The good news is that we are 2-1 on the season with wins over Albany and Georgia Tech.  As we do on here we’ll list the Good, the Bad and the Ugly then you guys can chip in with your thoughts.

However, I’m two-blocked with other obligations so my thoughts today will be short.


We held GT to 320 yards rushing.  I had written earlier that if we could hold their offense to under 300 yards on the ground we’d win.  Pretty close on that – although I had GT winning this game which was a bad prediction.

Pickett passed better than before with 16 0f 23 for 197 yards and 1 INT.  On the season so far he’s done this:

Pickett 2018

I thought he’d have better stats at this point but he’s not losing ball games which for a young QB is the key.  He’s got to be better on his deep throws though.


The 2nd half stagnation. We have to do something about the fact that in each of our three games so far we have been almost shutout in those six quarters of play with only a FG in this last game.  This isn’t good and this time it could easily have led to a loss.  We played so well in the first half so something’s going on there.


Even though it was a plus for us I thought GT’s HC Paul Johnson’s playcalling was horrible. GT was off all day – helped in that by our defense in the 1st half of course –  but I felt that the GT team we just played was not a very good one.

150 thoughts on “Monday Morning QB; Georgia Tech

  1. I agree on the 2nd half stagnation piece. And on GT not playing a great game. Lot of missed tackles on their end on the defensive side. I’m down in Atlanta (formerly used to post as Atlanta Panther), and the speculation down here is that Paul Johnson may be on the hot seat. Not that anybody cares, because this is UGA territory…

    Back to Pitt. So the 2nd half stagnation. Either other teams are adjusting and we are not adjusting to their adjustments, or the guys are just coming out flat and lazy. Or they aren’t in good condition.

    I’d speculate that it’s the former (we aren’t adjusting to the adjustments) but I did see some missed tackles on our end in the 2nd half.

    Either way, not being able to put together 4 good quarters (or even three) is Same Old Pitt.


  2. Anyone know a source to see a replay?

    The Good – Win and 1-0 ACC and possibly weaker than expected ACC giving a weaker than hoped for Pitt team an opportunity in the Coastal
    The Bad – 2nd half consistency, offensively at least and my kid’s tough loss in the semi’s Saturday.
    The Ugly – the lure of the Dark SIde here at the POV…I am a victim hoping not to return…this team and coaching staff are the only things that can save me from returning.


  3. Thanks Reed and we need to get busy helping Reed who is baring down on surgery. Take a comment and add some extra to it and make it an article. He needs our help guys and gals..

    …………………………………………….The GOOD:

    The coaches. They take some heat and that comes with their job but a nice job all around on Saturday.

    The o-Line stepped up some as well. Some nice holes for Ollie to run through.

    The defense, I really think this unit could become special very soon.

    ……………………………………………..The BAD:

    KP still a little to antsy in the pocket and some of his throws are late.

    Still too many big play killing penalties. PITT play a much cleaner game but the few penalties really hurt the team.

    KP’s knee getting dinged up. Let’s hope this injury doesn’t linger throughout the season.

    …………………………………………..The UGLY:

    There is not a lot here. All three of these first games have had a different feel to them.

    I do like the white pants but if PITT wins wearing them, lets roll with them


  4. Here is my take on the game with the benefit of reflection….


    Rebounding from a bad loss. The team came ready to play, got off to a fast start and dominated in the 1st half.

    Defense – the investment in practicing against the triple option during the spring and the summer paid off. Kudos to the players and the coaching staff for being ready for the game.

    Wirginis & Weaver – both played a good games. Wirginis with a couple key tackles and one sack, while Weaver was all over the place – but right where he should have been (if that makes sense).

    Kenny Pickett – made some great throws during the game and hopefully took a few steps forward in only his 4th start.

    Run blocking in the first half. The long TD run by Ollison started with well-executed blocks by the RG and Aston.

    Offensive play calling (part 1) – loved the gadget plays. Sent a message that we can and will throw downfield. The INT thrown by Pickett on the flea flicker was not a problem with scheme or the timing of the call. Pickett waited a bit too long to throw to a wide-open receiver. The delay allowed the DBs to converge.


    Offensive play calling (part 2) – The sweep plays were largely ineffective. Perhaps we should still show the sweep, but not actually run it for a while. There does not appear to be anyone in the current group of WRs who has the speed and instincts to make it work.

    2nd half letdown by the offense – we had only 5 possessions in the half, so there weren’t too many chances to score. Settled for a FG on the first drive due to bad play calling on 3rd down and the last drive we were able to run down the clock. Drives 2, 3 & 4 were the problem. Drives 3 and 4 were really killed by stupid penalties on the OL; the other was the flea-flicker play that ended with a turnover.

    The unlucky facemask call which in my view gave Georgia Tech life and was the starting point of their comeback attempt. I say unlucky because it did not look like a facemask and certainly was a blatant error by Jones, who was part of an otherwise outstanding play by the defense. If his finger missed the helmet, we have a stop and a fumble recovery and really the end of the game if Pitt could take advantage of the short field position and score. As for the timing of the fumble, it looked to me like the ball was loose when the penalty occurred – not sure if we would have needed to have recovered the ball already in order to avoid giving the ball back to GT (anyone know the actual rule?)


    Typical bad officiating by the ACC refs. Missed a couple calls – Aston was blocked form behind on one play and an OL for Georgia Tech should have been called for unnecessary roughness if the refs didn’t think he was guilty of a target on the facemask play above.

    Light crowd on what looked to be a nice day.

    Probably the ugliest thing of the day was a couple of awful, raspy sound that came through on my TV when the crowd sang Sweet Caroline. I can only conclude it was Fran and Richman.


  5. Ollie is doing a great job running the ball…would love to see more of Davis. Still would love to know why Ollie wasn’t the prime back last year.
    Would love to see Headhunter Patrick Jones at the other #1 DE… he brings a little nasty.. saw Reynolds a couple of times- if someone recorded the game check him out – is he an up n comer ?
    Aaron Matthews… WUPs there it was… nice catch- bad drop that stopped a drive ( I think- correct me if needed)
    George the Animal with a tight end-ish catch. He epitomizes what PITT FB should be in mental and physical toughness. He’s a man.
    The Blunder from from down under is the man from down under. “Play me diggery- do blue.” Develop into the Thunder from down under. Become a lethal weapon.
    Hoping our passing game shapes up and we see open receivers open and getting the ball all over the field- kinda like you see in most other games.

    On our prediction thread, like most of the brethren and Annie I picked us to lose. We were still in a post Sept 8 th depression. On the season prediction thread we did before the season I counted the GT game as one of my 6 wins.


  6. Now that we are 3 games in, I’m wondering how people feel about Kenny Pickett in comparison with the view after the Miami game, and discussed at length over the Summer. There seemed to be a collective opinion that Kenny could be the next Marino, or at least a QB that could take Pitt to the Conference title. What say you after three games? Has he met expectations or disappointed? My view is that reality is somewhat lower than the incredibly high pedestal he was placed on.


  7. you can watch it on WATCH ESPN app. I watch a little yesterday and noticed Shane Roy getting blown off the ball most of the time. Or as we called back when I played…he was on roller skates. Reed is right, he is a liability.
    JoeL,That raspy sound was definitely me. Turn down your hearing aids next time. Fran, larry, myself and my wife will be attending the UNC game assuming the stadium wasn’t washed away. Hope Bernie and others can make it as planned. .


    1. Richman — I’m a bit surprised by your Shane Roy comment. Course it’s tough to tell what’s going on inside when you watch live, but SR did make a couple of nice plays early, and Pitt did seem to shut down the dive play pretty well…

      But the video doesn’t lie…

      Go Pitt.


  8. The Good, the bad, and the ugly: That GT fake punt. Good for us, bad for them, and I’m sure a decision that generated a lot of ugly comments on the GT POV!

    To be serious, that fake punt attempt did not come off as aggressive, to me it felt more like desperation.


  9. The good, the play of our defensive line for the most part. I think this group will be the key if Pitt is to contend in the Coastal. They will have to exert pressure on the QB consistently to help our less then solid play at the safety position.—On Pickett’s deep throws he was one step from being flattened on most of the long throws which might account for some of the under throws he made. Even on the 60 yard pass completion he was one step from being flattened. Also I can no reason for not giving Shocky a chance on deep throws. He’s got the speed to go long and the height to contend with the possible jump balls they might occur on those throws.—-The bad the almost stupid call by Narduzzi to go for it on a 4th and three from about the GT 42 yard line with a little over 4 minutes left in the game. You got a 12 point lead so punting and making GT go the distance of the field twice to beat you is the right call. You don’t give GT the ball close to mid field if you missed on the 4th and 3. Thus Pitt’s best penalty was Hendon getting called on the false start and the ensuing 5 yard penalty. That kept Narduzzi from the second worst bone head call of the day. Johnson gets that award on the fake put deep in his own territory with about 7 yards to get the first down.—The ugly has to be MY lack in connection to what our punter is likely to come up with anytime he is on the field. I’d consider giving him a one way ticket back to Australia and soliciting a walk on punter in the Pitt News to handle the job for the remainder of the season.


    1. Don’t know if you were at the game or watching on TV, but the announcers postulated that Narduzzi might have been trying to draw an off-sides on that 4 and 3 and if he didn’t get it, would take the delay of game penalty and punt from the 47.


      1. That was exactly my thought as I was watching the play by play refresh on my cell phone when the penalty showed up. I thought it also then gave our punter more room to get the ball up in the air for hang time coverage….which on second thought he has NEVER done to my recollection. 😦


  10. Re: your comment that the “GT team we played was not a good one” and “off all day”, why do you think GT’s offense looked good during the USF game and then bad when they played Pitt? Its because Pitt made them look bad. That is credit to the coaches for playcalling and the players for getting their jobs done. PSN has a nice post with videos describing the play calls and execution. To me, that’s another notch in Pitt’s “good” column. Gotta give credit where credit is due.


  11. I thought it was great that after 2-3 offensive plays a GT fan stood up in our section and started yelling “Fire Paul Johnson!” I really would have put my money on a Pitt fan screaming about Narduzzi after all the negativity flying around after that PSU game. It has to be tough to watch the Option offense year in and year out.

    Good: Ollison is hitting the holes well and they are being created by Aston and the O-Line. I think KP is doing a great job on the short and intermediate passes. I was so impressed with the defense shutting down the triple option and making GT play from behind. Exactly what was needed.

    The Bad: I think KP does need to work on the deeper throws. Even on the 60yd pass the receiver had to slow up. Could be multiple factors and I’m hoping it improves. At least he is taking the shots. Also, I hope I never have to see one more jet sweep on a 3rd and short. Our players are running 15 yds east and west.

    The Ugly: has to be the 2nd half ineffectiveness. I’m all for a team being 2-1 and 1-0 in the ACC. The team will evolve every week. But they HAVE to be asking themselves what is going on as it is glaring to everyone in the country. It’s trending (slowly) in the right direction. But college ball needs to be played aggressive for 4 quarters.

    I like our chances to beat UNC so I hope the team gets their work done this week!


    1. Yes, Pickett needs work on the deep balls, he puts a lot of arc under his passes, but in all fairness the 60 yd pass was not under-thrown, it was a good deep pass, not perfect, but pretty close.


  12. All teams have pluses and minuses. Taking advantage of them is another question. We seem to play well in the first half’ then get overconfident, think the game is over and make no adjustments. This will cost us victories.

    UNC looms and we need this game to win the Coastal.

    Grand kids not interested in Pitt gear at the game but grandson did get a Pitt fidbit spinner


  13. I also wonder – although I don’t know the validity of this:

    If Pitt draws a delay of game penalty the clock stops and the next play is untimed until the snap. By pulling offsides the clock continued to run and then they let it run down more before the punt. We’re talki :10-:15 seconds more but maybe that was the plan?


  14. Good – lots of stuff. Fran’s tailgate; Kressman’s kickoffs and FG; Scarton’s (spelling?) holding!; Mack showing he’s a pretty reliable WR; trick plays; we ran a screen play!!!!; KP standing in against the rush; KP getting experience; the OL opening holes;Ollison and Hall running hard; George Aston!; Coach Bates approach; Weaver!; Hamlin flashed how good he can be; an interception!; a ton of players played – again; our punter had a good bounce-back game; Morrissey apparently handled their big nose guard pretty well; excellent turn-around effort following the rain-game fiasco…

    Bad — a bunch of stuff. Aaron Mathews dropping one after catching one; two of our DBs, one was Motley, getting tangled up and letting a GT WR run free (he dropped the pass); committing, or almost committing, too many penalties; we lack a TE threat; our second half scoring.

    Ugly — GT’s fake punt was one of the worst calls ever. That big slow guy would have needed another 10 seconds to get to the first down marker…

    Another Good: Reed and his POV.

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Good:
    We won.
    We shut GT out in the 1st half.
    #81 Medure getting off his block to help stop the fake punt.
    Hamlin’s two nice TFLs and one nice hit.
    #17 Weaver’s play all game.
    Oduwu and Wirginis each made a couple of nice plays.
    Pitt’s hustle on defense.
    The flee flicker call and execution on 1st down after a GT turnover.
    1st half – Watson calling pass plays on 1st and 2nd downs.
    The fake jet sweep that resulted in an Ollison TD run. GT bit.
    The lack of Pitt penalties in the first half.
    Pickett didn’t need to run and had time in the pocket.
    Aston’s blocking.
    Pitt’s defense against the Triple Option.
    Kickoff through the end zone with no returns.
    GT’s replacement RBs were faster than the guy that got injured and Pitt still stopped them.

    The facemask penalty. First, it wasn’t a facemask. Second, #75 GT should have received 15 yards for unnecessary roughness on that same play, and third it was a fumble. That single play changed the momentum of the game in the second half. It should have been Pitt’s ball and the game is essentially over.

    Ollison was tackled in the backfield on several plays. It happens, but for all the good creativity in play calling there were also many predictable calls by Watson.
    Aaron Mathew’s missed catch (ball hit him in the hands) on third down. Gotta make plays.
    Picket’s knee injury. Hopefully he’s fine.
    Punting has improved, but still has a ways to go.
    The jet sweep flicker and Picket’s interception. The WR was double covered. Throw it away.

    Paul Johnson’s play calling (good for us).
    My prediction. I was way off at GT 42 Pitt 31.
    The lack of scoring in the 2nd half.
    The need to recover an on-side kick to win. After such a solid performance, we could have grabbed defeat from the jaws of victory.
    Cut blocks – most that I saw were legal, but there were a few beyond 5 yards down field.


  16. The Ugliest: the second half (once again)

    So fat this year, Pitt looks like a 22nd ranked team in the 1st half … and a 122nd ranked team in the 2nd half.


    Liked by 1 person

  17. I thought Weaver had a monster game!
    I think Pickett hasn’t touched his max potential but is progressing nicely
    GT coach called the fake punt for the same reason idiot Tomlin should have on side kicked yesterday. His defense was getting manhandled by Pitt’s offense. The game was being played 3 yards beyond the LOS first half. Pitt’s O and D both kicked ass first half.

    I see no bad and ugly because we won and dominated play for 3 quarters.

    Kudos to the coaching staff for having them ready to play post last weeks worst loss ever. No easy thing.


  18. As Reed aptly pointed out before the season, Pickett has very limited game experience, and his passing numbers are above average at best. And that has proven out thus far.

    Nonetheless, I definitely see an upside and expect him to be very productive QB in the next 2 years. He has a lot of poise for his little experience, and should only get better.

    BTW, Mack made an outstanding catch on a 3rd down in the 3rd quarter, wwb


  19. The good:
    Weaver, Ollison, and also Motley on a few key plays. Winning.

    The bad: 2nd half of course

    The ugly: Watson’s lack of adjustments, real creativity (not just a gimmick play or two), not exploiting defensive weaknesses and staying away from their strengths…just really poor offensive coaching.


  20. The good – I listened to the game. I seem to be more calm listening to the radio.
    The bad – Where does the offense go during the second half of the games?
    The ugly – Watching the lead slowly evaporate.


  21. The Good:
    PN and the D game plan. Great job. Period.
    Young DL. Weaver is a very good player.
    Wirginis. Good for him for getting his stuff together. He is very talented.
    The OL, TE and FB run blocking. Ashton is a stud. Carrigan and Sear are very good blockers for young guys.

    The bad:
    Watson. Stop running the ball on 3rd or 4th down and more than three yards. Did it against PSU on fourth in a jumbo set (idiotic). Did it 3 or 4 times this past week with jet sweeps. Let Pickett throw.
    Watson. Get Shockey in the damn game and throw to him. He is explosive. Get Davis some carries.
    Picket late on long throws. He has the arm strength, it is a timing thing.

    The ugly:
    Pitt’s penalties.
    Colors. I assume Pitt is waiting until next year to permanently switch to the royal blue and yellow. It will take years to switch all the facilities. That gold and dark blue are every where.


  22. The Good: We won. At this point, we Pitt fans should just take some joy in that– we aren’t good enough to be critical of ANY win.

    The Bad: See above. While I liked the dominance up front on both sides of the ball (in the first half) I’m not overly impressed with a 5-point win at home against that GT squad. I still have lots of concerns.

    The Ugly: Man, I felt awful Sunday morning! I think someone spiked one of the 35 drinks I had Saturday.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Games against GT are perfect games for the brighter colored Pitt unis — since we otherwise have the same colors…

    Contrast is good — I think it would even help KP spotting our guys downfield…

    Go Pitt.


    1. It will be played. They’re not going to cancel two of their games, as you only have 1 bye week. Nothing in the NC newspapers but this:

      “We’re more worried about what’s going on right now across the state with the people that are being affected by the hurricane,” Larry Fedora said. “That’s really where all of our thoughts need to be. We do have to prepare for a football game this week against Pitt and we will do that, but there are a lot of people out there that are suffering.”


        1. You know, this storm was very weird. Parts of North Carolina got monsooned, Chapel Hill, as well as Charlotte did not. Except for some pockets. I had totally cleared by outside deck of furniture, grills, bar, etc. And it didn’t even get wet. Chapel Hill only had 2-4 inches of rain in most spots, about the same as Charlotte.


          1. We had way more than that, Emel. It rained for days. Today, the Trader Joe’s / Starbucks shopping center off of Franklin St. was under water.


            1. Really, we only had intermittent rain from Friday evening to Sunday evening.
              I see Eastgate Crossing in CH was flooded pretty good. Must be in a low lying area, flood plane.
              Hope you and yours weren’t affected.


            2. Thanks Emel. We’re all good. We actually had more rain last night than all of the other days combined. Heard it was about 6 inches overnight. #twss


  24. Narduzzi at least had the team ready to play vs a Ok team. GT with that offense is hard to play. It just is. As I have stated Pitt has talent on defense. But they need to play with more speed and take better angles. But they have the talent to be a good D. OL is serviceable which I thought would be the case. Not great but OK. Narduzzi and Watson are bringing Pickett along at a slower pace than I thought. I see the reasoning but another couple of games should produce more vertical passing. Since I root for the players, my hope is they can have a successful season. It is still doable with the coastal looking suspect..


    1. Chet — very similar to how they handled Peterman. I remember in the early season games how we would run on Third and seven type plays even with Peterman at QB…

      I surmise it’s because of Coach Duzz’s fear of turnovers…

      Go Pitt.


  25. The Flea Flicker that was intercepted, was a very poorly designed poor. And let me explain why, but…

    First off it shouldn’t have been called. You use Flea Flicker’s ie. Trick Plays to change the momentum of a game. Pitt had all the momentum in the game, going into that play. So there was no reason to try and change the momentum of the game. Let me reset the game circumstances.

    It was late in the 3rd Quarter, only 2 minutes and change left, Pitt was leading 24-6. Pitt was on the march to another score, being on the GT 29 yard line. Pitt was in total control of the game
    It was 1st and 10 on the GT 29 yard line.


    Next I’ll explain why it also a very poorly designed play


  26. Good: Plenty of good. The Defense came to play. No wide open receivers, except maybe once or twice, although GT’s passing game is certainly not very good. Running game and kickoffs into the end zone with no return.Trick plays on offense to mix things up. KP threw some solid passes, not trying to do it all and not trying to hurdle defenders (my heart skipped a beat when he wet down). GT is a middle of the pack team and Pitt needs to consistently start beatiing middle of the pack teams.

    Bad: Play calling at times. Other teams are focusing on the jet sweep. If running the jet sweep, need to give it to Shocky more frequently, who can really fly. Others ran jet sweep more like a twin ngine prop than a jet.

    Ugly: Guess I need to say the offense in 2nd half, although they did respond with a FG after the 1st GT touchdown. Hoping for a 2nd half breakout on Offense vs. NC (together with a solid 1st half again)


    1. That article is a great read on Johnny’s first game at Pitt.

      Amazing to think what laid ahead for freshman Tony D…

      Go Pitt.


  27. Up until that point, Pitt’s defense played like a Michigan State defense under Nardo, which is what I wrote pre-game, Pitt would have to do for Pitt to have a chance to win.

    With 3 minutes to go in the 3rd Quarter, Pitt’s defense only had given up 6 points and 165 Total Yards.

    That boneheaded call by Watson, certainly did change the Momentum of the game, as it went from an easy Pitt win……to hanging on. Thank God Brightwell clobbered the GT player on the Onsides Kick, as that was a almost a perfect onside’s kick.

    Goes to show you, just one boneheaded call can change the whole outcome of a game. These coaches are supposed to be professionals. And they are getting paid lot$ of money to basically be prepared for 12 games an entire year.


    1. FWIW, I agree that there was absolutely no need to get cute at that point. Even if Pitt only gets a FG, it takes time off the clock and expands the lead to 24 pts, meaning GT would not only have to score 3 TDS but also all 3 two-point conversions.

      To make it worse, a PI call and blatant hold call are missed, placing the ball past mid-field. Definitely the 2nd half turning point.

      As far as play-calling, Pitt dominated the first half by primarily running up the gut. All 3 TD runs were from a pro-set running between the tackles. Yet, the entire 2nd half, it seems that it was all sweeps … against a team known for its team speed.

      But at the end when we needed a first down …. right up the gut … 1st down Pitt and a kneel down.



      1. Good points bro wwb. Game started with Q running strong and ended with Q running strong.
        He was avg’g 5.5 ypc. Up 24-6 he should have gotten the ball more. Connor and company use to pound teams in the 2nd half, wear them out. You pound the will out of them


  28. The Good : A win is a win is a win. Especially a Conference win.

    The Bad : Scoring nothing but a FG in the 2nd half, which were the first Pitt points in the 2nd half in 3 games

    The Ugly : The size of the crowd, almost nailed it at 35K (announced 34,284) The opening Conference Game should always be a sellout. Plus Pitt and GT have played some exciting games and have a history.
    And a special ugly note for the white pants, when GT was also wearing white pants.


  29. Emel:
    Spot on!
    3 runs and a kick gets the win easy.
    It was unnecessary and poorly timed and as my wife said why show it then when you did not need it.


  30. I am glad we are in a major conference but my beef with the ACC is their officials are poor and their announcers always sound like the’re the home announcers for the good old boy team. Now the game. The second half problem. Defense gets gassed, it is obvious, because the offense does not eat enough clock in the second half. Its a downward spiral. We get out adjusted by opposing coaches at halftime. Stop throwing to Mathews until he catches the ball. Use Shocky Jaques and Mack who make it look easy and have speed. It is sooooo great to have Aston back for the O but especially the run game. Hope Pickett is OK. He is coming along for his amount of playing time and he is not getting the 3 seconds Joe Moore once said his boys had to give Marino. In some lists GT was ranked this year and this win changes my take on the season for sure even though Johnson was unhappy with his teams poor performance in the first half. Everything else has been covered already by other POVers. PS Crowd was noisy but unbelievably scant. Hope it improves with next game.H2P

    Liked by 1 person

  31. For the first time this coming weekend PITT will play a conventional offense against a team on a similar plateau. Albany never challenged, psu had the veteran QB in a monsoon and GT is GT. Now we will see this PITT defense unleashed.


  32. Back to Narduzzi’s almost bone headed call attempting to go for it on a 4th and 3 from the GT 42 yard line with plus 4 minutes to go. From the Press Briefing today Narduzzi’s mentions the Herndon penalty as an opportunity lost. Again I think Narduzzi was going to try to go for it absent the penalty. I view the penalty as an opportunity gained most certainly after downing the punt on the one.


  33. Bates did well in his first Pitt game as DC against the Triple Option. As I posted above Pitt’s D had only given up 6 points and 165 yards thru almost 3 Q’s. Until the momentum changing Flea Flicker interception and then resulting long return.

    Gotta say, as peeps mentioned the poor officiating. Could have been 2 GT penalties on that play. On the interception itself, could have been pass interference or face guarding on the GT DB. As his head wasn’t even turned back towards the LOS.

    And Aston got held on the return, replays clearly showed a GT player was holding him by the collar shoulder pad.

    Were either of these wrong calls challengeable ? (didn’t have Hillgrove & Bostick on, what did they say ?)
    As I was watching on Fox Sports South and they had 2 yahoo’s doing the game


  34. Cudos to ike btw, for pointing out that Bates had coached at Navy. Which looked like it helped in Pitt’s prep for this game. GT has run all over Nardo’s (Conklin’s) defense in prior years.


    1. I heard they practiced in the spring. But then again those practices are closed. They were better prepared for sure until they got gassed.


  35. I don’t know if you guys and gals got this one last week concerning the coin PITT toss? Narduzzi said that it may have been his fault for not just telling Bookser, “Defense or Offense” Why in the heck would you choose to play defense first when you won the coin toss? I don’t know if I explain that well but he can be a real goof sometimes.


  36. Sorry about the jumbled word comment. I was testing you all. Actually I was interrupted by my better half 3 times while trying to post that and it makes no sense to me and I wrote it. ike


  37. Very Good – Ollison who once again showed himself to be a ONE MAN running crew.

    Good – A lot of good on both sides of the Ball

    Bad – Pickett is going to have to show he can throw the Ball BETTER than what he has. Starting this week, the Offense is going to DEMAND it!

    Ugly – No ugly this week. Pitt won… albeit against a 4 Win Team.


  38. Lived down here since 1992, never saw such a weird hurricane as this. There are still some remnants of it in Eastern North Carolina. It’s sunny here atm.

    Only got about 2-4 inches of mostly moderate rainfall. My outdoor deck/patio, which had been cleared of everything, per their warnings, didn’t even get wet.


  39. UGLY: Play calling is still an issue. Trick plays are great but should not be the offense … they should enhance the offense.

    The pick was clearly pass interference. I can’t get too upset with that one. How isn’t there an underneath route to check down to if it’s not open, however?

    I don’t have an issue with Pickett because I don’t think the play calling has allowed him to get into a rhythm. If you’re concerned with the OL, then do some quick hits … and why are all the routes to the sideline? Completing a pass in the middle of the field is within the rules of football … last I checked, anyways.

    This Wannstedtian approach of keeping it close and winning it in the 4th quarter has disaster written all over it.


  40. Not to undermine the accolades, but GT was playing without their starting QB and RB. The lack of good play calling could have been in the need to make changes quickly because of personnel.


      1. Plus missing their leading tackler until second half. It’s like them playing without surging for a half. Had to sit. Targeting last week. Pitt got lucky.


  41. It’s not homerism complaining about ACC officials. If you watch a lot of football you’ll see ACC crews doing other games, like OSU-TCU. They are horrible. I mean really bad.

    The Good: The coaches keeping the team together after the PSU debacle. I did not think it was possible. I was wrong.
    The Bad: The officials were bad, the coaching in the second half was questionable, and sorry, the punter is bad.
    The Ugly: Those who complain about the music the students like and Sweet Caroline. Hey, not my style, but the kids love the music and the song. Let them have it if that’s what they want. Seriously, some people don’t realize how they sound when they complain about that stuff. Sort of like my Dad complaining about Zeppelin. Let it go.


  42. At the Penn State game a guy next to me was yelling at kids in front of us to sit down and said that they should be in the student section if they want to stand. SMH. I told him, no, he should be on his couch.

    Sweet Caroline is dumb but it does wake up the stadium. Sometimes dumb is fun.


    1. In my seats for the pedo fiasco, we were told by the usher to sit down cause the Yinzers behind us couldn’t see.

      We were flanked by pedo fans, and numerous fights broke out during the game.

      Oh how I hate penn state! Smug, denying, enabling, creepy cultists…


  43. The good: Excellent bounce back from last week, means strong coaching and senior leadership.
    Total first half dominance.

    The Bad: Letting GT get back in the game. Don’t mind going for the jugular with the trick play, but Pickett needs to not throw into double coverage or throw long enough that no one but the receiver can catch the ball. Two games in a row with a short pass that was intercepted. I also would have preferred running the ball down their throat at the time which would have completely demoralized them.

    The UGLY: Fan support was terrible for the ACC opener. Really think this is on the marketing staff. Need to promote the ACC as the real season. Especially with the students which looked like half of the Penn State Game. This is where Heather is dropping the ball and has the greatest opportunity. The sooner ACC games matter the sooner we get better. The ACC Network can’t get here fast enough. Students need to show up for all ACC games. It turns out the Penn State game was a loser for Pitt in many ways. HEATHER, CANCEL NEXT YEARS GAME!!!!!

    Not a big fan of Sweet Caroline, but it is the loudest Pitt Fans get all game. Too bad we can’t get that volume of Let’s Go Pitt when we really need it.


    1. Yes, I do think Pickett underthrew the interception, but that wasn’t my problem with the play—-the problem was that the receiver was wide, wide open and Pickett threw it 2 seconds too late, after taking a couple more steps to his left, which is why it was underthrown. Too many rollouts to his left. But, if he chucked that ball two steps sooner, then it’s a TD


  44. PITT WINS, PITT WINS, PITT WINS and then there was silence from the back gallery. Not unexpected and I understand but it does kind of prove a theory I have about many PITT fans.

    PITT badly needs to beat UNC this week. Narduzzi is still very much deep in the woods.. This is kind of one of HCPN bigger games and possibly a turning point in his tenure at PITT?


    1. We are self loathing? When you’ve experienced countless years of Pitting and SOP, you begin to question the good because it never lasts for long. And looking back on the good, it wasn’t really that good.


      1. Those are the two words I’m looking for. You don’t think I’ve been on this train wreck for years? I look forward not backwards. It’s a lot more healthy that way.


      2. I know I’m going to get grief for this, but Pitting and SOP are in your head. Stop using that word and acronym because you’re just looking for those situations. You’ll always find it.


  45. Obviously the Good is a win, especially a conference win.
    The Bad is not being able to keep things moving in the second half.
    The Ugly is the lack of identity for this team. Hoping that is developed but we seem a bit haphazard with our offense. I see times when we should continue to exploit the running game and don’t. Our passing game is not good, at least not yet. There are short and long passes but need those 10-12 yard routes to move the chains.



    1. Pitt is a school that’s got about 30k core fans. Visitors might be another 5-10k. The casual fan another 10-15k. Pitt needs a 50k venue. Oh wait, pitt did have that 18 years ago. Shift fans to the lower bowl. Tarp the upper deck. Heinz looked really bad to me on TV. Almost as bad as the white pants.


      Liked by 1 person

  46. The good: Pitt wins, we are not fsu, the Q’s, the D, the kicking game, Paris Ford was on the field

    The bad: 2nd half play calling, the botched trick play, officiating, leaving the tailgating early, not golfing for 2 weeks

    The ugly: losing the previous week lyke we did, that bad taste from the pedo loss, the B1G Joke teams losing 7 games to unranked opponents with only two being P5 teams


  47. Hold on down there, JoeL!
    GOOD: Defense, Oline, and Running game.
    BAD: Drops and lack of separation by the WRs.
    UGLY: Second half drop off (again), southern cooking referee calls to keep GT in the game.


  48. Fans: If you win they will come. While this game’s attendence was worse than normal (a la prev weeks play) watch the other stadiums during weekends. Other schools like Pitt ie., city school, not state university, competes with pro team next day etc. we are not as bad as some think. Purdue and NW both have turned their teams around and their attendance shows it .Duke only holds 35,000 and they do not fill their stadium. It is just that even 45,000 in a box that holds 70,000 looks bad. In addition we have to put up with BB next door till middle of Oct. Why cant those SOBs go away on Labor day as they used to. Only sport that goes on 7 months a year— and it is boring to watch. Get out of our parking spots its football time now.


  49. Alan Saunders does a nice job breaking down film on Pitt’s games on Pittsburgh Sports Now.

    Interesting insights this week on what Pitt did offensively and defensively to get the win against GT.

    Go Pitt.


  50. The Good: Ollison, the defense and Pickett not out with the year with a knee injury. Also, Tech’s receivers dropping passes.

    The Bad: Watson’s play calling in the second half. The flea flicker was stupid. Your defense just forced a turnover and you’re up 18. Don’t be in fear of being called conservative by the fans. Just run the football, take time off the off the clock and throw it on third down if you need to. Then when up 24-12, 3rd and inches, just QB sneak it. The gap to Pickett’s right was more than enough to get the first down.

    Tech’s receivers open and dropping passes. Carolina’s guys won’t drop passes, so why are these guys so wide open?


  51. Regarding the flea flicker, hindsight clearly verifies that it was the wrong time for that play call … but you see college coaches do something like this all the time. When they have momentum (I.e., after a big turnover/sudden possession change), offensive coordinators try to ride the momentum and frequently go for the home run play. Back in my glory days, I played defense and I remember the first time my d-coordinator told me this — and amazingly, he was right. You see o-coordinators try it all the time.
    And because of that, a well coached defense will be ready for it.


  52. I do agree that GT didn’t play very well and had a lot of unforced errors, dropped passes etc.
    But isn’t that a part of the game. The team that makes big plays and fewer mistakes usually wins.

    It seems that Pitt has rarely played teams that make mistakes in the last few years. Part of that is that when you put pressure on a team, they are more likely to make mistakes.

    In any case why look a gift horse in the mouth, just be happy that things went our way. The better team usually gets the breaks,


    1. Hey,, remember where and who you are. You can discount or throw out Pitt big plays and count everything positive as luck and pick and choose your favorite stats but any opponent success was because we suck and that is who we are, have been, and always will be, forever, amen.


  53. Of course we are biased, and we don’t expect homers but ACC broadcasters do seem to root against us and we seem to get fewer calls from the refs. It is a southern league, and we are damn Yankees.


  54. Face it … when the team executes, the play calling is fine. And when they don’t execute, the play calling stinks.

    While I still don’t care for the gadget play call in the 3rd quarter that was intercepted … if Pickett throws the ball 2 seconds earlier, it would have been a TD and Watson would have been a genius.

    If Pickett has a recurring fault, it seems that he seems hesitant before passing … as if he doesn’t trust his WR to run the correct or he has trouble locating the receivers. This is part of his inexperience and I would expect to see improvement as the year progresses



  55. As I said before the Season started, Pickett is NOT elite in any one category… with the exception of his willingness to COMPETE.

    Despite what everyone would like to think, it is obvious that his Arm Strength and Accuracy are both pretty AVERAGE. He does NOT seem to the pocket when he steps up to throw. At the same time he seems to NOT be all that fluid when it comes to rolling out and throwing on the run.

    The GOOD news is that he is YOUNG in both age and experience.

    Problem is starting this week, the Offense is going to DEMAND the Pitt Passing Game to start firing on all cylinders.

    The time for being able to simply RELY on getting BIG Plays from Qadree Ollison is quickly coming to an END!


  56. His receivers aren’t getting quick separation so he’s had to hold onto the ball.

    I think well get passed on a lot during the rest of the season. In both this game and PSU the opponent’s receivers were wide open and dropping passes.


    1. I have to agree with you.

      Though Pitt did show three or four different looks (3-4, 4-3, 5-2 and some other variations) on defense against GT so who knows, maybe Narduzzi is learning and can adjust mid-game…. Time will tell.


  57. Everyone is saying GT is a bad team – but if you look, most all the major sporting sites have them ranked higher than Pitt even after this past week.


    1. Not sure why UNC has a 66% chance of winning per the ESPN chart…

      UNC recruits fairly well and definitely has some roster talent. They’ve also had a week and a half to prepare as they learned about the cancellation mid-week. And, they are not banged up from a physical game against GT like we are.

      On the other hand, the best tackling practice is gained playing a team like GT, so Pitt should tackle well this week.

      UNC will throw the ball better than GT, though the UNC QB has four INTs in two games so maybe we will get a couple of turnovers this week.


  58. Yeah, I would like to know how UNC is predicted 66% winners when looking at that very chart? There is not ONE thing they do better than PITT. I guess it’s the home-field advantage?


  59. Anson Whaley of Cardiac Hill points out that ESPN had UNC as a 100% probability of winning vs East Carolina 2 weeks ago, UNC lost 41-19.

    But then again, this is UNC vs Pitt, and history shows a Pitt loss. Not only has Pitt not beaten UNC recently, Pitt has only won in the state of NC 3 times in the last half century. The last 2 times at Duke and the 09 Belk Bowl. wwb


  60. UNC needs a win badly. Things are precarious with the NC program and road games are always an unknown. Pitt’s first road game with NC feeling some heat makes this game a tougher game than it should be. But Pitt understands their season became coastal or bust after the PSI game.


  61. My quick takes:

    The good:

    We won. Would have been easy for the team to mail it in after the thumping they took from PSU.
    We defended the option as well as I can remember. We finally figured out that the defense has to attack across the line of scrimmage. Nice job by the entire defense.
    We made our extra point kicks! Didn’t bobble the snaps.
    Ollison running hard. When he gets going north and south, he’s a load.

    The bad:

    Ollison running east and west. When Ollison runs laterally, he’s not much of a threat.
    Secondary still is having breakdowns in coverage. We dodged a few bullets with GT receivers who were wide open, but GT couldn’t convert.
    Oline still needs to give Pickett a cleaner pocket to throw.
    Pickett still has happy feet. Maybe it’s because the Oline is still breaking down, but Pickett threw half of his balls on the run. Effectively cuts the field in half. Even when he’s in the pocket, Pickett is not planting and stepping into his throws. Hopefully, this will come with game experience.
    Need to get Jacques-Louis and Butler-Jenkins more involved in the passing game.

    The Ugly:



  62. This year, break the annual NC brain fart. Win! Regardless of ESPN %, most rankings have NC below Pitt—- oops forgot we tend to loose the ones we are supposed to win. Historical note. Pitt used to play NC from time to time as an independent and while Big East. My recollection is we about split those games. Not sure when Fedora arrived there.

    Liked by 1 person

  63. “The old North State”has not been friendly to us it’s been darn right hostile. I have witnessed five losses to the Tar Heels, to do the Wolfpack and one to the East Carolina Pirates. Great game with Alex van pelt going up against Jeff Blake. I don’t think Pitt won another game that season after coming to Greenville riding five wins. Lotta future pros were on that Pitt team: Hamilton, Spindler, Goose, Israel, Gilbert, Grossman, Dan MooreTE….

    As far as the Tar Heels, in the last 12 quarters of action I think we had the lead 495% of the action in those games… Blowing it in the last minute or two.

    Liked by 1 person

  64. How about an update on how many POVers picked GT over Pitt and visa versa. it seemed to me there was about a 50/50 split with many of those that picked Pitt did so only because they almost never pick against Pitt.


  65. Picking up from yesterdays critique of the Disaster Trick Flea Flicker, besides it being a poor play decision at that juncture of the game and having all the momentum, with Pitt up 24-6, driving for another score, with 1st down at the GT 29.

    Beside all that, it was a poorly designed play. And why do i say that ?

    Well you have the QB lined up wide on the wrong side of the field. Pickett should have been lined up on the other side of the field and then taking the pitchback from left to right, not from right to left. As the play was designed, Pickett has to run to his left, takes the pitchback with momentum going left and then has to throw across his body, ie he can not step into the throw. Which is probably why the ball was underthrown.
    Add in the factor he, so far’ underthrows deep passes, rather than overthrowing them, and the throwing across his body just made that throw much more difficult to complete.

    So the whole play was poorly designed, Picket should have been lined up wide on the other side of the field, take the pitchback going left to right and then he would have been able to ‘step into’ throwing the deep pass.

    Also there were no other options to throw to, as this play design only had one WR running a route, which is guaranteed to get Double Coverage…..which it did.

    3rd video on this is The Disaster Flea Flicker


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