Pittman, balanced attack helps Texas dispatch of TulaneNov 19, 2008 - 5:37 AM AUSTIN, Texas (Ticker) -- Dexter Pittman showed off the moves he learned at Pete Newell's Big Man Camp in his second career start. Somewhere the legendary coach was probably smiling.
Pittman scored 10 points and grabbed six rebounds, helping the No. 8 Longhorns roll to a 76-51 victory over Tulane on Tuesday.
Damion James scored 16 points and A.J. Abrams added 15 for the Longhorns (2-0), who shot 48 percent from the floor (27-of-56) and had five players in double figures.
Pittman, a 6-10, 299-pound junior, attended Newell's famous Big Man Camp in Las Vegas this summer.
He learned from the best. Newell's camps have helped mold the likes of Shaquille O'Neal, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Hakeem Olajuwon. The legendary coach passed away on Monday at the age of 93.
Pittman spoke of his interaction Newell -- the only coach to win an NCAA title, an NIT championship and an Olympic gold medal.
"He told me I was a beast and he was trying to joke around," Pittman said. "He said I was one of the biggest wing mans who had come through his camp and he was a nice guy."
What did Newell teach Pittman during his camp?
"A lot of footwork and a better feel for the defender, how to pass from post to post," said Pittman, who scored eight of his 10 points during a 21-2 second-half run.
According to James, Pittman's development is crucial to a Texas team that is looking for more scoring now that D.J. Augustin is playing in the NBA.
"He's a force inside and I really truly believe that when Dexter gets the ball inside, he's going to score," James said. "For us to be where we want to be, he is going to have to help us a lot."
The Longhorns removed all suspense in this one early. Texas' swarming defense forced 25 turnovers and held the Green Wave to 31 percent from the floor (18-of-58).
Abrams scored eight of his 10 first-half points during a 21-6 run that put his team ahead, 31-14, with 7:47 to play. James added nine in the first half as Texas shot 50 percent from the floor and took a 42-25 lead into the break. It held Tulane to just 32 percent (9-of-28) from the floor in the opening 20 minutes.
"We obviously created a lot of offense with our defense," Texas coach Rick Barnes said.
"The thing we were most impressed with as a coaching staff is the things we got done on the defensive end. Offensively, the big thing was putting the ball inside. Any time you can make more free throws than your opponent takes, you'll be happy with that."
Kevin Sims scored 11 points and was the lone player in double figures for Tulane (1-1).
The Longhorns opened the second half on a 21-2 run to widen the lead to 63-27 with 15:20 remaining.
"We played against one of the best teams in the country tonight," Tulane coach Dave Dickerson said. "Texas' team is as good of a team I've ever coached against. They're well coached, they're quick, they're athletic. They're a good team and they showed all those things tonight.
"I don't make any excuses for our team, but we're on the home court of the best teams in the country and they defended it well tonight."
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