happen agianst Memphis/Stanford/Texas, it is absolutely critical he is able to play their bigs.

  2. Drew Margulis Says:

    it can’t happen against MSU, either…we will need him

  3. Michael Says:

    this is an awful feeling


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