The Cincinnati Bearcats travel to New York City Tuesday night for a matchup agains the Pittsburgh Panthers in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden. This marks their first matchup since Pittsburgh left the then Big East for the ACC while Cincinnati stayed and joined the newly formed American Athletic Conference.
Cincinnati comes into Tuesday nights game losers of their last two including an embarrassing loss to crosstown rival Xavier on Saturday night. Head Coach Mick Cronin lambasted his team for what he called a “lack of toughness.” Although offense is really what the Bearcats need.
Cincinnati is led by seniors Sean Kilpatrick, Titus Rubles and Justin Jackson. All three need to step up into a leadership role soon, if not all three then one. Kilpatrick is regarded as a possible NBA prospect, if he wants his dream to come true taking control of this Cincinnati team could do wonders for his draft stock.
Cincinnati and Pittsburgh use to be river city rivals, that time has come and gone and this is the only matchup for the foreseeable future. Both sides have a lot to prove in this game. Cincinnati needs to show everyone they can be a quality opponent while Pitt does not want to lose to Cincinnati.
Pittsburgh comes in with a 10-0 record, with an averaging margin of victory at 21 points. Cincinnati meanwhile has had a well documented rough week. Bearcats players said they were surprised Xavier man handled them, if they aren’t careful Pitt will do the same.
The game tips off at 7pm ET on ESPN and WatchESPN. Follow @Riverfrontball for updates.