WASHINGTON - MARCH 19: Members of the Pittsburgh basketball team including Nasir Robinson #35, Ashton Gibbs #12; and Brad Wanamaker#22 walk off the court following their loss against Butler in the third round of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at Verizon Center on March 19, 2011 in Washington, DC. Butler won the game 71-70. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Pitt's subpar season is dying a slow death and the Panthers will try to finish strong with a home game against the St. John's Red Storm. The Panthers haven't had a great season, but neither has St. John's. The Red Storm, though, at least are on a bit of a roll. While Pitt has lost five straight games, St. John's has won their past thee straight against UCLA, DePaul, and Notre Dame.
The Johnnies are perhaps the youngest team in the nation with eight freshmen and are led by the two-headed monster of first-year players, Moe Harkless and D'Angelo Harrison. Both average more than 15 points per game and are competing for the Big East Freshman of the Year Award. Harkless, in particular, is an immense talent. He's not only one of the top scorers in the conference, but one of the league's best rebounders as well.
Pitt should get at least a small boost from seniors Ashton Gibbs and Nasir Robinson. Both Gibbs and Robinson will be playing their final regular season home game at the Pete and should be excited to play in front of the home fans on senior day.
One advantage the Panthers may have against St. John's is on the boards. The Red Storm don't have a player taller than 6'8" and they rank near the bottom of the conference in rebounding. Pitt's success will depend on the aggressiveness of frontcourt players Nasir Robinson, Talib Zanna, Dante Taylor, and Malcolm Gilbert. Of the group, only Robinson is consistently attacking the glass and if the others follow suit, the Panthers should be able to take advantage of the Red Storm.
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