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Panther of the Week: Jamel Artis

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Jamel Artis continued his improvement and looks to have taken the next step in what is becoming a breakout season.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

This was not the best week for Pitt basketball, however, we do have to keep in mind that during these winless seven days, the Panthers did lose to two top-ten teams. From the second half of the loss at Duke, Pitt played pretty well. Louisville shot the lights out to take down Pitt, but the hustle and effort was there for Pitt and one player continues to give Panther fans something to get excited about for the remainder of the season. Several of Jamie Dixon's players did not look like they were ready for the big boys on the schedule, but Jamel Artis was and that is why he is our Panther of the Week.

Since the Florida State game a couple of weeks ago, Artis has really stepped up his game and is now averaging double digits in points per game. The Baltimore native is looking more and more like a typical Jamie Dixon player that is turning into a good all-around contributor. He is even beginning to develop some slick moves and has been more consistent with his mid-range jumper.

While Pitt got their feet wet and looked terrible in the first half against Duke, Artis kept them within shouting distance and finished the first game of the week with 21 points, six rebounds, four assists, and one block. The 6'7" forward was not done there and continued to step up against the best of the best against Louisville yesterday. Artis finished with 18 points, eight rebounds, one assist, two steals, and a block against a suffocating Cardinal defense.

Pitt may have finished 0-2 this past week, but I believe we are starting to see the emergence of Artis. With the young nucleus coming back, Pitt will need someone to take the lead and Artis and Michael Young are providing the team with a good foundation.

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