PITT - Our Biggest Rival?

Jan. 19, 2010

PITT – Our Biggest Rival?

Browsing the internet for potential topics for my Georgetown/Pittsburgh blog, I came across the top storylines posted on the Panther’s website, http://www.pittsburghpanthers.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/011810aab.html.

TODAY'S TOP STORYLINES  

  • Pitt enters the contest on an eight-game win streak and has won 11 of its last 12.
 
  • At 5-0, Pitt is off to a school-record tying best start in Big East play. Pitt also began the 2002-03 and 2006-07 seasons with a 5-0 record. Pitt has never started 6-0.
 
  • Pitt is 6-0 since veterans Jermaine Dixon (right foot injury) and Gilbert Brown (academic suspension) both returned to the floor. Pitt played its first 10 games with a starting five that combined for one career start prior to the season opener.
 
  • Pitt is in its eighth season in the Petersen Events Center and carries a 125-10 overall record (.926 winning percentage) and 51-9 record vs. Big East opponents in the arena.
 
  • Pitt has won 31 straight home games, a streak which ranks as the nation's second longest current win streak (Kansas, 52). It also ranks second among the school's all-time longest home win streaks. Additionally, Pitt won a Petersen Events Center record 34-games to open the arena from 2002-04.

Meaningful, significant rivalries are what make sports so exciting and fantastic.  When you think of major sport rivalries, what matchups naturally come to mind? For me it is Michigan/Ohio State football, Duke/North Carolina basketball, Yankees/Red Sox baseball and Georgetown/Syracuse basketball. 

Now, I understand why Hoya hoop fans say that Syracuse is our biggest rival seeing how this match up dates back to the beginning of the Big East Conference. There is obviously no love lost between both teams; I mean, who will ever forget one of Big John’s infamous statements, “Now, Manley Field House is officially closed.” Even JTIII has commented on the rivalry by saying, "The Georgetown-Syracuse rivalry is something that is synonymous with the Big East."

As we embark rapidly into 2010, let’s take a realistic look at what particular Big East team has been our biggest rival. Let me just put this out there, but quite frankly, the Georgetown/Syracuse rivalry hasn’t been the same since Big John retired in 1999.  Maybe I am not as passionate about this rivalry as most because I didn’t grow up a Big East fan, however, it seems to me that fans have a tendency to reflect and relive the “glory days” by embellishing moments in time that necessarily don’t hold true in the present.  I think as Georgetown fans, we let the past dictate reality which overshadows the fact that Pittsburgh has been our most competitive rival in recent history. 

When I read Pitt’s top storylines, I thought to myself, “Wow! The Hoyas have the opportunity to play spoiler on Wednesday.” Then I wondered, “When was that last time a game played between Georgetown and Pittsburgh held no significance? Has Pitt been our biggest rival this past decade?”

Don’t get me wrong, there is a greedy pleasure anytime the Hoyas are victorious over the Orange (or any other team in the Big East for that matter) but recent key victories and milestones were achieved when Georgetown defeated Pitt.  Georgetown and Pitt have met in two of the last three Big East Championship Finals, 2007 and 2008. When the Hoyas beat the Panthers in the 2007 Big East Championship game in NYC, the game was such a blow out, it was almost boring!  

Pitt has always been a tough match up for the Hoyas, especially on the road.  Pitt has defeated the Hoyas in three straight matchups and is 3-1 vs. Georgetown at the Petersen Events Center.  At home, Pitt is 51-9 against Big East opponents and currently owns the nation's second longest home win streak at 31 games, is 10-0 on the year and owns a 46-game win streak against non-conference opponents.  

There is a lot on the line for Pitt this Wednesday evening, with all the pressure on the Panthers. The Hoyas need to come out strong to lock down an impressive road win which will cause this rivalry to only intensify.  

Let’s Go Hoyas! 

Leslie A. Tyburski, MSB ‘06

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April 29
L, 4-0
Villanova
Plymouth Meeting, Pa.
RECAP
April 29
L, 5-1
St. Johns
Queens, N.Y.
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L, 4-3
Butler
Cayce, S.C.
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Cooper Field
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Florida
Gainesville, Fla.
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Cayce, S.C.
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April 29
Individual Results
Penn Relays
Philadelphia, Pa.
RECAP
April 29
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Ithaca, N.Y.
April 29
All Day
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Washington, D.C.
April 30
W, 3-2 (11)
Villanova
Plymouth Meeting, Pa.
RECAP
April 30
L, 9-0
St. Johns
Queens, N.Y.
RECAP
April 30
L, 9-2
St. Johns
Queens, N.Y.
April 30
All Day
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Ithaca, N.Y.
April 30
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Worcester, Mass.
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T1st of 9
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Callawassie Island - Charleston, S.C.
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Callawassie Island - Charleston, S.C.
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7:00 PM
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Shirley Povich Field
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Callawassie Island - Charleston, S.C.
May 4
7:00 PM
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Villanova, Pa.

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May 5
7:00 PM
St. Johns
Shirley Povich Field
May 5
All Day
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Palo Alto, Calif.
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College Park, Md.
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Palo Alto, Calif.
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7:00 PM
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Shirley Povich Field
May 6
2:00 PM
Butler
Indianapolis, Ind.
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4:00 PM
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Indianapolis, Ind.
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2:30 PM
Championship
Villanova, Pa.

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May 7
1:00 PM
St. Johns
Shirley Povich Field
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12:00 PM
Butler
Indianapolis, Ind.
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5:00 PM
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Shirley Povich Field
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7:30 PM
Maryland Eastern Shore
Shirley Povich Field
May 10
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Nm./Nc./Tx./Oh.
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7:00 PM
Butler
Shirley Povich Field
May 12
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Villanova, Pa.
May 12
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BIG EAST Outdoor Track & Field Championships
Villanova, Pa.
May 12
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Patriot League Championships
Camden, N.J.
May 13
7:00 PM
Butler
Shirley Povich Field
May 13
All Day
BIG EAST Outdoor Track & Field Championships
Villanova, Pa.
May 13
All Day
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Villanova, Pa.
May 14
1:00 PM
Butler
Shirley Povich Field
May 14
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Worcester, Mass.

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6:00 PM
UMBC
Baltimore, Md.
May 18
3:00 PM
Xavier
Cincinnati, Ohio
May 19
3:00 PM
Xavier
Cincinnati, Ohio
May 19
All Day
Ncaa National Championship
Sugar Grove, Il.
May 20
12:00 PM
Xavier
Cincinnati, Ohio
May 20
All Day
Ncaa National Championship
Sugar Grove, Il.
May 21
All Day
Ncaa National Championship
Sugar Grove, Il.
May 22
All Day
Ncaa National Championship
Sugar Grove, Il.
May 23
All Day
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Sugar Grove, Il.
May 23
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Charleston, S.C.
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Sugar Grove, Il.
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Charleston, S.C.
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Charleston, S.C.
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TBA
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Omaha, Neb.
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Charleston, S.C.
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TBA
TBD
Omaha, Neb.
May 27
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Princeton, N.J.
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Charleston, S.C.
May 28
TBA
TBD
Omaha, Neb.
May 28
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Princeton, N.J.
May 28
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Charleston, S.C.
May 29
TBA
TBD
Omaha, Neb.
May 29
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Princeton, N.J.
May 29
All Day
ICSA Team Race National Championships
Charleston, S.C.
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All Day
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Charleston, S.C.
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Charleston, S.C.
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Charleston, S.C.
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All Day
IRA National Championships
Lake Natoma, Calif.

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All Day
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Charleston, S.C.
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All Day
IRA National Championships
Lake Natoma, Calif.
June 3
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IRA National Championships
Lake Natoma, Calif.

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June 4
All Day
IRA National Championships
Lake Natoma, Calif.
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June 5
All Day
IRA National Championships
Lake Natoma, Calif.