Pittsburgh was one of the most disappointing teams in 2011-12 college basketball.
The Panthers were ranked No. 11 in ESPN's preseason poll, but they finished the regular season with a 17-16 record, going only 5-13 in Big East play (13th place).
To put that in perspective, Pitt had only lost 11 Big East games in the last three years.
Even though the Panthers pulled themselves together enough to win the College Basketball Invitational (CBI), 2011-12 will be viewed as a low point in the recent history of the program.
In 2012-13, the Panthers will return plenty of talent and firepower, starting with rising senior guard Tray Woodall.
Woodall (pictured) averaged 11.5 PPG, 3.2 RPG and 6.1 APG. One of the big contributing factors to Pitt's dismal 2011-12 was the fact that he missed 10 games (3-7 during this stretch) because of injury.
Lamar Patterson (9.5 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 3.6 APG) also provides good production.
One of the bright spots of the Pitt postseason was the emergence of rising junior Talib Zanna (6'9", 230 lbs.). Zanna averaged 11 points and seven rebounds per game in Pitt's six games in the CBI.
Jamie Dixon has to also be very excited about two incoming players.
Steven Adams (6'10") is the No. 4 center and James Robinson (6'3") is the No. 5 PG in the recruiting Class of 2012.
If these two can contribute from the beginning, the Panthers could jump back up into the top half of the Big East as early as next year and be a threat in March Madness 2013.