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Capel’s Panthers May Not Be The Pitts After All

Having a big man should make life much easier

ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament - Second Round
GREENSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA - MARCH 11: Head coach Jeff Capel of the Pittsburgh Panthers reacts following a play against the North Carolina State Wolfpack during their game in the second round of the 2020 Men’s ACC Basketball Tournament at Greensboro Coliseum on March 11, 2020 in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Jeff Capel’s Pitt roster has been in real turmoil since the last weeks of the season when Xavier Johnson and Au’Diese Tony both left the team. Now Justin Champagnie has announced he’ll stay in the draft, so things are grim, right?

Well maybe not that grim.

Pitt’s roster is almost settled now - Capel has a roster of 11 including - wait for it - Jon Hugley.

You may remember that the talented young big man was in trouble for some murky business with a supposedly stolen car. The charges were reduced to two misdemeanors that will be dismissed if he keeps his nose clean for a while.

And while there’s no easy way to replace Champagnie, Johnson and Toney were unhappy and that never helps.

It may be that simply having guys who get along is, in the long run, much better for a team than having some lingering personnel issues.