Up Next: Virgina Tecxis

Note: written this way on purpose. 🙂

The Pitt Panthers play the Virginia Tech Hokiewes next Saturady at 3232 PM.

The Hokies, despite their 2-3 record are 3rd in teh Coastala, having beaten BOston College and lost to North Caroline.

They also lost to Od Dominion (and you thot loosing to Georgia Tech was bsad…) and West Virinnna.

VT is 111th in the FBS in ofnseeev yards, with 319 yerds per game. And 117th in scoring offense with 18.2 ptssss p game. But Gorgia teach was pretttty bad too and they diminate us.

Tech is a bit better on defisnse, which you’d expect from head coach Brent Pry, since he was a Defoisoise Coorindanator. They rank 50th in scoring defens (22.2 ppt). They are in the tooop twenty fivwa in yards per game allowed though, with just 310, and their pass efficneey defnase is 51st in the counteray, so not to bad there either. What we should rellly werry about thoug is their rush defense whih is 24th in the country, at just 100 YPG.

West virginoa rolled up 421 yarsd against them tho, and UNC rolled up 527. Stillll, after expriencig last week’s debacle at Heinze fild, I have no fath in Pitt’s offenxe.

SOrry aobut the crappy article. I had a great plan, but I just coulnd’t execute. I’ll have myself reeddy for next qeek.

Ed: P/S: Trying something new here. Can someone try the QR code below and tell me if it takes you to a different article please? Thanks

Pat Narduzzi – VT Week Press Conference

October 3, 2022

Pat Narduzzi Press Conference

Virginia Tech Week

PRESS CONFERENCE VIDEO

PAT NARDUZZI: All right, guys. Ready to go?

Tough Saturday evening. I don’t think our guys executed. I don’t think we did a great job coaching, the whole deal. Our kids are playing their tails off, I can tell you that.

Look at the back of the wall, I talk about our attitude. I think our attitude is really good. Evaluate them on that all the time.

Their effort was outstanding, almost too good at times. Sometimes we’re trying to do too much at times. We just got to do our job, especially on special teams. MJ scores a touchdown, everybody wants to score a touchdown every time they line up on that team. Guys are doing extra, doing a good job to screen like we coach them to do. We’ve just got to do a better job at it.

They’re playing their tails off in every phase of the game. That’s all you ask for is effort. I think we’re a tough football team.

Our knowledge, details have got to get better. You see the little, little details that are hard to see on videotape for the normal eye. We have to clean those up. In the game of football, if one guy doesn’t do it the right way, you have 10 guys that are busting their tails, doing everything right. One guy, defense, offense, special teams, for that matter, good things don’t happen.

We closed a chapter last night. We’re moving on. I think we’ve got a team that’s getting better every week: Virginia Tech. Coach Pry coming to town, old Penn State guy. You’ll see some of that flavor defensively. You’ll see some Penn State offensive stuff as well. Really both sides of the ball.

Be another good challenge for our guys to bounce back and find out what we got.

Questions.

Q. Do you see this loss against Georgia Tech similar to the loss last year against Western Michigan where you made some adjustments, turned it around?

PAT NARDUZZI: Every game you make adjustments. I don’t see it as that. Georgia Tech is a good football team. Anybody standing on the sideline, you look at them compared to Western Michigan, no disrespect to Western Michigan, you see what they look like, they’re a good-looking football team. They’ve got some great players from down the Georgia area, surrounding states down there. They’re a good football team.

Obviously they made a change for a reason, whatever. Obviously it was healthy for them. They played energized, like I knew they would, like I warned our team. They’re 0-0. They’re fresh. I don’t see it like that.

We’re going to make adjustments every week. There’s a lot of good stuff on tape, there’s a lot of stuff we have to clean up.

Q. You mentioned knowledge and details. Did you expect that to be an issue with how much experience this team has on both sides of the ball?

PAT NARDUZZI: Always. If I had to pull it up there, attitude takes no talent. Effort takes no talent. Toughness takes no talent. Knowledge takes some talent.

You’ve still got new guys out there, whether it’s at the linebacker position, new defensive ends out there, a new quarterback, new wideouts. You’ve got a new offensive coordinator as well.

There’s growing pains that go with that, how you want it done, what you’re doing, how you’re doing it, transitioning from different styles of games based on who you’re playing.

You’ve got a quarterback out for a game, game and a half, whatever it is. Okay, what do we have to do this week? You mold in what you need to win that week, getting out of the mold, doing what you do.

There’s not been a whole lot of consistency as far as who is out there, when they’re out, what we’re trying to do, need to do to win a football game.

Q. Is there something to being too self-assured?  

PAT NARDUZZI: Too confident, you mean?

Q. Yes.

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t think there’s anything wrong with confidence. I think you better be confident in what you’re doing in your jobs, our jobs. You better be confident in what you’re doing. I like confidence. If you don’t have confidence, you have bigger issues than anything.

There’s got to be reality, too. I think we got a good balance of that.

Q. Kedon Slovis didn’t get a chance to go out and play after the Tennessee game. Are you curious to see, excited to see how he bounces back after a loss?

PAT NARDUZZI: No doubt about it. I think putting those games together back to back, playing your type of game, it takes reps. It takes time, too.

I was happy the way he played in the second half. Not as happy in the first half. Again, it wasn’t all him. There’s some protection stuff, things that we’ve got to get cleaned up against a good football team. I think they’re talented.

Q. Did the thought cross your mind of trying something else Saturday night, different quarterback?

PAT NARDUZZI: Not at all. Not at all. Not even close. He’s the best quarterback we’ve got at this point without a question. I mean, just watch the way he operates in the second half. You talk about having a short memory. To rebound in the second half. First half compared to the second half…

Again, we’ve got to get into a rhythm. How many plays did we run in the first quarter, anyone know, offensively?

Q. Nine.

PAT NARDUZZI: Nine plays. You don’t get in a rhythm. I’m telling you, it’s hard as a play-caller to get in rhythm when you run nine plays in the first quarter.

The first attempt, the first play of the game, we go to throw it, we got a guy that’s wide, wide open, okay? Kedon can’t see him because there’s a protection issue, then takes a hit. Just start off in that place.

Second play is a drop. You can talk completions. In the NFL or college football, you catch it or you don’t. Everybody has to help him, too. Completions aren’t all on the quarterback.

Again, it was a little sloppy early. The second half the weather got a little bit better. We had a little steady drizzle at least in the first quarter. We didn’t do well with that.

Q. Now that you’ve had time to watch the tape, how much of it was purely timing, the defense was reacting in certain situations, plays you guys drew up to give him a different opportunity?

PAT NARDUZZI: You can find out what they’re giving, what they’re doing. We adjusted I think for sure in the second half and did a good job at halftime.

It’s always part of that. That’s the game of football. That’s what we deal with. Everybody is going to play a little bit different.

Q. Do you think Kedon is as comfortable as he should be in the pocket, back under center?

PAT NARDUZZI: I think he’s really comfortable back there. You see how he sits in the pocket, throws the ball. He’s not afraid to sit back there, take a shot, throw the ball. He does it. That’s what you have to do.

He’s not a scrambler, not a guy that’s just going to take off and run for no reason. We just got to get him in a rhythm. That’s us as coaches. Our job as coaches, we have to put our players in position.

Going back again to Saturday evening, our job as coaches, again, there’s a lot of blame to go around, it starts with me and the coaches. I’ve said already after the game, our job as coaches is to put the kids in position to be successful. As you keep going, that’s what we have to do, is put them in better positions to be successful.

Q. Evaluation of Bradley, rough game against Rhode Island, not a great start to this game. Then he caught two touchdowns in the final quarter. Doing the right things.

PAT NARDUZZI: He is. I’m fired up for Jaden. Bradley has done a nice job. He’s fought through some adversity. Things aren’t going good. Short memory. Everything you want to see out of a wideout. We’ve helped him as well.

He’s confident, okay? He’s very, very confident to a point where he thinks he knows every position. I can play the X, the Z, I can do it at all. We had him learning them all. A mistake on our part. You might know what you’re doing, but can you do it at a high level?

He wasn’t doing it at a high level. That’s our fault as coaches not putting him in a position to be successful. I think what we’ve done the last two weeks is saying, ‘Listen, you’re playing one position and you’re going to know that position in and out.’

Again, what you lose by that is maybe he’s that fourth receiver in the game, you want to get him in whenever you’re able to get him in. Konata needs a break, go for the Z, go for the X.

But we’re not doing that anymore. When your position needs a blow, that’s when you go in. Just slim down what he has to know so he can play fast and do everything exactly the way we need it.

Everything is precision. Again, it’s one guy. One guy runs a bad route, it messes up the levels in a pass concept, you have issues. Everybody has to be in the right spot just to spread the defense out.

Q. You never like to lose, but is there almost a little bit of a benefit to having an ugly loss like this early in the ACC schedule so you can review everything, kind of start over from scratch?

PAT NARDUZZI: Hate to lose. I don’t know if there’s ever a good loss because you can learn from a bad win, too. We’ve done that, as well.

We’ve just got to keep getting better as a football team. We’re going to learn regardless of a loss or a win. We’re going to make our adjustments, regroup, start over again.

Q. You haven’t had your five offensive linemen together at all this season. Does that have a lot to do with what’s happened so far this year? When do you expect to have them all back together?

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t know on the second part of your question.

I think you guys asked the question after the game. You want them all together. There’s the cohesion and a comfort level when you have them all in there.

We had some missed IDs, which we haven’t had a lot. You go into this game, all of a sudden there’s some center missed IDs, Owen doesn’t have very many of those because he’s a veteran. Followed up Jimmy. Kradel has done an unbelievable job. He gave up some pressures, miss identifications as far as the linebackers, where we’re targeting, where we’re going. Doesn’t help the offense or the quarterback any. But we’ll get it cleaned up.

Q. With Coach Pry in there, what have you seen on tape that reflects that Penn State flavor that you mentioned?

PAT NARDUZZI: He’s got his mark on defense. They’re playing really good defense, which he did when he was at Penn State. That’s why he got that job down there, because of the consistency, the type of defensive product he put on the field.

They’re playing really good defense. He’s got an old Penn Stater that’s running his offense. You see what he’d like to do, what his vision of an offense and a defense is on a football team.

Q. Fifteen carries for Vince Davis, more than he’s had since last September. What went into using him so much?

PAT NARDUZZI: Sometimes you don’t have choices. Izzy was banged up a little bit. Banged up in the game, not prior to the game. That happens. It’s going to happen.

We’ve got a lot of confidence in Vince. You guys can check back, I love Vince. Again, got a ton of confidence in him. He ran the ball well, too. He ran the ball well. Put the ball on the ground a couple times which is going to get you beat, period.

I don’t know if he’s had a fumble. I can’t think of a fumble in the last two or three years that Vince Davis has had. Mark that as one of those one-timers, never expect to see it again.

The type of kid Vince is, I’m sure he’s hurting from it, feels bad. He’ll be holding onto that ball a little bit tighter the rest of the season. Sometimes it’s got to happen for you to go, ‘Let’s go.’

Q. Did you have a chance to see Kenny play at all yesterday?

PAT NARDUZZI: I got home at about 11, 11:15 last night. As soon as I got home, my kids were like, ‘Dad, do you want to watch it? We DVRed it.’

I get a family text in the middle of the day, I’m seeing all those Steeler emojis and flags. Fans were going nuts, all that stuff.

I went home and stayed up a little bit longer. Usually when I go home, I pass out. Actually had text exchanges with Kenny last night and his dad. Was happy for him. I think he’s only going to get better with reps, yeah. Happy for Kenny and the family. See how it goes.

Q. Lot of work for Tylar Wiltz on Saturday. How did he do with getting more reps?

PAT NARDUZZI: Tylar did great. Tylar had a really nice game. I was excited about what we saw.

He plays fast. He’s been productive. He just keeps earning more reps every week that we play him. That’s for sure.

Q. You are back on top of the ACC in sacks, but what do you have to do to finish the pass rush more consistently?  

PAT NARDUZZI: We had four sacks in the first half, none in the second half. That’s not what you want to see. Sims took off running. I mean, he’s a good football player. That guy is really good. I think he’ll get a chance to play on Sunday somewhere, I’m not sure if it’s at quarterback or not. I made sure to search him out after the game to tell him what a nice ballgame he played.

He can run. He got the edge a couple times. Our guys misjudged his speed. A couple of them were some busts. It hurts when this is a hashmark and the ball is tackled right there, the defense thinks it’s on a hash. As a play-caller, you look down at your call script, you think you’re on a hash and you call a play. All of a sudden the ball ends up being over here. You’re like, ‘What?’ Now all the sudden it’s in the middle ofhte field and it becomes an issue. Hopefully we can correct some of that.

We made some errors with some of that. The only big pass of the game, if you go back and look, a 33-yarder. Haba’s got a sack, or Bangally’s got a sack, if we just do it the right way. Would have been sack number five. We didn’t do a good job of over-communicating on defense. We assumed everyone knew what was going on. Assumptions will get you beat. That’s over-communicating. Gave up the first field goal on a 33-yard pass, three-and-out, three plays, they kick a field goal.

Again, it was all structure and communication on defense.

Q. Same issues with the long run, 63-yard run?

PAT NARDUZZI: Which one? There were too many of them.

Q. 63.

PAT NARDUZZI: Who ran that one? I got confused because there were five big runs. We talk about explosive runs. Three the last three weeks.

We gave up five big runs. Again, the quarterback had the last one at the end. That was an adjustment. We didn’t get lined up perfectly like we need to. When they’re in four detached receivers, you got to get lined up perfectly. We didn’t. Again, I don’t remember the 63-yard run. Tailback?

Q. Tailback. You guys just scored.

PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah.

Q. Fourth quarter.

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t remember. Pull up the video, we’ll go through a video session here (smiling).

I would love to tell you which one it was. I can remember the quarterback on zone, what we call a swat play, sweep with the tailback, quarterback inside zone.

I’d be lying if I tell you I knew exactly which one it was. I’ve been watching a lot of Virginia Tech tape today.

Q. How do you clean up the penalties?

PAT NARDUZZI: We had two on defense. Holding on a five-yard play. We had one off-sides where Deandre Jules lined up about this far off-sides. Check for glasses today, make sure he can see the ball, doesn’t go over the ball.

We had four unforced errors on offense. Two false starts coming on a 99-yard drive.

I think Jacoby flinched one time. Then there was one holding on Vince in protection, which called back an 18-yard pass. That’s a large penalty when you’re going backwards. You’re talking about a 28-yard penalty because of the yardage we lost in the play, and the penalty yardage.

Again, we’ve been pretty solid on penalties. The most disappointing was what I started off with, talking about the special teams penalty. Our guys are busting their…butts down the field, trying to cut people off, not getting it done in the proper technique. They’re busting their butt to get things done, but you sometimes try too hard.

MJ can make people miss. If you can’t get your block, pull off and find a different colored jersey.

Q. Virginia Tech has given up the second-fewest sacks in the league. What have you seen that they do well in protection?

PAT NARDUZZI: Grant Wells is doing a good job of knowing where to go with the ball. He’s a seasoned quarterback from Marshall. Obviously a transfer in there. He can make all the throws. He can run. He does a lot of scrambling. We’ve got to be able to get him in the pocket when we have opportunities.

They run a lot of draws with him as well. He’s going to be a ball carrier, a lot like we saw this past weekend. Next weekend will be a good challenge for our guys. Following up with another similar offense.

They’re very similar to what they’ve been the last couple years offensively with some of the things they’ve been doing. It is almost like they went back and watched all of last year’s season and said, ‘Let’s do the same thing.’ New head coach doing kind of the same things on offense, which is very similar to what they did at Penn State as well.

I don’t know if I answered your question.

Thanks, guys. Appreciate it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

MMQB: Pitt Loss to Georgia Tech

To be honest, it’s more fun being the underdog.” (quote from Stephen Karam).

You can bet the house that is how the Georgia Tech football team felt at the end of the game on Saturday night after the oddsmakers had Pitt winning with a 21.5 point margin of victory. The final score, at 26-21 in GT’s favor, was not all that surprising if you had truly looked closely at how Pitt had played it’s previous four games and then entering the GT game at 3-1.

We had homefield advantage, even on a crappy weather night and we came out of the gate looking like Carnegie Mellon could beat us. GT was more fired up and had much more concentration on each play than we were.

A case in point was the difference in both penalties and turnovers. Pitt had 12, count them 12, penalties for 75 yards along with three turnovers which hammered the nails into the coffin lid. GT answered that with only four flags for 43 yards and zero turnovers.

Again, hyped up players, composure on the field and on the sidelines and better coaching from the booth combined to beat us. Forget about what some were saying about disarray due the the HC being fired the week before – it energized the GT guys.

Even in the games with our two lesser FCS opponents there were worrisome signs – against Western Michigan we went into the fourth quarter leading by only seven points at 20-13. Against an even easier team, Rhode Island, we were ahead by 10 points at 24-14 having given up a 63 yard run for the first TD and a completed 45 yard pass to set up their second TD.

Yes, we won both games by a pretty big margin of success in terms of points and that 3-1 record kept us in the Top 25 (falling from pre-season ranking of #13).

But some Pitt fans looked at those big plays, and the fact that we were out passed by RI’s QB, and started to wonder just what sort of team this 2022 squad is. At this point it may be some time before we get back up to that Top 25.

Especially since the GT loss put us below even the “Others receiving votes” listing. Don’t read this next sentence if you are faint of heart… Penn State is ranked #10 with a 5-0 record.

Back to the game: In GT’s opening possession we had them bottled up then on a 2nd & 11 snap they completed a 33 pass to not only get the 1st down but to jump to our 22 yard line then grab a 3-0 lead on a FG. With there was a real sense that this match wasn’t going to be the runaway win Pitt and fans had hoped for. GT held that lead and added another FG then kept that lead until there was only 1:05 left in the half where we scored a TD to go up by one.

In other words GT was tied or held the lead for 28:55 of the first half. The second half mucked onward with GT regaining the lead and holding it the last 23:24 of the game – doing the math we were tied or on the lesser end of the score for 52+ minutes of the game.

Why did that happen? For a beginning reason we sucked at the run game and then, even worse, sucked at stopping their run game. In numbers they had 232 yards (5.3 avg) and one TD while we went into the locker room with 106 rushing yards (3.4 avg) and zero TDs. BTW – as far as big ground plays go they had runs of 63 and 42 while our longest were 12 and 11 yards.

Where was this great defense Pitt fans talk about? Going into this game GT was 106th in the nation in rushing with 123 YPG and they grabbed 232 yards from us.

Sorry die hard Pitt fans but that level of play makes projecting out the rest of the season pretty hard to figure out. Had we won this game, even by one point, we’d all feel better about the rest of our ACC games. Now we look at our first five games and see that of those three FBS teams we have played we lost two of them with one being this huge upset.

We’ll watch closely for a turnaround against Virginia Tech next week as they now sit at 2-3 losing big in their FBS matches and losing the opener against FCS Old Dominion. VT has a horrid offense so far but a bright spot for them is their rushing defense which has held opponents to 100.8 YPG (24th in nation).

If our OL plays as it did this last game, bad pass protection (GT had 12 QB hurries with Slovis) and sluggish pulling on run plays, we could be in for another surprise at Acrisure Stadium.

HTP!

Pitt vs GT Loss Media Press Releases

Pitt Head Coach Pat Narduzzi Transcript
Georgia Tech Postgame
October 1, 2022

PAT NARDUZZI: Tough loss. One thing about our kids is they never quit. One of the big keys to victory was being plus in the turnover margin and we weren’t. We were minus 3. Disappointing we had three turnovers in a row in the second half. Pretty much gave ’em the game with that.

Got to give Georgia Tech credit. They came out and played hard. I knew we’d have a brand new team out there. Those guys played with energy. Give them credit.

Jeff Sims is a heck of a quarterback. He’s an athlete. He outran us to the edge a few times. Took bad angles. Didn’t make tackles when we needed to. We got to get him down, period. Just overall, disappointing performance, period.

But all our goals are still ahead of us. I think it will make them a little hungrier. We have to take it. We have to take what we got, what we paid for, and it just wasn’t good enough. And we didn’t start fast like we needed to and we left them in the game too long and, again, the offense really didn’t get started until the last two series of the game. If we would have done that the whole game we would have had a chance.

But again, it starts with me. There’s no finger pointing in our locker room. It starts with me. Number one, obviously I didn’t do a good enough job getting them ready. We’ll go back to work tomorrow at 2 o’clock with our kids and go back to get on to Virginia Tech.

Q. How to explain a performance and result like this?

PAT NARDUZZI: There’s no finger pointing. We didn’t win. We lost together. We win together and we lose together. We didn’t make enough plays. Defensively, I thought we played a solid game. We held them to four field goals to begin with. Then they scored two late TDs. Put it in position. I don’t know what the time of possession was, but it probably wasn’t very good. It looks like they add up to 31 minutes. But, hey, got to regroup and start over again. It just wasn’t good enough.

Q. Any explanation for the slow offensive start?

PAT NARDUZZI: I’ll have to go back and watch the tape to see exactly. We just didn’t play good enough, period. We didn’t get in a rhythm in the first half. It was three and out, three and out, and just couldn’t get in a rhythm. It’s hard to call a game when you’re going three and out. You can’t set a play off a play. Just not a very good performance.

Q. How would you evaluate Kedon’s decision making today?

PAT NARDUZZI: Decision making at the end was really good. Early, he needs some help. We’ll look at the tape. But it’s how we finished. Probably the way he finished, he threw some nice balls. Did we protect him a little bit better maybe in the last couple drives than we did earlier in the game, I don’t know.

Wasn’t seeing it good early? I don’t know. We’ll have to look at the tape and find out exactly why. I don’t want to make a comment right now.

But again, he shows he can do it. We just, again, we didn’t get it done in the first half as an offense, period.

Q. Did you see that the problem — late in the game, it did click. You saw the talent was there. But early on it seemed like there wasn’t any chemistry. Even when he threw some passes there was either a drop or a penalty.

PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, well, that’s a problem. We had a drop or a penalty. We had way too many penalties. Special teams and on offense. I mean, even on the last 99-yard drive we had two illegal procedures and thank God it only cost us like six inches.

But just details. It wasn’t detailed enough. It starts with me.

Q. The defense dropped a number of potential interceptions. 

PAT NARDUZZI: They’re all big. None of ’em were easy. But Tylar had a chance. Got his hand on it. Obviously 31, Erick Hallett had a chance. We got a chance to make plays. And in position.

I mean, the first — second play of the game I think we had a chance to probably get a pick six. You got to make those plays. They made ’em. They got the ball out. And we didn’t make them. It doesn’t matter if you stop them or hold them to a field goal. We have got to make plays on defense like that and we have to finish the play off and we can’t turn the ball over.

Q. Was emotion the problem again tonight or do you feel they were fired up?

PAT NARDUZZI: I think we were fired up. I think emotionally we were ready to go. Again, we’ll look at it. But I think we played good on defense. It’s hard to say half the team was fired up and half didn’t. The defense was ready to roll. Just couldn’t get in a rhythm in the first half. We’ve got to do a better job on offense. We’ve got to do a better job as coaches on offense, putting our kids in position to make those plays. And we got to make plays as players. That’s their job is make plays and it’s our coaching job to put them in position to make plays.

Drops you can’t have. There were some balls that were right there, getting hit as they caught it. Looked like sometimes it was a little early. But we’ll look at the tape. But we got to make plays.

Q. They ran for a lot of yards tonight. Do you feel at some point maybe that they were more physical than you were?

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t know. We’ll watch the tape. Maybe. They’re a good looking football team. They got players too. They got guys on scholarship. And certainly the quarterback is a big athletic guy. We bounced off some tackles, there’s no question. Especially on that last one. We got to 1:57 to go. We debated whether to kick an onside kick or not. And we trusted our defense. And we were going to kick it and get them pinned down there and get good field position and go down and score. We probably would have. But we didn’t — we had a four-minute situation on defense and we didn’t stop it. I guess we did stop it. We stopped them at the goal line, I guess. But we gave them too many yards. And we had to go 99.

So hindsight, geez, 1:57 with three timeouts. Three timeouts, three runs and get them to punt the ball and feel like we would win the game. But obviously a bad call by me.

Q. Kedon took a hard hit early in the game. Could that have had a lasting impact on him the rest of the game?

PAT NARDUZZI: It may have. It may have. I don’t know. I didn’t see the tape. My eyes were down the field. I didn’t see it. I think any hit on a quarterback takes an effect on a guy, period. When you’re sitting back there and you’re unprotected, you’re in a passing stance, when you get hit like that it will definitely affect you. But it didn’t affect him enough that he came back and played really well in the second half.

Q. You mentioned all the three and outs. Do you think that had an effect on the defense in the fourth quarter being on the field as long as they were?

PAT NARDUZZI: I looked at the time of possession, it’s not good. It’s not that bad. But two extra minutes — we had three set changes in the third quarter. We turned the ball over three times in a row. Three straight series in a row. We had two fumbles and an interception. Yeah, the defense is going to get tired when you go three and out yes.

Q. Penalties were a problem for the second game in a row?

PAT NARDUZZI: We’ve got to get the right guys that we can trust that aren’t going to do that. We had a couple guys out there that got some penalties. And they have done it in the past. And we’ll have to find replacements for them if they can’t do it the right way. And then there were a couple, you know, you question, but we got to do a better job. Get the right guys on the field.

Q. Four different offensive linemen starting today. You had Branson at left tackle. Matt start at right tackle. Gabe swapped in. That shuffling of the offensive line, do you think it negatively impacted you guys tonight?

PAT NARDUZZI: Not having Carter Warren out there, yeah, you know, always affects you. But that ain’t the reason why. Turnovers are the reason why. I can’t sit here and say it’s because of that. Next man up. Didn’t affect us when Nate Yarnell was in. We made plays. And it can’t affect you, period. We got a lot of trust and faith in Branson Taylor and we got to go.

Would you like your starting five out there? Yes. But you’re down two starters on the O-line. We trust those other guys to go make plays, but we just didn’t get it done.

PITT POSTGAME NOTES
Georgia Tech 26, Pitt 21
Oct. 1, 2022

TEAM

  • With tonight’s 26-21 loss to Georgia Tech, Pitt is now 3-2 overall and 0-1 in ACC play. The Panthers dropped their ACC opener for the first time since 2019, when they lost 30-14 to Virginia.
  • The Panthers are now 11-6 all-time against Georgia Tech, including 6-4 in ACC games.
  • The loss halted a four-game series winning streak for Pitt. Georgia Tech defeated the Panthers for the first time since 2017 (35-17).

OFFENSE

  • Kedon Slovis threw for 305 yards on 26-of-45 passing with two touchdowns and one interception.
  • It was Slovis’ second 300-yard passing effort of the season and 13th of his career.
  • Jaden Bradley had the first multiple touchdown game of his career, catching scoring strikes of 26 and 18 yards. (He finished with two catches for 44 yards.)
  • Pitt did not have a 100-yard rusher for the first time since the Sept. 1 season opener against West Virginia. The Panthers’ leading rusher was Vincent Davis, who netted 80 yards on 15 carries (5.3 avg.).
  • Branson Taylor started at left tackle in place of the injured Carter Warren. It was the first start of Taylor’s career. For Warren, his streak of 18 consecutive starts was halted.
  • Pitt completed a 99-yard touchdown drive (nine plays, 1:54) in the fourth quarter to pull within 19-14. It was the Panthers’ first 99-yard TD drive since Nov. 21, 2020 against Virginia Tech (four plays, 1:12). 

DEFENSE

  • As a team, Pitt collected a season-high 11 TFLs. The Panthers’ four sacks matched their season high (Rhode Island).
  • Tackle Calijah Kancey compiled a career-high 3.5 tackles for loss. His TFL total included a seven-yard sack.
  • Tackle Devin Danielson had a career-high two TFLs.
  • Safety Brandon Hill tied his career high with 11 total tackles (Clemson, 2021)