Pitt Basketball vs Philadelphia: Postgame Notebook
By: Ryan Bertonaschi
Jeter appearing to be a double-edged sword
Sheldon Jeter showed those in attendance for Pitt’s final exhibition game Friday night that he’s a player of great highs and great lows.
For the time being, that is.
Jeter scored eight points, including an electrifying put-back dunk over several Philadelphia U players that thrust the Panthers to a 7-point lead in the second half that only continued to increase. Pitt would go on to win 82-71.
On the other end of the court, however, the 6-foot-8, 225-pound sophomore struggled. On two obvious occasions, Jeter allowed his man to blow by him, and all Jeter could do was watch the ball drop through the net as he stood in his man’s trail.
Dixon said he was “surprised” with Jeter’s poor defensive showing through Pitt’s two exhibition games.
“Defensively, he’s struggling,” Dixon said. “He made some shots and is going to be a good player for us, but it’s learning a whole system.”
“It’s not where he needs to be, and he needs to get better,” he added.
Newkirk, again, plays sparingly.
After receiving 27 minutes against IUP in Pitt’s first exhibition game, sophomore guard Josh Newkirk saw the floor for just 15 minutes Friday and was rendered scoreless.
Newkirk, a sophomore, is in the mix for a starting job. Derrick Randall is still recovering from a leg injury and played for just two minutes.
Dixon “honored” to play against Magee
Philadelphia coach Herb Magee is the winningest coach in Division II history and garnered the knickname “The Shot Doctor” for his ability to transform players’ strokes.
Magee said his Rams will not play a deeper team than Pitt this season, but, he said, “Their weakness, we felt, was in their outside shooting… And certainly, that wasn’t proven tonight because they go 9 for 17 [from 3-point range].”
Philadelphia cracked the top 25 in many Division II preseason polls. The Rams are just six men deep.
Media members were informed after the game that Dixon told his players that he’d never delivered a longer postgame speech to his players than the one he issued after Friday night’s game. When asked about the offensive performances of Chris Jones and Durand Johnson, who combined for 30 points, Dixon replied by asking, “How many rebounds did they have?”
Combined, they collected one.