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Pitt vs. West Virginia: Full preview, odds, prediction for The Backyard Brawl

We take a look at Wednesday’s matchup between the Panthers and the Mountaineers.

Pittsburgh v Xavier Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Panthers take on the West Virginia Mountaineers on Wednesday, December 6. Tip-off is scheduled for 9:00 p.m. ET from Morgantown, West Virginia.

Pitt (5-3, 0-1 ACC) is on a two-game losing streak after falling to Missouri 71-64 and Clemson 79-70. The Panthers rank 57th overall at KenPom. Pitt is led by forward Blake Hinson, who scores an average of 20.5 points per game. Ishmael Leggett follows with 15.1 points per game, and leads the team in rebounds per game with 7.1. The Panthers’ only Power 5 win this season has come over Oregon State, and they also have a loss to Florida on their resume.

WVU (3-4, 0-0 Big 12) has lost three of their last four games, and most recently fell to St. John’s, 79-73, at home. West Virginia ranks 111th overall at KenPom, and also have losses against Monmouth, Virginia, and SMU. They have yet to beat a Power 5 opponent this season. Their team leaders in scoring are both fifth-year transfers — Jesse Edwards (15.7 PPG) came to Morgantown from Syracuse, and Quinn Slazinksi (16.7 PPG) arrived from Iona.

Neither of these teams have put together a particularly successful start to the 2023 season, and neither are looking like early contenders to be competitive in conference play. However, the rivalry nature of this game — the Backyard Brawl — should bring some exciting energy and competition to the court. The Mountaineers will struggle to match Hinson’s offensive production in this matchup, and simply don’t have the firepower to win this one.

Pitt vs. West Virginia Odds from DraftKings Sportsbook

Spread: Pitt -4
Total: 139
Moneyline: Pitt -166, WVU +140

Pick: Pitt -4