Know The Enemy: Georgia Tech

(As always here are the Georgia Tech Game Notes for Saturday as put out by the Pitt Media Dept.)

We face our second ACC conference team on Saturday at Heinz Field.  The kick-off will be at 12:30 and at Heinz Field.  As we remember last season we beat the Yellow-Jackets by a score of 31-28 on an almost-last minute FG by Chris Blewitt:

That was also Nate Peterman’s first three-TD game for Pitt as he went 14/21 (66.6%) for 162 yards and 3 TDs & 0 INTs.  That sort of play is what we came to expect from Peterman last year – not a lot of yardage but production in what he did do.  Let’s hope he replicates that Saturday.

What was best about that 2105 GT game to me was that it put the previous year’s 56-28 loss where we fumbled the ball away so much to rest.  That loose-fingered play led to this post-game paragraph that I wish I had written as it fit the situation perfectly:

“Pitt did its part to help during a comical opening 10 minutes that practically gifted Georgia Tech a massive lead before the game was halfway through the first quarter. The Panthers fumbled four times in their first six plays, finding increasingly elaborate ways to give the Yellow Jackets the ball.”

That’s the past two games we played against them – what are we looking at for this week?  Well, GT isn’t as formidable as it has been in the past. We’ll talk about the team here and then I’ll put some more detailed info in the first comment block as I do with these articles.

Right now GT sits at 3-2 with a 1-2 conference record. They opened this season beating Boston College, Mercer (?) and Vanderbilt.  Then in the last two weeks they played two nationally ranked teams and lost both matches.  

Their vaunted killer Triple-Option Offense has seemed to have deserted them.

Against #5 Clemson they went down 26-7 and then lost to #14 Miami by a score of 35-21.  So looking at them dispassionately it’s hard to get a take on them – honestly they look kind of like us in some respects. 

Tech’s HC, Paul Johnson, has a good record against Pitt at 3-1 including a 1-0 record at Heinz Field in the Fumble Bowl.  He’s a decent HC but at this point he seems to be hitting his shelf life at GT.  He needs a win Saturday to silence the critics as he’s already been there for eight full years so he’s in a position to be fired with ease by GT. 

On the other hand I’d say Narduzzi needs the win also otherwise we’ll most probably whiff at a division championship again.  But he’s only in his 2nd year and barring any sort of scandal or such he’s good for at least two more seasons before Pitt would even think of a firing with the accompanying required buy-out of his contract.  We’re far from that happening at any rate. His 11-7 record is pretty good considering we are Pitt.

The two teams have the same record with both having two losses to the better teams. Here are some basic stats side by side as comparision:

gt-stats

Thank God GT’s passing game has sucked so far. And truth be told their running game doesn’t strike fear like in seasons past either.  Although one thing does jump out at me – their rushing yards per carry average isn’t too bad at 4.85; ours is 5.21 ypc.

Team Stats – Through games 10/05/2016
Stat Rank Value
Total Offense T-113 335.6
Rushing Offense 28 226.8
Passing Offense 126 108.8
Team Passing Efficiency 108 114.13
Scoring Offense 97 23.6
Total Defense 27 342.4
Rushing Defense 31 119.6
Passing Yards Allowed 62 222.8
Team Passing Efficiency Defense 74 132.31
Scoring Defense 21 18.4

Regardless of the past performance of their passing game HC Paul Johnson would be a complete fool not to throw deep early and often.  That approach has just been a nightmare for us in the last four games.  Hell, we fans crow about only giving up 240 yards to Marshall’s QB.  Granted he had racked up big numbers against Akron and Morgan State earlier, but we really should have been able to contain him much better than we did.

I wonder what our rushing game is going to do against a rather stingy GT defense in that area?  They give up only 119 ypg (we rush for 250 ypg so far) and they have held their opponents to an average of 18.4 ppg.  Both are pretty good showings.

But I am suspect of our rushing game – the numbers are gaudy, but we have broken some big gainers that mask what I think are real problems in the lack of consistency with the short run game when needed.

Our 3rd down conversion rate is standing at 41.9% and that ain’t very good.  And for some reason we have been running the QB on some short yardage 3rd down plays. Part of this is the fact that James Conner has been stopped at or behind the LOS on more than a few occasions this season, so that forward moving consistency he did so well in 2014 is gone.  Sadly I don’t think we’ll see it again from him this year.

Luckily against Marshall we didn’t have that many rushing conversion failures – but we did against OSU and missed out a whole bunch of times.  We ran the ball on 3rd down six times and converted only once.  Overall we were 4 of 18 on 3rd downs in that game.  Let’s hope that poor play is behind us – but I have to say this is one reason that bolsters why I can’t understand that Ollison isn’t getting carries.

The odds makers are heavy for Pitt in this one.  It must be the 14 point home field advantage we get from sold out and the standing room only crazy loud fans we have for our games at Heinz Field.  The predicted score is around 33-19 Pitt. Hmmm, I kinda doubt it but we’ll do our predictions piece tomorrow.

Here are the current standings of the ACC Coastal Division as of today:

coastal

If we start of ACC play with a 0-2 record we have a long row to hoe to get on top.  Currently # 10 Miami isn’t going to be an easy game nor is # 25 VT.  We get VT at home but have to go down to Miami for another late season match.  In other words we need this game to stay in the hunt.

Personally, I think if we lose this game to an average at best GT team we need to really look at the future – especially if we get torched in the passing game.  DC Josh Conklin hasn’t impressed at all in his first two season so far and neither had Narduzzi on the defensive side… actually it has been a shambles.

Here is a comparison between the two season with Conklin as DC – granted we are only five games into 2016 but boy does this hurt to look at.

 Team Stats – 2015  Season

Stat Rank Value
Total Defense 37 363.2  Yards per game
Rushing Defense 40 148.5  Yards per game
Passing Yards Allowed 54 214.7  Yards per game
Team Passing Efficiency Defense 66 126.97  Rating
Scoring Defense 57 26.1  Points per game

 Team Stats – 2016 Season (after five games)

Stat Rank Value
Total Defense 72 406.6  Yards per game
Rushing Defense 4 69.8  Yards per game
Passing Yards Allowed 126 336.8  Yards per game
Team Passing Efficiency Defense 110 151.55  Rating
Scoring Defense T-90 31.0  Points per game

Friends – that is an increase of 122.1 passing yard per game allowed – it is killing us and will ruin this season if it isn’t corrected ASAP.

I don’t think any Pitt fans were real happy with our defense last year even with a 8-5 record.  But I think this game against a middling offense that GT possesses will be the harbinger of Conklin’s future as the DC at Pitt.  Keeping the Yellow Jackets to the predicted 19 points would be a big help because IMO that will almost guarantee a win.

But the future of Pitt, and what Narduzzi promised when he was hired, was going to be a tough and stingy defense.  What we have gotten so far is the opposite.

Let’s hope all the Pitt player’s flu shots have be been finished by early this afternoon.  Heaven forbid we have a “Great Panther Influenza Epidemic of 2016” hit us before a conference game. 

Predictions tomorrow…

HTP!!

42 thoughts on “Know The Enemy: Georgia Tech

  1. Here are some other facts:

    PITT (3-2, 0-1 ACC) vs. GEORGIA TECH (3-2, 1-2 ACC)

    October 8, 2016 • 12:30 p.m., ET
    Heinz Field (68,400/Natural Grass) • Pittsburgh, Pa.

    ACC Network (WTAE-TV, Channel 4) • Pitt IMG Sports Radio Network

    PittsburghPanthers.com • @Pitt_FB • #GTvsPITT

    LINK (PDF): Pitt Game Notes (vs. Georgia Tech)

    LINK: TV Affiliates List for Pitt-Georgia Tech

    GAME STORYLINES

    • Pitt resumes ACC play with a key Coastal Division encounter against Georgia Tech at Heinz Field. The Panthers close the regular season with seven consecutive ACC contests beginning this week with the Yellow Jackets.

    • The Panthers’ stingy ground defense will be challenged by Georgia Tech’s potent spread option attack. Pitt is yielding 69.8 rushing yards per game to rank first in the ACC and fourth nationally. The Yellow Jackets average 226.8 rushing yards, fifth best in the ACC and 28th in the nation.

    • Pitt is plus-5 in the turnover margin department (10 gained and five lost), while Georgia Tech is minus-3 (five gained and eight lost). Pitt has forced at least one turnover in each game this year.

    • Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson is 2-0 all-time at Heinz Field, including the Yellow Jackets’ 56-28 win in 2014. As coach of Navy in 2007, he led the Midshipmen to a 48-45 double-overtime win.

    • Pitt’s Ejuan Price is making a strong case for All-America and ACC Defensive Player of the Year honors. The senior defensive end leads the entire nation in quarterback sacks (7.5) and tackles for loss (11.5). Price has logged at least one sack in each contest this season.

    • The Panthers boast one of college football’s most dangerous all-purpose players in Quadree Henderson. The sophomore wide receiver leads the nation in total all-purpose yards (tied) with 937. Henderson’s average of 187.4 yards per game leads the ACC and ranks fifth nationally.

    • Junior running back James Conner, who overcame both a knee injury and Hodgkin lymphoma during the past 12 months, is just the fifth player in Pitt history to surpass 3,000 career rushing yards. The Panthers’ leading ground-gainer this season with 381 yards, Conner now has 3,022 for his career.

    SERIES NOTES

    This is the 11th meeting between Pitt and Georgia Tech in a series that began in 1918…Pitt leads the overall series, 6-4, and won last year’s encounter at Bobby Dodd Stadium, 31-28…the Panthers are 3-1 in games played in Pittsburgh and 3-1 in Atlanta…Pitt and Georgia Tech have twice met in bowl games with the Yellow Jackets winning each time…Georgia Tech defeated the Panthers in the Jan. 2, 1956 Sugar Bowl (7-0) and the Dec. 29, 1956 Gator Bowl (21-14)…

    the 2016 game marks the fourth Atlantic Coast Conference encounter between the two schools…Georgia Tech leads the ACC series with Pitt, 2-1…this year’s game marks only the second time since 1920 that Georgia Tech has played in Pittsburgh…in fact, the initial three games of the series from 1918-20 were all played in Pittsburgh…led by legendary coach Glenn “Pop” Warner, Pitt won each of those three contests by an aggregate score of 58-9…

    before the 2013 revival of the series, the two schools had not played since a pair of games at Georgia Tech in the 1970s…in 1976, Tony Dorsett scored three touchdowns as Pitt routed the host Yellow Jackets, 42-14…under the direction of Coach John Majors, Pitt would go 12-0 in 1976 and claim the national championship, while Dorsett would win the Heisman Trophy…the Panthers also defeated Georgia Tech, 27-17, during the 1974 season.

    SERIES IN BRIEF

    Series Began: 1918

    Series Overall: Pitt leads 6-4

    ACC Series: Georgia Tech leads 2-1

    At Pittsburgh: Pitt leads 3-1

    At Georgia Tech: Pitt leads 3-1

    At Neutral Sites: Georgia Tech leads 2-0 (two bowl games)

    Last Meeting: Oct. 17, 2015 (Pitt 31, Georgia Tech 28)

    Last Meeting at Pitt: Oct. 25, 2014 (Ga. Tech 56, Pitt 28)

    Current Series Streak: Pitt has won 1 (2015)

    Longest Pitt Series Win Streak: 3 games (1918-20)

    Longest GT Series Win Streak: 2 games (twice, most recent: 2013-14)

    Largest Pitt Victory Margin: 32 points (32-0, 1918)

    Largest GT Victory Margin: 28 points (56-28, 2014)

    BROADCAST INFORMATION

    Television • ACC Network (WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh)

    Tom Werme, play-by-play

    Dave Archer, analyst

    Roddy Jones, reporter

    Pitt Radio • 93.7 The Fan & the Pitt IMG Sports Network

    Bill Hillgrove, play-by-play

    Bill Osborn, analyst

    Larry Richert, reporter

    SiriusXM Satellite Radio

    Sirius Channel 93, XM Channel 194, Internet Channel 956

    WPTS Radio (Pitt Student Station) • 92.1 FM

    Pitt IMG Sports Network Online Audio Options

    PittsburghPanthers.com via CSLive

    Pitt Gameday LIVE App

    TuneIn (free live and on-demand content)

    #H2P | Twitter | Instagram

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  2. As (I believe) Emel pointed out the other day here …. Pitt did not play a good passing team in the first 5 games last year (YSU, Akron, Iowa, Va Tech and UVa) in fact, there isn’t even a really good offense there although Iowa was decent.

    But that still doesn’t explain just how horrid Pitt’s pass defense has been … especially when the only loss from the DB was L Pitts. In fairness, the three 1st year players that were supposed to impact the defense (Hamlin, Hill and Hendrix) are all shelved.

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  3. Hamlin and Hill were supposed to impact the defense? Really do you really know how many 4 star recruits fail to impact anything at the college level? Counting on any freshman coming in to impact any phase of the game is a stretch IMO. And by the way didn’t L Pitts make an NFL traveling squad this year?

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  4. What Coach is trying to do Defensively is build a team that gets to the QB on the ends, blocks up the middle of the line, gets pressure from blitzing LB’s and occasional DB’s, all while expecting the secondary to make plays on the ball. We do not have all of the personal to successfully do that yet. I think it’s an exciting way to play defense, but until we have all of the necessary bodies on that unit, it will continue to be a struggle.

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  5. jrn, I would wager that Hamlin or Hill would be better than Lewis based on natural abilities alone. But the guy I was looking forward to see the most was Hendrix — thought it would have been great to see him and Price as bookends.

    Pitts signed on with Dolphins’ practice squad.

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  6. Heard a lot about Allen Edwards dominating in practice last year along with Hendrix. Maybe with Folston and Edwards they be can the answer for the need of speed for PITT’s defense Saturday? PITT needs another player on D to step up badly.

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  7. Game will possibly be played in the rain on a soggy field…should be interesting watching our DL if those conditions hold true..the Navy game was a real eye-opener how quicker ,smaller and ya gotta have a good head on your shoulders to be admitted)Navy squad ripped our big boys last year…looking forward to focusing on the DL and the cast of players Duzz will use to contain their run game..then GT will be force to pass and will play into our strength (NOT) Should be a lot of fun to watch…Prayers for all of those in the Hurricanes path.

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  8. PittFan28 – it is an exciting defense when it clicks. We can really bring pressure to bear on the QB but that seems to go in fits and starts. But when it happens it is a thing of beauty.

    I think all of us Pitt fans felt that our passing defense and our DBs were going to improve upon last year due to it being Conklin’s 2nd year with the returning DBs. But it has been just a lot worse and it is a head-scratcher.

    We knew Price and his speed was coming back on one end and the staff really went out and got a good one in Hendrix but even with his injury we had a seasoned Rori Blair returning. All set up and ready to really shut down passing games.

    Instaed Jarrett and Soto showed up to play and our run defense got much better – and I can truthfully say I didn’t think it would and neither did other Pitt fans. If anything we felt the interior of the DL was going to really be in trouble.

    But this is why i really like college ball so much more than the NFL – you see huge swings that come out of nowhere and live and die by them. The things we felt were ‘flukes’ early in the season can’t be called that any longer after five games.

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  9. Reed – Good stuff as usual. You need to watch NCAA basketball more. Mercer (Bears) is in Atlanta (near Ga. Tech) & a second campus in the south Atlanta suburbs. They are now in the FCS Southern Conference (SoCon).

    I believe they beat Duke in the tournament a few years back.

    Major (P5) expansion not only had a domino effect on FBS football conferences but also affected FCS conferences. Mercer was in the Ohio Valley Conference before moving to the SoCon with the loss of App State & Ga Southern to the Sun Belt & Davidson & “THE COLLEGE” of Charleston to upgaded mid major basketball conferences.

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  10. Guys – I have one ticket for Saturday’s game as I was in a pretty bad car accident last evening and can’t travel to PGH this weekend. Got slammed by a lady who ran into me while I was making a turn – she was speeding and I think on her phone texting…. Lucky she hit the passenger side or I wouldn’t be here pissing all over Pitt football today. Actually got pretty banged up – spun around twice and my head whacked the door a few times. I feel like Ike looks. No hospital though.

    Hey! BTW – I’m being ‘moderated’ when I post articles on a Pitt fan group’s on Facebook page now – obviously I’ve hit some nerves because I don’t worship the ground Narduzzi walks on.

    Anyway – it is a single end zone seat (because I’m in the press box I bought one seat to give to my friends who go with me – they can’t use it this week) on the aisle and down by the front rail – Section 521. Yours for free if you buy me 7 beers when we meet again.

    View from Sec 521

    Let me know and I can have it emailed to you ASAP.

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  11. Reed, get well soon, the texting offenders will drive up the insurance rates across the country and kill many innocents in the process. Something has to be done quickly and the fines for being sighted should be a minimum $100 in each and every state.

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  12. Get well. I got hit once walking through an intersection, banged on hood while the slo mo accident happened, rolled over hood, came down swearing loudly, she never looked up from her phone even when I kicked the shit out of her door as she muddled through the intersection.
    Heinz Field has never looked so good, serious photo shopping.
    Moderated? What the hell is that?

    Moderation means that mu post has to be approved before it actually goes up on Facebook on their Group Facebook page.

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  13. Here is a great PSN article looking at two Pitt football players thru their Mother’s eyes. Q. Henderson and Tre’ Tipton and is well worth the read.

    Here is a very interesting and tricky thought in a quote from Tipton’s Mom…

    “When he went to school, I told him, ‘Now is the time for you to be selfish.’ Because Tre is a very team-oriented person, so he will sit on the back burner for the good of the team. He had to learn to think about Tre, too. And he never had to be in that position where someone was trying to take his spot, or the next person was going to step up. So that was very humbling and he needed to see that.”

    Selfishness to be the best you can be – because that is what will ultimately help the team the most. Very astute thinking there.

    And later on this quote from Henderson’s mother:

    “I’m very happy with his decision,” said Jackie Henderson. “He had a few choices, and he chose Pitt even going through the changes with the coaches. Quadree had already committed when Chryst was still there, and the opportunity opened back up, and there were other coaches still contacting him once Chryst was leaving, telling Quadree the door was still open if he wanted to change his mind.

    Me and my husband sat down and spoke with him, and Quadree was just very gung-ho on going to Pitt. He didn’t pick Pitt because of a coach. He liked the area. He liked what the school has to offer. He liked the program, the football history.”

    I have written many times that in my conversations with Pitt players and their parents the University itself has always been the major factor – the university and the football program, not so much the individual coach. I don’t think most Pitt fans actually realize that.

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  14. My wife’s sister was hit and killed 2 years ago by a distracted driver as she was crossing in a crosswalk heading to church to help with meals on wheels ..

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  15. This is very similar what I have been saying about Jordan Whitehead this week. He just loves playing in front of his hometown fans. He’s a genuine and overall great young man. There was never nothing to see there.

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  16. Hey Reed, I was “moderated” also when I posted a link on one of the sites, and I don’t think I am on the “hit” list, so maybe it was setting for the group that was clicked? Maybe they are being careful of links?

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  17. Glad you are ok Reed.

    This game is a bad match up for us – I have a bad feeling about it. Our DB play forces them to the pass and it will kill us. I’m. It worried about the run game with them at all.

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  18. Hey I missed that Reed. My gosh I’m so sorry. Thought you were giving a ticket away for Virginia game? Those crack ups hurt even more next few days. Hope you’re feeling better real soon and you’re looks come back around soon.

    I’ve been a scatter brain the past few days as my best friends wife is gravely ill.

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  19. It’s been HUGE that Damar Hamlin has been injured all pre-season, and into the Fall and actual season. One of the top rated cornerbacks in the nation on a team with zero even remotely NFL-quality corners, YES, Pat Narduzzi was hoping Pitt’s ‘Baby Richard Sherman’ could play as soon as he got on campus. Already taller and longer (over 6 foot) than any CB on Pitt’s roster even if he’s slight mass-wise at the moment.

    And let’s not even get started on the sad turn-of-events regarding conensus top-200 recruit George Hill from Ohio 😦 😦 — A solid 6-foot, and a yoked-up, lean 200 pounds as an 18 year old, who ran a well-under 11 second 100 yard dash (blazing, scary speed for such a powerfully-built young man) — a High 4 star recruit who was heads-and-shoulders the most athletic and ready-built player in the recruiting class to go out there and play right away….but, alas, the young man has a heart condition and can no longer play football. Yeah, if George Hill was healthy he woulda been out at there Safety + Corner from day-1. If George Hill was in good-health, either Terrish Webb or Ryan Lewis would not have seen the field at all this year.

    That already has crushed the defensive backfield, Damar Hamlin having a Chronic, serious injury, and George Hill’s Heart Condition. These two were by-far the highest-ranked recruits of 2016 (and National-Level recruits) and by-far the most talented with pure NFL potential. Both top-200 overall, 4 star studs were the Prized Jewels of Pitt’s recruiting class, and were already head-and-shoulders above Ryan Lewis, Terrish Webb, Reggie Mitchell in talent — and both are literally the height and size of two Avonte Maddox’s (hahaha).

    It is what it is — no excuses, ever, gotta go Make It Pop with whoever is there. Even if the towel-boys and equipment guys have to go Pad-up!

    @Josh Conklin, For Goodness Sake’s, make Terrish Webb learn to play deep!!! Terrish Webb playing the deep ball is like Lafayette Pitt’s never, ever turning around to play a ball in the air. It’s just not gonna happen. At least Reggie Mitchell at Free Safety seems to comprehend his duties better 🙂 so he needs to stay there at the Free Safety spot, with Terrish Webb up at the line at Strong Safety….Cough, and Jordan Whitehead at Cornerback opposite Avonte Maddox this Homecoming Game against GT would be sweet.

    #HailToPitt !!

    @Reed, goodness-gracious, please recover well. And even if you don’t worship at the Altar of Pat Narduzzi ( 🙂 haha) — you undoubtedly are as Passionate about Pitt as anyone, writing about it right after you were in a really bad accident!

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  20. Reed, Glad you are ok. I was nailed while driving in the far right lane on Reisterstown road by a young woman who was coming from the other direction and inexplicably made a left turn driving into me in an offset front end collision totaling my 7 yr. old Honda Accord and giving me a severe scalp laceration. Also have been nailed from behind x2 by 2 young men in the last 2 years. I suspect texting or possibly intoxication in each case, unprovable of course. All I can say in the words of a famous philosopher is “they are out there” (in this part of Maryland). Again, so glad you are ok. I really appreciate and respect the work you do on the Pitt POV. H2P!

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  21. P.S. (!) about a previous article @ Reed:

    When Pat Narduzzi talks about “Swagger”, and what I personally define it to be (it’s really a figurative idea when most people discuss it as a positive thing) is this: “Swagger” = The Mutual-Exuding of Great Competence in equal measure with Stylish PANACHE .

    THAT is how I — and I’m guessing Pat Narduzzi is along-those-lines — define and mean-by “Swagger” —- As opposed to arrogance/ignorance . Anyways, Hail To Pitt!!! Recover well @Reed, glad you are mostly-okay!

    Have a great night everyone, and let’s beat Georgia Tech at Home, on Homecoming, in our Awesome “Kits”!!!

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  22. Nice pics of the poor little Honey Bee (which is being killed off into extinction) and the nasty aggressive Yellow Jacket.

    Moronic gov’t killed off several million little honey bees using a spray toxic to them in South Carolina.

    “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.”

    ― Albert Einstein

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  23. The Ramblin Wreck is only 2 years removed from winning the Orange Bowl and finishing the 2014 season ranked # 8 in the nation. When was the last time Pitt finished the season ranked in the Top 10. Well you’d have to go way way way back to Danny boy’s senior season. For the youngin’s that would be way before you were born, 1982.

    So I doubt GT’s HC(Paul Johnson) is much on the hot seat. I believe they had a rash of injuries last year, which resulted in a worse than expected 2015 season. But they still managed to do something Pitt hasn’t done since a long long time ago…..and that is beat #9 Florida State.

    So they still have better athletes than Pitt and ran all over us the last 2 years.

    Almost 400 yards rushing in 2015 Another 106 yards passing. So 500 yards of Total Offense to Pitt’s 391.

    In 2014 it was even worse. GT had 465 yards rushing. That’s not a type…….465 YARDS RUSHING.
    And another 147 yds passing for a grand total of 612 TOTAL Yards.

    Pitt does not fare well against teams that run the Triple Option. Heck even New Mexico was able to run on us a couple years ago with their Triple Option.

    And this belies the fact Pitt has had horrible LB’s for a long time, all of them have one thing in common, they’re slow. Slow to the ball, slow to react, just slow.

    Unless Virginis, Brightwell and the other kid from North Allegheny see substantial time tomorrow, GT is going to run wild again. And there is no guarantee (far from it) that they won’t anyway. Since the above 3 have very limited experience. And our secondary is the most undisciplined lot I’ve seen since ’96 team.

    And one thing is certain, defending the Triple Option requires disciplined players, sticking with their assignments. What generally happens is : they might stick to their assignments for a period of time, but as the game wears on, they don’t and the whole thing starts breaking down. And you will see this if you watch any replays from previous Pitt/GT or Pitt/Navy games.

    Another thing that is almost certain, GT will complete a long pass for a TD, and the WR will be open by 10-15 yards.

    After all like Reed said in his article……..We are Pitt after all 😦

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  24. And as far your comments being moderated (censored) on Facepoop.

    A very disturbing trend is or has begun on these ‘social media’ platforms. There is massive censorship going on, if those that control the site, don’t like the context of what you post. That my friends is exactly what is going on in Communist China and went on, in regards to limiting free speech, in Soviet Russia or Nazi Germany.

    Some very dangerous and scary stuff trending in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

    We better start getting brave again or we won’t be free.

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  25. A shout out to our large Pitt Family in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. Everyone stay safe from this nasty looking Hurricane. We were going to move to Cocoa Beach a few years ago and that looks like it might take a big hit. God Bless everyone down there !

    https://www.wunderground.com/wundermap/?lat=26.165298896316042&lon=-78.65661621093751&wxstn=0&zoom=8&radar=1&sat=0&cam=0&severe=0&fronts=0&lightning=0&sst=0&sstanom=0&fire=0&rep=0&surge=0&tor=0&hur=1&models=0

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  26. Reed,

    Sorry to learn of your accident.
    You should feel worse the day after, and even worse the day after that…but then things improve. I do pain management, so email me if you have any problems.
    The selfishishness of texting boggles my mind. Put the damn phone down, show some restraint, and don’t pick it up again until you are parked.

    Agree on Narduzzi -free pass time on defense is coming to a close. Stop square pegging a round hole. His job is to win games with kids who aren’t rapists, killers or heroin dealers. So put your players in position to win, instead of in position to prove a point.
    And to think Hill (who I thought was the true gem of the class) and Hamlin were defensive saviors was wishful thinking.

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  27. Gas-
    I think Narduzzi was planning on starting Hamlin and hill. Then the floor dropped out. Not wishful thinking. Shit happens. DBs HAVE TO step up and play better.

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  28. Planning on true Freshmen starting does not equate. Does not equate, does not equate (this is my Mr, Spock )

    As you don’t even know if they’re even going to academically qualify and take a look at Hamlin, he’s all skin and bones, which is probably part of the reason he’s not in the mix. He’s not physically ready to play D1 football in a P5 conf.

    The Nard Dog should have brought in 3-4 good juco DB’s that more physically mature. Again we get penalized for a HC learning his trade on our trade. And when he has (or at least a little better) he’ll be off to somewhere else, much like Paulie.

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  29. ^learning his trade on our dime ^ When is Pitt ever going to learn ? Ever ? it’s been 30+ years of either futility or a middling or slightly above middling program. Only because there are a gazillion bowls, and if you get one, somehow that equates (Mr Spock again) into a somewhat successful season.

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  30. Didn’t watch this game last nite, but the typical MO of ESPN is to try and hide all the empty seats with low camera angles,etc. Except of course for Pitt games, when they love to give a wide camera pan of the upper deck . Did they do that last nite in Memphis ?

    https://twitter.com/EmptySeatsPics

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  31. Reed, hope you are not tooo sore today. Apparently that small car you drive kept you safe.
    Apparently Category 4 Hurricane Mattheew is a wild one. I echo Emel’s thoughts on our Pitt family in the South – keep safe!!! Hunker down with a drink, inside.
    As to “moderation” I again am in line with Emel – today the First Amendment means you have a “right” to affirm someone’s opinion – if you disagree you are in the Basket (name the hate name you are called) i.e. Reed you are a Nard H8ter – haha 🙂 Don’t they teach civics anymore?

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  32. I have tickets for both games.

    I also don’t think any HC really plans on using true FR unless there is a compelling reason to start them early on – in Whitehead’s case it was his talent was above all others.

    Not sure you can say that about Hill and Hamlin. Every single year college fans, and Pitt in particular I believe, look at 4* kids and assume they will be D1 ready right off the bat.

    A while ago I published an article on The Blather where I listed all the 4* & 5* recruits Pitt had since the Harris days and well over half never became starters at Pitt.

    In football you play with what you have . Now, with our pass defense being as poor as it is this might be that ‘compelling reason’ to try a true FR at DB but as written above Hamlin isn’t physically ready at this point.

    One other point about kids not playing – Just because a kid is benched or if they aren’t playing (like Hamlin) doesn’t mean they are bad kids – a lot of the time a minor infraction may be the case or it might be that their academics aren’t allowing them according to Athletic Dept standards (not the NCAA’s but Pitt’s).

    That can’t be discussed publicly due to student privacy issues so it is usually said that ‘he isn’t ready to play’ which is sort of the truth – the kid won’t be ready to play until some things get taken care of. If you remember this:

    “Sophomore cornerback Titus Howard, who is suspended for the season, participated in every drill on the first day of summer camp Monday, and he continues to receive support from coaches and teammates, especially long time friend Tyler Boyd.

    Howard’s punishment for an undisclosed violation of team rules is that he can’t play in games.”

    That was a drug test issue that ultimately resulted in his leaving school. “Defensive backs coach Troy Douglas said Howard can treat this season like a redshirt year, a fact of life for many college players.”

    However a staff coach tried to pretend that it was academics when he said “He’s going to help us,” Douglas said. “Nobody’s perfect. This is his chance to improve. He needs to pick it up on his academic side as well. Those type of things are what we need to get Titus focused on.”

    It was the as well that was the truth.

    Personally- I don’t think that it was the flu that kept Whitehead out – if that was the truth Narduzzi wouldn’t have said the things he did afterward like “”Jordan Whitehead did not play in last week’s game for reasons that are personal in nature.” or list that position on the two-deep as this:

    9 Jordan Whitehead OR
    15 Reggie Mitchell

    That is the only position on defense with the “or” designation – Believe me the Flu isn’t an injury and he could have easily deflected all the media storm after Saturday by just saying “He had the flu” but he didn’t for a reason. This doesn’t mean he’s not a good kid – it means that he might have done did something relatively minor and is being held accountable for it which Narduzzi is serious about.

    Or not but I used this instance to show what goes on behind the scenes with these types of circumstances.

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  33. Here are our tackle stats for 2016 … http://www.cfbstats.com/2016/team/545/tackle/index.html

    If our MLB is going to average only 3.8 tackles, we may be in a heap of trouble. It could be that we have played pass-oriented teams so far since our opponents thus far have passed 191 times versus 148 runs, but IMO the issue we have against the option is the speed our our and to a lesser extent, the failure of our DEs to penetrate.

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  34. I see a geezer texting while driving the other day. That is how bad it has gotten. Needless to say the car was weaving like a drunk was driving it.

    I have yet to see a Pitt DB play the ball this year. Though I think Whitehead made a play on the ball in the UNC game but came up inches short. I noticed cover-2 being played in the Marshall game at times – but it also coincided w/ big gains running the football.

    I dunno… I think it is the point where the coach has to go JUCO or senior-transfer for defensive help.

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