Saturday may have just been an exhibition game for the No. 10 Pittsburgh Panthers. For those like Geno Thorpe—who doubles as a basketball fan and prospective college recruit—there is nothing better than seeing your first college game of the season; exhibition or not.
"It was good, it was very exciting," Thorpe said. "I haven't seen Pitt play in a long time, and it was good to just watch some of the freshman play."
Thorpe, a 2013 guard from nearby Shaler, has a verbal offer from the Panthers as well as a few other schools. Since he's established a pretty good relationship with assistant coach Brandin Knight, Saturday's exhibition game was a good chance to see those freshmen in person—as he said. If Pitt is indeed one of the schools he wants to keep on his list, he'll obviously want to see how this class of freshmen, as well as the returning players, look in their first outing.
"I didn't know some of the freshmen, so I wanted to see them," Thorpe explained. "But, I know Travon (Woodall) and Ashton (Gibbs) and John Johnson."
Moreso than the players, it was a good opportunity to just see the coaching staff.
"I had chance to do both; meet the players, meet the coaches," Thorpe said. "I went to the game, talked with Brandin Knight. He was talking about how he wants Pitt to do well this season, and what he's doing to prepare the team this season. He said there's a lot of work to do if they want to be Big East champs and reach the NCAA Tournament."
Thorpe also had an interesting take on why Pitt would be a good school to keep on his list—regardless of the fact of it being his hometown team.
"It's a school I definitely would want to keep around," Thorpe said. "It's close to home, but obviously with them being in the ACC next year, it's definitely a team to love and keep around."
Thorpe also lists Penn State, Wisconsin and Kansas State as schools he's received a verbal offer from. This coming weekend, Thorpe might check out Seton Hall. He does plan on returning to the Petersen Events Center for a few more games this season.
He also says that his team will open against Highlands in December, with his first official practice starting on November 18. Thorpe and his team will also play in a tournament in January at LaRoche College, that could include five-star prospect Rodney Purvis, and his Upper Room Christian Academy team from Raleigh, North Carolina.