Here is the latest Roundtable discussion with Mark (UPitt), Jim (Pittman4ever), Richard (PittCocks in SC) and myself. This was a winged discussion because I had forgotten it was Wednesday and didn’t prep any discussion prompts. Enjoy…
In an almost unbelievable headline subject here is a piece in the P-G about King Pat’s defense.
But linebackers coach Rob Harley, who sees everything from a different perspective, had a more nuanced reply to that question of regression.
“I don’t know,” Harley said after a pause to think. “I really do believe that every week, we’ve gotten better. … In terms of development and growth, I think it’s hard to boil one game of 60, 70, 80 plays just to say, ‘Well, we didn’t get better.’
“Did we play as well as we needed to in key moments? No. Did we play as well as we need to, overall, to win the game? Obviously not; we didn’t come out victorious. But there are these bright spots as you go around.”
Blah, blah, blah. I’d give a $100 donation to the athletic fund right now if just for once a Pitt coach would come out and say “You are right. This defense is no good and hasn’t been since Narduzzi and Conklin got here”
But in a nod back to the 4th & 19 debate the P-G’s Batko comes up with this statistical gem…
In that final 15 minutes — the final 13:16, to be more specific, after Darrin Hall’s go-ahead score — North Carolina put up 152 of its 366 total yards of offense and averaged 7.2 yards per play after gaining 5 per play the first three quarters.
…and this was the info that should have been in the front of Narduzzi’s decision-making when faced with the question of whether or not our porous defense could stop NC from getting a single 1st down after that punt.
Of course we weren’t going to stop them and I’ll say this – if any Pitt fan watched that game and honestly thought we’d not allow a 1st down by NC at the end of the game – you were watching that game with blue & gold tinted glasses on.
Here is a strange and complete wishful thinking bit from the P-G’s Paul Zeise’ mailbag Q&A:
Jeff Hauser, @jdoogie1: Why is Pitt struggling so much to identify and recruit an ACC-level quarterback out of high school? Does MacVittie have a future with the program as a QB?
Zeise: I don’t know this to be completely true. I mean, Pat Narduzzi has gone the graduate transfer route because he has a comfort level with experienced quarterbacks. His plan was to have Thomas MacVittie, Ben DiNucci and Kenny Pickett (all three recruited by him out of high school) grow and learn for a couple of years before they are thrown into the fire. It’s clear MacVittie has fallen behind Pickett, but that isn’t a death sentence. He could outplay both of them in the spring and win the job. If Pickett is as advertised, though, he should eventually win the job.
Look, if anything has been made perfectly clear by Pat Narduzzi and OC Shawn Watson it is that Thomas MacVitte is not in the future plans as far as playing QB at Pitt. I have paid pretty close attention to Narduzzi’s press conferences and interviews and he has not mentioned MacVittie’s name at all – not once unless prompted by the interviewer.
Hell, on Monday Narduzzi even went so far as to say that if Pitt needs another transfer QB going into next season he’d go get one and that alone speaks volumes about what the staff feels about MacVittie.
And another thought on this – if you feel that Narduzzi is going to have an open competition among THREE QBs then I believe you have another think coming. I’m deathly afraid that he’ll not even have an open competition between TWO- DiNucci and Pickett.
Here are some other noteworthy Pitt items: