1. Pitt’s Jamel Artis scores 43 points in 85-80 loss to Louisville-Usually I wouldn’t put any stats before a loss, but I’ll make an exception here because Artis was amazing in that game. The 43 points were obviously a career-high, but so were his 7 three-pointers. Wow. He truly is the modern-version of the ‘Rifleman’.
  2. Just in case you were wondering where Artis’ 43 points go in the record books, it’s the second-highest in Pitt history behind Don Hennon’s 45-point performance in 1957. He did all he could to keep the Panthers in the game, and the fact that they only lost by 5 is proof that if he had more of a supporting cast, Pitt might have won.
  3. If Artis keeps this type of performance up, he’ll start getting the attention of the national awards as well as All-American status. The ACC is watching, that’s for sure.
  4. After Artis’ 43, and F Mike Young’s 17, the remaining starters: 7 from Sheldon Jeter, 4 from Chris Jones, and 2 from Cameron Johnson, who’s supposed to be the 3-point specialist, as he went 0-6. You lost that title, buddy.
  5. As a team, the Panthers are now 12-5, and most critically, 1-3 in ACC play. We knew the conference schedule would be tough, but they need to get some more wins or they will be waiting for their selection at the National Invitational Tournament. HC Kevin Stallings must know what adjustments he can make to compliment Artis and Young. And they only have 2 days to do so as they host Miami on Saturday.
  6. As for the rest of college basketball, West Virginia is at it again as they upset the #1 ranked team in the nation. Last year, it was Kansas, this year it was Baylor as they beat them 89-68 on Tuesday. The Mountaineers are ranked #10, but you can bet that will change when the new polls come out.
  7. I think it’s safe to say that West Virginia has finally adjusted to the Big 12, because they’ve been one of the best teams in that conference the past 2 seasons. They looked good in football this season and are already making waves in basketball. Keep an eye on this team, because they may be ranked #1 soon.
  8. As for the NFL, the Pittsburgh Steelers have an important game this weekend as they take on the KC Chiefs in an AFC Divisional Round Game Sunday. Unlike their first encounter in which the Steelers defeated the Chefs 43-13 at Heinz Field, this game will be at noisy Arrowhead Stadium.
  9. The Steelers know not to base their success on what happened in the regular season. The Chiefs are obviously better than they were in October. They have a balanced offensive attack and a better defense than Miami. They love to force turnovers.
  10. I do like the Steelers in this one, because they’re in a zone and their offense is stacked with QB Ben Roethlisberger, RB Le’Veon Bell and WR Antonio Brown. If this ‘Big Three’ can set the tone and punch the Chiefs in the mouth like they did Miami, then we can expect the Steelers to get back into the AFC Championship Game. Yeah, I said it.
  11. The biggest question, is who they Steelers could play if they get that far. Well, the other AFC Divisional Game is the Houston Texans vs. those New England Patriots. Can the Texans, do it? Well, QB Brock Osweiler did when he was in Denver last year, but he basically must not make mistakes and score some touchdowns, but the key will be that top-ranked Texans defense to get in Pats QB Tom Brady’s face all game. Houston wins if they can do that.
  12. As for the NFC, Divisional Games: I can see Seattle beating Atlanta and get this…Green Bay beating Dallas. Why? Because experience still does matter in the playoffs. QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott dominated the regular season, but how they respond in this type of pressure will be put under the spotlight.
  13. But the NFL news doesn’t stop there. Apparently, they will finally get a 2nd team in Los Angeles, and that will the San Diego Chargers, who made it official on Thursday. The Chargers spent 56 years in San Diego, but them began their existence in Los Angeles, so it will come full-circle for them.
  14. The Chargers and Rams will split a new stadium, but that won’t come until 2019. So, while the Rams are at the Coliseum, the Chargers will play…in a Soccer Stadium. Yep. StubHub Stadium, home of the LA Galaxy. Well, at least we know that 30,000 seat stadiums will be sold out.
  15. Do I agree with the move? Yes. Because LA is a bigger market, just like New York is. LA has been trying to get teams back there for some time. As for San Diego, they couldn’t work out a stadium deal the past few years and Qualcomm (Formerly Jack Murphy) Stadium is a crater. One of the few sports stadiums that’s been around since the 60’s.
  16. Speaking of the Rams, they hired a new Head Coach in former Washington Redskins OC Sean McVay, who’s only 30 years old and is only 5-years older than Rams DT (and former Pitt star) Aaron Donald. He’s now the youngest Head Coach in NFL history.
  17. And then there’s former Steelers QB Terry Bradshaw, who made news when he questioned Steelers HC Mike Tomlin’s coaching by calling him a Cheerleader. I knew it was just a matter of time before Bradshaw backtracked, and he did on Thursday saying that he should’ve never called Tomlin a ‘Cheerleader.’ Yeah, no kidding Terry. Even media persons can think before they speak.
  18. As for the NBA, what is with the NY Knicks Derrick Rose? He misses a game without telling anyone? I mean if he tried that on a regular job, he would be suspended or done. Instead, Rose comes back and starts in the next game. Once again, the Knick area a mess.
  19. Rose’s reason for missing the game was because of a family emergency. Well Derrick, you have a telephone, e-mail, and other ways to communicate. Pick one next time.
  20. In Tennis, Serena Williams is seeking her 23-rd Grand Slam at the Australian Open, which would be a record. I wish her the best.

 

 

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbanmediaRay on twitter

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