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Wiz Khalifa Helps Pitt Basketball Tip Off New Season



Image by Jared Todhunter

PITTSBURGH — With multiple upgrades to the Petersen Events Center, including a new floor design and a new jumbotron, Pitt opened their season to the fans on Friday night with their Blue and Gold Madness event. Wiz Khalifa headlined this year’s start of the season celebration.

Steelers Ryan Shazier and James Conner were the first people announced at the event and were modeling the new Oakland Zoo t-shirts.

Pitt basketball alums DeJuan Blair, Carl Krauser, Chevy Troutman and Julius Page were just some of the ex-Panthers in the Pete on Friday night.

The madness kicked off with player introductions of the women’s team, followed by a 10-minute scrimmage against five scout players. The women won the scrimmage 26-17. Head coach Lance White compared the game to the Harlem Globetrotters against the Washington Generals (The women’s team, obviously, as the Globetrotters).

Following the women’s scrimmage, the men’s team was introduced to the fans and they played a 15-minute scrimmage against themselves.

Eric Hamilton, a graduate transfer from UNC Greensboro, led all scorers with 14 points. Other new additions for Pitt showed off some of their skills, as well. Junior transfer Ryan Murphy added eight points, with two 3-pointers. Freshmen Gerald Drumgoole, Jr. and Karim Coulibaly dropped in eight and six points, respectively.

Pitt’s two returning starting backcourt-mates, Xavier Johnson and Trey McGowens were both showing their growth on both sides of the ball. Johnson finished with six points but was looking to facilitate more than score the ball. McGowens led his team with nine points.

Head coach Jeff Capel briefly spoke to the fans following the men’s scrimmage and was appreciative of the support and expressed his excitement for the upcoming season.

Following the men’s scrimmage Pittsburgh’s own multi-platinum, Grammy-nominated, recording artist, Wiz Khalifa performed about 10 songs on stage, in front of the Panthers fans.

DJ Bonics, who is a 2002 graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and currently the DJ for Khalifa, was the emcee for the all of the festivities.

Khalifa kicked off his performance with his 2010 hit, “Black and Yellow” that was made as an homage to the city.

“I love the 412, it’s the greatest city in the world,” Khalifa said.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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