For Jeff Capel and Pitt, Some Mystery Remains in Much Improved Frontcourt

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Jeff Capel at the ACC Press Conference

   Abdoul Karim Coulibaly played 29 minutes in Pitt’s 83-74 win over Drexel on Nov. 28 at the Petersen Events Center. With John Hugley playing just 10 minutes against Drexel, and with Terrell Brown failing to appear in the game at all, has a leader emerged in Pitt’s battle for frontcourt minutes this season?

   In short, the answer is yes. But in the bigger picture, there are still plenty of questions about how the frontcourt will shake out. Consider that in the 2019-20 season, Pitt played 33 games, and a Panthers center played 29 or more minutes in just five of those games. So who were those centers?

   Coulibaly, who played a whopping 35 minutes off the bench in a 79-67 loss at Duke on Jan. 28, 2020; Terrell Brown, who also hit the 35 minute mark in Pitt’s 71-57 road win over Robert Morris on Nov. 12, 2019; Brown again with 31 minutes in a 72-49 loss against Syracuse on Feb. 26, 2020; Eric Hamilton, who played 30 minutes in Pitt’s 63-59 win over Kansas State in the Fort Myers Tip-off Tournament; and Hamilton again with 29 minutes in a 71-60 home win against Rutgers on Dec. 3, 2019.

   As you can see, each of Pitt’s three big men from last season played big minutes at least once, and the  spread was fairly even–Brown and Hamilton each hit 29 minutes twice, and Coulibaly did once.

 

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