Stallings Expects Tougher Team in 2018

PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) — As part of the Pirates’ “University Nights” promotion, Pitt men’s basketball coach Kevin Stallings will throw out the first pitch Tuesday night at PNC Park.

Now this is no Curtis Jackson (50 Cent) (Also check out a nice Jon Niese appearance)

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or Porky Chedwick

No, Stallings has a baseball background and his son, of course, is Pirates minor league catch Jacob Stallings. Kevin joined the Fan Morning Show on Tuesday and dove into his baseball background a little deeper.

“I was actually an infielder, played a lot of shortstop, a lot of third base,” said Stallings. “I did pitch some but I was more of an infielder and maybe like my son I was a better defensive player than I was an offensive player. Nevertheless, baseball was actually the family sport, I was the only person in my family to play basketball.”

So what’s the plan for tonight?

“I won’t be trying to throw any cutters or slider or anything like that, I’ll go with my four seam fastball that’s not very fast and just hope that I can throw it straight and get it somewhere near the white.”

The Pitt basketball team meanwhile has renewed its rivalry with West Virginia by getting them on the non-conference schedule this season at home on Dece. 9 (time to be determined). Stallings says that process was rather painless.

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“When I got here there was so much sentiment for why don’t we play West Virginia, why don’t we play West Virginia?” said Stallings. “It was the easiest scheduling assignment ever because we called (WVU head coach) Bob [Huggins] and they were like, ‘yeah, we’ll play, do you want to play two years of four years?’ We said four. They said, ‘do you want to start at our place or yours’ and we said ours and that was it. It was something that we wanted to do and I think it will be good for our fans, I think people in the area will enjoy it.”

So how is the 2017-18 squad shaping up?

“The early returns are that we’ve got a group that’s very together, communicates well with each other, they really like each other, they are communicating well with us,” said Stallings.

“I think that where we are at right now is a very good place. Obviously we need to continue to grow, but we will. But we’ve got a bunch of hard-nosed, tough guys right now and I think our fans will really enjoy watching them play.”

You can hear the entire interview with Kevin Stallings above.

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