We will again be in Fran Lokar’s 20+ year spot in Parking Lot Red 5A, which is bordered by General Robinson street to the south and Reedsdales street to the north and directly next to the Red 5 parking garage. It is also directly under the North Shore Light Rail station and adjacent to the Residence Inn.  Very easy to find…

Red5A

Fran will have the great 20′ flag pole and POV & Pitt flags that Bernie B. so graciously donated to the tailgating cause – thanks to both of you.

Fran historically gets to his spot five hours before the game begins (12 noon against OSU this Saturday) and I’ll drive up the night before and get there around 9am. This is going to be a blast guys – totally free of course and all we want is to meet, greet and drink a few with all the POV friends we have made on here over the last year… Can’t wait to see everyone… OK – onto Know The Enemy…

Here is Chris Logue with another excellent article to get us ready for the game on Saturday.  Make sure to put your own predictions in your comments…

The reasons are not quite defined and I can’t say as though they will be until maybe a minute before kickoff, but I feel far more comfortable about this match up than that against Penn State.  By comfortable, I mean confident in our ability to protect our home field and to help reinstate confidence in the ACC against other Power-5 foes. “Upset, Baby!” With my best Dicky-V impersonation.

Could it happen? Quite possibly, but the Panthers have to be more disciplined in the middle of the field and the offense must become more consistent.  In particular, at quarterback. Sure, there were throws that should have been caught, but as the captain of the team, Browne has to be the one to take the next step in maturing in the pocket and putting his players in position to flourish.

This week we are joined again by a special guest. Scott Wright takes care of the Oklahoma State football beat for The Oklahoman and is definitely atop the mountain when it comes to reporting in that area and beyond.

Oklahoma State in 2017

Record: 2-0

Leading Passer: Mason Rudolph (638 yards, 72.2% completion, 6 touchdowns, 0 interceptions)

Leading Rusher: Justice Hill (159 yards, 6.1 YPC, 1 touchdown)

Leading Receiver: James Washington (8 receptions, 243 yards, 30.4 YPR, 3 touchdowns)

Average PPG For: 55.1 (Opp. Tulsa, South Alabama)

Average PPG Against: 15.5

 

Last season, we saw individuals in Mason Rudolph and James Washington run roughshod on the Pitt defense, well, the secondary. Washington had 296 yards receiving in the game and Rudolph went for 500 in the air, so what could they possibly do for an encore? For that, it all depends on what Pitt does on defense to combat the attack. But, Scott Wright thinks it could be a group effort of players not named Rudolph or Washington that will make the difference that Gundy will focus on.

“They’ve got guys like Jalen McCleskey, Dillon Stoner and Tyron Johnson who are dangerous in the middle of the field, and running back Justice Hill has already caught more passes out of the backfield this year than he did all of last season. So that could be an area they attack.

I’ll be curious to see if Pitt changes how they cover Washington from last year, when they tried to go man-to-man on him a lot. Obviously that didn’t work, but doubling him also makes the rest of the secondary more vulnerable to the other weapons.”

The middle of the field will be a major point of emphasis for the Panthers. With Narduzzi admitting that  the linebackers looked slower as the game went on, that’s when Penn State began utilizing the middle of the field and having greater amounts of success(Barkley catch with Brightwell trailing).

This could be a game where Washington could be used as more of a decoy to open up the field for Hill out of the backfield and other receivers across the middle and down the sidelines. Of course, even as a decoy, Washington has the ability to break the will of a team. Here’s to hoping not.

Traditionally, Oklahoma State, well the entire Big-12, is a pass-first conference and that is great if your quarterback is on each game, but on his worst game, it’s the weapons around him who have the chance to lift the Cowboys to a victory.

“..Justice Hill was the Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year last year, but he really hadn’t had his breakout until after the Pitt game, when OSU was still trying to figure out who their running back would be. OSU has probably three other receivers who could be NFL players eventually. It starts with Chris Lacy, Marcell Ateman and Johnson. Now, if Rudolph is having an off day, things can go sour pretty quickly, because it’ll be tough to get the run game going without a passing threat,” Wright says.

Still, I consider how weak the Pitt offense has looked, well when comparing to 2016, and it makes you wonder how they match up against an often times weaker defensive team like Oklahoma State. Although to be fair, OSU is very athletic at all levels of the defense. Pitt is in wavering waters when it comes to quarterback and I look for Max Browne to have a shorter leash this week, which could make way for Ben DiNucci for the second straight week. Even with a potential quarterback quandary, and one the coaches are trying to dispel but keep stoking the flames, the Pokes will be prepared.

“..They prepared for Tulsa in the season opener not knowing who would win their QB battle, and both quarterbacks ended up playing. So I think they’ll take what they have film on and build the game plan around that. The OSU defensive line has been solid so far, and I’d expect them to push the issue up there to try to create pressure and keep the QB, whoever it is, uncomfortable from the start.”

Again, the overall flow of the Pitt offense could be up to how much WR Quadree Henderson can be effectively involved in the scheme of the offense. Sweeps don’t seem to be the answer to this point in the season, although early, it could be time to panic. I look for Pitt to take a page out of the Kansas City Chiefs playbook and look to how they use their dynamic receiver, Tyreek Hill.

Having Henderson in the backfield in the shotgun alongside Browne would diversify his abilities. Quick pitch, zone reads and as a receiver out of the backfield would create nightmares for defenses by isolating linebackers and putting him on an island.  Not to mention, the shovel.  How do you free up the tight-end for the shovel?  You exercise the defense by continuing to pull the defensive ends and linebackers to the outside creating a void in the middle of the defense.

Oklahoma State doesn’t have Quadree Henderson, but they are doing their best to prepare.

“We aren’t allowed in to watch practice at this point in the season, but there’s a chance they’d be using fifth-string RB Chuba Hubbard in that role.  He’s a true freshman who is likely to redshirt, so he could very well be working on the scout team this week.  I don’t know if the speed took them by surprise last year, or if they just weren’t prepared to handle it.”

Now, the nitty-gritty.  Edit: OSU had open practices all during camp. 😦

Does Oklahoma State cover the -11 spread, and how do they do it?

“It starts with the passing game (SURPRISE!).   If Rudolph goes for 500 yards again, I’d expect the Cowboys to cover.  The defense is improved this year, so I think Pitt will have a tougher time getting up to the 38-point range they reached last year.

But OSU is dealing with a lot of issues at linebacker, with one starter injured, and his backup suspended for the first half of this game for a targeting call in the third quarter against South Alabama.  And another key backup blew out his knee last week in practice.  So that’s a big question mark.  If Pitt can take advantage of the struggles there, they might find a way to stay in the game.”

This is the point where Wright makes a very firm statement and it’s interesting the confidence.

Q: “Can you fathom a world in which Pitt can pull the upset, which they have a propensity to do? If so, what will it take for them to reach that point?”

A: “It can absolutely happen (this is the statement I was talking about). OSU wasn’t flashy on offense last week at South Alabama, and a better team might’ve made them pay for it early and stayed in the game. Instead, South Alabama didn’t even get past the 100-yard mark until the fourth quarter.

Pitt should have significantly more offensive success than that. Being at home always helps. And they showed last year against Clemson that they can handle speed. So it’s certainly possible. OSU hasn’t turned the ball over much yet, so if Pitt can get a few takeaways, it could really create some momentum.”

Before we get to the predictions, I wanted to know an outsider’s opinion on the comments made by James Franklin during his post-game boastful banter. Wright delivered.

“When I first heard just the “like beating Akron” line, I thought he was trying to either establish or strengthen the idea of a big brother/little brother relationship between his program and Pitt. 

I don’t know if that exists up there, but that’s something OSU battled here with OU for a long time.  OSU always considered OU its biggest rival, but OU’s biggest rival was always Texas.  But for about the last 20 years, OSU/OU has been a more substantial rivalry and a lot more evenly split than it ever was before. 

The initial sense I got from Franklin was of him discounting the meaning of the rivalry.  But when I went to watch the entire portion of the interview to try to put it in context, I started leaning more toward the idea of it just being a horrible, horrible analogy he was trying to make, with no clue how bad it sounded.  There still seemed to be some negative intent in there, but it wasn’t as bad as I initially thought from the first time I heard it.  Being a guy who loves rivalries, and particularly, impassioned coaches, I thought it was something that will definitely add some juice when they meet next year.”

PREDICTIONS

OSU’s Scott Wright – I’m taking OSU 45-20. I think the defense is physical enough to contain Pitt, and the offense has too many weapons.

Pitt’s Chris Logue – Pitt doesn’t have the dynamic playmakers in the receiving game necessary to out-battle the secondary of the Cowboys, but I am extremely encouraged by the traditional running game Pitt brought to the table against a superior run defense at Penn State.  That makes the difference for Browne and takes the ball out of the OSU offense’s hands long enough to steal one at home.

Pitt wins 33-30 and is successful in taking two possessions away from OSU and is lucky enough to return one to the house early in the game.

Pitt’s Reed Kohberger – Boy, this is a tough one because I’m just not sure how good a team PSU really is this season, so I think we still don’t have real answers to a lot of serious questions.  Either way though I’m not as satisfied about how we played last week as some fans are. We scored 14 points overall with only one TD – and we lost by 19 points.  Spin that anyway you want but it isn’t good.

One startling fact: our QB has yet to throw a TD pass in eight quarters of regulation play… two full games, but also has three INTs in that same time period.  The first TD last week put us down 7-0 with only 2:07 having been played and we never dug out of that hole.

I’ll have to be convinced by actually seeing it that our passing defense is truly better than last season – after all we just two weeks ago gave up 311 yards and 2 TDs, along with a very good 9.7 ypa average, to an FCS offense (by comparison Nate Peterman had a 9.3 ypa in his excellent play last season).

Fans also seem to think we looked good in the pass defense last week because we held McSorley to 164 yards passing, but tend to overlook that he tossed 3 TDs along with that.

I think the OSU passing game dominates the field and the game and we won’t be able to score enough points to keep up.  I shudder to think what OSU QB Rudolph will do for an encore of his 540 yards / 2 TD performance of last season.  The fact is they have better WRs this year than they did last.

We’ll score more than last week but our offense has a lot of problems right now and it starts with the QB. We won’t be able to keep up like last season when we at least made it a game., as it was 38-38 with only 1:53 left on the clock then before OSU scored to win. But that was with a much better offense than we have this season.

I’ll guess OSU 41 – Pitt 20 and wouldn’t be shocked to see DiNucci get a lot of playing time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

214 thoughts on “Know The Enemy – OK State U. & Predictions

    1. WHAT IF..we don’t have to outscore. If the defense can force a turnover, it completely changes to complexion of the game. The Pitt offense is capable of holding the ball, limiting the OSU opportunities to score. No need to outscore.

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  1. The signed Ricky Jackson Jersey auction is officially closed – the winning bid was $2,200 dollars by Erie Express.

    Kidding – it was $220 and money well spent.

    Thank you Erie, that $$ will go right into travel/tailgate expenses… And thank you so much to Jason Smith (Jay91) for his generous offer to do this. Between his support at the Golf Outing and now this auction he’s been a real mainstay of the blog. As is Rick Caldwell also.

    You are both great guys.

    Like

  2. I happen to think PSU is not a fluke. They played arguably the hottest team in the NCAA in the Rose Bowl, and stood toe-to-toe. And they returned 17 starters.

    OSU is also no fluke but I expect Pitt to make a game of it. 38-27

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  3. Rudolph a better QB than McSorley, and has better receivers. I think our offense has more success than against PSU but will not keep up. 38-24

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  4. This will be the true test of whether our CBs and overall secondary has markedly improved, or is simply a bit better than last year (which is the definition of damning it with faint praise). Jackson and Garner have been the DBs bright spots so far in my opinion, with Maddox playing about as good as he did last year.

    Although slightly better than against YSU the DL is still clearly a work in process with an occasional great play sprinkled into a salad of mediocrity. That is going to be the problem against OSU because if Rudolph is comfortable in the pocket Pitt will be lucky to hold OSU to the same point total as last year.

    I could not be less impressed with Watson as OC and it is heart-breaking to think that we only had one year of Canada’s exciting plays to enjoy. I think that is Q Henderson’s problem, he’s not seeing the openings that he did last year and frankly he’s not able to make his own hole, but needs the deception and element of surprise that Canada’s offense afforded him. I fear his funk will be a season long problem, although I am stumped by how he lost his edge in the return game. Against a high-powered O like OSU’s Pitt needs to get field position and maybe a TD to help stay in the game.

    I think all-in Pitt will be lucky to score 2 TDs, but that could change to 4 if QH returns to his 2016 form. Browne is not officially a bust but NardDog should be checking the silverware drawer for the fork. OSU is good for 5 TDs even if they are having an off day so there you have it . . . Pitt 17 OSU 42.

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  5. Got to love after PITT plays psu semi-tough that maybe it’s psu being over-rated. Typical SOP fans. Could it be remotely possible that Narduzzi is getting his stuff together? Maybe the addition of Charlie and two years being on the job as a first time head coach HCPN is finding his way? Oh, and no one being negative, right??

    As far as the OSU game goes, it’s going to be tough. Real good team with a great passing game as we all know. Which does open up the running game. Although this fantastic freshman RB (Hill) has only 160 yards which is not bad but against Tulsa and some team called South Alabama? With that passing attack?

    This will be the game that Maddox steps up and shows off his ability to cover or the haters go absolutely bonkers.

    The catch 22 here is, this is still an OCC game, remember? Cause I’m thinking this fact will get lost if OSU blows PITT out. Trying to stay one step ahead of some I ask, haven’t we decided the ACC conference games are the most important games?

    I won’t be around the next 2 1/2 days after tonight so here is my prediction and surprise I think PITT wins a tough, exciting and a little bizarre game. Kessman pulls a Blewitt,and wins the game late < (is that an oxymoron)

    PITT —–35
    OSU——34

    ike———— H2P!

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    1. Ike – I said I wondered if PSU was the team we all thought, not that it wasn’t… calm down Ike.

      When you play like crap against an FCS team and then play decent against a power 5 team neither one is the true litmus test of how the season’s going to go and that’s why this third game is so important. After all is barely beating YSU in overtime indicative of the HC ‘getting his stuff together’?

      We’ll know more on Saturday afternoon about what this team’s all about. Right now I can’t put my finger on it and I don’t think you can either so spare me the same old Pitt crap because really as far as the season goes we pretty much played the Same Old Pitt way by barely beating a FSC team and then losing by 19 to a Power 5 school.

      I don’t think that’s all that great and neither should you because that’s going backward from last year when we won both games.

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  6. Despite the loss last week, I too feel much better about Pitt. There are still lots of deficiencies, but I think the lines both improved last week and the Panthers looked like they actually paid attention to what the coaches were saying in practice. Continued improvements in execution will help make us look better this week. I think the Defense will come together and make it a closer game, and if offense can open some more running lanes this week it might be an upset. Pitt 38 OSU 37.

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  7. OSU defense has problems, possibly more than ours. Their offense not so much…..,BUT the Duzz Crew find a way late and hang on for dear life
    PITT 33
    OSU 28

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  8. I used the Tardis, TX panther. Unfortunately, I ended up at the sec championship game instead of this week’s Pitt game.
    That thing should really come with instructions.

    I will guess a Pitt win, 31-28.

    And for those curious, Alabama wasn’t there for the game I landed at.

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  9. SOP applies to management, players and coaches as it did in it’s forerunner SOS where the cheap Rooneys and the coaches and players found ways to losing on a weekly basis for 40 years. The cheap Rooneys still haunt Pitt. . IMO those who insult others as their argument do not have any realistic faith in their own opinions. There has been nothing to like about the play of Captain Max, by the time Nard pulls him we will be down by 24. Realism vs pipe dreams. In a pipe dream my team PItt would win every game. Toke up unrealistic optimists, Doc’s Pitt Haze is apparently great, 🙂 OSU 42 Pitt 17. Oh hell pass the doobie.

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  10. SOP fans apply to PITT fans that cannot give credit where it is due. All of the off season, all I heard and read was how horrible coach Conklin is. Well imo, holding McSorely to 180 yards passing is a step in the right direction. No PITT win so maybe we should start bashing Watson instead? SOP fans! .

    Until I have a few bucks on a PITT game, I’m not betting against them. << Which will NEVER hapen. What do I have to lose? . . . .ike

    H2P!

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    1. Forgot about those pesky 3 TDs he threw… It was better than last year but giving up 33 points sucked….again…

      We sit at 68th in total defense, 78th in scoring defense, 81st in passing…311 yards passing allowed to YSU… Let’s wait a bit before we start saying Conklin’s doing any better.

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  11. I dont think Max et al can generate the offense to keep up.
    OSU jams the box, makes Max and the receivers – the ones that cant get open anyway – beat them. Tight ends continue to drop passes, A Officer gets a few penalties, JJS gets mowed down, and QH continues to be a step slow.

    Bad guys 38
    Good guys 10

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  12. It boils down to a couple things I think.

    Pitt can stay in the game, if the WR’s decide to catch the ball this week We might even win.

    If they don’t, we lose by several scores. Mason threw for 28 TD’s and only 4 picks last year or
    somewhere around there. If they (Conklin/NardDog) don’t come up with a scheme to take OSU out of their rhythm or comfort zone, could get ugly. Like in a mass exodus ugly.

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    1. How is calling the fact that a third rounder is not playing in year two in a system rooting against?

      He is passed over by a slower white wr and they drafted a wr in first round.

      It proves the fact taking him in the third round was WAY to early but that is what they are the Bengals and stink.

      Who rooted against Conner? My opinion is he is not a NFL RB but I have never rooted against him or his heart.

      You go away for 9 months and show back up like a new sheriff is in town. That is funny to me. Go watch some Stallings or something Emel.

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      1. Actually Tyler was taken in the 2nd round partner. You seem to revel in the fact that Boyd got passed up.
        It’s a long season, he’ll play his way back and if he doesn’t with the Bengals, what does that mean ?
        You just said they suck.

        My point is….. why wouldn’t you want a Pitt Man to do well in the NFL ?

        And as far as Stallings, that ‘s the best thing that’s ever happened to upitt.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. False.
    I root for all ex-Pitt guys.
    I hope he is paid for being INACTIVE.
    It reflects well upon the university when ex-players do well. A positive feedback loop,as it were.

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    1. Wasn’t referring to you Gasman….was referring to the board anti all everything Pitt,….upitt.

      Exactly…a positive feedback loop and having guys in the NFL obviously helps in recruiting too. And Boyd is in Ohio, so that’s one of our key states.

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  14. Reed, Fran, Ike, I plan on coming to the tailgate and bringing one buddy with me.

    Regarding the game, I’ll stick with my prediction from last night of OSU 45, PITT 28, but I am glad to see so many optimistic predictions. Sure hope I’m wrong!

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  15. Ike with all due respect you are redefining a long standing Pittsburgh expression to fit your overly optimistic, IMO, view of Pitt football. For you and others overly optimistic is the rule.

    WADR you remind me of Candide by Voltaire where in the midst of horrible conditions in France Candide went around saying “This is the best of all possible worlds.” If you understood the history of the Pittsburgh Steelers you would understand that SOP is an outgrowth of SOS – Same Old Steelers which is what fans would say about the cheap team of losers fielded by the cheap Rooneys.

    WADR you folks are trying to appropriate an expression to use as an insult to those who IMO take a more realistic view of the condition of the program and the team. I don’t want to go down the political road but this is like Whoopie saying it is okay for African Americans to change the Nword to end in “a” not “er” as being ‘appropriated’ – horse manure, wrong is wrong. My parents would have wiped my mouth with soap if I used either I respect your overly optimistic approach, its too bad you cannot respect people who have views other than yours but such is life today

    I was struck by Gundy in his presser saying that Nard’s defense was one of the “big”, looking down on it.

    The Big 12 is known for its emphasis on pass offense which is the problem Pitt has had for three years. You cannot deny the facts though maybe you see light at the end of the tunnel – I am trained to be concerned it is a train. Pitts biggest advantage going into the game IMO is that OSU has not been tested at all, Pitt has.

    I would never call you a “kool aid drinker” as that shows disrespect for your opinion,. We will both be yelling our lungs out come noon on Saturday, after all we are Pitt fans!!!! There are different types of show me fans – I root for Pitt all the way and dont run them down (alright maybe the coaches ha ha).

    Take care my friend, hopefully I can get to the POV tailgate, I come with my brother who gets off work at different times depending on whether he works OT.
    HAIL TO PITT!!! COWER THE COWBOYS!!!
    Are we still buds? XXXOOOXXX

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  16. I saw improvement from Game 1 to Game 2, especially when considering the opponents in each game.

    I still maintain faith in the DL’s improvement, which will be UGE this week. We win trench warfare.

    I look for Max and the O to force Okie Fenokie out of the box packing business early – CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW, MR WATSON???

    I think we beat them, IF we win the turnover game, and Max has NO its.

    So-o-o, good D, and no Ints, Pitt wins TOP (by a bunch), and a comparatively low scoring game – 31-24

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  17. Pitt wins 42-39

    QO goes off on the soft OSU D. 4 TD’s.

    Min/Max keeps the mistakes to a min, and the completions to a max. 2 TD’s.

    A receiver other than a starter has a big game.

    A defender other than a starter has a bigger game. 10 tackles and 2 sacks.

    HTP!

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  18. Now see RKB, here’s where I didn’t make my point clear I suppose? First off, I do go back to the SOS in the 60’s. Remember this play call. “Ed Brown drops back to pass, Ed Brown is dropped for a sack”? <standard play call

    That was most definitely “Same Old Steelers” back then.

    PITT didn’t play the greatest game last Saturday but the defense did play a lot better was more to my point against a big-time opponent.

    As far as not respecting another opinion is, well, your opinion. I sure didn’t mean to disrespect you RKB in anyway.

    To sum it all up for me is this. Great PITT fans like us go way back. Yes even before Johnny came marching to PITT then back home again and then back again. We’ve seen the worst and the best in our PITT days. The program was being destroyed by a lunk-headed corn-holer named steve. Could it be that PITT is righting a wrong?

    I’m just here with my, possibly, overly optimistic view on the PITT football program. I make no apologies for it and admit I could be all wrong. It’s just the way I roll . . . Hope to see you at the tailgate R. .. . . . . .ike

    H2P1

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  19. Erie – I think OSU’s Defense is sunstianally better than last year FYI.

    I also heard Van Gundy basically laugh that we have a Big 10 Defense. For him to know that from the Big 12 tells you the word on the street is coaches don’t respect Narduzzi’s defense.

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    1. Is that right upitt….coaches on the street, don’t respect Nard Dog’s defense. You’re so full of BS, you don’t know when to stop. Why don’t you move to Stillwater and get on their boards.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Emel, after what we have seen out of the Narduzzi defenses of the last 2 years why would anyone really respect them? They’ve been average one year and horrid the next and that is pretty evident.

        Now that doesn’t mean one doesn’t respect him as a head coach, 8 wins a year is nice, but the defenses haven’t been good at all.

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          1. It deems him as smart as hiring an amazing OC in Canada. It also teams him in a negative light because he couldn’t keep them after 12 months. You pay the man that had the most prolific offense of season in history.

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  20. I was heartened by the effort last week and think we can move the ball on the ground. However, I don’t think Browne is the answer at QB and I have SERIOUS concerns with Watson. I think our DB’s are improved, just not enough to stop a solid OSU passing attack. If we are able to play keep away and limit the big plays, we can stay in this.. for awhile. A win is possible, not probable.

    OSU 38 Pitt 24

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  21. Pittman4ever Says:
    1. To win this game we need to outscore OSU.
    2. PROBLEM: OSU is a scoring BMW fine tuned machine and one of the best in the nation. On the other hand, our offense is currently a broken down Chevy Nova and one of the least productive in the nation.
    CONCLUSION: I want our team to win I just can’t see how we can score more points than our opponent based on the evidence our O has displayed up to this point. :<(
    PITT: 26
    OSU: 42

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  22. The Pitt offense is a shadow of the one put on the field last season. The defense is highly questionable based on how poorly(many missed opportunities by YSU in the first half) they played against YSU at home. And Max is just such a comedown from Peterman that there is almost no chance of outscoring this OSU high powered offense. OSU 55 Pitt 20 Most of Pitt’s points coming with DiNucci at QB.

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  23. Reed, I am assuming a similar number of POVers from the first tailgate. Mimosas, beer, breakfast casserole with sausage and bagels.

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    1. Awesome. I’ll be at your house Friday night at about 8:30 and then we’ll spend the night drinking and you can cook me breakfast and then we’ll go to the tailgate and have another breakfast…thanks!!

      Seriously friend , thanks for everything I appreciate it. If you can bring that Ikea bag also that would be great.

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  24. Toward our discussions over the offseason about Max Brown being a five-star number one recruit.

    I am reading a book now titled THE QB by Bruce Feldman and it talks about the 2010 HS recruiting class.

    That class had 31 quarterbacks ranked as blue chippers – meaning four or five star players…of the 31 recruits four of them won starting jobs (13%) and 22 transferred to other teams and didn’t start (71%).

    Pretty eye opening, eh? But not really unexpected, especially when you think about Max Browne being at Pitt after a solid 4 years of not doing anything in his college career earlier. That five-star number one rating really didn’t mean anything then and I don’t think it means anything much now. His job now is all about production on the field at Pitt this year regardless of what his past was.

    This is the defining game for his future I think.

    Good book and should be at your library.

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  25. Reed said to let’s wait awhile before judging the defense. Totally agree … in fact, I have been saying that all summer to wait until mid October to judge this team. Isn’t Pitt the 6th most inexperienced team in all of college football (or something like that.)

    We are playing easily one of the most explosive teams the past 2 years. 51 ppg and I’m sure it could have been more since they jumped to early leads in both games, and then cruised a bit.

    It may well be ugly tomorrow but I again stress patience.

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  26. For some reason I am remembering that Mason wasn’t as accurate on the short passing routes, I may be wrong. So I think Pitt will have a better chance in this game if they are going to throw shorter passes as mentioned in this post.

    I hope you guys have a great time at the tailgate, I hope to get up there again some time this year.

    42-35 OSU, but I really hope I’m wrong

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  27. Duzz does have a D that served him well in the Big10 but hasn’t done much against the pass in pass first team…this will be a good practice game for conference play Ga Tech excluded..
    Emel.. love having you back..no personal attacks please..our boy UPitt is getting married Saturday….

    Pitt 24…. Osu…45

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  28. I think many of you are putting too much emphasis on the opener vs YSU.

    1) in 2008, Pitt lost opener to Bowling Green, and 2 games later,they beat an undefeated Iowa team that had won big in their first 2 games.

    2) in 2007, Michigan began the year by losing at home vs Appalachian State. They ended the year by beating the Heisman Trophy winner Tebow-lea Florida in a bowl game.

    3) in 2012, Pitt lost to the opener to YSU. 2 weeks later, they put a pasting on a ranked VT team.

    4) in 2013, Pitt toyed with Delaware in the opener, 62-0. 4 or 5 games later, they lost at home to Akron by 11 pts.

    5) in 1983, coming off winning their 1st national title,PSU graduated a lot of their players and lost opener to 44-6. They also lost their next two and then went on to win the balance of their games, including at ranked ND by 14, until the infamous 24-24 tie at Pitt Stadium.

    I can go on and on …. but when a team has a large turnover of personnel, it often takes a while for them to reach their max.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. True Wbb but you can’t just cherry pick games to pay attention to. If we are going to take an honest look at how we played at PSU then we should do the same with YSU – and hope YSU was an aberration. My biggest concern about the YSU game is that it wasn’t a productive one for Browne to ease back into playing which I thought it would be – a morale builder as it were.

        Instead I think it shook Browne and we saw the hangover from that last Saturday.

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        1. OK, in 2008, we won the 2nd game vs Buffalo but the game wasn’t decided until the 4th qtr

          in 2012, we lost the 2nd game at Cincy also

          in 2014 (not 13) we also won at BC in 2nd game, and won the third game .. yet we still lost the fifth to Akron

          The point is that you really don’t know a team, especially a young team, until mid-season approaches (In many cases). Last year, PSU started 2-2 including a 49-10 loss before winning the rest of the games until the bowl vs USC

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    1. That 1983 PSU-ND game, wasn’t the final, 34-30, PSU?

      Those used to be terrific games looking back, as much as I hate both. That 24-24 tie and losing to tOSU in the bowl game was the start of Pitt football not catching breaks 50-55 percent of the time, rather about 33 percent.

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  29. Reed first mentions that he feels more comfortable with this matchup than he did against PSU, then he gives his prediction of OSU winning 41-20? Color me perplexed!

    Me, I HATE this matchup. The Rudolph-Washington duo scares the crap out of me but forget the other guys like Johnson or Ateman & they’ll hurt you just as bad.

    This is a game where OSU’s strength, the vertical passing game vs. Pitt’s weakness, the defensive secondary. This matchup will demonstrate whether Coach Duzz is learning as a HC or not. If he’s stubborn, sticking with his basis Cover 4 defense we get beat badly.

    Instead, I’d double team Washington all day long challenging OSU to beat us with single coverage elsewhere, or better yet for Pitt, with the run game. If the Cowboys find the running game effective instead, that’s even better for us cause that slows down their scoring juggernaut machine and keeps Pitt in it.

    So I think Pitt needs to be playing a nickel type DB set or some form of read zone coverage with an extra spying DB on Washington giving double team help over the top on him.

    If we can limit their quick style scoring then we have a chance, if not we lose like Reed predicts, by at least 3 TDs. My prediction, unfortunately is even worse than that, just too many questions still in our secondary. And with Whitehead still suspended, Hamlin not yet seeing the field and a probable RS for Paris Ford due to joining the team late in camp, the best talent in our secondary remains on the sidelines. Not good for the good guys.

    My prediction, 49-24 OSU.

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  30. and of course, in 2001, Pitt started 1 and 5 with the sole win over East Tenn St. They won their final 6 games including a 38-7 beatdown of #12 VT and an impressive bowl win over Philip Rivers and NC State. That was mainly due to a change to the offensive scheme but it still shows how things can change.

    and also of course, the ’91 team was 5-0 and ranked 12th but finished 6-5.

    Like

    1. That 2001 change to the no-huddle spread was the most damaging decision to hurt Pitt football since the school decided to let football die in 1990. Incredible Harris would make such a move when he had a veteran team returning, including a senior quarterback.

      That 1-5 start never would have happened with his regular offense. There were so many 3-and-outs in that 1-5 start the defense pretty much gave up. No way would Pitt have lost all four to USF, ND, Syracuse and B.C. And in typical Pitt fashion, the Thursday night game versus Miami should have been competitive, but at one point the score was 40-7.

      As you said, wins over VTech and NC State showed how good that team was as the combined score in those two games was 72-26. That decision by Harris cost Pitt tons of momentum at the early portion of the decade. Yet for some reason people focus on Wannstedt’s first three seasons of no bowl games. Going 7-5 in 2000 and 2001 when the records should have been at least 9-3 both years cost Pitt from recruiting better players. The proof was in the pudding by 2003 and carried over into when Wannstedt took over as he had to play a 19-year old Gus Mustakas versus ND in 2005.

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  31. Sticking with my prediction that Pitt starts 1-2. They lose a close one.

    The key:
    Don’t give them quick scores.
    On O, long sustained drives and capitalize in the red zone.

    No one holds OSU under 30. A good D holds them to 35.

    38-33

    The POVer go balistic and Upitt is found praying at the Jumonville Cross for Narduzzi’s firing.

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    1. Haha! Wouldn’t be first time buddy. Love the fact that you got to stay at the summit inn and enjoy those views. I wish I would’ve been there my dads house is three minutes away and have some pretty amazing views you guys going to enjoy. Hope you guys had a great time. Really pretty there during fall foliage.

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      1. Have in-laws up there.

        The Summit hallways look straight out of The Shining. After a few martinis I was looking for the twins and the kid on the tricycle.

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        1. Yes. Very true. Red Rum. Let’s plan to meet there one weekend. We can have dinner at Melonis or Nemocolin. Where do you live now? I fly there Wed.

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          1. I’m actually out by the Pittsburgh airport. I am only in Uniontown or Farmington when we go to visit the in-laws.

            Be cool to meet you. I won’t have time next week, doing a big migration and it goes live Tuesday. I’ll be putting in long hours.

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  32. Can’t double team Washington all game long, they have 3 other really good options at WR. Only chance is to get to Rudolph and throw him off his game. Keep the D-line fresh and apply as much pressure as Pitt can with blitzes. They will burn Pitt a few times with this strategy. Hope we can cover the spread again this week.
    Give ’em hell, HTP.

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    1. OSU RB is actually good. I think they come out balanced with Run and Pass Game. Our hope is long sustained drives. I bet they put many in the box and make Brown throw the ball. I think Cauklin has a dece t game honestly. Not enough to win but plays pretty good.

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  33. I’ve been reading this site for months and love it. I think we keep it close tomorrow. OSU 45, Pitt 35. We are going to run all over them and they are going to throw all over us.

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  34. OK ST. 42-24
    D-line needs to get pressure and a few sacks otherwise point total for them will go up. A track meet with this team not in Pitt’s best interest.

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  35. Guessing the most UNLIKELY outcome might just come Saturday… which of course would be an impressive Pitt Win!

    Well, Pitt better win.

    Cause next week against Georgia Tech ain’t happenin’ and “ONE and THREE” is not going to sound much like a “transition” year to even the biggest Narduzzi Supporters..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Disagree, next week’s game against GT is a win if we come out of this OSU game injury free.

      Whitehead gets back on the field against GT & this Pitt defense is built better to contend with the triple option. Pitt defensive personnel are faster sideline to sideline this season than either of Narduzzi’s previous teams. Plus Coach has seen GT twice now. He hasn’t lost to the Yellowjackets yet.

      Like

        1. You guys must have short memories when it comes to the triple option. After watching Army play against Navy and doing a dam good job I was hoping Upitt favorite football coach could come up with a great gameplay for the Navy bowl game.—-Playing the triple option once a year makes it very difficult to practice for it. And being a very young defense is not going to make any easier.

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  36. Getting ready to get ready… Reed ^^ above makes a good point. We still don’t know who or what this PITT team is. The first two games were so drastically different in terms of talent and play. I still throw out the YSU game though. That game means nothing by the end of the season.

    Welcome AJ and all the newer posters

    I’ll be at the Hyatt tonight hopefully around the fire-pit later on sipping a cold one after a little bite at Hyde Park, stop by and say hello. . . . .See you all at the tailgate and yell if anything is needed besides cash. . . . ike.

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  37. If we play the way we did against PSU: outgain them (rush and pass) and dominate them in time of possession and if the defense continues to improve, my guess is its close with OSU getting the win. However, I would like nothing better than to say, using my best Howard Cosell voice, “Down goes Okie, Down goes Okie. – Hobie

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  38. Try this again: Pitt 38-34
    Believe Ed Brown’s backup was Bill Nelson (USC grad) FWIW
    Heard sports commentator locally note “Penn State may haven beaten Pitt, but for the second consecutive year the Panthers knocked them out of the top 4 playoff spots as their ranking drops to #5 after the game (at least temporarily).”

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  39. Just got to see the end of the game when DiNucci played.

    If you watched that and think he is the answer you are smoking crack. The D was playing back and playing backups and I can throw a football with that velocity. He can run. That is it.

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  40. Guys – you all are great commenters, really know your football and don’t hesitate to chip in – a Big Thanks for that. Threads like this one where you really go in depth with your thoughts are truly what separates the POV from any other Pitt media site – I believe that. BTW = 35,278 comments now in 14 months… or 2519 per month or… 83.9 per day or… 84.6 per article.

    Isn’t it great how many new commenters we have now that the season started – and welcome back Emel! That was too long of a break for you.

    I like the way we can, 99% of the time, agree to disagree in a congenial way.

    “Ville – interesting your thought about Rudolph’s short game in the game last season, that really wasn’t the case though – he did make over 50% short also.

    However, in OSU’s first four series last season he did this:

    1st series – 91 yard TD
    2nd – 43 yard TD
    3rd – 28 and 29 yard (TD) passes
    4th – 50 yard pass

    That ain’t quarters but their first four times they had the ball.

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  41. The short term and long term answer may be Pickett. But you ain’t going to see that this year unless DiNucci stinks it up in replacing Browne. If DiNucci fails in relief of Browne Narduzzi and Watson will probably bring back Browne for another trial. Could be a VERY LONG season folks.

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  42. OK folks – Here are the outcomes of our predictions for the first two games:

    YSU – Reed wins the Pot o’ Gold with a 28-21 Pitt win score.

    PSU – this was very interesting and we had predictions from PSU blowouts by 40 points to Pitt winning by 21… No one got the actual score correct but here are the guys who came closest to the 19 point score differential:

    Reed – 20 points apart (Carnac the magnificent)
    Dr Tom – 18
    Pitt-CocksFan – 18
    Upitt – 18

    And the most interesting one was a 5 point spread in score but the winner having 33 points – unfortunately he picked Pitt as the winner and that was Savannah Panther.

    Fun, huh?

    Like

  43. First time poster and truly enjoy the realistic perspective on this site. I have to say I feel a bit more optimistic/hopeful than most on here in the sense that we do have one of the youngest rosters in the country and I think these guys will all grow into better players. How much they grow, we don’t exactly know…but by the end of this year I think we’re all going to be singing a slightly different tune (and will all be chomping at the bit for next year). I mean it’s been two games for Christ sake, and some people are immediately doom and gloom. Let these guys get some real-game experience and develop, and enjoy watching them grow.

    Having said all of that, I don’t feel that Pitt is ready to beat such a strong OkSt team: Our defense gives up less points than last year and our offense starts to play a little better, but we’re still not there yet:

    Pitt loses 34-20.

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  44. The play of the OL is going to have a lot to say about how tomorrow’s game (and the season) unfolds. We need to be able to control the ball and expand the playing field with the passing game while avoiding costly mistakes and turnovers… play a perfect game maybe we have a chance… they have probably spent time with the OL getting ready for Yellowjacket cut blocks.. hope the OL is focused and not looking to next Saturday… only UPitt can use that as an excuse tomorrow.

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  45. @pittman @ 12:44am – never typed a more accurate statement brother.

    In order “for Pitt to win we will need to outscore them”. Don’t you have to do that in every win??

    I got your point but after a late night and early morning, it struck me as funny. Thank you!

    Catching up on the roundtable, very well done fellas. Going through comments now so that I can impart some fresh wisdom that you can take in and puke out. LOL

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  46. Thanks for the great articles on this blog. I have not missed a home game in the past 12 years, but will be missing tomorrow’s game due to a work function. I hope everyone has fun, and gets to see the Panthers pull a huge upset!

    I predict that Mason Rudolph will dominate the game. While I think the pass defense may be improving a bit, going up against a team that scores so many points is going to hurt this offensively-challenged team.

    Oklahoma State 45
    Pitt 21

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  47. Huff,
    I was waiting to see how long it would take for someone to comment on that line (LOL). Wrote it as kind of a double meaning in that it is always true and especially true this Saturday with their 56 point per game average!
    #H2P

    Like

  48. As far as team analysis and who won in game one versus game four and vice versa is not a good barometer of future success or failure. For most, it is just the eye test. For some, they look at the OL, others the DL. Whoever looks back at the DB’s should stop and teach the DB’s how to look back at the football! We have seen a couple of plays where the db’s are actually looking back, so that is improvement.

    Still comes down to trenches. We need to stretch the field and pick on their 3rd string safety during the first half. In the second half, we will wear them down with our OL or we are in trouble.

    Seriously, I think we are improving in areas of need. Look for Clarke to have a good game. There is something about him. Perhaps a double scoop of humble pie will do wanders for him going forward.

    Thanks to the newcomers for participating. You will get challenged, but in a good way, I think. We are not a bunch of cyber bullies. We have real names and are real people. We each speak the truth, through our own respective lenses and are provided a medium with which to do so. To Reed and the regulars, congratulations on the numbers Reed reported. More importantly, thanks for sharing the growth with us Reed. Keep the faith guys, Pitt will have a winning record this year, but regardless, the POV will maintain its record as the place to be.

    I can’t pick against Pitt, so they must win. 36-35 on a three pointer at the buzzer! Let’s go one further, off an upright!

    The band just went passed my office……ugggh!

    Like

  49. Really have to ride the coattails of Reed when I say this is literally the best group of educated Pitt fans you’ll find. Have to hand it to Yinz.

    See you gentlemen at the tailgate in the morning! I look forward to meeting you!

    Like

  50. Ok St 44 Pitt 24

    I hope the game is close. I will be there with my younger brother. Will try to stop by the tailgate and introduce ourselves. I really do enjoy the hell out of this site and the characters that post on here.

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  51. wwb..thanks for sharing that article…We definitely have more issues than the QB or OL…last year the O was in sync for much of the season without really no consistent help from the D and this year the O has issues in many areas, hopefully, they improve tomorrow as the D continues to grow. I am looking for game to game team improvement.
    Besides the OL another area I am concerned about is our receivers..has Jester resorted back to Limas Sweed..can anyone else get open, I don’t remember Matthews contributing much with his tall frame last year and to date pretty much -ditto..I think TEs come through in the catching game this week.
    If we get a year when the O and the D both have there act together then we will be ranked and be in contention for the ACC title. Gosh, we have waited a long time.

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  52. Last Wednesday evening the tents started going up….great environment, big game!!! You’d have to see it to believe it. This week it is Thursday as the opponent is much lighter. Opponents spend a lot of money on campus too, versus spending money in downtown Pburgh which Pitt does not see a nickel of. Don’t get me started on this topic! Also, don’t mock my prediction. I can’t ever go against my team.

    @Upitt – I never stepped into the battersbox fearing a pitcher or an opponent and always expected to win (except when Lindsay Delaney beaned me in the back with a fastball). On my way to first he asked me if I was okay, I said i didn’t hardly feel it. He said, you will next time. Next time I was scared! Did you ever step in and think you would fail? I have taken that attitude everywhere and that is why I can’t say we will lose.

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  53. Stub..welcome and stop by the tailgate!!! I won’t be at the tailgate but have met a bunch of great POVers..good peeps and true fanatics of Pitt football…One of these days we are going to be 50000 strong and take over the stadium and make big demands of our administration..

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  54. This is the game the offense gets on track, and the DB’s get some respect for all the hard work they put in. And Allen Edwards puts himeself on the map.

    Pitt pokes the ‘Pokes in the eye. 35-31

    Like

  55. Grilli threw heat for Seton Hall. I can’t rememember if I faced him.

    Enochs from WV threw 96. I pulled a HR foul if that tells you how far in front of it I was. LOL

    Like

    1. FWIW, I once reached base on an an error on 2nd baseman against Dave Dravecky (when he was about 20) … but my all time highlight was that I broke up a no-hitter against Chuck Tanner’s son after he struck out the first 9 of us out. (he was about 5’11 in the Little League)

      Like

  56. TO ALL THE NEW COMMENTERS,
    Thank all of you for commenting on this article!!!! It is encouraging to know that there are more than just a few of us Pitt fanatics! I think you can see from the round table that we are all pretty good guys (even Upitt) and love our Panthers to a fault. We come from all walks of life and join in the brotherhood of the blue and gold.
    LET’S GO PITT!!!!

    Like

  57. I will be with my son and friends in Red 7A. If I can swing over, I will
    Unfortunately, I see the same results as last week – it’s a tight game, but Pitt gets worn out/experience factor kicks in and OK State pulls ahead in the 4th. OSU 34, Pitt 24

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  58. Upitt,
    Bring your new bride (of next Saturday) to Houston with you the next time you’re here. My wife and I would enjoy having dinner with you newly weds.

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  59. Also OSU is in shape and conditioned for Spread. Plus Pitt is cooler than 90’s in Oklahoma somcondirioning will tire out our Defense. That is worth 10 points.

    Like

  60. I too am glad to see new commenters here and, like ike, wish to welcome you aboard. Yes, there are times when I want to tear my hair out because of some of the comments here … but as a warning to you newbies … there will be even more times that you will want to tear your hair out because of my comments … deal with it!

    Again … welcome, and don’t be strangers.

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  61. Not only does OK ST have a good QB, RB and WRs but their OL is pretty good too. They have a lot of experience upfront. That doesn’t bode well against all of our inexperience. In fact, I’d take their OL over PSU – and the more I think about that the more uncomfortable I am with this game. I think we have to score at least 35 to have a chance – and I don’t think that’s a big chance. We really need to rattle Rudolph early somehow. I think we’re due for a game from our D where we get like 4 or 5 TO – like we gave GT a couple years ago. Hopefully we get that this game. And we absolutely can’t turn the ball over and can’t commit stupid penalties. If we get a couple big plays, maybe we can pull it off. But looking at last week, we won almost all the stats and still gave up 33 points and I didn’t think the D played bad.
    OKS – 47
    Pitt – 27

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  62. UPitt..I married a cheerleader and her abs still look good 43 years later..mine,not so much but I watched 22 minutes of game film from 1969 with 2 of my high school teammates yesterday- felt good to see us look physically in shape….BIG week for you.!!! So happy for you and your bride..Your Mom will be smiling……

    Like

    1. Thanks Bernie! Wish she was here with us but she will be in spirit. I called you this week to BS. Hope you are doing good. Might be in your parts in 2 weeks.

      Like

  63. Ok State 42 Pitt 26 – Pitt continues to settle for FGs instead of TDs, Ok State offense is too polished and experienced to be stopped by a young defense like Pitt has. Quadree Henderson is pressing way too much on a lot of his returns he needs to take the easy 5-7 yards and get better field position rather then go for the home run. Pitt under Narduzzi has been very uneven in that they have a great half and the next half is awful or the offense plays a decent game and the defense is atrocious. IMO it has been a while that Pitt has played a complete game (offense, defense, special teams and 1st and 2nd half)…the fact that they continue to have a winning record is pretty remarkable when you think from that perspective. My prediction was a 1-3 start and as soon as the moaning and groaning on here intensifies past the already pessimistic levels I predict a 6 game win streak because the schedule substantially softens up after G-tech. H2P!

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  64. PSN reporting that Henderson is dealing with a minor injury according to Narduzzi. If Narduzzi said its minor its most likely not minor. Henderson is by far Pitt’s most explosive offensive threat when healthy.

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  65. I am going with my “blue and gold boxers” karma—we win 30 – 24. Don’t ask how we keep them to 24. But, that is my prediction.

    Have fun at the tailgate. I will get there someday.

    H2P

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  66. NOLA69… Questions re PITT band.. on the way home Today I heard the song ” The Horse” by Cliff Noble and Co- didn’t the band play that song every game between the 3rd and 4th quarters ..I also ( think) I remember them ending either the pre-game or half- time show and marching off the field to the theme from “Patton.”
    Band needs to bring back the Panther head… been so damn long probably few remember it.. certainly no one in management.

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  67. On the road to Pittsburgh right now. Traffic on 70 West is horrendous. I’ll see everyone at the tailgate tomorrow I should be there between 8:30 and 9 and I can’t wait for everyone to have a good time tomorrow and watch Pitt win

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  68. First of all, I have never met you Reed, but there are readers of this blog that appreciate a healthy dose of reality when it comes to Pitt football. The last thirty years of Pitt football demands that approach. The reason I read this blog is that you take an honest approach to covering the squad without waving blue and gold pom poms. Keep up the great work. I appreciate your objective coverage.

    I wasn’t as thrilled as some others with the Pitt defense last week. They gave up 31 points despite PSU having very low time of possession. Despite the short fields they were given, the defense could not limit PSU to a field goal when it mattered most. The defense was still getting caught in mismatch situations given the man-to-man schemes. All equates to a recipe for disaster against OSU. However, I was encouraged with Pitt’s offensive time of possession stats. Cannot kick field goals to defeat top 10 teams, but controlling the time of possession can help me get a cover (at Pitt +14.5) in back to back weeks.

    With this week’s match up, Pitt will clearly be outclassed at the skill positions. I don’t know enough about OSU’s offensive line, but I think that is the key. If Pitt can get some kind of pass rush to disrupt the Cowboys passing game, Pitt has a chance to cover. If the DL cannot get pressure, it will be a really long afternoon. Here’s hoping that special teams can step up somehow, Chawntez Moss has a break out game, and Max Browne can prolong his football career in his final start at Heinz Field. Prediction: Cowboys win 38-27.

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  69. For all that are concerned about Okiefenokie’s 51 ppg:

    Per wwb’s 7:55 post, I did a little checking. In 2014, we started out 3-0, averaging 44.66 ppg. We didn’t get ranked #9; nobody was sceert of us scoring on them; but, as best I recall, everyone was yelling, “Schedule”!! (BTW, we finished 6-7 in 2014.)

    Point is, when you play “nobody” teams, you better score big. But it is certainly not indicative of your team’s true ability.

    If we don’t turn the ball over, and we can catch the ball, I like our chances.

    Like

    1. scheduling means a lot. WVU was ranked the entire year in 2016. They played 3 teams that finished ranked last year and lost to all of them by double digits …. yet remained ranked because they had 10 wins.

      We played 5 or 6 teams that finished ranked, including 3 of the Top 11.

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  70. We’re not there yet. We can hang for a while, but OSU has experience in the most important position on the field at QB. Just like the dairy farmers last week, if you have experience vs. inexperience, you’d better have superior talent. We didn’t, and we don’t. (By the way, all that experience the dairy farmers have now goes right out the door next year – in the way of every single one of their 10 best players).
    Would love to predict an upset but….
    Pitt – 27
    OSU – 41

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  71. The only game since PN became HC that I thought was the most important game of the season was last year’s Clemson game and if you really think about it was the most important game. So here I go: this is the most important game of the season. I know it’s not an ACC game let alone a Coastsl game but from my perspective what’s important to me is “is PN the real deal”. Fact is right now for the first time in awhile I am really concerned with whether or not he is. This game will tell. I know OSU is a very good team but they are playing in our house after we got beat by our blood rival so Pitt must be highly motivated. This game will tell us whether or not PN knows what he is doing.

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  72. Disagree with you on that 6. There is not a game that defines a program or a coach this early in the season. The biggest game is the one we are playing, true. A win tomorrow, puts Pitt on the map again as a team that can win, but we already know that we can win. What we haven’t seen is a team that wins with great consistency. Our next biggest game is next Saturday.

    Noone can say that we have played two great games or two very good games thus far, except for Ike. Sorry brother!! We have been average as a team in my opinion. If we play average tomorrow, we will lose. If we play better than average, we may win. Likewise, if OKSt plays their best game and we play our best game, the team with the better overall talent, will win.

    If OkieSt plays average and we play above average we have a long shot. Okie is a 14 point favorite so I get confused as to why this is the game that will tell us something. What it tells me is that we had an idiot for an athletic director who probably scheduled his wedding on super bowl sunday. One game, this early does not a season make. We just need to get better. Tomorrow we get better.

    Reed, how dare you say let’s watch em win! That is soooo negative. LOL!!

    This is an 11am start for okie. Maybe they stay up late tonight and struggle to wake up. Not wishing harm on anyone, but is the hotel serving the salmonella special

    We must get up early by spreading the field, beating them in the trenches and attacking their 3rd string safety up the seam. Second half, run em into the ground.

    Like

    1. Last year’s team we know could win. And last year’s team was loaded with PC players and a grad transfer at qb. This year’s team we don’t even know if it can beat Duke or Virginia. Beat OSU and we will know it can win.

      Like

      1. This year’s team has a grad transfer at qb. The suspensions and dismissals do make one wonder if this team is less Politically Correct than last year’s team.

        On a more serious note, I think few will agree with your assessment on most important game of a season. However, your logic behind how you came to your conclusion seems consistent/sound (although I do not know the specific reason you pegged the Clemson game as most important last season)..

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        1. It would not have mattered to me if Pitt ended last season 1-11, even that could not tarnish my memories of that Clemson win! It was a magical game that can never be excised from Pitt Panther football history going forward.

          Taking the eventual National Champs down in their own house, when it was Senior Day in Death Valley, was an experience that I will never forget. It was an epic Pitt win.

          Pitt can beat OK St. easily today. IF everything goes Pitt’s way. IF we win the turnover battle, IF Browne gets good pass protection from his OL, IF our receivers catch the damn ball, IF Henderson has another game this year against the Cowboys that duplicates last year’s effort, IF Ollison runs hard like he did last week & IF Coach Duzz has figured out a way for his defensive secondary to slow down OSU’s aerial attack.

          Yeah, that is a lot of IFs. But,,,,,,,,,,,13-9 happened, Clemson happened, a win today could happen. Pitt just needs to play up to the level of their competition and have the ball bounce their way while grabbing the momentum early and never giving it back.

          We’ll see. Hail to Pitt!

          Like

  73. If any POVert is in need of tickets for tomorrow, text me at 570-855-4879. I believe I will have 2 extra. 45 yd line behind Pitt bench. We can hook up at POV tailgate.

    Like

  74. I stopped at the New Stanton rest stop and as soon as I walked in someone called my name and recognized me from the POV…Our friend Ghost of Billy Gaines.

    We had a nice talk about the blog, the team and tomorrows game.

    Took me 6 hrs to get here…crazy traffic.

    Like

    1. Nice to meet you Reed and talk with you for a little bit. I had a lot less traffic coming from Lancaster so sorry I held you up a bit more. Hope to see you and meet others at tailgate tomorrow. Should be a nice day.

      Like

    2. Everybody coming in to the Burgh to go to the Pitt game! If course the traffic is horrendous! What did you expect?

      A guy can dream right?🙏

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  75. Just back from a week at the shore. No internet but did watch last weeks game. Yes Reed, traffic today on 70 West was bad, almost as bad as the drivers!
    No smart quips about the previous game, was somewhat better than most expected. Did not go back and read posts, could guess how they read.
    This week, well it could get really,really ugly. But I think we will again be better than expected, but still not good enough.
    48-17, not us.

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  76. The spread is down to 11.5 for tomorrow, hmmmmn. And Upitt has me convinced this was going to be a 20+ point blowout. I am going to take Pitt and the 13.5 they were getting earlier, but unfortunately I see our offense coming up just short tomorrow.

    No, can’t do it again, Pitt 30 OSU 27.

    H2P!!! Please knock out Rudolph early!

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  77. I’m predicting about 37 ppg for pitt O and 27 ppg for our D for the year. So, we have to hit about that average to stay on track. I’m looking for 38-32 Pitt. Some good D stands, ints, and a lot (75%) of 50/50 balls being caught for a change.

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  78. Today the curse of Stevie continues-what a complete dolt scheduling OSU after PSU. Here’s hoping Duzz has a the right magic to finally rid of us this curse!

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  79. Up early for Pitt pregame tailgating.

    I see Watson showing new looks today with QH lined up at tailback and taking quick tosses out of the backfield or being used as a decoy with shovel pass plays.

    I’m surprised AJ Davis did not play at all last week – look for that change as well.

    On D, look for mass substitution like a hockey game. The Pokes are fast, but I believe Pitt’s D is faster than last year, but very inexperienced.

    Pound the Pokes in a physical game today.

    HTP!

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  80. Awake here also and ready to roll – will be at Red 5A around 0830 or so.

    We see to see at least one passing TD from Browne today – 8 regulation quarters without a single one is, if it continues, a morale killer for our offense – especially the WRs and the OL.

    I think Ollison has a big day today and I wouldn’t be shocked at all if today is a replica of the Voytik-Peterman 3rd game of 2015 when the back-up took over for the rest of the season.

    And I hate to say it but if DiNucci is forced to be The Guy for the rest of the year we may have some large growing pains… on the other hand we can’t help but have more excitement for the fans if a change has to be made away from Browne.

    Critical game for Browne for sure… our critical game for the team is next week at GT IMO – if we lose today and then get beaten next week we’ll be in a hell of a hole. Fingers crossed we build on the not-a-bloodbath game of last week and steadily improve on both sides of the ball.

    Win today and get excited as a team; win next week and then we have a whole different outlook on the season…

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    1. I don’t disagree that if we lose today next week is the critical game. But if we get beaten badly today at home what does that tell us about the 2017 Pitt Panthers? What does that tell us about PN’s program. Sure, we can lose badly today and win next week but if we lose badly today what is the likelihood that we beat GT? Reality matters and the past is the best predicter of the future. Pitt’s performance today (not necessarily whether we win today) is a Program statement. And if we win, watch out GT.

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      1. 68&34, it says a young team lost to a Top 10 team … and that’s about it.

        Go back to PC’s 3rd year …. the first 3 games were Delaware, BC and Florida International … and they lost its 5th game to Akron at Heinz.

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    2. Most everybody pegged Pitt at 1-2 to start upon hearing the news of the dismissals/suspensions during fall camp, so no big news if we do lose this one. I agree totally with you Reed, next week is a pivotal game. 1st ACC contest, gets us back to .500 if we lose today. GT is a key game for this young team.

      Today is going to provide TONS of experience for our newbies though. Today will be a learning experience. Whether our boys can pass the exam or not is secondary. Today they get valuable experience from a very good opponent. It will be a learning experience, win or lose.

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      1. Agree Dr. Tom. And this game has zero importance in the ACC. Pitt’s season starts next week at GA Tech. With two tough opponents back-to-back, Pitt should breeze through the ACC.

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  81. 90% of predictions are one of two scores…a OSU blowout, or a close Pitt win. I SOOOO wish the latter…but I am thinking these teams are equal in talent except for WRs, DBs, and QBs…and in all 3 cases, we are seriously outclassed. My heart says the blowout much more than the Pitt win is likely.

    But hey Nards has been good for 1-2 upsets per year…here is rooting for the first one of the year today!

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  82. Unless a QB shows up for Pitt today, this game is going to be a Cowboy blowout. Turnovers and mistakes are Pitt gifts and OK State will make Pitt pay for them just as Penn State did last week. Sorry folks. See you next week on the Flats. H2P!

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  83. Worse tackling team under Narduzzi. Conklin needs to go and we have to stop saying “wait for Narduzzis athletes to get here” …….”Athletes” don’t tackle like this.

    I really try to be positive and I really want to be a college football fan. But this is so painful and pathetic to watch that I am struggling.

    Raines must be really impressed with the coaching he will get.

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  84. I quit!

    Can’t tackle, can’t cover can’t pass, can’t catch, certainly can’t coach.

    Dr. Tom – give me something positive other than my 4th Jack and Coke!!

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  85. I sit with some pretty hard core fans that at positive no matter what. They are swearing for the first time since Graham was here. The students showed up today and were ready to be loud. Their team sucked the life out of them

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  86. VERY bad team. No discipline either. BAD QB.

    Pitt might very well be a 1 win team this year and you already saw the 1 win.

    Sure talent could be better but I expect more. I would sit Browne at the half.

    Like

  87. Well at least Mason had less yards than last year. Lol. You better be able to laugh watching this game or life would be miserable!

    Like

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