Here is a nice look back and discussion of Pitt’s game day experience from an older Pitt fan – longtime reader and seldom commenter Larry V.

Ever since I’ve been reading the POV and Blather I’ve seen many comments on the lack of a game day experience at Heinz Field. This has caused a certain amount of consternation with me since I have started attending games again in 2015. I will get to that but to put things in perspective a brief bio on my experience as a Pitt fan.

I grew up Butler and attended Pitt from the fall of ‘70 to the spring of ‘74, not the best era of Pitt Football (except the Major change in ‘73). So what was my game day experience?  I was in the VMB (G34 for those in the know) for the ‘70 season so I was at every game but two. So my game day experience that season was defined by being in the band (and post game fraternity bashes). After that season I became more involved in the fraternity and was no longer in the band. So those game day experiences involved a pre game tune up at the house or local watering holes then continuing the festivities at the game (security at that time could not inspect the women’s purses so they became the booze mules) and finally a post game party.

There weren’t many victories in the ‘71 & ‘72 seasons so game day was more about being with friends and hopefully seeing a good game. At least the home schedule was filled with quality opponents (Notre Dame, Oklahoma, USC, UCLA, Arizona State, Georgia, and Penn State, etc.) and maybe we would see a close game. Things changed in ‘73 and there was excitement around the new coaching staff and the skinny kid from Hopewell. We saw more wins and what seemed to be closer games against quality opponents. After I graduated I attended some games in ’74.  The USC game was hyped as AD east meet AD west (Tony Dorsett and Anthony Davis) and we froze our butts off at Three Rivers for the psu game (oh my, a home game not at Pitt Stadium).

I joined the Navy in ‘75 and spent the next 22 years in Florida, Virginia, and at sea (underway the only way).  (Editors Note: Hell, Yeah!!) When I retired from the Navy in ‘97 I stayed in Northern VA and spent the next 15.5 years with Lockheed Martin.  It was difficult in the pre-internet days to keep up with Pitt football. There would be the occasional game on TV but no real way to keep up with what was going on with recruiting and any hype for the upcoming seasons. That all changed when I discovered the Blather and then moved on the POV. It rekindled my interest in Pitt football and I eventually became a season ticket holder.

So what is my consternation with the game day experience?

In my undergrad days game day was being with friends and watching the game.  Now my game day experience is being with friends and watching the game.

However, what has changed is Oakland itself and the venue the games are played in. The Oakland of 2018 is far different from the early ‘70s; all the bars I would frequent are gone (except Chief’s), the fraternity house is gone, and it seems like UMPC has taken over every available square foot of property.  So other than not going to Pitt Stadium on game day, I’m not certain my game day experience has diminished. The ugly truth is Pitt Stadium was deteriorating, traffic certainly was a nightmare, and parking sucked.  Also attendance at Pitt Stadium was around the same as Heinz albeit without the yellow seats (hey, if  more commenters attended some games that would help with that.)

What do I see at the North Shore?  Plenty of places to meet up with friends, easy access, and many parking lots. As I walk to the stadium I see Pitt banners in the lots along with tailgate parties, I see the band, cheerleaders and Pitt paraphernalia for sale. I don’t think I saw any of this on the trek to Pitt Stadium. I still remember the first game I went to at Heinz and feeling reconnected with Pitt after a 30+ year absence just from the atmosphere around Heinz.

I know everyone has a different take on the game day experience, but in case you missed it, mine has always been about friends and seeing a good game. Would I prefer an on campus stadium? Yes but I have to say the ease of getting to the North Shore sure is appealing compared to the traffic nightmare in Oakland.  However I will support the program no matter where they play.  here are some questions I have for fellow Pitt fans:

-Why do people try to compare land grant colleges’ game day to Pitt’s? Totally different environments, the only option for 6-7 days a year compared to the smorgasbord of things to spend your money on in the Burg?
-Could I do with more band and less piped in music, sure, but that isn’t a deal breaker (and I think the younger folks like it)?
-People gushed over Navy’s stadium but don’t acknowledge that is is not on the academy grounds?
-Where would Fran’s tailgate be in Oakland? (on my to do list this year).
-Why the disdain for Heinz Field (the structure not location)?
-Why get spun up over Heather recognizing academic achievement and other sports during TV timeouts?

 

174 thoughts on “The Ever Elusive “Game Day Experience…”

  1. Excellent article! Thanks.

    Totally agree about comparing Pitt to other Universities. The fact is, there are no schools in P5 that compare to Pitt’s city environment, small campus, pro stadium and smaller athletic budget.

    I like Heinz better than Pitt stadium but that can be blamed on the University never renovating it they way they should have over the years. I am sure non-commuter students would rather it be an OCS.

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  2. The truest statement in awhile. Oakland itself has changed beyond recognition. Students themselves do not spend evening hours there. Weekends it’s like a ghost town. Kids are in the Southside, East Liberty and Garfield, Lawrenceville, and many other places. The whole area needs bulldozed. Rip everything down from Magee to the Cathedral. There’s really no place there kids want to be anymore.
    As for Navy’s stadium, well, if you’re under 6 feet you might fit in those seats. If not, your knees were in your chest. Looks good, but functionality a mess. And done on the cheap btw.
    Move in days are upon us, avoid Oakland at all costs. You couldn’t get thru there this summer in less than 35 min. due to construction, it was a real mess. Ban all cars, go back to streetcars, lol.

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  3. The game day experience is what the fans themselves make it.

    I’ve had more fun at Fran’s tailgates then walking to the stadium and watching a game than I ever did at Pitt Stadium.

    I think Pitt fans who want, or think we’ll have an OCS really don’t understand the University of Pittsburgh at all.

    In all my conversations with ex-Chancellors, BoT members and other Pitt Admin types I have never once heard anyone say they want or would support an OCS. Not once; but I’ve gotten strange looks and laughter after I’ve asked the question though.

    I know some BoT members might support one but really it’s pretty much a pipe dream. Much more effective use of time and energy would be finding a site outside of Oakland for a new stadium.

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    1. I think if you ask the question differently that you’d get a different response. If a football venue could be part of a much larger sports and wellness project, you could garner support. Pitt is lacking a modern home for swimming, wrestling, volleyball and gymnastics. Fitzgerald and Trees Hall are relics. Pitt is also lacking a modern rec/wellness center.

      If you provide a home to other sports programs, modernize/incorporate technology, build to cater to a better experience, improve a students quality of campus experience, you have a winner.

      I think the leadership doesnt really understand the university. The culture and mindset is vastly different at other ACC schools. Why are they wrong and Pitt right?

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        1. Yes its a plan to help modernize facilities and provide new homes to some successful but little supported or followed programs. Pitt would have an easier time raising the funds if football was the focal point. The area designated can support a multi purpose venue. My thought is why think small when you have this one chance to think BIG.

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  4. I attended UPJ for four years (77-81). Me and some friends drove down for almost every game. My perspective is obviously different from the main campus experience. Parking was nuts and there was no place to tailgate. We all brought our pint bottles of rum and made due with that.

    I now live in the South Hills. I can jump on the T and be at the stadium in about 20 minutes. Friends have parking passes, so tailgating is much easier. Have been a season ticket holder for most of the past 20 years. While I understand those longing for a return to an OCS, I prefer the current situation.

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  5. Why do people try to compare land grant colleges’ game day to Pitt’s?
    Because its different and it doesnt need to be. You can learn a lot by attending other schools games and how they incorporate traditions and make things fun. The best thing about an on campus venue is it allows one to hang out on campus. Its a great way to market the university to prospective students and to show off campus to visitors.

    -Could I do with more band and less piped in music, sure, but that isn’t a deal breaker (and I think the younger folks like it)?
    The college experience is all about the band. More band and less piped in stuff.

    -People gushed over Navy’s stadium but don’t acknowledge that is is not on the academy grounds?
    I’ve never been there but I’ve heard Annapolis is a fun college like town and the stadium is a short walk

    -Where would Fran’s tailgate be in Oakland? (on my to do list this year).
    The place for a new venue would be on the current OC lot (between Cost Center and the Pete). That could be part of the Victory Heights initiative. Oakland does have plenty of surface lots and parking garages. And many fans could be transported in from off campus parking lots (many schools do this)

    -Why the disdain for Heinz Field (the structure not location)?
    I think most of the disdain is due to the size. Its just too big for Pitt’s needs. 40k in attendance at old Pitt stadium would have been 72% of capacity while at Heinz its 56% and you see a lot of empty yellow seats. Plus the students are bused 5 miles in from campus…thats not a good experience for students. And then you have to wait to jump back on a bus to head home. Lastly, the stadium screams Steelers. Its got little charm, character or connections to Pitt.

    -Why get spun up over Heather recognizing academic achievement and other sports during TV timeouts?
    I think it might come off as corny or just not the appropriate time and venue for it. I personally dont have a problem with it.

    Those are my thoughts. I experienced both Pitt stadium (as a student) and Heinz.

    I always ask the question: what will Pitt do when Heinz has outlived its life? I think the answer at this point is whatever the Steelers decide to do. Heinz has about 10-15 more years until major renovations are required. We know what happened last time when major renovations were required by the Steelers and Pitt.

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  6. Good stuff Larry V.

    Oakland is definitely different, but mostly for the better. Times change things in a lot of ways. We miss a lot of things that are no longer there, or the way things used to be. Fortunately we still have our memories and all the new things that are way better. I agree that it is important to embrace the now, because it is all we have.
    If you make a list of the pros and cons of Heinz Field and the game day experience, the pro side wins hands down, except for all the losses. Could the game day experience be better and more Pitt Centric, sure it could.
    Winning would do the most to change the dynamic.

    Unfortunately the advocates for an OCS don’t want to hear any of this. Everyone that doesn’t think that Heinz is a dump and that Pitt Football can’t be great without an OCS, thinks that everyone that doesn’t feel the same is stupid. So instead of being happy with what we have and doing their best to enjoy the experience, they act like the proverbial Don Quixote and Sancho Panza bemoaning the yellow seats.

    Meanwhile today’s Pitt students go to the South Side drink craft beers and eat fantastic wings and gourmet burgers instead of the flat warm beer and crappy food served in the old Oakland joints. They make their memories at the Pete and on bus rides to Heinz, which I am sure can be fun if you are with your friends.

    If your comparison is with the land grant schools and the SEC, the Pitt Football experience will always come up short. So why not enjoy the Pitt experience for what it is and try to make it better?

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  7. Game day experience is possible at Heinz Field as it is anywhere, but Pitt has a history of crapping the bed every time they can take that program to the next level. The 2009 seasons was full of the best game day experiences I have had as a Pitt fan. I ask the question why is that? I’ll give the answer because they were winning games and competing for a championship. 8-1 going into the Notre Dame game awesome game day experience. I got to the red lot at 8am passed out by 2 sobered up and watched Pitt win a huge game and join the top 10. The very next game was the Ciny game. Most electric atmosphere I have see at Heinz and we crapped the bed. We have never got close to that level of excitement again. Win games and the atmosphere will follow you anywhere.

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  8. Guys…… Playing at Heinz is like having sex with a beautiful woman in your parents bed. You can get into it but you are always thinking this is where Mom and Dad sleep.

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  9. You want a great college game day atmosphere? Find a way to be in Heinz Field on Sept 8th and you’ll get one. It’s not so much about where the PITT home site is, it’s the fit that’s not right. Heinz is made for close to 70,000 fans to be in it to give it the right kind of vibe for a football game.

    Fran and JoeL’s tailgate would be great even if it was in Homewood… wait… Let me think that through a little further. . Fran and JoeL’s tailgate would be a good time almost anywhere.

    The truth is, the students want to jump on the bus before the end of the game to save a large portion of their day waiting to get back to campus. When will the port authority realize the T needs extended to Oakland? I know there are some sorts of plans in the works but then you got the “not in my neighborhood idiots” to worry about.

    I’m going out in front of my house and protest something, don’t know what I’ll protest just yet but I hear it’s the new thing to do. Maybe after it stops raining….. nah . . ike

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  10. I do agree, even going to the Pete for a basketball game is hard to get in and out and find parking. Most games we never left Peters Pub! Heinz Field is easy to get in and out of, hotels available right there for us that drive several hours to a game (and may enjoy tailgating to much before and after). If you could pick up the North Shore bars, hotels, parking and Heinz Field and plant it in Oakland I am sure there would be somebody that would still find an issue to croak about!

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      1. You might have a problem with glowing footballs thats why. The amount of heavy metal down there would make Metalica look like the Backstreet Boys.

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  11. Brother Larry V. Enjoyed your read and sharing those moments with you including those days at band camp before I escaped! You capture the current fan day experience and contrast it well. For we alums, it is a better deal. Where Heinz hurts is with student attendance and I’m not certain there is a solution for that. I continue to believe “win (consistently) and they will come,” probably not to the capacity of Heinz but they will come. “Yes, they most definitely will come Larry.” Phi A Bro.

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      1. Papillon! I like it. Brother Larry, we are going to the UCF game in Orlando. Daughter lives there. Plan to meet with Bros. Larry S. and Stan and spend a day or two. Will be mucho fun! Not sure about the Burgh yet. Brought it up to Debo last night and got a cool reception and she is from the Burgh, go figure.

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  12. But we keep saying “winning will fix this or that” and history has shown that isn’t necessarily true.

    I’m with gc above. Recognize the past for what it was but understand that the present reality is different.

    Pittsburgh is a completely different city than it was when I left in 1978. Everything almost has changed and for the better.

    But look no further then the housing prices’ rise to see what Pittsburgh will be in the future. Students who graduate from Pitt can’t and won’t be able to afford to buy there hardly anymore and so they leave. That’s why there isn’t a lot of ‘corporate memory’ about Pitt football…it is just another of many things going on in the city.

    Pitt football occupies a very small niche in Pittsburghers’ thoughts. I truly don’t think that will ever change. I’ve a very good childhood friend who works in the County Planning office and has for years. He has flat-out told me the County doesn’t want a stadium in Oakland and won’t approve it and neither does the City government.

    It just isn’t important to anyone but Pitt football fans who are a very small segment of the population. Lots of Pitt fans like Heinz Field fine…they just aren’t as passionate and vocal as those who want a new OCS.

    I think we have missed out on some properties that Pitt could have purchased and used off campus but close to campus. That is what Pitt will have to do when the leases expire at Heinz in 2031.

    Here is an interesting article about this:

    http://www.post-gazette.com/business/development/2017/08/03/Pittsburgh-Stadium-Authority-extension-pnc-park-heinz-field-lease-steelers-pirates-north-shore-parking-garages/stories/201708030070

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  13. Larry V, I liked your article for 2 reasons,

    I thought your bio was pretty interesting
    I agreed with just about everything you wrote about the current gameday experience.

    thanks for sharing. wwb

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    1. Actually, since Larry V was wise enough to only share those aspects of his Bio that were not incriminating or illegal, I found the resulting expose relatively tame as it relates to the actual complete historical record.

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        1. NO COLLUSION! That’s your story & you’re sticking to it, right? Just hope that I don’t get indicted Larry, cause I’d spill my guts in a second under the pressure of a good grilling. Then you’d be looking at 10 to 20, although the statute of limitations has probably been exceeded by now!!🤣🤣🤣

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    1. From what I know, it was presented last Summer. Pitt has not made it public. If Populous did say it was feasible and the study leaked, Pitt would then have to explain why and why not. Not a discussion they want to have when Pitt is content with Heinz (low rent and no maintenance burden).

      I believe that some of their findings helped lead to the Victory Heights initiative.

      I know that Pitt is interested in the rec center/wellness idea. Its a great way to attract better quality students and a great way to keep them on campus and engaged.

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  14. Can anyone define Pitt’s campus? I just looked at the campus map on the Pitt website and it looks like there are facilities all over Oakland (much more than in my day.) I used to loosely define the “campus” as the area from the towers to Heinz Chapel, the buildings across Forbes and Fifth, the stadium, and the buildings around the field house. Even with that there were plenty of businesses mingled with the Pitt buildings. Pitt is a true urban campus with no definable boundaries. It would be nice if we could put a dotted line around the perimeter of the the Pitt buildings and then buy out the non-Pitt stuff and create a real campus located in the city. What do you think the chances of that are???

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    1. Ask a modern day Pitt student that gets a free ride on PAT mass transit utilizing their student ID & they’ll tell you the “Pitt Campus” is the “City” from the North Shore over to Lawrenceville & out as far as East Liberty while stretching across the Mon onto Carson St. as well. Pitt students call all of Pittsburgh their collegiate neighborhood.

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        1. Screw classes! I’m referring to the important stuff, partying! Talk to any current kids & they’ll tell you that they spend more time iff campus than on campus when it comes to such extracurricular activities.

          Then as far as cultural & sporting events, etc. the “City” is a Pitt student’s oyster. Back in my days at Pitt my girl & I had Sunday matinee season tickets for the symphony at Heinz Hall, always checked out the horticultural exhibits at the Phipps Conservatory that came along. Saw Penguin games at the Civic Arena and the Steelers/Pirates at 3 Rivers. The Syria Mosque was special too & right in Oakland for too many concerts than I can remember. North Craig St.,,,,, many a night spent stumbling home from all the bars down there. Plus we had a couple haunts over in East Liberty too.

          That’s the huge benefit of attending a university with an urban campus that you never get at a place like creepy valley. When you consider how great a place Pittsburgh has become for young hipsters as of late, the college experience is priceless if you take advantage of those urban perks.

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  15. the first 50 years of Pitt football were the greatest period of Pitt football. They drew large crowds and were the big game in town. Steelers were an after thought and the Pirates were popular and drew pretty well. After the Jock Sutherland era ended, The academics at Pitt didn’t want Pitt to be a football factory so that was that. So that was that until Majors. Thus Pitt had 8 good years including a NC but even then the stadium was never sold out unless WVU pr PSU or ND were playing. Heinz is a far better facility and is quite frankly one of the best venues one can have compared to most college stadiums. But it is too large for a program like Pitt. Is that a crime? No but it is a bad look compared to the optics at big time large stadiums. I think a better way to allocate tickets and not opening the end zone upper level takes 10 to 15K from the capacity. I tarp that area unless ticket demand is 60K. Having the lower owl filled and upper bowls mostly filled is a far better look..Pitt can average 45 to 50K with winning and maybe a little more. The alternatives are so costly that the economics are just to good to leave Heinz

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  16. Why do people try to compare land grant colleges’ game day to Pitt’s? Totally different environments, the only option for 6-7 days a year compared to the smorgasbord of things to spend your money on in the Burg?

    Never understood this concept. Take PSU for example, do we really think all 110000 people live in State College and attend games on Saturday? It’s been shown that many drive from Philly, DC, and Pittsburgh for games. All one has to do is see the mass exodus from Pittsburgh via US22. How do they get so many to return to the middle of nowhere for a game and we can’t get people in the Pgh area to pay attention.

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    1. PSU current enrollment is 99k plus, and 47k plus on main campus. Pitt has 28K plus undergrad plus 9k grad. But even more important, because there has been such a disparity for decades, the PSU alumni exponentially dwarfs Pitt.

      This is the major reason where large, land grant universities have the advantage … but of course there are more.

      wwb

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  17. Larry V…great article and perfect timing in the life of BigB and Jeanie. What I miss the most about an OCS is being on the PITT grounds and seeing the sights that are familiar to me..the places that connect me to my college days.

    We were at the Phi Delt 110 yr reunion celebrating Phi Delta Theta Iota this past week-end which was held at the downtown Renaissance. Me n Jeanie B headed out to PITT to stroll around memory lane and get some PITT gear for the new season. Still a lot of dumpy old places and familiar buildings remain but so much new building everywhere..drove around looking for a parking spot…tons of empty spaces along the streets but all requiring a PITT parking permit..It’s crazy…Bellfield, formerly home to the PIKA -SAE hated rilvarly has given was to apts and WPA School for the Deaf..student housing going up near Chiefs…buildings going up between 5th and Forbes by the hospitals….a lot has changed and will continue to change… did manage to get to the PITT shop and get some new PITT gear and walk through the quad and student union…the kids were moving in…a group of in-coming freshman (looked like babies) were being taken to a bus from the union where a party and band was setting up for later in the evening…memories…flash-backs (not the LSD type) came back to haunt in a good way..life in the 70’s at PITT..it was a special time shared with great people. (insert 70’s pic of long-haired gc in dingo boots with bell-bottoms)

    At that moment I realized 2 things..I love being on the campus period (that’s been missing for many years) and the walk enabled me to re-connect..need to do it more often… a football field would be nice but so would having my frat house back on N. Ditheridge but not necessary.Just standing in shadow of the Cathedral stirs the soul.It’s all about the relationships or walking through the hallowed halls andbeing challenged by PITT and getting a degree which has served me well…

    When we couldn’t park because PITT had just about every space under their control with a few metered spaces the OCS fell from my wish list…I let it go.

    Our new season is at hand..new friends made on the POV await..more new friends to be made waiting in the wing…the POV is doing it’s part to connect us to our past and our tomorrow with the University of Pittsburgh…H2P/WUPS there it is !

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    1. There is underground parking in front of Soldiers and Sailors next time you visit. Everyone should walk around the campus from time to time. Good for the soul. Even when you live as close as I do.

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  18. When we start getting the majority of commenters in the 23-30 year old space, I will admit that Pitt has connected to its fan base. I think the main assumptions are wrong. Pitt does not connect to its fan base by playing in Steeler stadium, they just don’t.

    You can’t bus students to games. Wait, you can bus students to games. It provides for a gameday experience, albeit, a bad one. Kids want connectivity and being a part of something. A bus ride to Steeler Stadium doesn’t do it.

    All the old farts like the conveniences of Steeler stadium, and that is why there is nothing special about it. Read what you all write and the common thread is PITT Stadium watching our boys, not Steeler Stadium.

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    1. Is it ideal? Of course not but I know plenty of young people, my two kids went to Pitt, that have no problem with Heinz. It is all they know. An OCS isn’t a concept that they even think about because it doesn’t exist in their frame of reference. When I go to Heinz, I see plenty of young people in attendance. As us old farts die off even fewer people will remember an OCS.

      As far as the students, I think their attendance is even better than ours was back in the day. Going home early could easily be addressed by not having buses arrive until the game is over.

      You mention Steeler Stadium three times, there is no such thing. From the beginning Heinz has been the home of the Steelers and Pitt. Pitt doesn’t play on Sunday and the Steelers don’t play on Saturday.

      I think you have a personal problem. You don’t like the Steelers and you don’t like old farts.

      Someone mentioned the Cincinatti game, best atmosphere for a game since TD ran for 303 yds vs ND.
      and it was a loss. When Pitt becomes more competitive and wins big games Heinz will have better atmosphere.

      If Heinz Field is the albatross that you claim, there would be more than a handful of the same guys complaining about it all the time.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Heinz fits Pitt’s short term needs. But now is the time to begin addressing long term needs by developing a strategic vision.

        A way to better connect students, fans and alumni, a way to increase the equity of Pitt’s brand, a way to build a new fan friendly experience, a way to market the university and campus to the outside world, a plan to take control of the future and not be tied to the Steelers.

        Pitt’s home is Oakland. A quarter of campus is already comprised of buildings for athletics.

        In 15 years, Pitt will need to have a solution as to where the football team will play (a proactive solution or plan that really needs to be in the works now). If the Steelers decide to move to the suburbs and Pitt tags along with them, you can kiss Pitt football goodbye.

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      2. The more you typed gc, the more you made my point more clear, thank you. The cincy game was 9 flippin years ago. Not last year, or the year before, or before that, etc. When you state that it had the best atmosphere, that is telling. What made it great? Was it the senior walk, battle of the bands, nostalgia of the old stadium and years and years of games played against each other, or the cathedral, the bars and restaurants around the stadium, the traffic? What made it so great other than the large contingent of Cincy fans that were there and the fact that we almost beat a 5th or 6th ranked team? Really, what was it, other than 9 years ago?

        Change lanes – I have attended three of the Steelers Super Bowls with the last one being in Tampa where santonio holmes made ‘the catch”. There was a point in my life when a close friend of mine played on the Steelers. For two years, I went to every home game and 4 away games, so if that’s a problem with the Steelers, ok. Actually, after a game in Cincy we all drove home when we probably shouldn’t have. Two of the Steelers came with us. It was stupid now, but hysterically funny, then. I golfed two years ago with one of the owners of the Steelers while in Spain.

        You were somewhat correct in that I like a few of the old farts on here. Not in an awkward way, just like them, including you for your comments sometimes.

        It’s Steelers stadium. There is no identity to Pitt, sorry. When the Steelers shared facilities and played in Pitt Stadium…they called it Pitt Stadium.

        It’s the old farts that identify with a program due in large part because of the connection we had to Pitt Stadium, on campus.

        @TT below – I could argue that playing at Steeler Stadium is a bigger high for the opposing players than it is for our own. The reason the Pitt players get excited is the same reason the opponents players get excited. It is to play AT STEELERS stadium, where the big leaguers play. Couldn’t have said it better. It’s not Pitt, sorry.

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        1. What young kid wouldn’t get excited about playing at a pro stadium. But after one game, the novelty wears off. Most definitely a bigger high for a player from an opposing team. Heinz is 100 percent Steelers.

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  19. I did a side job over the weekend my one buddy helping me is a Pitt grad engineering class of 08. He said he’ll be at the Pitt Psu game and he’ll be rooting for Psu. That right there is a real problem. They need to find a way to connect these kids.

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      1. All of those mentioned above are traitors. Pure & simple. Makes no difference if they are Pitt, penn state, WVU, or whoever alumni. Not rooting for your alma mater is sacrilege. Lock them all up!

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  20. I totally disagree Pitt grads will leave the area because of housing prices. Just the opposite.

    Years ago, all types of people left the area for better jobs. Pittsburgh now has the jobs of the future and the companies are hiring. That is why housing prices are going up (slightly). Pittsburgh traditionally has not followed the national rise and fall of housing prices. It stays pretty steady.

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    1. I agree, even with the increase in some housing markets in the region, Pittsburgh is still dirt cheap compared to other metropolitan areas.

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  21. In the not too distant future everyone will be going to school or college on Face Time or virtual reality on the their phones or pocket computers. Many of Pitt’s buildings will be empty. Plenty of space to built a multi use stadium for a campus gatherings.

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  22. Even in the Zeise interview, Zeise referenced one of the reasons that his son didn’t transfer was the opportunity of playing at Heinz Field. I, for one, also like Heinz better than Pitt Stadium, if not for anything else the tailgate experience. Not to mention, not having to look at the dumb ass track that kept fans 20 yards from the action.

    Don’t underestimate how much Heinz and the Southside Sports Complex help Pitt. Duzz gets a, probably deserved, bum rap here with how his personality conflicts with some folks but he has done a great job of building Pitt’s relationship with the Steelers, and has embraced his professional neighbors.

    Pitt did a poor job negotiating more of a presence at the Heinz and, as a result, it affected some of the game day experiences. I’ve seen effort to unwind some of that but there really isn’t much that can be done in the stadium.

    Ultimately, as so many of us have said, winning is missing ingredient. Winning cures all. Pitt will always have competition for entertainment dollars … if you win, they will come.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Maybe PITT should hire Zambelli to light up the sky for a night game (not needed September 8th) Shoiuld have had fireworks for the Carolina game…people love them as evidenced by what I personally witnessed a PNC during the Cubs series. Place was packed Saturday night for the fireworks.

    Like

  24. I was there as you know Bernie, you probably could see fireworks better than I could from the first base side. Lots and lots of Cubbie fans that didn’t understand the hullabaloo about rockets in the air. It’s a burgh thang.

    Like

  25. Cubs fans were everywhere in the Burgh.Lots of explosions and nobody got injured…. PITT needs to market the City to visitors…so much to enjoy in our city and university. We certainly are in the most unique setting in the ACC if not college FB…If you got IT-use IT…. lot’s of reasons to come to a PITT game if you are a visiting opponent’s fan or a PITT fan living out of the area…the Burgh rocks !! …maybe we should change our name from PITT to the Pittsburgh Panthers….Bull-$hitting of course……

    Like

  26. Merge with CMU and expand their on campus stadium. The best of both worlds, a near campus stadium within an advanced academic culture.

    Like

  27. Anyone who doesn’t have a real connection to psu and still roots for them in football makes it obvious to me. They haven’t been able to win at anything in their own lives and they live vicariously through a pedo enabling shameful institution.

    I’m very ashamed that State College is in the same state that I reside in. It’s embarrassing isn’t it? ike

    Like

  28. Hey Big B, you know there was a fatal stabbing on Sunday night a block down from Hyde Steak house? A simple misunderstanding I suppose.

    Like

      1. I actually thought I would like one of their steak knives went I ate there a couple times. 6 trips you have yourself a collection. 🙂 Nice steak knife but I decided to stay with my set. For a chain restaurant it’s pretty good.

        Like

  29. Duquesne just announced a new coaches show on AT&T Sportsnt for football, men’s and women’s basketball. 26 shows in total. Where is Pitt in all of this?

    Like

  30. About the forbes article that Reed posted a link to..

    I find it hard to believe that the most important thing to potential recruits is academics. If that were true, schools like duke, harvard, and cal would be in the bcs playoffs every year.

    One good point in the article is how big of an effect on recruiting branding has. Some schools hire consultants to best find how to brand their school to potential recruits. I feel Pitt has done a very poor job with this at heinz field.

    When a recruit visits our stadium, I don’t believe they are overwhelmed with a feeling that “wow, this Pitt school is really connecting with me. I see what they are all about. I feel I want to be a part of it too. “

    Like

  31. I asked Heather but she is on vacation with her stay at home hubby. I hear they are touring real OCS trying to get an underatanding of what football and building a fanbase is all about.
    For the record ask anyone in populous or the HOK and they will tell you how cheaply the Ronney’s built Heinz Field. It is well know in industry.

    Like

    1. the architects and engineers will tell you that Heinz has a life for 25 years. Most stadiums built these days have this life expectancy. Its by design and benefits all parties. But, the Rooneys did build it on the cheap compared to other stadiums built around the same time. So in 2026, Heinz will either need some massive renovations to extend its life or the Steelers will build a new stadium. You’ll hear the Steelers begin talking about this in the next 4-5 years. BTW – OBX is a great vacation place.

      Like

  32. ^^^ Beware of the fake new above.

    So Mark, you say you asked Heather but she was on vacation, now there’s a trick? Kind of like when a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, huh? I guess this makes Heather 300 years old too?. jus kidding… ike

    Like

  33. Larry Great Article.

    As for the Heniz vs Pitt Stadium crowd. I started attending games at Pitt Stadium in 1993 at the age of 10. Watched 6 years of lousy football except for 97. Aside from the Gold Lot right above stadium (maybe a few hundred spaces) there was zero tailgating.

    Heniz was an upgrade especially for parking and tailgating believe or not and the teams those first few years were better than my Pitt Stadium experience. When Larry Fitz was here (02 and 03) the parking spots against the river even had outlets. (The Rooneys greed took that parking lot and the good tailgating). But I love stage AE and the restaurants.

    I guess the reason I go to Pitt games has to do with the City Atmosphere. The hustle and bustle the backed up traffic. The culture and different demographics. If I wanted to sit in a cow patty around an RV by a who bunch of country folk like myslef I would have become a PSU fan years ago.

    The lights and the culture of City is so unique. State College is totally different. In fact, one of the reasons the Nit Wits want to attend the game in Pittsburgh is to experience the city. Pitt needs to Market this. We will never be a State College or even a Morgantown and I don’t want to be.

    H2P! I will support them wherever they play. But if they want to be more like a land grant school they have plenty of space in Johnstown to build a 100,000 plus stadium with plenty of spots for RV’s etc.

    Like

  34. Link: Panthers Continue Preparations for 2018 Season

    https://pittsburghpanthers.com/news/2018/8/21/2018-pitt-football-camp-day-16-videos-photos-quotes.aspx

    Pitt Football Camp: Media Recap, Day 16

    Videos, Quotes and Photos from Pitt Training Camp

    POST-PRACTICE VIDEOS

    Head Coach Pat Narduzzi

    Tight Ends Coach Tim Salem

    Tight End Tyler Sear

    Offensive Lineman Connor Dintino

    Defensive Back Phillipie Motley

    Defensive End Dewayne Hendrix

    Placekicker Alex Kessman

    PITTSBURGH—The Pitt football program began its third week of training camp with an indoor practice on a rainy Tuesday morning at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on the South Side of Pittsburgh.

    Head coach Pat Narduzzi met with reporters prior to the session, while tight ends coach Tim Salem, tight end Tyler Sear, offensive lineman Connor Dintino, defensive back Phillipie Motley, defensive end Dewayne Hendrix and placekicker Alex Kessman answered questions from the assembled media at the conclusion of practice.

    Videos from each media session are available above, while a transcript of Coach Narduzzi’s media availability can be found below.

    Head Coach Pat Narduzzi

    Opening statement:

    “Practice 16 today. I guess it’s been a long time since you guys been here. L­­ast time I left you with Taysir [Mack] information and since then we had a scrimmage Saturday—productive for the most part, stayed pretty healthy, tackled well, threw the ball pretty good. Wish we would have run a little bit better. Our defense is pretty stout. Then we had a nice practice at Heinz Field Sunday night right after the Steelers Fest. Got some great work in there. The kids were obviously energetic. Anytime you can get into Heinz Field, which is not easy, it’s a great atmosphere to play the game of football. Our kids need to be in that atmosphere.”

    On the development of position battles:

    “It’s a good question. I’d say we’re probably a couple days away from really making that decision. We will be working on Albany today, so there will be some of those where guys are looking around like, ‘who’s on the Rocks scout team?’ But that’s not a sure thing. We are going to see special teams are still a major part. We got a lot of that done at Heinz Field. We worked every facet, and Kessman’s been whacking the heck out of balls. That guy has been hitting 82 percent of his field goals right now; one of his 82 percent was a 58-yarder that he decided to kick on his own in a team period. Asked him where he wanted it, and he put it at 58 yards. I don’t know if I told you guys that. It bounced off the upright and almost went in. It would have been good from about 64. But position battles are still a ways away. If you asked me an individual battle, I could give you a little insight on that.”

    On the positional battle at cornerback:
    “I could tell you one position battle. We got four, five, six good corners right now. They are still battling. It’s probably going to be the guy that’s most consistent. I would say right now if I had to name a corner it’s Phillipie Motley. He’s playing his tails off. And we talk about to win a championship, your seniors got to play the best football they ever have. Number 32 is doing that right now. He is playing his tails off, making plays. I am happy for him and excited for that group. But the rest of those guys are pegging away. Paris Ford has done a great job. Damarri Mathis, there’s [Jason] Pinnock, there’s some good players there. It’s like ‘god, we only get to play two.’ We’re not in Canada yet. But with the position battles, there’s a battle everywhere.”

    On if he has the starting five offensive linemen identified:

    “Yeah, I think we got them identified. Are we where we want to be? No. I mean everyday, it’s a battle, but I feel comfortable, very comfortable. I want to run the ball better. I think they are doing a great job protecting Kenny [Pickett] in the pocket; that was probably my first fear. As a head coach, you look at the defensive line, and Coach [Charlie] Partridge said to me the other day, ‘I’ve never had this many guys up front that can play.’ That’s a good thing for Pitt football. Is it a fair evaluation? I mean he was at Wisconsin for a long time, had some good players up there. Our depth is good. It’s hard to read where you are even with the run game, and I know we are going to stop the run anyways. We are built to stop it. When you are built structurally and then all of a sudden you got guys up front that can play it too, that helps you.”

    On how many young guys will contribute on special teams:

    “It’s still hard to tell on that to be honest with you. It starts with who can help you on offense or defense, and then we will go from there. But there’s going to be guys that you trust enough—and it comes down to trust in special teams. They are good athletes, but there’s got to be that trust factor for Coach [Andre] Powell to be able to put them on the field and trust that he’s going to do the right thing. Just like any other phase of the game, it’s not about how good you are athletically, it’s about how smart you, how much knowledge you have and if you are doing the right things there as far as fitting in to what we do schematically.”

    On the positions where the depth chart is set:

    “Kenny Pickett is the starting quarterback, if you guys didn’t know. We don’t have to make some big quarterback announcement. He’s the quarterback of our offense. On defense, Quintin Wirginis is clearly the guy. It’s not because those guys behind him are doing bad. You go all the way to Wendell Davis; Wendell is playing really good. He’s one of those guys on special teams that you go, ‘we are going to get four games out of Wendell this year,’ if he redshirts. I say that if because I don’t know yet. Wendell’s a guy that pays attention to detail. He’s just one of those guys. His dad played; his dad must have got after him when he was younger. He understands the game of football, which is always beautiful when you have someone who grew up in the game and might be a heck of a coach someday. Just for a freshman not to hit the wall; he’s pretty locked in. But Quintin is [the defensive] quarterback; it’s easy to say he’s the guy. Dewayne Hendrix had an excellent camp, and we just have to keep that rolling. The tailbacks are by committee. We got a lot of good guys back there. Those are the ones where you go, ‘pencil those guys in for Saturday, September 1st.’ You are going to see those guys out there.”

    On if the senior tailbacks are going to be a two-headed monster:
    “I think it’s going to be a two-headed monster. Just like anybody, you have good days and bad days and to me, those two (Darrin Hall and Qadree Ollison) are both starters. A.J. [Davis] has crawled up the depth chart as well and you go, ‘man, we’ve got to give A.J. some looks,’ because he does things differently than the other two guys do. But I think it’s really who’s got the hot hand. You’ve kind of got to do it that way. Who’s feeling good? Who had a better week at practice? That’s the carrot you lay out there. Who’s going to get their name on the scoreboard? After that, it’s who’s making the plays? Who’s playing like their tail is on fire? That’s what we want a tailback to do: run through the smoke and not care what’s there. The guy who’s playing hungry and running with a chip on his shoulder is the guy I want to carry the ball.”

    On if the wide receiver corps will also be by committee:
    “Yeah, it is. It really is. We have a lot of weapons out there, more weapons overall then we’ve had. Obviously Taysir [Mack] will add to that arsenal. But we’ve got a lot of guys out there that can do a lot of great things, so it will be. But there will be some guys that will have their name called over the loud speaker. Everyone wants to be that guy.”

    On what stood out about Dewayne Hendrix during camp:

    “The consistency. With the way he’s practicing, I can’t say that he’s had a bad day. I can’t say that about every player. Rashad Weaver too; he hasn’t had a bad day either, so throw him in there. He’s played darn good. But both of those guys, it’s the consistency of how they play and go about their business everyday.”

    On if Ryan Shazier spoke to the team Sunday night at Heinz Field:

    “No, obviously the Steelers were there before us. But no, I didn’t have him talk to the team. I just said hello to him and his wife.”

    Like

  35. An on-campus stadium is fun to dream about, but as Reed has referenced in the past, the families that run the show in Pittsburgh (and largely reside in the East End, which would be most heavily impacted by an OCS, would never sign-off on the deal).

    For starters, they wouldn’t want the construction or the congestion. Secondly, they have other ideas for how real estate that abuts Shadyside and Squirrel Hill could be used. Thirdly, building a college football stadium in 2018, and locating it in one of the densest neighborhoods in the entire state is not a “good look” for this crowd. Smacks too much of the football-obsessed Steel Town image they are eager to leave behind as Pittsburgh positions itself to be Portland or Seattle-east. That’s the model that both the blue bloods and the new cultural and professional leadership class wants and the concerns of Pitt football don’t even warrant consideration, except perhaps lip service for PR reasons and barely even that.

    If Pitt ever builds a new stadium for itself, it won’t be on what’s recognized as the current campus footprint. Maybe in Hazelwood or somewhere thereabouts. Better to focus on what Pitt can do (along with winning) to build its brand and create a sense of a Pitt game as a special occasion.

    I wrote this before, but the only thing that’s remotely definable about Pitt to anyone under 35 (and that’s being generous) is Pitt script, and we abandoned that for a generation. Pitts needs to win, but it also needs to differentiate itself in a very crowded marketplace. In today’s world, where everyone has a platform that can potentially reach millions, building a brand is expected, and the worst thing you can be is boring. Better to be tacky. Ask Boise State why they built a blue field, or Oregon or Maryland why they take wardrobe changes to the extreme. Other than the current scandal, would anyone ever talk about Maryland football if not for the uniforms? And before you scoff, they recruit as or better than Pitt. That’s not all down to the uniforms, of course, but it speaks to the importance of creating an identity. Nike and UnderArmour understand this as well as anyone, they’ve developed cult followings and spend more on marketing, research, and development than the GDP of small African nations. So, when you see them guiding a program in certain direction, it’s worth taking note.

    Pitt needs to prioritize branding in the same way. The school doesn’t have the academic caché of Duke, the campus or Greek scene of UVa, the South Florida location and iconic brand of Miami, the long-term success of Florida State or the recent history of Clemson. Yet, we expect to compete with these schools in recruiting and on the field. It can be done, but what are you selling? What is the culture of Pittt football? Who is its target audience? How does it intend to differentiate itself from its peers? Once you determine that, you can use that information to craft a gameday experience to meet your goals. What you can’t continue to do is be nondescript, boring, and have no identity.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Much ado about nothing. So far I’ve been to Duke, Syracuse, UNC, GT, Virginia, VT & Clemson stadiums. I personally prefer Heinz Field to any of the above as far as the stadium itself & associated amenities.
    GT is the only venue that beats Pittsburgh for the urban feel & other things to do in the local neighborhood for attractions & nitelife/restaurants, etc. whiners gone to whine. Haters gone hate. Just keep reading Upitt, Tx Panther etc. Both of them together have probably attended less Pitt games in person over the last couple of year than the number of fingwrs on one hand. The OCS debate, as always a DOA waste of time discussing, meh.

    Like other posters have said, winning cures many ailments.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. please Doc. Each time I attend a game at Heinz it is no different than the last time at Heinz. What makes it special to you old farts are the seats and not bleachers, its the amenities like concessions and restrooms (but still the same ole piss troughs like the old stadium), its ample space to tailgate and relative ease to get in and out.

      A college experience is not meant to be a pro experience.

      I dislike Heinz for some very good reasons. I’ve made them abundantly clear. However, It doesnt make me a hater.

      But dont take my word. Get on the phone and call Wanny and Fitz…both advocates of an on campus venue. Talk to some ex players, ex coaches, prospective recruits. You can make an informed opinion then.

      And read some articles on why other schools think that sports being played on campus are important.

      Lastly to win, you need to build a culture that caters to winning. Pitt’s played at Heinz now for over 17 years. Havent seen much winning and like Reed said, winning isnt going to fill up a 70k stadium.

      Like

      1. Then I’d suggest that you attend our home opener against Albany, Tx. The difference that weekend is Rib Fest. Last time I did a Rib Fest I consumed enough ribs that my crap smelled of smoked Bar-B-Q till mid week. It was glorious.

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  37. Hey Dr T, which games will you be attending this year? You live in the south and I bet you do attend more PITT games than 60% of the POVer’s. I get it that there are good reasons for that living close in ACC territory….. and I have a question….. Do you find it just a little strange that not so much positive posts but comments defending the coach and the PITT team is met with such disdain? It boggles my mind that I am considered the village idiot on a PITT blog for liking my PITT team. The good news is that boggles doesn’t bother me all that much…. see you at the game. ike

    Like

    1. Ike, this season we return to Chapel Hill. BigB bought our tickets & had the good sense to get seating on the shady side of the stadium this time around. We have to beat those guys this year, it’s just the law of averages coming into play, if nothing else. Then down to Orlando for the UFC game. Never been to that on campus stadium. Hitting Universal Studios on Sunday. Some of my old fraternity brothers & BigB are planning on WF too, but I’ll wait on both that game & Miami until I see if the Panthers are in the running for the Coastal Crown or not. A season ending battle against the Hurricanes would be a great way to determine who wins the division. I’ll be there if it comes down to that.

      You know Ike, this blog takes a long look back when talking Pitt football & many of these commenters are still afflicted with SOP mentality. In many instances it is self defeating. An example is post season bowl games. They’re labeled “meaningless” on the POV when the Panthers beat the MAC Champs in an exciting game but those same post season contests somehow become a signature of Pitt’s failures for the program when Pitt loses a couple bowl games in a row. Focus on the negative? You tell me.

      I don’t ignore the blemishes with this program but I enjoy the high points when they are achieved. Tx Panther points out about developing a winning culture being a key to a successful peogram, well I think Narduzzi expects to win & it starts with him & his staff, so he has my support for now. But the fans need a winning attitude as well, like you have. The fans attitudes who still feel SOP is still here are part of the problem.

      In that regard though, I hold Narduzzi to my expectations. I cherish those big time victories over psu, Clemson & Miami & don’t discount them when they come during 5-7 seasons. However Champions don’t have 5-7 seasons so this 4th year at Pitt, Narduzzi should be producing 8 wins, even with this tuff OOC schedule IMO.

      And I’m not going to ridicule those efforts before they begin that journey either simply because the team has weaknesses at certain positions. That’s not wide eyeed optimism on my part, it’s just being positive & hoping for the best for my beloved Panthers.

      My mantra is “Never Forget Houston”. Been there, done that. Watched season after season of SOP football. But I also watched a 1-10 program win a National Championship four years later too. That’s Pitt Football as well. I also watched our last game and it was a fantastic win. I’m anticipating the encore.

      What’s in store for 2018, we’ll all find out soon enough. But for now, I’m going to promote the winning culture that we all want Pitt to develop by EXPECTING them to win at least eight this season. I believe they can do that & of course, first you gotta believe. H2P.

      Like

  38. Great article Larry V! I share many of your thoughts regarding games on the North Shore, and believe the biggest key to filling the seats is putting out a competitive product. I also believe Pitt can do a better job of getting kids to/from the games in a more timely manner and make it worth the students while to attend!

    Like

  39. Permanently tarp upper deck end zone bleachers with navy blue a mustard Pitt script. Clean up the signage on the sidelines. Tarps thst already exist above each tunnel same as the upper deck end zone. All colors match… They don’t now for some reason. Pitt script at the 50 with no ball around it. PITTSBURGH in each end zone. Done and done. Dolphins do it for the Canes. Steelers would do it for Pitt. Hell, the Raiders do it too. That’s it. Very simple.

    Cuts capacity to around 60K and all signage or tarps are uniform in colors. Still too big but has it’s own feel and more reasonable capacity. Simple, clean, consistent look around field. Also, given the location of tarp, you’ll see an enormous Pitt script anywhere you sit in Heinz. Unique.

    Should’ve been done years ago.

    Like

  40. Petersen Events Center and Heinz Field are awesome venues. Very glad Pitt plays in pretty much pro level facilities in each major sport.

    Like

  41. But, if they built something relatively soon, UPitt suggested the ideal location. Near Hot Metal Bridge. Literally just down the street from campus. There’s room there and South Side is right there for the reveling before and after the game. Something that fits 45K to 50K a la Stanford, TCU, Boston College, Syracuse.

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  42. Larry V., I also was at Pitt from Fall term 1970 to Spring term 1974 and enjoyed your blog. I loved the OCS in those years and the ritual of rolling out of bed in Tower A and later McCormick Hall and trudging up DeSoto with a group of about 10 mates.

    My take or vote on Heinz Field. I received my 2 football season tickets in the mail this past week for me and my Pitt wife so I guess I voted by choosing to attend games.

    Random bonus stat of the day: Of the 12 ACC teams (Pitt has never played Wake Forest), Pitt has an all-time football winning record with 9 schools. Only 3 teams (Miami, NC, and VT) have all-time football winning records against Pitt. Tony in Hampton’s analysis: “that ain’t bad.”

    Like

    1. But how many division titles has Pitt won?

      Duke, GA Tech have done it.

      Miami and Va Tech are always the teams to beat. They have good coaches and recruit good athletes.

      Like

      1. Forget about Division Titles; let’s talk about ACC Championships.

        Pitt has 0 Championships in 5 years of ACC competition.

        Since 1962, Duke has 1 Championship tie with Virgina in 1989. 1 Championship co-win in 55 years.

        Since joining in 1979, GT has 1 Championship in 1990 and 1 co-win in 1998. 1 Championship and 1 Championship co-win in 38 years.

        Believe me, I’m not a Pitt apologist, but if Pitt was an ACC member since 1962 or since 1979, they probably would have won one ACC championship.

        If Pitt had any resemblance of a defense; it might have happened in 2016.

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  43. Great article Larry V…hope to meet you at a tailgate.
    By the way, we used to tailgate above Pitt stadium in the open lot directly in front of the OC lot.
    One of my favorite photos is of my cousin Tom with the Cathedral of Learning in the background as the moon was rising over Oakland. It was Ansel Adams like…haha.

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  44. Biggest problems with Hienz. 1. MT seats .Solutions previously stated. Tarp, promotions, better transportation for students , quit filling existing parking lots with new construction you greedy city b_______ and mark the grass with panther piss not a little dust of chalk. 2. Always seems to be construction/bike lane s etc traffic tie ups. 3. We don’t have enough wins to have the following we could have. 4. Tarp those grey end zone seats. They look much worse than the gold seats because the the gold ones blend with the “Blue and Gold” Just read SEC average attendance is down over 2500 per game. All college games are dropping even the Nitters peaked at 110,000 then announced they were modernizing stadium with better seats, luxury suites and oh yeah we are cutting 10,000 seats. Much prefer on campus but Hienz is 1000% better than the haunted house of 3 Rivers,ugh that was really bad.H2P

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  45. Pitt’s longest sustained run in basketball was AFTER they built an On Campus State of the Art Basketball Arena. Imagine that.

    Pitt’s longest sustained runs in football were when Pitt had an On Campus place called Pitt Stadium.
    That would be in the 1930’s and the ten years of 1974 to 1983. Go figure.

    This isn’t Rocket Science.

    Like

    1. Don’t thing we played at 3 Rivers from the Pedo State game of 1976 until the 2000 season, after the nitwits had blown up Pitt stadium. I also remember the 1975 game when Long missed all the FG’s and lost 7-6.

      Like

    2. Saw 12-0 against the hated nitters in 3 Rivers. Now that place was a dump! Loved having that win over penn atate for the following decade & a half.

      Sept. 8th, another special opportunity to bitch slap the cult followers. Can we pull it off again?

      Like

      1. I saw Pitt beat the pedos at 3 Rivers in ’76, then we went to Oakland to celebrate. I lived in the North Hills at the time. I remember it being a great time all around.

        Like

  46. Exactly as such in the horrid bleacher upper deck end zone just with navy blue instead of black and a giant, clean Pitt script in mustard gold. Would look sharp and eliminate the least desirable, ugliest seats and reduce capacity by more than folks realize because they are bleachers rather than actual seats. Also, would give the venue a feel unique to Pitt on Saturdays. I’d tsrp nothing else. Looks cheap abd for too busy when you tarp a section here and there. Make it permanent fixture for Pitt football at Heinz. Capacity for Pitt games would still be just over/under 60K. That’s more than enough.

    Like

  47. Just picture it. Would look awesome from a distance and in stadium if done as the Raiders and Athletics do it. And, that entire bleacher section is ripe for it. It’s begging for it.

    Like

    1. Although games like on September 8th need these seats to be sold, your tarping concept is a no brainer slam dunk for the rest of our home slate. I couldn’t agree more with you on that concept.

      Like

  48. Just heard an interesting statistic related to the last thread on the scandals at Maryland and OSU. The last time there was a death related to heatstroke in the NFL was 17 years ago. There have been 27 heat related deaths in NCAA football during that time. I have to believe that has to be literally an example of survival of the “fittest”, as opposed to differences in training practices…..

    Like

  49. Just so I understand I’m reading correctly here. By “permanently” tarping seats we are talking PITT games, right? I mean the tarps have to come off at the end of the game for Steeler games. << Who pays and how much?

    So when PITT host a big game like psu, Notre Dame or WVU, they can open up the ticket sells to 70,000 which is how many people will be in Heinz Field Sept 8 this year.

    I’ll stand behind my idea of conjoining with CMU and building up their stadium into a nice 50,000 seat stadium.

    Like

  50. A list of conference wins by ACC teams the past three years: Hardly pedestrian. PITT needs more OOC wins! Huff the third is right!

    Clemson 22
    Miami 17
    Louisville 16
    VT 15
    Pitt 14
    FSU 14
    UNC 14
    NC State 12
    GT 9
    Duke 8
    WF 8
    Virginia 7
    BC 6
    Syracuse 6

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amazing that Pitt had as many ACC wins as Florida Pen State. Since they finished ranked #8 in 2016 and #14 in 2015. While Pitt was rank(less).

      Like

    2. Ike, if Pitt ends the regular season at 8-4 then I hope that they don’t win a single OOC game. First & foremost, the ACC Coastal Division Crown is priority #1!

      Like

  51. Okay, PSU, WVU, ND remove the tarp covering the end zone bleachers. Otherwise, it’s a permanent fixture there for Pitt home football games.

    And, to whom asked, Miami Hurricanes and Dolphins share a stadium. The Miami “U ”
    logo at the 50 never has the Dolphins white ball around it, as in what happens often with Pitt’s logo bring placed inside the Steelers logo. Also, each end zone reads MIAMI. Rather than end zones with the practice field lame white stripes. That’s my suggestion for how the actual field should be handled at Heinz.

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  52. Dolphins…

    Hurricanes…

    Can be done. Looks great. No reason it can’t be done at Heinz as well for Steelers and Pitt.

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    1. Pitt’s Heinz contract only allows for a white chalk pathetic mid-field Pitt script which makes us look as bush league as possible. Along with nothing in the EndZones but vertical stripes. Most HS fields are painted better. Anybody that is happy with that, has to be nuts.

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      1. For those reasons alone….we need our own Stadium. That image being broadcast around the nation, and when not the nation, being broadcast regionally, probably also effects our recruiting.

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  53. Ike, don’t see it. They’d have to tear down a lot of some of their campus buildings to fit it there, no? Doubt CMU would want a 45K venue in the middle of their campus. Looking at it, how would you do it? Doesn’t seem to enough room.

    Like

    1. Johnny – you fight an uphill battle with these Yinzers
      no parking
      track around the field
      bleacher seating (oh the splinters on my arse)
      a shared stadium with nerds?
      traffic congestion
      city would never approve
      the elites who live in shadyside fart in your general direction
      astro turf
      too costly
      heinz is good enough

      it would provide a nice cathedral view though

      if you want to build something, come to Texas. The state is very progressive and really doesnt care what old farts think (good luck finding one). Theres good and bad with that approach.

      But some leaders seek solutions and economic benefit for their citizens. The Pitt BoT and City leadership have been gutless.

      Ask Heather what happened with the Populous Study. The media in Pittsburgh is negligent as the 4th estate.

      i’m not arguing that a new stadium will improve attendance or will help Pitt win. Those were talking points made by Cornhole though in justification to raze Pitt Stadium.

      Google why Colorado St, Temple and USF think its a good idea. They are much smarter than me. I only have a Pitt Poly Sci and Economics degree.

      Like

      1. May I suggest that you utilize that economics education then, do a cost feasibility study for an OCS and you’ll come to the conclusion that you’ve produced just another excuse preventing such a dream from becoming reality.

        Like

  54. I enjoy attending games at Heinz (yes, I’m an old fart), and the only thing I liked about Pitt Stadium was it’s location and the way it looked from the outside. Hated the track for pushing the stands back so far.

    Of course I’d like to see a stadium the students could walk to. And a right-sized stadium. Tx has made the point many times about constructing a multi-purpose facility — this makes great sense.

    In the meantime, do you need tarps? Couldn’t you just not sell the upper deck and end zone sections and maybe project “Pitt” on those sections? Get the high tech folks involved…

    (However, there is one exception, you can’t tarp/not sell the “Lastrow” seats used by Fran’s clan… Haha!)

    Go Pitt.

    Like

    1. tarps and on field lettering will help
      those are good short term solutions

      the longer term solution is for victory heights to include a multi purpose venue as the centerpiece and not some small 3000 seat facility for 3 sports programs that are barely followed and supported

      must think BIG.

      and in 10 years the VA hospital wont be around. theres plenty of space there as well for a venue, new fields and parking. keep sports at the top of campus. thats 1/3 of Pitt campus geography…40 acres.

      and i crack up when i hear that the city and ‘well connected’ citizens wont approve any facility that leads to more traffic. every time UPMC expands in Oakland and elsewhere in the city, the city approves. thats far more traffic over 365 days a year than just 6 football games. Its an economic endgame.

      Like

      1. Agree Tex and the vast majority of the games are on a non-work day, that being Saturday. Even Temple after 70 years of being non-entity in college football has figured out, they need a OCS. Even Temple !!!

        Like

  55. Emel,

    I don’t get why Steelers or Heinz would be against a field setup more the like Hurricanes have with the Dolphins? Pitt can’t just shell out a couple more bucks to please them enough to make it happen? That’s always confused me.

    Like

    1. The Steelers are generally anti-Pitt. The Rooney’s and their minions have close ties to Pedo State. I guess they felt slighted some-how when the Stillers were tenants at Pitt Stadium.

      Ketchup Bottle looks crappy for Steeler games as well. But even worse for Pitt games.

      And apparently nobody at Pitt has ever had the balls to demand, this and that, at Heinz.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Act 2nd rate and you get treated 2nd rate. Pitt treats the Stillers 1st rate over in Southside. No reciprocity over at Heinz for Pitt at all. You wouldn’t even know Pitt played in the ACC. And if it weren’t for those cheap looking banners they put on the first row railings, you wouldn’t even know Pitt was playing period.

        Liked by 1 person

  56. Forgot to thank Larry V. for the fine article.

    My daughter was in a play at the Stephen Foster recently. I enjoy walking around the Cathedral and down memory lane…

    And thanks to BigB for all the wisdom he shares on here.

    Go Pitt.

    Like

      1. I don’t even remember this guy playing for Pedo State. But somehow he got this:
        Jim was a stalwart defensive back at Penn State from 1971-74, earning the 1975 Dapper Dan College Football award

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        1. And another one.
          “He talks at length about the Steelers’ team internist, Tony Yates, and trainer, Jon Norwig, a Penn Stater. The three have been with the Steelers for a combined 85 seasons.”

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          1. Even with all his baggage, it didn’t matter. Cause he had to have known what was going on at Pedo State. Being there for 37 years.

            Former Penn State assistant coach Tom Bradley is headed to the Steelers as Pittsburgh’s secondary coach. February 2018.

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  57. Stephen F Foster from Pittsburgh lived in Greensburg for a short while. Just a few blocks from where I grew up. Just I few years before I was born. He should be much more celebrated. imo

    Liked by 1 person

  58. All, thanks for the kind words on my first endeavor at a POV article. I hope it stimulated some brain cells and generated some memories. And to the the younger commenters who hammer at us old farts, let me just remind you of the story of the young bull and the old bull. The young bull and old bull were on a hilltop staring down at a herd of cows and the young bull says “let’s run down there and have our way with a cow”. The old bull says no, and the young bull looks at him in shock. Then the old bull says “let’s walk down and have our way with them all! (cleaned up for our female readers/commenters).

    Liked by 1 person

  59. I have too close of a connection with the team doc to speak on it but it is also real. Doc Jim seems like a decent guy but maybe a little arrogant like a doctor would be. I have no problems with him.

    Like

  60. Never had a problem parking in Oakland as some claim, There was always Schenley Park as an outlet. But there is parking for thousands of cars in Metered lots and parking garages around Oakland. I used to have a season pass in the School of Education garage that mtd onto Ohara at Desoto.1/2 block to stadium and a right turn and out thru Shadyside E. Liberty to pkwy.east Actually followed PS team buses out that way one year. Since they had a sheriff’s dept escort we really moved thru the traffic. I just tucked up behind the last bus and had fun. Where would the north side be without parking garages as they build on all the lots.

    Like

    1. If you have any inclination of how to find a parking space, no problem finding a space in Oakland. And a free one at that. When I didn’t have a parking pass at 3 Rivers I never paid to park on the North Side. Are you kidding me !

      Like

  61. I’ll never forget a Pitt Ohio St game in the mid to late 80’s. I wanna say ‘84 so I was 8 or 9 at the oldest. Me and my old man literally could not find a parking spot. The old Exxon station wanted $10, at the time I guess that was a lot and my dad told the guy he was nuts, after driving around and finding nothing, my old man was ready to suck it up and pay…I’ll never forget the guys smile telling my dad “sorry we’re full”. We ended up going home, had to ask my mom what a c-sucker was. Lol. 1st time I had ever heard the word, she slapped me in the face. In my old man’s defense, he woke me up that night and apologized and told me he loves me, something he don’t say much…

    Like

    1. What grade school did you go to? I knew all of the good cuse words by third grade, where I came from. And by fourth grade, could string them well enough together to make a prostitute blush.

      Like

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