Pitt Begins Play In 2K Sports Classic With Game Against Maryland

Pitt had a brief respite with games against North Florida and UIC, but now the fun begins - starting with a game against Maryland on Thursday.

Pitt will have its hands full with two pretty good opponents in the 2K Sports Classic - starting with the Maryland Terrapins.

Like Pitt, Maryland is off to a 3-0 start. And like Pitt, they've had a test already. Pitt's came in the form of a single-digit victory against Rhode Island and Maryland won by only a single point against the Charleston Cougars.

Pitt's foes have taken note of the Panthers' outstanding guard play and Maryland head coach Gary Williams is no different:

"Pittsburgh is ranked where they are for a reason," Maryland coach Gary Williams said. "They have great guards. You can start right there. Great leadership from seasoned guards is a pretty good combination most people don’t have. In college basketball veteran guards make a difference, like we had last year."

And Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon isn't above praising his own guys:

"They obviously had really good years last year and they're better this year," Dixon said. "I always felt Brad was overlooked and underrated. Now he's scored a few points in some games on TV and people are talking about him. He does a lot of things for us."

But the focus of the game might not be on the guards, but in the paint.

Pitt's chances of winning will be a lot stronger if they can contain Maryland's super soph, PF Jordan Williams. Williams is averaging 20 ppg and 10 rpg and after a freshman season of averaging almost a double double, is the real deal. At 6'10" and 260 pounds, he's a beast, too.

Williams' fast start landed him the ACC Player of the Week award last week. The fun doesn't end after the Maryland game. Pitt will face another big-time opponent in a game against a ranked team in Illinois or Texas. Pitt's clearly capable of winning two straight, but facing back-to-back quality teams in consecutive nights is never an easy task.

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