Pregame Breakdown: Louisville v. Pittsburgh

The Louisville Cardinals are home on Friday night for an ACC matchup with the Pitt Panthers at the KFC Yum! Center. Louisville, who is 8-0 and ranked number one in the polls, is fresh off a 15 point win over fourth ranked Michigan on Tuesday night. Tuesday’s win was the first regular season win for Louisville as the number one ranked team.

Pittsburgh is 7-2 and 1-0 in ACC play. The Panthers opened up their season with a surprising two point win at home over Florida State. They also own a bad loss against Nichols State, but have win five straight with three of them coming against top-100 teams.

Four Pitt players are currently averaging between 10.9 and 12.0 points per game. Trey McGowens is the leading scorer at 12.0; he averaged 20.0 points in two games against Louisville last season. McGowens scored 33 in Pitt’s 89-86 win in OT over Louisville at home last January. It was a bad loss for the Cards at the time,  but they returned the favor with a 15 point win in Louisville later that month.

Jeff Capel is in his second season coaching Pittsburgh. They went 3-15 in the ACC a year ago. While not expected to necessarily compete in the ACC this season, Pitt was picked 10th in the preseason poll after finishing in last place each of the past two seasons.

Louisville is 17-6 all time against Pittsburgh. Pitt has only won once on the road at Louisville, and the Cards have won 13 of the last 14 games overall in the series. 

Louisville played its best game of the season on Tuesday against Michigan. They’ll look to follow that up with a convincing win over Pittsburgh. Pitt has been better this year, but this is still not a tournament team and Louisville should win at home. Pitt did beat Louisville last year in the second conference game of the year though, and they’ve already knocked off a good FSU team this season. If Louisville comes out and plays defensively like they did earlier this week, it’ll be in great position to keep the unbeaten record in tact.

Prediction: Louisville 74 Pittsburgh 59


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