11Pitt (22-11, 14-6 ACC) vs. 11Mississippi State (21-12, 8-10 SEC)
Tuesday, March 14, 2023 • 9:10 PM
Dayton, Ohio • UD Arena
truTV • 93.7 The Fan
THE OPENING TIP
• Pitt opens play in the 2023 NCAA Tournament with a First Four matchup in Dayton, Ohio against Mississippi State Tuesday, March 14. Tipoff at UD Arena is set for 9:10 p.m. with Tom McCarthy, Avery Johnson, and Jon Rothstein calling the action on truTV.
• The Panthers are making their 27th NCAA Tournament appearance and their first under head coach Jeff Capel. Pitt received an 11-seed as an at-large selection with a 22-11 record overall and a 14-6 mark in the ACC.
• Pitt is 24-28 all-time against teams currently in the SEC, including a 1-3 mark in NCAA Tournament action.
• The Panthers earned four Quad 1 wins during the season and were tied for fourth among power conference teams with seven road wins.
• Pitt has five wins over teams (4Virginia, 5Miami, at 7Northwestern, at 11NC State, 16FDU) in the 2023 NCAA Tournament field.
• Jamarius Burton became Pitt’s second First Team All-ACC selection after averaging 16.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game in conference play. He is one of four players in the NCAA averaging 15.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 4.0 assists per game, while shooting 49 percent or better from the field.
• Blake Hinson, a Second Team All-ACC pick, has posted 28 double figure scoring games, including 19 games with 15 or more points and nine 20+ point games. He is the only player in the ACC averaging 15.5 or more points (15.6 ppg.) and 6.0 or more rebounds per game (6.2 rpg.) with 85 or more made threes (91 3FG).
BY THE NUMBERS
• Jeff Capel was named ACC Coach of the Year, becoming just the third coach in program history to garner conference coach of the year honors. Ben Howland (2002) and Jamie Dixon (2004) earned Big East Coach of the Year accolades during their careers in Oakland.
• Nike Sibande became the first Pitt player to earn ACC Sixth Man of the Year recognition after averaging 9.7 points per game in conference play. He is the first player to earn a conference individual award since Ashton Gibbs was named Big East Most Improved Player in 2010.
• Jamarius Burton and Blake Hinson earned All-ACC honors marking the first time Pitt has had multiple All-ACC selections (1st, 2nd, or 3rd Team) in a season. Burton is the second First Team All-ACC selection, while Hinson is the second Panther to garner second team honors.
• Pitt has won 21 of its past 29 games and is one of 17 power conference teams with 20 or more wins since Nov. 20.
• The Panthers finished the regular season tied for fourth among power conference teams with seven road victories, including six wins away from home in league play.
• Pitt ranks second in the ACC (T-24th in the NCAA) in three-point field goals (9.21 3pg.) with Blake Hinson (2.76 3pg. – 3rd) and Greg Elliott (2.26 3pg. – 12th) both ranking among the league leaders in threes per game. A year ago, the Panthers were 14th in the ACC at just 5.38 three-pointers per game.
• The Panthers’ backcourt quartet of Jamarius Burton, Nelly Cummings, Greg Elliott, and Nike Sibande has combined for 5,791 points in 15,048 minutes over 581 career games. Pitt is one of four programs (along with UAB, Chattanooga, and Texas) in the NCAA with four or more players with 140+ games played.
• The Panthers have found success early in the week throughout the season posting an 8-0 record in games played on Monday and Tuesday. Pitt is 6-0 on Tuesday night contests, including an early January win over Virginia.
• The Panthers’ starting backcourt of Nelly Cummings and Jamarius Burton has combined for 2,964 points, 853 rebounds, 842 assists, and 242 steals in 293 career games. The tandem combines to average 26.6 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 9.2 assists per game.
• Blake Hinson leads the Panthers in scoring (15.6 ppg.), rebounds (6.2 rpg.), double-doubles (5), double-figure scoring games (28), 20+ point games (9), and three-point field goals (91). He is looking to become the first Panther since Sam Young (2008-09) to average better than 15.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game, while making 50 or more threes in a season.
• Jamarius Burton has scored in double-figures 28 times and is averaging 15.6 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game. He is looking to become just the fourth player in program history to average 15+ points, 4+ rebounds, and 4+ assists per game for a season.
• Greg Elliott is shooting a team-high 42.0 percent (74-of-176) from three-point range, third best in the ACC among players with 2.0 made threes per game. He has made three or more threes in a game 14 times this season, including four games with five or more threes.
• Blake Hinson (91), Greg Elliott (74), and Nelly Cummings (56) have combined for 221 of Pitt’s 304 three-point field goals (72.7 percent of team threes).
• Federiko Federiko is shooting a team-high 66.7 percent (94-of-141) from the field, while also leading the Panthers in offensive rebounds (86), blocks (57), and dunks (39). His .667 field goal percentage is second best in program history (minimum 4 FGA/g). Federiko enters the NCAA Tournament with a streak of nine consecutive made field goals.
• Nike Sibande is averaging 14.3 points and 4.5 rebounds, while shooting 51.4 percent (19-of-37) from the field over the past four games. He has scored 15 or more points in three of the past four games.
• Jamarius Burton is 12 points shy of reaching the 1,500-point mark for his career. He has scored 858 points (14.1 ppg.) in 61 career games at Pitt.
• ACC Sixth Man of the Year Nike Sibande has scored in double figures 12 of the past 19 games and is averaging 10.4 points per game on 48.9 percent shooting from the field in that span.
• Greg Elliott is 12 points shy of becoming the fifth player on the Pitt roster to reach the 1,000-point plateau. Six other teams in the NCAA have 5 or more active 1,000-point scorers.
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