Pitt ran out to an early lead on Tuesday night against the Stanford Cardinal, and continued to add to it throughout the game in an 88-67 victory to move the Panthers to 6-0. Led by Lamar Patterson's 24 points, the Panthers once again, looked very impressive against a major conference opponent. Patterson was one of five Panthers to reach double figures in the 21 point victory. Talib Zanna and Durand Johnson each chipped in 14, while Cam Wright and James Robinson added 13 and 10, respectively.
Pitt used a similar recipe that helped them handle Texas Tech on Monday. Pitt knocked down eight three pointers, while going 30-34 from the line. Pitt also out rebounded the Cardinal 33-26, with not one Panther having more than five rebounds in the contest. Needless to say when you have five guys score in double figures, out rebound a team, and make 88% of your free throws, chances are you will win the game. Pitt never trailed for 80 minutes of game action at the Legends Classic in Brooklyn.
Pitt was supposed to be tested somewhat in these two games, and apparently they passed them with flying colors. The Panthers are looking like they could be more than just an ordinary middle-of-the-pack ACC team. Pitt has experience and confidence with this year's team, and they are also very athletic and gifted offensively. Some pundits are throwing around the notion this is Dixon's best outside shooting team ever, and so far it is hard to argue.
Still, Pitt did not receive the resistance some thought they would get in this tournament. It could be that Pitt is very good, or these opponents still have a lot to improve upon throughout the season. Still, Pitt fans should not buy their final four tickets just yet. The post play has not been all too impressive, and they still have yet to play a true marquee opponent. Pitt will play Duquesne Saturday at the Consol Energy Center, before they take on Penn State at home in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge Tuesday. Those games could be somewhat tricky, but Pitt's next big test will come against Cincinnati on December 17 at Madison Square Garden.