Head coach Roy Williams brings North Carolina into Oakland for Pitt’s final home game of the season. Sheldon Jeter, Chris Jones, Jamel Artis, and Michael Young will try for their biggest win of the season in their last time playing in front of The Zoo. A win would give their fading NCAA Tournament hopes a shot in the arm. UNC rolls in ranked eighth in the country in both polls and Vegas has installed them as a eight point favorite for today’s contest.
Pitt is coming off a tough loss against Wake Forest, where they shot an abysmal 4-24 in the second half. The Panthers look to rebound from that loss and from a tough one the last time these two teams collided. North Carolina took that game 80-78, with Artis missing a three pointer at the buzzer. That game stopped a trend of Pitt playing like they’d rather be anywhere other than on the court. It wasn’t enough as UNC’s talent shined through.
North Carolina’s has a record of 24-5 and 12-3 in the conference and would love to lock down a top seed in the post-season. The game will tip off at high noon in Oakland and you would expect the home crowd to give these seniors a lif.t They will have all the help they will need getting up for this game. No matter how this season has gone, there should be a good effort today, but will it be enough to pull off another upset?
Pitt sorely needs this one to have any shot at the Big Dance and the ones after, which would give them plenty of nice resume wins. The bubble is weak, but not weak enough for the Panthers to lose many more games than they already have. The ACC conference schedule will only hold so much weight with the selection committee.