With Talib Zanna and Lamar Patterson leaving the basketball program to begin professional careers, there's some opportunity for others to step up next season. Some are showing some signs of it in the Panther Pro-Am summer league.
Players such as Cam Wright and James Robinson are expected to lead the way, but there are a number of other guys poised or breakout seasons.
Two new players that many fans want to see were not factors at all last season. Sheldon Jeter and Jospeh Uchebo are two players that are turning heads in the Summer League. While Uchebo is the bigger question mark due to his injury history, reports are that he looks much more comfortable than last year and with Zanna graduating, some minutes in the middle will be needed this coming season. Jeter, meanwhile, looks like he could fill in for some of the many, many holes left by Patterson.
Josh Newkirk was a guy that played a lot last year and there are expectations for him to contribute more. CBS Sports' Jon Rothstein recently said he's not only going to be a breakout player for Pitt, but in all of the ACC. Mike Young was expected to be much more of a force and earned the starting spot at power forward. Unfortunately, he fell a little short of what was expected from him. The fact remains, however, that he was a true freshman and was starting on a very experienced team last season.
There's also Jamel Artis, who played pretty well as a true freshman, as well as Durand Johnson, once he returns from his injury. Both have provided the offense with nice lifts when on the court.
Who do you expect to take a big step forward in 2014-15? Do you think it's one of the aforementioned guys or someone else that's expected to perform such as Cam Wright? Or do you think it's someone who struggled last year, such as Derrick Randall? Someone does it every year and it is why Dixon's teams have been so successful - but who do you see as Pitt's 'breakout' player this season?