Pitt vs. Florida State: Preview and Open Gamethread

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport
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After a week off, Pitt gets back to action today against Florida State. The Panthers have certainly had time to get themselves back on track and today we'll find out if the time away has paid off.

The appealing thing about today's game is that it's at home. Long layoffs aren't always the greatest thing in the world, but it's encouraging to know that at least Pitt will be a familiar territory. I'd be a lot less optimistic about today's game if it were on the road.

Florida State has kind of fallen off the map a bit. Early on, they looked like an NCAA Tournament team and now that's not exactly the case. After a 12-4 start, the Seminoles promptly went 3-7 over their last ten games and really need to pull off some nice wins to get back into the discussion for the tourney. They'll have the opportunity with today's game against Pitt and then a season finale against Syracuse. Without a great win on the year, they likely need to go 4-0 the rest of the way to even have a sniff at the tournament.

On Pitt's end, it's the start of a five-game stretch that likely decides their season. The Panthers need to a bare minimum 4-1 record to feel safe about getting into the tournament in my opinion, and winning all five and an ACC game would really help them move up into a better seed. The big win isn't there, but a 6-1 run to close out the season would be impressive - particularly since there are three road games.

Game on ESPNU and WatchESPN. Leave your pregame thoughts below then join us at 6:00 p.m. here to comment live during the game.

Be sure to join Cardiac Hill's Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @PittPantherBlog for our regular updates on Pitt athletics. Follow the author and manager/editor of Cardiac Hill @AnsonWhaley

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