DUQUESNE vs. PITT
Today's the day. The City Game is upon us, and the Dukes (2-2) will tip off against unbeaten Pitt (6-0) at CONSOL Energy Center at 1 p.m.
I'll be covering West Virginia today (last game), but will update as often as possible at @dukePG. Follow @PaulZeise, our Pitt reporter who will be at the game.
Q&A: Jim Ferry
Took a few moments Friday to talk with coach Jim Ferry about the matchup.
Here are the highlights:
Pitt comes in unbeaten and on a roll. What have you gleaned from watching film?
Ferry: “I don’t expect them to change much, and they shouldn’t — they’ve been playing really, really well. It’s a team that reminds me of my championship team [at LIU]. They’re playing 10 guys; nobody’s playing more than 26 minutes per game. They’re scoring at a high rate. I think they’re a top-20 basketball team right now — people are sleeping on this team. From all the games I’ve seen, I think there the most consistent team I’ve seen on both sides of the basketball.”
They've had no trouble scoring this fall, winning by 19-plus points each game. I imagine your focus this week has been on limiting them with strong defense?
Ferry: “We have to. The thing about them is it’s hard because they have several guys who can score. They’ve got five guys averaging double figures. Lamar Patterson is playing fantastic.”
Considering your limited frontcourt depth, does their size and experience with Patterson and center Talib Zanna concern you?
Ferry: “The one thing we have going for us is their four spot they go mostly with freshmen, and we’re playing Ovie Soko, a fifth-year senior. Ovie’s ability to have an impact on the basketball game have been vital for us.”
How has Micah Mason handled news of his broken hand?
Ferry: “It’s tough. It’s always tough when someone gets hurt, especially because I think he’d been playing pretty well for us at the time. Everybody’s a little disappointed, but it gives opportunities for other people to step up and fill that role.”
How do you plan to replace Mason's minutes?
“It’s going to be by committee. Desmond Ridenour has played really well at times, and he’s going to need to step up. Derrick Colter and Tra’Vaughn White have to take on more of a scoring role. But I think Jerry Jones, a senior, is going to be vital."