Submitted by Mark Kerestan (PittPT)

  Imagine if you will…… you are walking down the street in Oakland on the way to The Porch for a gathering of the  POV faithful, when you trip on something lying on the sidewalk. You turn around and pick it up and think, “Who left a gravy boat on the middle of the sidewalk?” Then on closer inspection you realize that it is an old-fashioned lamp, like the kind that would hold a genie in the fairytale.

Feeling a little foolish, but with nothing to lose, you rub the lamp. In a flash a genie materializes in front of you. Not Robin Williams, but in fact an attractive, tan,  blond haired woman wearing a blouse in one of the many variations of Pitt Gold, and with her buff arms crossed in front of her, like Barbara Eden. She says “Greetings, I am the University of Pittsburgh Sports Genie”. Incredulous but willing to play along you respond “Great, do I get 3 wishes?”

The genie reports “Unfortunately no. I used up two of my wishes at my last two stops (OSU and EMU) and have just one selection to offer you.” “You mean one wish, right?” you respond. The genie sighs and answers “Again, sadly,  my superiors have limited my resources and the best I can do is offer you three options for major sports major sports programs at Pitt. The selection you choose will determine the course of Pitts Football and basketball programs for the next 30 years. Are you ready to hear your choices?”

Thinking that you must be dreaming you enthusiastically agree. “Very well then”, the genie begins.

Before you are three paths for Pitt football and basketball. With Choice 1), The Pitt football program has a resurgence, winning 8-12 games a year, regularly competing for the Coastal Division, winning the Coastal Division every 4 years and winning the ACC every 8 years.

The FB team would regularly participate in top-tier bowl games including the New Years  Six. However, along with the success of the FB program the basketball program would continue to struggle mightily, winning 15-18 games per year and never really competing in the ACC and never competing in the NCAA Tournament”

“With Choice 2, the roles reverse. The football team will struggle, winning 4-7 games per year, with very few bowl appearances, no competing for the Coastal Division, and an upset of a top ranked opponent occurring only once every 4-5 years.

Conversely the Pitt basketball team will return and exceed its previous glory days, winning 23-28 games a year, competing regularly for the ACC championship, making yearly trips to the Big Dance, with frequent trips to the Sweet 16 and a couple Final Four trips.”

“Wow” you respond. “That’s a tough decision. What is the 3rd option?”

The genie continues, “With the 3rd option both the Pitt Football and Basketball programs achieve moderate success.  The Football team will  win 6-8 games a year and participate in a marginal bowl every year. The basketball team will win approximately 20-24  games a year and make the NCAA tournament 2 out of 3 years. They will never win the ACC and will usually be out of the NCAA tournament by the second round, although a few Sweet Sixteen appearance may occur during the 30 year stretch”.

“Now, the decision is yours” says the genie. “What fate do you choose for the Pitt Football and basketball programs moving forward?”

You ponder this momentous decision but aren’t ready to commit yet. “May I get some clarification before I decide?” you ask. “Perhaps” the genie responds, so you continue.

“What kind of recruiting can I expect in the three options?” Again, the genie sighs and replies “ As you might expect, in choice 1 or 2 the successful program will have an abundance of blue chip recruits while the other program will have none, although the downtrodden program will hit on a serviceable transfer on occasion.

“What would recruiting be like if I select the 3rd option?” you counter. The genie pauses to think then continues…” with option 3, the Football program will get one to two 4 star recruits a year, and the basketball team will be able to recruit one center each 4 year cycle.” Just  to be clear you ask “Rivals, Scout, or ESPN star rankings?” ”Rivals”, the genie replies.

“And my final question” you respond,” in terms of big men, are we talking Rozelle Nix or Steven Adams?” The genie smiles and replies “Think Aaron Gray, and no further questions. It is time for you to make a decision!”

So now indeed…it is time to voice your choice. Take a minute and let your fellow POVers know which choice you would select, and if you would, Why? Is it simply a matter of favoring one sport over the other, or are there other factors weighing in to which path for Pitt Sports you would choose.

97 thoughts on “I Dream of Genie

  1. LINK: 2018 Pitt Football Schedule

    http://pittsburghpanthers.com/news/2018/1/17/pitt-announces-2018-football-schedule.aspx

    PITTSBURGH—Pitt’s 2018 football schedule, revealed today by the Atlantic Coast Conference, figures to rank among the toughest in the nation. The Panthers’ 12-game slate features eight teams that advanced to bowls last season, including five that finished in the Top 25.

    Four Pitt opponents finished ranked inside the top 13 in the final 2017 Associated Press poll after notching double-digit win totals: No. 6 UCF (13-0), No. 8 Penn State (11-2), No. 11 Notre Dame (10-3) and No. 13 Miami (10-3).

    “This is about as challenging a schedule as you’ll find across college football,” fourth-year Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi said. “Our non-conference schedule includes two Power Five opponents and a UCF team that went undefeated. And I think the road to the ACC title game will be a real grind in both divisions. We know firsthand how ultra-competitive the Coastal has been with five different champions the past five years.

    “That said, we wouldn’t have it any other way. Our entire program—the players, coaches and staff—are excited to compete against some outstanding teams this fall. It will serve as a daily motivation throughout offseason workouts.”

    The highlights of the Panthers’ six-game home slate include:

    · Historic rival Penn State visits Heinz Field on Sept. 8. It is, at this juncture, the last scheduled meeting in Pittsburgh between the in-state foes. The Panthers and Nittany Lions have split the first two contests in the current four-game agreement, which concludes at Penn State in 2019.

    · The Panthers open ACC play against Coastal Division foe Georgia Tech on Sept. 15. Pitt has won two of the last three meetings with the Yellow Jackets on late field goals.

    · Pitt hosts annual Atlantic Division crossover opponent Syracuse on Oct. 6. The Panthers and Orange have met every year since 1955.

    · Coastal foe Duke visits on Oct. 27. The Blue Devils closed last season in a flurry, capped by a 36-14 rout of Northern Illinois in the Quick Lane Bowl.

    · Pitt will host Virginia Tech (Nov. 10) in a game that could have a major impact on the Coastal title chase. The Hokies notched nine victories and a final No. 24 AP ranking last year.

    · Pitt opens the 2018 season against Albany (Sept. 1). The Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) program is led by former Pitt assistant and Duquesne University head coach Greg Gattuso.

    The Panthers will play six road games beginning with an ACC encounter with North Carolina on Sept. 22.

    Pitt has non-conference road dates at UCF (Sept. 29) and Notre Dame (Oct. 13). The Golden Knights capped their undefeated season with a 34-27 win over Auburn in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. The Irish rallied for a 21-17 win over LSU in the Citrus Bowl.

    After their October trip to South Bend, the Panthers’ remaining away dates are all ACC contests.

    Pitt’s Nov. 2 visit to Virginia will be a Friday night national telecast on an ESPN network. The trip to Charlottesville will be the Panthers’ only non-Saturday game of the regular season.

    The Panthers will meet Wake Forest of the Atlantic Division on Nov. 17, the first meeting ever between the two schools.

    The regular-season finale will be at defending Coastal champion Miami on Nov. 24. The Hurricanes rose to No. 2 in the polls last season before being upset by the Panthers, 24-14.

    Information on opportunities to purchase Pitt season tickets can be obtained by calling (800) 643-PITT (7488). Or you can go online to submit your information for the 2018 Season Ticket Interest List.

    Pitt Athletics will once again partner with Tailgate Guys to provide hassle-free, customized tailgating options. Now in its second season at Heinz Field, services are located on the Great Lawn at North Shore Park and are designed to provide an enhanced game day experience. With the ability to reserve tents, tables, chairs, media packages and catering, Tailgate Guys provide options for all fans. For more information, please email pitt@tailgateguys.com, call (412) 525-4125 or visit http://www.tailgateguys.com/home/pitt.

    The Panthers’ complete 2018 football schedule:

    Sept. 1 Albany

    Great Danes head coach Greg Gattuso was an assistant at Pitt from 2005-10.

    Sept. 8 Penn State

    Pitt won 42-39 at Heinz Field in 2016, while the Nittany Lions triumphed last year at Beaver Stadium, 33-14.

    Sept. 15 Georgia Tech*

    For the second consecutive year, the Panthers will open ACC play against the Yellow Jackets.

    Sept. 22 at North Carolina*

    The last seven games in the series have been decided by an average margin of 4.0 points.

    Sept. 29 at UCF

    The Golden Knights were the lone Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) team to finish with an undefeated record last year.

    Oct. 6 Syracuse*

    The Panthers have won 13 of the past 16 games against the Orange.

    Oct. 13 at Notre Dame

    Pitt makes its first visit to South Bend since 2012, when the Panthers fell 29-26 in triple overtime to the eventual BCS runner-up. The 2018 game will be a national NBC telecast at 2:30 p.m.

    Oct. 27 Duke*

    Darrin Hall rambled for 254 yards and three touchdowns in Pitt’s 24-17 win at Duke last year.

    Nov. 2 (Fri.) at Virginia*

    Pitt is 4-1 against the Cavs since joining the ACC in 2013.

    Nov. 10             Virginia Tech*
    

    Since the stadium’s inaugural season in 2001, the Panthers are 4-1 all-time against the Hokies at Heinz Field.

    Nov. 17 at Wake Forest*

    The Demon Deacons seek a third consecutive bowl victory in 2018.

    Nov. 24 at Miami*

    Freshman QB Kenny Pickett accounted for all three touchdowns in Pitt’s 24-14 shocker over the No. 2 Hurricanes to close the 2017 regular season.

    *ACC game

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  2. Genie .. could we have the correct Mustard for this kickass football team to wear as we reassert our National dominance… Bring on Bama.!

    Ain’t day dreaming great !!!

    Thanks Mark. Let’s Go WUPs!!!

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  3. Being the downer I am have a few questions Genie.

    First off, will PITT be capped at 11 wins the entire season? (offer was 8-11 wins)

    If PITT wins only 11 games and still wins the ACC championship, how could they make it to the NCAA playoffs?

    If PITT can’t make it to the NCAA playoffs with only 11 wins, can I tell you where to shove your gravy boat?

    Great idea PittPT, love your article and of course I take option one. I wish you would include the BB team loses every game until they abandon the hoop program and tears that gosh forsaken “Pete” down.. and put Upitt out of his misery. Then build a complete replica of a modernized PITT stadium where it should still be standing.

    but that’s just me. ike

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    1. Haha, good points, Ike. I’m more of a general idea guy. Didn’t think about how many wins were needed to get into the the National Championship playoff.

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  4. I’d wish for football success since it pays all the sports bills. But my true wish would be to abolish the BoT since that Genie aint ever getting out of the bottle.

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  5. Thanks again PittPT (Mark) great idea and very cleverly done..

    I for one am very happy for PITT not to be playing late November while students are home and the weather sucks. Playing home games early is a nice break with a young QB.

    I know I know winning an average of 7 regular season games first three years under a new coach falls below some expectations for those that like to look back 30 plus years.. but wait a second that hasn’t happened in the past 37 years.. It’s like it’s a complaint department around here. Oh well, complain away if it makes you all feel good. but you many of you sound miserable though???

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    1. Ike – broken record. Better to speak on the Pitt team, program, admin, school, etc… then other commenters. Everyone has a right to their opinion… and if they feel miserable you don’t have to remind them of that because that sure won’t make them feel any better..

      Mark – same goes for you.

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      1. Reed, I get your point, still trying to let it go and… I feel I add content here at the POV, next time you feel Mark does please, wake me up…

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  6. Be careful what you say because I am married to a Jeanie ..And Emel, you are right Jeanie’s – Genies don’t age… Check out Jeanie B and check out Barbara Eden…

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  7. If Wanny met that genie……lifetime supply of fish sammiches. Steve P wish is a life time contract and a magic mirror on his office wall. Todd Graham wish is for a big evangelical ministry and church called Our church of the most highest octane and cash donations.. P Chryst, head coach of Wisconsin. Pat Narduzzi, a meteor hits state college.

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  8. Could option #1 be a BoT that cares about sports? That might take care of the rest…might take 2-3 Genies to pull that off though.

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  9. Off subject matter as my Jeanie is snoozing…
    Schedule has come out.. looking at the Wake Forest game …. I can get a block of rooms at the Coutyard Marriott on University Pkwy. 3 blocks from the FN field… 10 room minimum- 19 room maximum..
    the way this works.. BigB reserves the block and each person calls in and makes their individual reservation… This was recommended by an Ole friend who went to Wake ( Jeanie B walked down the aisle to “Brian’s Song” on 8/24/1973) . So far I have 4 or 5 takers .
    Need 5 more- get you $hit together and plan on being there… LET ME KNOW….

    Remember a big tailgate awaits in Chapel Hill compliments of Greg Sasser and Frank Nixon….be planning!

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    1. Going to try and make one of these games in North Carolina this year BIgB We got anyone else in Charlotte who wants to drive up, let me know.

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  10. JoeL… booked at the Doubletree in Charlottesville for Thursday n Friday… Panthers, cheerleaders and Bill Hillgrove staying there to. Cost 175 excluding tax… Tom Bailey and the Pitt Panther Party bus in the parking lot for extended drinking hours….
    Been there 2 times… great times….I will bring a full bar!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Any one of the 3 is so much better than where we are now, give me whichever can happen soonest.

    I’d prefer basketball supremacy but NOT with Stallings so Barnes could not be associated with any legacy of success.

    SBS – Scott Barnes sucks!

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  12. Hey Genie,

    Go back and tell your superiors no deal. We’ll go work on it ourselves and we aren’t choosing. Tell them to improve the offer or go find another patsy.

    UPitt – regarding Ms. Loren…. I will take her at age 40 and me at age 18.

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    1. I hope our Fantas days are behind us. If the AD and BOTs want to get kids to the Pete, I think (hope) they know what has to be done. The basketball “process” ain’t working.

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  13. Pitt’s early enrollees from the 2018 recruiting class are:

    Chase Brown, OL, 6-5, 310, Ashburn, VA/Briar Woods H.S./Lackawanna College

    Jake Kradel, OL, 6-3, 275, Butler, PA/Butler Senior

    Shyheem Jacques-Louis, WR, 6-0, 170, Fort Myers, FL/Dunbar

    Taysir Mack, WR, 6-2, 200, Brooklyn, NY/Grand Street Campus H.S./Indiana

    Ricky Town, QB, 6-3, 205, Newbury Park, CA/St. Bonaventure H.S./Ventura College

    Media members interested in attending should email E.J. Borghetti (eborghetti@athletics.pitt.edu) by today at 5 p.m.

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    1. I like that the QB and WR’s are coming early, maybe get a chance to play early. Chase Brown too. Kradel a likely redshirt, but extra time in the weight room can’t hurt.

      Hopefully Town a legit back-up in case Pickett gets dinged.

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  14. I always envisioned compliance Heather to be a genie, but instead of granting wishes, she doles out bogus awards during commercial breaks.

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  15. Very tough schedule next year. I like having no late season home games in November and no Thursday nite game in late season. Pitt should not play Thursday nite unless in early part of season. Better yet if must play on odd day pick Friday nite. Easy on people traveling missing work ect. It gets tougher sitting at a game as you get older especially when it’s cold. Nice article good thought prevoker H2P Beat Penn State

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  16. I don’t understand why “bogus awards during commercial breaks” bothers anyone. Most of these are non-sports related and highlight achievements by students and professors. To me this is a good way to show appreciation and fill dead air time.

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  17. Agree Larry, promotes the University’s achievements.

    Are the Rooney’s now letting the Pitt BOT hire their coaches? Promoting a QB coach that has never been a OC to OC. Hu?

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  18. Promotes university achievement?
    And I care about that why?
    I m there to watch a game…played by an underperforming Pirr team.
    Knock off the everyone-gets-an-award crap!
    I received plenty of awards in my life. They never inspired me. I motivate myself.
    If u r that hungry for feel good moments, watch Ellen.

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    1. PittPov continues to be the toughest crowd around. It seems that they are angered by just about anything.

      Me .. I guess I am mainly angered by those who are always angered.

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    2. College games are about the University and students also, not just the old bitter pessimistic whining alumni and casual Pittsburgh fan.

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  19. “Pitt’s Nov. 2 visit to Virginia will be a Friday night national telecast on an ESPN network. The trip to Charlottesville will be the Panthers’ only non-Saturday game of the regular season.”

    Who wants to bet that it will also be the Panthers’ only non-Noon game of the regular season?

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  20. Pitt had a decent run in basketball with Howland & Dixon. (Wow, how things have changed!) We’ve waited 30+ years for Pitt FB to rise above mediocrity. So, I would choose football.

    How about another idea? As much passion & frustration that is displayed in the comments on here, how about forming the POV Mafia. (As many POVers that are on here, someone has to be connected…right?) The POV Mafia can “persuade” or “encourage” the BoT to ‘remodel’ the front porch. Reed could even use them to ‘rough up’ anyone that gets out of line on here.

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  21. Much as I’ve loved going to The Pete, I am going with #1.

    My most exhilarating in-person memories of Pitt sports over the last several years include the Miami game last year, PSU in 2016, ND in 2013 and Cincinnati in 2009. Special games with awesome crowds.

    Still awaiting that renewal packet…

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    1. Barvo, all great Pitt memories. That Miami game, I was watching on TV but I knew two things, one was that if butts in seats was pushing 40,000 it was a good day & two that that 35,000+ crowd was into what they were watching. Wish I had been there.

      The Clemson game was like that for me. The loudest I ever heard 5,000 Pitt fans that Death Valley Pitt contingent was.

      I’d rather see big wins like 13-9, beating undefeated teams late in the season & knocking ofc National Champs spoiling their perfect seasons more than if a weak schedule gives us routine nine win seasons.

      Those memories last forever, after a couple years a 9-3 season record over the likes of Delawares & Akons.
      Schedules that have contenders are championship seasons in waiting.

      The alternative is the crap UCF had to accept for a perfect season, defeating all challengers, even after beating the SEC giant killer Auburn. The title of also ran.

      I’m already ready to beat penn state.

      W

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  22. Alabama may promote one of their existing position coaches to OC (according to CBS Sports). He was previously an OC at Illinois, Maryland, and New Mexico so he has some experience. I would think that he had a loosing record as OC at these schools, given the mediocrity of Illinois, Maryland and NM. I would also think that Saban is a tough boss who wants to win. So, evidently, he sees something in this existing coach that came to Bama from three mediocre programs. Just one data point.

    It should be noted that Hugh Freeze is also in the mix to be hired as OC as well.

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  23. more fodder for King Angry:

    Rob Rang@RobRang
    Longtime scout this evening passed along that North Carolina Street DT Kentavius Street and Pitt CB Avonte Maddox have “dominated” the East-West Shrine practices, thus far.

    Jeff Risdon@JeffRisdon
    Avonte Maddox continues to impress. Sticky coverage, great feet. Good leaper for being a shorter CB. Has some Briean Boddy-Calhoun to him

    Jeff Risdon@JeffRisdon
    Asked AFC South scout who “won” East practice today.
    Avonte Maddox, Damon Webb, Daurice Fountain all came up

    Satter’s Sports Talk@SatterSportTalk
    #JTBarrett intercepted by #Buckeyes teammate #DamonWebb at practice. #AvonteMaddox (#Pittsburgh) creates the tip. #ShrineGame

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  24. Not long ago, Pitt hoops used to be my favorite thing to watch. period. Although in denial, I watched Dixon’s last 5 years or recruiting slowly erode the once-proud program, only to be followed by Scott Barnes & Kevin Stallings coming in to suffocate and kill-off any remaining sign of life. So fast-forward to today, and we are as a result clearly a football school, with the hopes on the shoulders of young Kenny Pickett. If I had to pick, I’d be in the minority and go with option 2 (which means we also hired a new coach), but option 1 is great too, and I think that’s what most fans would pick.

    For my money, our most important new recruit for the 2018 year will be Chase Brown, though I do buy Shocky’s potential impact, especially now that we a QB that can get him the ball.

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    1. I pretty much agree with everything you wrote. I really enjoyed Pitt BB of 10 years ago. And while my favorite was Pitt FB in late 70s, I know we we never see that again …even with a Genie’s help.

      Brown and Shockey are in the 2 main areas of need .. no doubt

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  25. Looks like Notre Dame is now also going after the Rice grad O-Lineman. I know he likes PITT but that may be a tough road to hoe.. Maybe it’s time to let the young guys grow up and gain the experience?

    I’m thinking PITT will have a better run game this year either way.

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      1. Isn’t Auburn & Texas involved with this grad transfer? Hard to believe that a someone from a lowly program like Rice can also a have kid who can be wanted by major schools.

        Actually, its not hard to believe at all. Lowly schools have some decent players – just not enough of them.

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  26. I didn’t get to attend many pitt psu games as a child.
    But one that I did attend that I do remember was when psu had the ball 1st and goal from the 1.
    Pitt put in Bill Fralic in on D and we stopped them 4 times in a row.

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  27. My high school produced Tony Dorsett. He was two years behind me at Hopewell. After enduring two years of Pitt football and a sophomore season ending 1-10 for Pitt, the Major Change in Pitt Football began. The rest is history. Glory days are only a memory away.

    Need I say more? Option #1

    Like

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