November 17, 2006

Pitt hoops notes: No foul, no harm

Among the more notable stats from Pitt's win over Delaware State on Tuesday night was the Panthers' foul numbers. More specifically, the team's lack of fouls was notable, as the Panthers recorded just nine fouls in the game. Delaware State was on the wrong end of the equation, as the Hornets shot just seven free throws, all in the first half.

"I attribute it to our second exhibition game, where we fouled too much and made a big emphasis in the two games afterwards," Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon said this week. "That's where it probably came from."

In the second exhibition game, an 80-65 win over California (Pa.), the #4 Panthers (2-0) committed 21 personal fouls. Senior center Aaron Gray, who experienced early foul trouble in Pitt's NCAA tournament loss to Bradley earlier this year, was called for four fouls in the exhibition game; in the two regular season games since then, Gray has been called for three total fouls.

"The coaches tell me that they need to have me on the floor," Gray said. "Sometimes I may not be as aggressive, but one thing I really try to do is limit my fouls in the first half. If I can go into the second half with only one foul or no fouls, then I don't have to worry about it for the rest of the game.

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