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Louisville vs. Pitt preview

Go Cards.

Kentucky v Louisville Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Louisville Cardinals (5-8, 0-2) vs. Pittsburgh Panthers (9-5, 0-3)

Game Time: Noon

Location: KFC Yum Center: Louisville, Ky.

Television: The CW

Announcers: Ryan Burr (play-by-play) and Brian Oliver (analyst)

Favorite: Pittsburgh by 8.5

Series: Louisville leads, 21-9

Last Meeting: Pittsburgh won 91-57 on Feb. 7, 2023 in Pittsburgh

Series History:

Probable Starting Lineups:

Louisville

  • G Skyy Clark (6-3, 205, So.)
  • G Ty-Laur Johnson (6-0. 160, Fr.)
  • G/F Mike James (6-5, 200, R-So.)
  • G Tre White (6-7, 205, So.)
  • F Brandon Huntley-Hatfield (6-10, 240, Jr.)

Pitt

  • G Ishmael Leggett (6-3, 185, Jr.)
  • G Carlton Carrington (6-5, 190, Fr.)
  • F Zack Austin (6-7, 210, R-Jr.)
  • F Blake Hinson (6-8, 230, Sr.)
  • F Guillermo Diaz Graham (7-0, 220, So.)

Statistics:

Relevant Videos:

About Pittsburgh:

Two of the ACC’s only three remaining winless teams in league play will square off Saturday afternoon when Louisville hosts Pitt at noon inside the KFC Yum Center.

The Panthers enter the contest having dropped their two most recent games, an 81-73 road loss to Syracuse a week ago and a 70-57 home loss to North Carolina on Tuesday. Jeff Capel’s team is currently No. 50 in the NET Rankings and No. 53 on Ken Pom.

Louisville had won 17 of 18 games against Pitt before the Panthers’ current three-game winning streak in which their average margin of victory has been 22.3 points per game.

Pitt leads the ACC in rebounds (42.1 rpg.), rebound margin (+7.86), and defensive rebound pct. (.773), while ranking second in offensive rebounds (13.4 orpg.), defensive rebounds (28.7 drpg.), and offensive rebound pct. (.341). Defensively, the Panthers are limiting their opponents to just 25.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc, the second-best mark in the country.

The Panthers’ offense comes and goes. Pitt is 9-0 on the season when shooting better from the field than its opponent. The Panthers have a .471 field goal percentage in wins versus a .370 field goal percentage in losses.

Blake Hinson, the team’s leading scorer at 18.9 ppg, has scored in double figures in 13 of 14 games with six 20+ point games. He ranks among the ACC leaders in scoring (4th - 18.9 ppg.), three-pointers (1st - 48), and three-point percentage (6th - .414).

Freshman guard Carlton Carrington, a three-time ACC Rookie of the Week selection, is one of just six players in the NCAA averaging at least 14.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 5.0 assists per game. He has scored 15 or more points in a game eight times with a season-high 20 points in his last outing.

Seven-foot sophomore center Guillermo Diaz Graham has scored in double figures in four of the past six games and is averaging 11.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks per game, while going 26-of-44 (.591) from the field (8-of-17 3FG) in that span.

Notable:

—After losing 17 of 18 games to the Cardinals, Pitt has won three consecutive games against Louisville with an average scoring margin of +22.3 points per game in those contests.

—Louisville ranks 18th in the country in free-throw attempts per game (24.8) and 17th in made free throws per game (18.2). U of L’s 237 made free throws are the program’s second-most through 13 games since at least 2010, behind only the 2018-19 team.

—Louisville announced Thursday that freshman center Dennis Evans will not be medically cleared to compete at the University of Louisville moving forward. He remains a member of the program at this time.

—Pitt is 9-0 on the season when shooting better from the field than its opponent. The Panthers have a .471 field goal percentage in wins versus a .370 field goal percentage in losses.

—Louisville is 12-2 all-time in home games against Pitt.

—Pitt leads the ACC in rebounds (42.1 rpg.), rebound margin (+7.86), and defensive rebound pct. (.773), while ranking second in offensive rebounds (13.4 orpg.), defensive rebounds (28.7 drpg.), and offensive rebound pct. (.341).

—Pitt is 59-12 under Jeff Capel, including an 8-1 mark this season, when leading at the half.

—Louisville is 2-21 in ACC games under head coach Kenny Payne.

—Jeff Capel is 4-6 all-time as a head coach in games against Louisville. One of those losses came in the 2008 NCAA tournament.

—Pitt is the only team in the ACC with three players - Federiko Federiko, Zack Austin and Guillermo Diaz Graham - ranked in the top 15 in the league in blocks. The trio combines for 4.15 blocks per game.

—The Panthers are one of the top defensive teams in the ACC ranking among the league leaders in scoring defense (3rd - 65.1 ppg.), field goal percentage defense (2nd - .394), three-point percentage defense (1st - .255), and blocked shots (2nd - 5.2 bpg.).

—Louisville is 222-15 over the last 20 seasons and 19-3 over the last three when scoring 80 points or more. The Cards are 3-1 in such games this season.

—Since 2004, Louisville is 129-0 when leading by more than 10 points at halftime.

—Louisville has won 162 consecutive games when holding an opponent under 50 points.

Ken Pomeroy Prediction: Pittsburgh 76, Louisville 68