I think we all know we’re not going to end up the season with only two wins on the year. I’m not sure how many more we’re going to get than that but I do believe we are going to get more.

Let’s look at the schedule and you Pitt fans tell us how many games you think we’re going to win and who the wins will be against in your comments.

As we know so far we are 2-2 with wins against mighty Albany (33-7) and against Georgia Technical College (24-19).

On the other hand we lost a squeaker to arch rival Penn State 51-6 then stormed Chapel Hill and allowed a crippled by suspension North Carolina team to come from behind and beat us 38 to 35.

Is your stomach upset yet?

Well, our next five opponents are a combined 18-1 on the season.  OK then!

Here’s the full schedule with what happened and some info about the upcoming opponents.  Name the wins…

For a bit of early season help here are the current ACC standings and info after Week 4…

ACC Standings

OK – here are my future wins.  During this last offseason I looked at the Pitt football program, the team and the coaching staff from every angle I could think of, really researched what I could and wrote about what I found.  I came away unimpressed and unconvinced that we would get back to the seven or eight win level of Narduzzi’s first two years.  I pretty much felt the same way at the same point in time last preseason also and so predicted a five win season (with a ceiling of six)  – but that was mostly because I felt the QB position was going to be major hindrance.

This season I feel better about the QB situation but worse about the overall talent level of the two-deep.  I’ve never felt Pitt’s coach staff – from the head coach on down – was good enough to scheme and game plan to mask deficiencies in talent on-field.  That is showing up big time so far this year.

This preseason I again predicted five wins but after watching our kids play their first four games I’m going to have to (for the sake of this particular article) revise downward.  Here who I think we can beat.

Win #3:  Virginia in Virginia.  Currently they are 3-1 and have beaten both Louisville and FSU.  In any past season that would be pretty eye-opening but not this year. Both those teams stink.  They also lost to a rather poor Indiana team so I’m giving our Panthers a shot at taking that match.

v sked

Win #4: Wake Forest at Wake Forest.  So far in 2018 this team hasn’t been real impressive beating Tulane and Towson.  They played a very good Boston College team to a 41-34 loss then got soundly trounced by Notre Dame. I think we can go down there and come out with a “W”.

WF Sked

I’m scrambling around trying to find a fifth win somewhere but can’t put my finger on one at this point.  Perhaps we’ll pull an upset somewhere down the line and that would be good.  But the way this team has played so far I’m hard pressed to feel good about figuring another win out.  When we lost to North Carolina the way we did – allowing a team that was heavily impacted by suspensions with a 2nd string QB who had done virtually nothing in his career up to last Saturday (except beat us with a decent game last year) – that was the handwriting on the wall for me.

I could be wrong with this – I often am, but isn’t that the beauty of college ball?  You never know what you’ll get week to week.

How do you see the rest of the year playing out and against who do we put a “W” in the win column after the game?

 

 

 

238 thoughts on “Let’s Predict Our Remaining Wins!

  1. I’m sure they will win one more, but I don’t think it will be either of those road games. We don’t play all that well at UVA and Wake is a little better at home. I don’t like their chances in any of the away contests for that matter. Syracuse will throw for a gazillion yards, maybe Duke, maybe. Wow, 3-9 oh boy.

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  2. PITT wins the next 8 games and crushes the bowl game opponent. 🙂 .,. jus kidding to keep you all on my back…

    I’ll sleep on this article and get back.

    Wait until you see the new Post Gazette commercial. It’s 300% Pittsburgh!!

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      1. Syracuse used to be our gimmy conference win for years but they beat us last year and are 4 and 0. In the 23 years I’ve followed this program there has been no 4 and 0. Why can’t we ever have one special football year? I never thought I would be jealous of Syracuse football lol.

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  3. Instead of real analysis, I will say PITT wins every other game. So that has me with WF and Virginia as wins just like Reed. Oh yeah, this approach means predicted wins against UCF and ND as well. UCF win gives two years in a row of ending long win streaks.

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  4. Well I am glad you did not say Syracuse will be a win! I think we may win one game during the rest of the season. It will probably be Wake Forest. I am not so sure about the Virginia game. I still have bad memories from the 2007 game down there we lost 44-14. We were the only ones left in the Pitt section at the end of that game. I am not hoping we have only one more win, I hope we win them all! I am just being realistic. I have tuned out Narduzzi. He is not doing his job. I believe he has lost his team especially the better players. With each loss, the clock on Narduzzi will click closer to its inevitable midnight.

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  5. I hoped pre season 4/8 but probably 3/9 based on a composite of rankings and giving Pitt W’s for those ranked below. Hope I am wrong but do not see much change at this point. Narduzzie presser he admits to what’s wrong but frustratingly seems to not know how to fix it. Maybe he just does not have the talent(coaches and players). Wish I were wrong, but You all see the same things.

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  6. I picked 2 -5 in the first 7 games. I thought we would also lose to GT for one of those 5. So I guess I can pencil in another loss that I did not expect. So 6 – 6 it will be. We lose at UCF, ND, Miami and at VA in a Friday night game. 5 – 3 in the Coastal. We go to the lowest ACC designated bowl and …..

    H2P but SOP

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  7. Got to be 4-8 and so then you need to ask “Is this a successful season for HCPN?”.
    Answer is yes of course, I mean, getting these kids potty trained is a monumental task, so 4 wins would take a terrific Head Coach. Hey even if 3-9, with these dogs…

    Can you tell I didn’t care for that analogy?

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  8. Preseason I predicted 6-6…..
    But now I can’t find 4 more W’s no matter how hard I try :<( After looking at the remaining games my guess puts me on Reed’s ship: W’s over Virginia and Wake Forest to finish out the season.

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  9. Ok so the last 2 years we’ve beaten No. 2 Miami and No. 3 Clemson, in highly unlikely circumstances.

    So Nardo is somewhat connected in being a Lifer and all what that entails. And he’s the son of former HC, albeit at a lower level. So that leads me to believe he’ll probably get another highly unlikely win this year.
    (in 1, 2, 3. the snide gc comment)

    We beat Top 10 Notre Dame and Duke (that is one team we usually can beat, as long as the FGkicker doesn’t have an extreme angle)

    We lost to Wake cause they will need 1 win to become bowl eligible and Pitt is it !

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  10. We don’t win another game and finish 2-10…..but wait! The NCAA compliance office determines we used an ineligible player against Albany and we must vacate that win! Narduzzi blames the infraction on someone else claiming that he coached them on how to do their job, but they are just not doing it. We finish 1-11 and first in the weekly Bottom Ten poll so Nard-dog can claim that we won a championship.

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  11. 4-8. Pick any 2: VA, VATECH, WAKE

    Our defense will give up 120 pts combined over the next two games to UCF and Syracuse.

    We won our once-every-four-years upset against ND two years ago.

    Duke’s passing game is legit. Too good for us to beat.

    Ain’t no way we beat Miami on the road.

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  12. I expect way more than a .500 record from the Pitt FB team – and many on this blog have stated, and could very well be correct that this team may only win 5 or less games this season.

    That is unacceptable and disgusting!

    As an alumni, all Pitt sports fan and financial donor who has put up with mediocrity for over 35 years and only two 4-0 starts for Pitt FB in that span of time, I “express” my displeasure by writing letters to the Pitt administration, withholding donations and cancelling my season tickets (basketball recently and FB in the 1990’s).

    Once I get through this busy week of work, I will begin to write letters to the Pitt administration, HL & PG to name a few.

    But, in the meantime, HCPN has a chance to redeem himself and the Pitt FB by upsetting another ranked team in UCF. Can it happen, yes. Do I expect it to happen, usually yes, but right now Im disgusted with everything Pitt FB, so my expectations are diminishing. Will they pull the upset, probably not. Sad to say…

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  13. Is the defense as bad as they played on Saturday, or will they get up off the mat like the Steelers and get sufficient turnovers, third and fourth down plays etc to win many more games. My revised over/under is 4-8.

    The question is do the players and coaches have enough pride to punch someone in the mouth or do they continue to flounder like last year?

    Football is a game of emotion and momentum. Right now there is very little of both heading forward. If the defense continues to play like the Keystone Cops, I would bet on the under. If all those seniors have any pride, maybe they pull their big boy pants up and start making plays. It is not looking good.

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  14. Man, I think you all are serious in your thinking but I just hope my writings haven’t sent you over the edge.

    But things do look bad. For me a big red flag was being shut out in the 2nd half against Albany. It was exactly the same deal we pulled with YSU last season, with the difference being Albany didn’t score either. But still.

    GT just was not, and is not, a good team this season so that close win pretty much cemented in my mind that the team is what I thought it would be…not all that good.

    The weaknesses are as predicted…an OL that can’t pass protect, a WR corps who have a hard time getting open, a DL that can’t get pressure on opposing QBs and DBs who don’t have the talent or smarts to succeed at this level.

    I don’t see any of those things getting that much better in time.

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  15. September 24, 2018

    Pat Narduzzi Press Conference

    UCF Week

    PRESS CONFERENCE VIDEO

    HTML TRANSCRIPT LINK

    PAT NARDUZZI: Good afternoon. Obviously disappointed in last weekend’s game, three-point slugfest, I guess, as it is with those guys every year. But when I look at the back of that wall (with ‘ATTITUDE,’ ‘EFFORT’ and ‘TOUGHNESS’ graphics) and I look at our kids’ attitude and their effort and the toughness they played with, you never question that out of our guys. They played their tails off until the end on the road, which it’s never easy to go on the road.

    We don’t do everything perfect as coaches or players, and we all make mistakes at times, and those are some of the costly things, whether it’s a penalty or just an error in what to do and how to do it. That’s why we teach. That’s why we coach. It’s not going to be perfect. It’s not at any level, from Pop Warner to the NFL.

    But again, the biggest thing is are they giving you everything they’ve got, and our kids are playing hard. They care. Are they disappointed? No doubt about it.

    I’ve been on a lot of team buses, and I’ll share this with you. I’ve been on a lot of team buses through the years where you’re going — you come out of the locker room, you jump on the bus and you’re hearing some talk in the back of the bus, and you’re kind of like as a head coach or a defensive coordinator, you’re kind of like, shut up back there. But you know what, I don’t know if I — I was on the offensive bus, I’m talking the entire time, just silent. So it hurts. And I think when it hurts, that’s when you know your guys care, and the same thing was on the defensive bus.

    That’s a great thing, I think. Because it hurts for everybody. It’s not fun, but we can’t sit here and worry about it. Again, they’re always tough — the closer they are, the tougher they are because you know you’re actually one play away, and we had a lot of one plays on offense, defense and special teams, when you think about how it could have changed the game just on a positive note, Stocker makes a great play at the end of the half, he’s going to take that to the house. That’s just one of the positive things, I guess, when you say it’s a positive-negative. Positive that he got his hands on the ball; negative that he didn’t pull it down, he’s got great hands, too.

    So there’s a lot of positives to come back from it. We’ve got to learn from our mistakes and move on to Central Florida with — top 15 football team with a Heisman Trophy candidate for real. It’ll be the second one we’ve played this season. McKenzie Milton is a football player. He’s got a quick release, makes good decisions, the tempo is going to be going. They’re special there. And Pat Jasinski, their middle linebacker, he’s a football player, kind of like our Quintin Wirginis, he’s the guy that runs the show for them. So 58 and 56, some of those linebackers are always worth keeping an eye on in the game.

    With that I’ll open it up for questions.

    Q. After watching the film what did you see on those two touchdown passes that UNC got on you? Were those more physical or mental errors?
    PAT NARDUZZI: Well, it’s — I’m trying to think of — I know one of them I can think of. You’re talking —

    Q. There was one that —

    PAT NARDUZZI: One was a T shoot, I think I mentioned the word T shoot to you guys on Thursday. Do you remember that? You’re probably going, What is T shoot? T shoot is what we saw, but we weren’t surprised by it. You get in the game and things happen like this, and we’ll practice the T shoot — T shoot is when there’s maybe two receivers either side, usually it’s what we call a smash 7 over there and they send the tailback up the middle. We try to run one, which we run them, and they grabbed us around the waist, and we weren’t in position to make a play on the ball, and it’s something we watched — we watched tape from three years ago how many T shoots they’ve got.

    That’s the one I can think of, and then the other one, you know, I don’t remember another one. I remember Dane’s big pass.

    Q. It made it 35-28 —

    PAT NARDUZZI: Oh, on the little switch route. Again, just that was more just physical really. We’ve got to press it up and we’ve got to get on the guy. We didn’t get on him, and something just — probably more physical. You can say they’re physical and mental. We always talk about physical and mental. They’re both — mentally if you didn’t get on the right guy and didn’t get on him fast enough, it’s a little bit of both.

    Q. How do you address the penalties during practice? The Steelers have an officiating crew during practice.

    PAT NARDUZZI: We do the same thing, we’ve got referees. Every team meeting, obviously I guess Wednesday and Thursday, I start off the team meeting and we talk about yesterday’s practice, where we are, what we need to do today. Hey, let’s look at a review of what we did. I put it up there on a piece of paper, boom, stick it up there every day. It’s got offensive penalties, defensive penalties, the period, who it was on, their name is up there. We’ve done that for years, and we’ve been one of the least penalized teams, and we’ve had way too many on special teams, uncharacteristic of a Pitt football team to be honest with you, and it’s guys trying to make plays. Guys just getting anxious to go do it, and you’ve just got to relax.

    We got two illegal shifts offensively, I think it was the only two penalties we had on offense, and we don’t — I’m not going to run them, I’m not going to make them do up-downs. They understand how it hurts, and it hurts worse in the second half. It hurts worse when you’ve got a 25-yard run, it’s a first and 10, change the field, and now all of a sudden you’re backed up again, go back further, go deeper into the end zone. Get into that coming out situation.

    So they know, and it hurts, and they’re not trying to do it. I think it’s something that everybody has got penalties. I think we only had five, so it’s not like there was — I think five, and one of them was a kickoff out of bounds, which Kessman kicked the ball, so you can throw that one out. And on the same play you had Chase Pine was a little bit offsides. He thought he had to change something a little bit on that down.

    But those two I’m not worried about. I’m not worried about a personal foul, I’m worried about the illegal shifts which are happening both on — and it’s something in college football, they’re trying to speed these games up. Well, by the time you get off the sideline and get on the field, that 25-second clock on those first-possession plays with some of the shifting and just getting lined up, usually it’s a guy that’s got the furthest distance to go from the sideline. So we’ve got to clean that up, and we’ve known that.

    But those are ones that have hurt us, and it’s usually a young guy that’s not getting set, a freshman. So those are things that you’ve got to live with and try to correct.

    Q. Were there mistakes that you saw on the field during the week that carried into the game?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Not really. You wish there would. We covered the T shoot every time we saw it. It’s an arrangement of different things.

    Like I said, let’s just look at defensively. There’s just little things, each play — you guys can put the tape on and point it out, we called out 3rd down and 17, we call cover two man underneath, and my man Therran Coleman is in perfect coverage, Dane Jackson is in perfect coverage, and the other corner just plays it different than the other two guys. It’s like — but he didn’t do that in practice.

    But things happen during the game, and you’ve got to correct it. But it’s one guy or two guys a play where — and then the other guys are playing it really good, and you’re like, Golly, if we can get all 11 playing, that’s coming together and doing it right and having focus for 60 minutes each play, six seconds. You get to break off six seconds again, and we’ve got to have focus.

    And again, perfect alignment, so I’ll throw that one out to you. Some of these tempos, and we’re going to see as fast a tempo as you’re going to see the next two weeks. Central Florida is going to snap the ball, shoot, between 8 and 12 seconds a lot of times, period. You might as well keep your cameras on and don’t shut them off, don’t blink, you might miss a play. But it’ll be as fast as you’ve seen. It’ll be lightning fast. But our guys got to get the call on the sideline and get back up and see the formation, identify a formation, and that’s why they’re scoring so many points because it’s going like this.

    We’ve got to get aligned perfectly, and again, our guys are in generally the right spot, but we talk about perfect alignments, and I’m talking this far. That far is a big deal, whether it’s a safety alignment on the No. 2, whether it’s a linebacker who thinks he’s in a 30, should be in a 10. It’s this far away, and those are all details that you have to clean up. So there’s some major things like that cover two I’m telling you about.

    But there’s some minor things that are just like tiny little things. They brought a couple motions, and we see about as much motion out of our offense in practice and camp and spring ball that we shouldn’t have any of those things. But we had a couple of them out there, and it hurts you.

    Q. Talk about losing focus on details. Are you surprised with all the seniors on defense?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Not really. A lot of times it’s not the seniors that are having the problems. Every once in a while it pops up, but no, it doesn’t surprise me at all. If you’re in the game of football long enough, that happens. And like I told the defense last night, one week (sportswriter) Jerry DiPaola was asking if you’re the greatest defense ever at Pitt or since you’ve been here, and then the next week it’s like you’ve got to come back. The room sometimes goes lopsided, and the offense plays good enough and the defense doesn’t, and then all of a sudden the offense doesn’t play good enough, the defense plays their tails off.

    Like I say, you evaluate things at the end of the year, and it does not surprise me. Things happen during a game. It is moving fast out there, and you’ve got to think fast, you’ve got to be locked in. And again, I think our kids are locked in, but you’re going to have mistakes. I’ve never been in a game where you’re not going to have mistakes. But again, one less mistake and we win the football game. All it takes is one.

    Like I told the defense, we didn’t ask you to shut them out. There’s not going to be a shutout. There’s not many shutouts in college football anymore. We didn’t expect you to score 60, didn’t give you a time or a score based on the keys to what we have to do to win this football game. But all you need is just one play. Just one play. Make one more than you did because it’s not going to be perfect. Stop that switch route you’re talking about, stop the T shoot like we did all week in practice. It’s just one of those plays. Intercept it, take it to the house, whatever it may be, make one more play and you win the football game.

    Don’t have an illegal shift when we get a 25-yard — who knows what that turns into, but probably one less series for them. Just don’t fumble a kickoff return and don’t give them a short field to score again. Just take that one away.

    So there’s so many — everybody has got a piece of it, coaches and players. That’s how it is.

    Q. This defense came into the season with a great deal of high praise. These first four games what have you noticed are the biggest shortcomings, and have they met expectations?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Nobody is going to meet expectations. You’re talking preseason as opposed to postseason to real stuff in season and weekly. We look at where we are weekly.

    And like I said, nobody cares what you did against Georgia Tech in the first half. Nobody cares. You know what, this week the only thing I care about is what you do against Central Florida. All we care about is right here, right now, where are you. And again, you’re evaluated weekly, not evaluated at the end of the season as we’ve mentioned before. You’re evaluated weekly, and individually and as a unit.

    Am I surprised? No, I’ve seen it. It’s college football. It’s teenagers. It’s coaching. It’s everything.

    Q. How do you simulate their tempo in practice?

    PAT NARDUZZI: It’s a great question. I’m getting ready to walk into a meeting. As soon as we walk out of here, there’s — we’ve done it a bunch of different ways. There’s different ways to skin the cat. But number one — and it’s every week — you say, How do you simulate it? Our scout team will probably have wristbands. We’re going to try to bang, bang, bang, bang, bang. It’s not going to look like them. Just like Georgia Tech’s offense didn’t look like it.

    But yeah, every week that’s probably the first thing we look at before we watch a down is before you get into, really, game play, right now our coaches are all in different rooms, putting the pieces together, and then come together and say, Okay, how are we playing them, who are we playing, what package do we got going on. These guys, they limit you to really doing much pressure-wise because you don’t have time to even communicate. The reason they go fast is because they want to keep you in your four-down and they want to keep you from doing anything but that, okay, so they want to block a bunch of statues, so you’re handcuffed as far as what you do. You do too much, you’re going to get whacked and get hit for a big play. So you have to keep pace. You’re playing pretty much the same defense every down.

    I went off on that, but did I answer your question?

    Q. You did. Seemed like you were making a lot of substitutions on defense throughout the game. Still seemed like — you had Briggs go down, looked like a cramp. It’s going to be 91 or 92 down there this Saturday. Are you expecting to need the whole two-deep on defense to play a good amount of time?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, we’re always trying to sub, and a couple weeks ago when I got a penalty, that’s what we’re trying to do is sub even if we don’t need to sub. We’re going to try to get this (makes official signal for substitutions). When they do this, and I thought the officiating crew did a heck of a job of that, and obviously I emphasized it before the game with them, and they did a terrific job with putting their arms out, staying in front of the quarterback to give us a chance to substitute, and that was good to see.

    But we want to sub as much as we can sub. We’ve got two-deep guys that we think — we’ve got the guys that we think can go in there, and we’re going to continue to do that. Dennis cramped up, we didn’t get to sub him. Phil Campbell didn’t make the trip last week. I don’t know if anybody noticed. It wasn’t an injury, but he was sick. I didn’t realize he was a little sick on Tuesday, a little sick on Wednesday, and then Thursday night it kicked in, so we were down one guy, and he’s back yesterday feeling good, smiling. So it’ll be good to have him back. And again, he practiced all week so we lost not only a guy repping, Bricen did a great job moving over with zero reps at that boundary safety spot, Bricen Garner, that is.

    Q. Considering you guys have had trouble getting the ball down the field vertically, the running game has been really effective. Is it even more impressive because teams are at the line and you’re still able to run the ball?

    PAT NARDUZZI: It does. I think offensively they were mixing things up run and pass last week pretty good. I think we’ve been running the ball effectively. We rushed for more yardage — you sit there and you look at some of the stuff we put on the screen (team goals) last night, when you out-rush a team, and we rushed for over 200 yards, and we rushed for more than they do, and you’re still slapping yourself in the face like you still want more, it ain’t good enough. Over 100 yards rushing on defense is not good enough. It’s kind of the standard. Maybe the standards are all changed and these offenses are whacked out. They do a nice job, but I think —

    Q. Do you just kind of want to keep them (UCF) off the field by running the ball?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, but the thing we don’t want to do is handcuff our offense to the point where, hey, we’ll run it three downs in a row, see if we can eat up the clock and don’t run out of bounds. Nobody wants to coach that way, nobody wants to play that way offensively. (Former Pitt quarterback Pat) Bostick used to like that, but we’ve got to be opened up, we’ve got to go, and we’ve got to make plays, and I don’t want to handcuff anybody. We need to make plays down the field and Taysir did a great job of making plays, so those are some big-time catches. We’ve got to get more of that and we’ve got to get some more guys involved.

    Q. What do you guys have to do to sustain the good things you’ve done in the first half offensively the last couple of games and carry that over?

    PAT NARDUZZI: I mean, you’re talking first half to second half? You know, that’s the magic question right there. The first thing we’ve got to do is give ourselves a chance with field position, and it starts with special teams, and it starts with offense and defense. It’s really all three phases. But I mean, the second half the last two weeks, we’re sitting in the — really last three weeks. We lose the field position the second half. We win it in the first half, and we lost it in the second half. I think we lost the field position by 117 yards if we look at that, but it was all in the second half. I mean, our average field position in the second half, does anybody know it? Anybody? You guys look at the stats? Does EJ give you a stats book? What do you guys do? There’s so much information in there.

    I think they had it on the 36, we had it on the 18-yard line. No offense likes that. When you look at where they had the ball, our offense never had the ball in a P and 10 across the 50, and our offense had it at the 18, and their offense had twice on our side of the field, twice. They had it at the P whatever, the P 37. They had it on the Pittsburgh 37. And again, 10 points. Just don’t give them the short drive. That’s 10 points. I know they beat us by three, so those are all little factors that we talk about all those things. We’ve got to get better punts, we’ve got to get better kickoff returns. We can’t have penalties on punt return. We had two of them. We have a nice return and punt safe. We throw someone down, which is uncharacteristic. It’s just like, you know, we just, boom! Stab ourselves in the heart. We can’t do it. Until you fix that, you’re going to have the same problems.

    Q. Field position could be a problem with the defense giving up too many first downs?

    PAT NARDUZZI: No question about it. It’s everything. It’s all, like offense, defense, it’s all combined.

    Q. Talking about field position, are you seeing from Kirk Christodoulou in practice something better than what is put out there in the game?

    PAT NARDUZZI: I think he’s just got to refocus on — he can punt the ball. You guys probably see it in practice. He’s just got to get in the zone. I think he’s thinking too much. Again, it’s a young punter. You know, a young punter that’s trying to work through the good and the bad, you know. I’m happy he’s caught the dang snaps. You know, don’t wish for too much, you know, but I’m just happy he’s got the dang things.

    Q. We’ve seen more of your five defensive back looks against Carolina. I suspect that Central Florida and Syracuse next, we’re going to see more of it?

    PAT NARDUZZI: More of what now?

    Q. Your five-defensive back set out there.

    PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah.

    Q. How is that developing, and are you still evaluating personnel in that group and how that works?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Not really. I mean, I think we’ve got who our guys are. We know who they are as long as they’re healthy and ready to go, we know who those guys are. There’s backups that will be in there at times. Therran Coleman came in and did a heck of a job for a few plays that he was in. You’d like to see that every day in practice from everybody.

    But practice is when we get an opportunity to do it in. I like where it is. Again, it’s just details. We put some decent pressure on the quarterback, got a couple hits. But we’ve got to get some cover sacks too.

    Q. Do you expect you’ll have to rely on that more because of the next two offenses you’re going to see?

    PAT NARDUZZI: If you do go to that, usually when we get into the five DBs, what down is it? Usually third down. You start going to some of that on first and second down, you won’t have to worry about third down. They’ll hit their head on the goal post running the ball down your throat.

    This team likes to run the football. They’re good running the football and they’re fast into it. So switching personnel isn’t really an option. Sometimes third down they’ll give you a chance to change personnel. But when they sub, we’re going to try to sub and get our guys out there.

    But, you know, the substitution is the key, and being able to stop the run out of a front, that our three down stuff is really for pass. So if you get into that on first or second down, you know, and we’ve got to stop the run, period. We didn’t do that last week.

    To win a football game, I know I’ve said that for three years here, you guys are probably going, ‘yeah.’ But some of these zone teams, we have not stopped it like we need to.

    Q. How far could Tre Tipton have run it on that kickoff if he kept hold of that (Maurice Ffrench) fumble?

    PAT NARDUZZI: Longer than you would.

    Q. That doesn’t say much.

    PAT NARDUZZI: He might have taken it to the house.

    Q. Preseason you said how much you like the leadership on this team. Has it held up to your expectations so far, especially bracing yourself for the stretch that’s coming up?

    PAT NARDUZZI: No doubt. The guys we have in this front row here our eagle council, some sharp guys. Dennis Briggs is in my office today. Greatest guys in the world. You love these guys. We’ve got great leadership. Like I said, I think the leadership starts with just the way we acted on the airplane and the bus. The guys are hurt after losses, and they’re happy after wins. Sometimes they’re not even happy after wins, you know, because they’re so locked into what they want to do, and they want perfection.

    Coaches want perfection. You’re never going to get it, but, you know, you need to be excited after wins and after losses you should be having some disappointment. If not, there’s something wrong with your heart.

    Q. You just talked about the Carolina game and having your signals. When you look back, how do you feel like that went?

    PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t know. Maybe you’ve got to ask them. I don’t know. You try to protect them. Who knows. I saw, I guess, maybe it’s FAU has this big, it looks like a big black door, that they’re trying to prevent people from seeing it. We may have to have you guys get a side line pass and come down to start to shield some stuff from the other sides.

    But you can only protect it so much. If you protect it too much, and maybe that happened a couple times where you cut off a safety, and he can’t see the call, and he doesn’t get it. You know, I know someone thought at one point we might have been in punt safe when we were in defense. But I mean, you screen them off, but you can’t screen them off of our kids either.

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    1. My attitude towards the program is getting soured. I haven’t been this dejected since Chyst and company lost to UConn. Can you imagine if we keep losing? Heniz will get nicknamed the morgue where the hopes and dreams of Pitt nation die a slow, painful death.

      Like

  16. For history buffs:” On this date in 1925 Pitt Stadium, with a capacity of 60,000 opened! The Panthers defeated Washington and Lee in front of a crowd of 20,000.”

    Like

  17. I see a win Saturday against UCF. Their streak is bound to end. We are P5, with more talent on paper. This is one of those games that we win, gives everyone false hope, and then go a get blown out by Cuse next week..

    Johhny C.

    Like

    1. You comment above is right on. The Milton kid has thrown for almost a 1000 yards in three games. We don’t defend the pass well. And, UCF has played a weaker schedule so they’ve been running the ball quite a bit in those first three games. Last year Milton ran for over a 1000 yards as well. We can’t stop a solid balanced offense like UCF.

      Our offense should score on the UCF defense so I expect another shoot out type game where we score some points as well.

      Like

  18. PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, we’re always trying to sub, and a couple weeks ago when I got a penalty, that’s what we’re trying to do is sub even if we don’t need to sub.

    OK then. Thanks For the clarification Pat.

    Like

  19. JoeKnew..looks like we had some big dreamers in leadership positions back in the day…big stadium and small crowd -sound familiar…the history of attendance in those days would be interesting to know…back when it was college football….

    Like

  20. I am still feeling “gutted” from that last game…too early in my mental recovery process for me to predict..definitely not going to 6-6 on my pre-season prediction…

    Like

  21. Regarding the punter:

    “I’m happy he’s caught the dang snaps. You know, don’t wish for too much, you know, but I’m just happy he’s got the dang things.”

    State of Pitt football a it stands…

    Like

  22. This article cracks me up.

    https://pittsburghsportsnow.com/2018/09/26/saunders-pitt-a-victim-of-its-own-hype/

    It is the exact same things I had been saying about Narduzzi’s closed practices and then his force feeding positive hype to the local sportswriters for the last two years.

    Now all of a sudden it’s a revelation?

    These writers won’t ever quote or reference the POV if it would save their lives but honest to God…they are blinded in what the see and get from the Pitt propaganda machine.

    As I wrote just yesterday, all the national writers had Pitt at 6 wins max…all the local writers had them at 7 or 8 wins minimum…with some at 9 or 10.

    I really don’t get why the local guys can’t be more honest and realistic in their writing but I’m sure it has to do with advertising, subscriptions and sponsorships.

    Heaven forbid these writers anger the Pitt fans!

    Like

    1. Reed…you sat in my TV room and said this 3 years ago and having been preaching this to anyone who will listen forever. I never really understood the folly of closed practices but add it to all the Narduzzi utter failures and it is just one more reason we need to say goodbye to this fraud.

      Like

  23. Ya know, I really don’t think I ask for too much. Really. All I want is:
    1) A team that’s competitive.
    2) A head coach that takes responsibility for his own actions
    3) A head coach that has a preferred way of doing things but has the ability to adjust, depending on his talent and opponents skill set.
    4) A coaching staff that represents the university in the best possible manner when dealing with recruits, weather that’s going into a students home, or dealing with high school coaches or ADs.
    5) An administration that gives the coaches the means to be successful.
    6) An administration that has a comprehensive plan to brand the product and achieve athletic success. This includes media relations, alumni outreach, and interaction between all parties.
    7) A peaceful Saturday when I can easily access and watch a game, and win or lose, see a well coached team with a good game plan give a solid effort, win or lose.
    8) Athletic teams that can made halftime adjustments.

    I guess that actually is a lot to ask for, but it really shouldn’t be. I’m sure it’s happened and I just can’t remember, but when was the last time we saw successful halftime adjustments? Oh well….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Joe, I am with Dan very well side.

      That is all I am looking for as well.

      If we could do all those things you mention loses are much easier to take. I am okay with losing.

      I am not ok with running the same pathetic defense year after year after year.

      Look at this way. If Duzz’s defense couldn’t succeed with the NFL Talent he inherited from Chryst it will never succeed with Duzz’s recruiting.

      Our secondary might as well stayed off the field that last few years as it would have been just effective.

      But Whitehead, Maddox, Lewis, and Lafayette Pitts were all on Narduzzi’s defensive over the last few years. It still didn’t make a difference.

      Pathetic Coaching plus Pathetic Recruiting equals a dumpster fire.

      Last year the dumpster was smoldering and this year give it a few more games and it will be ablaze.

      Like

  24. Random thoughts:

    I watch those 1:18 second clips of the PITT QB’s in drills and and while watching the games it struck me that KP is just to plain mechanical and rigid if and when he stays in the pocket. Sure, he looks loose when he breaks containment but the way he fires those flat passes he almost looks over coached.

    Why does the punter look like he’s pooch punting from his own goal line. Can’t a coach see he is not extending his leg?

    I feel PITT has no chance this week.

    Predicting PITT wins these games: Syracuse, Duke, Virginia, VT and Wake to finish 7-5. Why not. I’m not going to dwell on a crap season before it actually happens.

    Like

  25. I predicted 5 n 7 that was with an upset of PSU.

    Right now I am at 4 n 8 but might revise down to 3 n 9.

    Either way it’s a sinking ship and he should be canned.

    Alan Sanders has a great post up I suggest you read it.

    Like

  26. Ike… Don’t take this the wrong way, but your 7 Win prediction tells me to DIVIDE by 2 and basically that SHOULD be just about right.

    I like Pitt beating VaTech. Makes sense that either Wake Forest or Virginia could supply the other win to make it a total of FOUR.

    But I got this FAINT inkling about one possible MAJOR upset.

    Like

  27. Reed, forcing us all to go through the remaining schedule game by game has been like getting hit with a 2 by 4 between the eyes. Any last vestige of hope was squashed, and reality and despair have set in. They say hope springs eternal, but in this case hope is a fool’s errand… I’m seeing 4-8 at this point.

    Like

  28. Well, here is how I look at Pitt football… Almost every other D1 program, except for the perennial top 20 teams, has crapped the bed with 2 or 3 win seasons every so often, so why not Pitt?

    Why would we be immune to that just because we are Pitt? The fact that we have hovered around .500 seasons for the past 20 years would lead us to believe we were due for something like that.

    I’ve written many times before that Pitt’s best seasons have always had a star player or two (mostly on offense) and that we didn’t have that going into this season. That is becoming very clear as the weeks roll by.

    Pitt fans put too many expectations on Pickett…on a kid who in all his play last year had only one TD pass and as trick one way that. Now he’s on track for 12 TDs and 9 INTs and if that holds we are screwed bigtime.

    I think he’ll do as bit better but his WRs have limitations also…soon we’ll be seeing Mack get double teamed and I’m not sure we have anyone able to step up big if that happens.

    Btw, where is Shocky Jacques-Louis or Butler-Jenkins after all the lying hype the staff put out to the local media? The writers where insanely optimistic for both those guys being immediate superstars.

    So, yeah…I guess I could see 2 or three win this year especially if we get an injury or two which happens every year. Why not Pitt?

    Like

  29. I’m with Reed on his point that “IF” PITT can get a big upset again this year, let it be against an ACC opponent. Yet the way the schedule is shaping up, we may not know who will be consider an upset. It could very well be a Syracuse, Duke or Virginia?

    Like

  30. Looking at the remaining schedule, I can’t see more then 2 additional wins, which would leave us at 4-8. Given that Pitt has always underperformed even my most dire expectations, I’m going to say we win one more game this year (either UVA or Wake) to finish 3-9. The silver lining in a 3-9 record is that this just might be bad enough that Narduzzi gets the boot.

    SantaCruzer

    Like

  31. UCF is 7th in rushing @ 283 ypg and 21st in passing @304 ypg…and 9th in scoring at 50.0 ppg.

    All that with a hurry-up offense that takes around 12 seconds in between snaps.

    And get this; their team passing eff. Defense is 4th nationally with opposing QBs fielding an average rating of 91.19 against them which is crazy low. To put that into perspective Pitt QB Kevan Smith had a rating of only 100.1.

    This game is going to be hilarious.

    Like

    1. You are probably correct.

      UCF is better than we are. But, so far this season, UCF hasn’t played a difficult schedule. Pitt, while not very good, is a half step up in competition for UCF. So, maybe Pitt hangs with them at least for a while. Not saying we will. But, maybe.

      Like

  32. Considering everything said, I think UCF’s hurry up offense is the most worrisome for Pitt. They are blowing assignments now with standard alignments and with normal time for substitution. Imagine the disaster we will see when back ups need to get on and off the field quickly and still understand the defenses called. Good luck with that. By the way, another overly hyped kid appears to be WR Michael Smith. Wasn’t he supposed to be a recruiting find that could play as a Freshman?

    Like

  33. This is lowest I’ve been in feelings for Pitt since 1969. I really felt 6 wins early now maybe 4 if they play hard. I’m sure they still care but that may change. Positive Pitt is 6wins. Reality now is 4. I’ll be at Syracuse game. Rooting either way. Isn’t that what fans do

    Like

  34. Reed, you keep emphasizing the inability of the Receivers to get open as the problem with the Passing Game.

    I still think it is the lack of a Tight End that is the REAL problem. Just about every GOOD College Team has AT LEAST one they can count on.

    As we saw in years past with Orndoff and others, Tight Ends who can RUN do far more than just catch passes. They are effective in getting DEEP which works to take up the attention of Safeties who otherwise are free to double up Wideouts or cheat up in Run Support.

    If you go back to my posts after the Spring Game… I pointed to the Tight Ends as a major problem. I think “BIG and SLOW” just about summed it up.

    As you have pointed out, Watson is now keeping the Tight End in to help out with blocking due to the problems with the Offensive Line.

    While this might be true, it is also because NONE of them are much good at getting open quickly enough to give Pickett an option he KNOWS he can count on being there.

    Like

  35. The fact is the Tight End problem didn’t have to be quite this bad.

    It’s always been my thinking that Narduzzi made a mistake when he moved Elijah Zeise to Linebacker. The Kid was a pretty good Receiver in High School.

    Zeise would be paying much BETTER dividends right now had he stayed on Offense as a Tight End.

    I’d be curious to hear how his Dad feels about it.

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  36. Sadly I do not see another win on this schedule. A part of me does not want them to win another game. Let this thing burn to the ground and start over. Pitt needs a proven head coach that agrees to have an honest and open program, that fosters local ties, and recruits his behind off. If they want to hire another assistant I say fine but must drop down to the CAA. What a joke this program has become under Narduzzi.

    Like

  37. Regarding the TE’s – it goes back to Reed’s point about transfers. What exactly is this former 4 star Gragg doing for us? Not much of anything.

    So not to look ahead but how is next year any different or dare I say worse. You better believe Duzz will be hitting the transfer market for OL. Again we lose 4 out of 5 starting OL, 2 RB’s, WR….offense will be worse than this year.

    Defense – we lose all linebackers and starting DE and DT.

    Next year looks around the 2-4 win range – which is why I say get rid of Duzz now. Get some excitement in that will help us with recruiting.

    Like

    1. correct
      Pitt loses many of its starters on O and D next year
      Their replacements arent seeing the field this year and arent elite talent

      The recruiting classes being brought in dont have elite players

      I see another 4 win season next year

      This year would be the year for a change

      Why delay the inevitable?

      Do we think that Year 6 will be the year Pitt challenges for the Coastal after seeing the way the previous 5 years played out.

      By year 4, you know if your coach is a keeper or not. You see the positive trendlines in wins and recruits. Dantonio won 11 games come year 4. Gary Patterson from TCU won 11 games come year 3.

      I only see negative trends like poor recruiting classes (where are the 4 stars), poor player development (I see transfers and 5th year seniors as the starters), embarrassing losses, fewer wins, little excitement around the program, etc

      Like

  38. Please remember, the last time people were saying a highly ranked team we were playing wasn’t that good because they didn’t play power 5 competition was……… Utah. How’d that work out??

    Like

  39. Gragg is playing a good bit actually. and what harm is it doing to have him on the team? Narduzzi has already handed out two scholarships to deserving walk-ones this year. Gragg is not taking up anyone’s scholarship. Also, I keep saying, Watson has shown over the years at every stop he’s made, is to NOT emphasis the tight ends.

    Like

  40. Who would have thought that when Kenny Pickett guaranteed we would not repeat a 5-7 season that he may have been thinking….4-8. Good grief Charlie Brown! Say it isn’t so.

    Like

    1. Some posters on here bought into his comment big time. Time will tell what the rest of the season brings.

      This weekend watching Narduzzi’s LBers trying to cover much faster players will not be fun to watch. UCF already knows what he’s going to run.

      Just like when Mike Gundy was asked in his press conference after they beat two years in a row, Gundy was asked about Narduzzi’s game plan and he said he didn’t do anything different the second game and Gundy expected no changes from Narduzzi. It was easy peasy for Gundy.

      Like

      1. I guess not, Okie State had 704 yards of offense in the 2017 game, after only having 640 yards in the 2016 game.

        Okie State probably gets a better game going against their ‘2nd team’.

        The Defensive Guru didn’t learn a dang thing for sure. 704 yards !!!

        Like

        1. If I remember right, Mason Rudolph and his 1st team pals got pulled in the mid 3rd Q or they would have had over a 1000 yards of offense.

          Incredible as that sounds !

          Like

  41. If you are running a professional style offense, a very good tight end is a necessity.

    Coaches need to adjust style of play to personnel OR get different personnel to fit the system. Or get
    better, more innovative coaches.

    Like

      1. 5 OL
        1 QB
        2 WR, sometimes 3
        2 RB, sometimes 1
        1 TE

        That should be 11 total. Not a constant 3 or 4 or 5 WR sets. That said, some offenses in the nfl are going to a consistent 3 WR attack. Think Steelers 1970’s Reed. 5 OL, Randy Grossman at TE, or Bennie Cunningham. Franco and Rocky as RB’s, 1 QB and Swann and Stallworth. That is 11.

        Reliance on the run game to set up the passing game. Time of possession critical to winning. College football has gone to the spread for the most part with at least three wr’s. Big8 goes with 4 alot.

        Alabammer and Ohio State run pro style offenses and they have the horses to pull it off. They can beat you both ways.

        Like

  42. The TEs have to stay in pass protection almost every single pass play.

    I went back and rewatched all the games two days after they were played and very few times did any tight ends go out into a pass route at all. This is the problem when you have a offense of line that cannot pass protect.

    Like

  43. Although I also think our TEs are lacking talent in blocking also.

    On most Pickett sacks you see the pressure coming from the strong side of the OL.

    This is pretty much what I expected from the o l when I talked about them during the preseason. I figured they’d be pretty good at the Run game but would be poor in the passing game and that’s how it’s turned out.

    Although they aren’t ‘the worse we have ever seen’. (yet).

    Like

  44. good news though we are not the worst in punting I think we’re around 106th with an average punt distance of 34.3 yards per punt. With no hang time whatsoever and no accuracy whatsoever.

    To add wounds… we are 114th in punt returns with an average return of 3.0 yards.

    Ain’t Life Grand being a Pitt fan?

    Liked by 1 person

  45. Ike – you are missing the point. Yeah – the transfers like Millen are helping or he wouldn’t be starting. The fact that Duzz needs to have transfers is troubling because he couldn’t recruit and develop OL on his own.

    Just wait till next year – it will be the transfer market express trying to patch together a new OL.

    Let’s just cut ties at the end of this year – get some excitement with a new coach that can recruit and develop.

    Like

    1. Especially because a new coach will be inheriting a roster that I believe is devoid of talent across the board. The sooner he can start recruiting his own guys and maybe getting a staff that can teach these kids how to play at the D1 level better the better off we’ll be in the long run.

      I just don’t understand why Pitt fans are so adverse to change with the head coach when things are bad.

      I know Ike that you like Trends and if this season turns out the way we think it will there certainly going to be a downward Trend in last 2 years.

      So I don’t think you should wait to see us about what’s going to happen in the third year when you lose your two best running backs and your star FB… you lose almost your whole offensive line … you’re going to lose all your linebackers and half of your defensive line which might not be a bad thing there actually.

      But the handwriting is on the wall that the recruits Pat narduzzi got that everyone was so excited about and so hyped up about are not the kids he said they are or we thought they were. With that fact known and it’s becoming more apparent that that’s true we can’t logically look at 2019 and think it’s going to be any better than it is this year with the exception of maybe Kenny Pickett being more mature and being able to play better. But that’s not a guarantee either just because we all thought he did well in two games in one season doesn’t mean he’s going to be great the rest of his career although I think he’ll still be a good one.

      Like

  46. The OL has its problems for sure. But Pickett has a lot of work to do. He’s been average so far to this point. He also doesn’t throw the deep ball well which opposing DC’s will use to their advantage.

    Like

  47. Reed – excellent, thought provoking post and in light of your back issues…much appreciated.

    I don’t believe the UNC loss was due to our recruiting issues. The kids made a lot of mistakes that can be corrected. I really believe they blew a great chance to finally beat those guys.

    Having said that, they did make those mistakes and it did cost them the game and I am concerned that our shared concerns about the OL are coming to bear and won’t get better in time to salvage a winning season.

    I think its possible they won’t win another game – and I also think its possible they could get 4-5 more.
    The 4-5 I think they could get are UVa, Duke, Syracuse, Wake and one of the the four others.

    Pressed for something definitive, I’d say we win one from the first group and surprise one of the others for 4 wins on the year. If this scenario plays out, I think Narduzzi is done at Pitt.

    Like

  48. If you look at some of Saunders film study, you’ll see on some plays there are WRs wide open. The issue is the time to throw and Pickett having the vision to find them.

    Like

  49. Well, I sure don’t see five more wins to get to Seven on the season I think that’s almost impossible. But I could see two or three more wins certainly but Syracuse is very good this year I don’t think that’ll be one of them Virginia things better than they have been in the past and Duke is playing really good football.

    So I don’t know… is it going to come for UCF Virginia Tech or Miami? I doubt those three teams either so it’s going to be a long road this year I think

    Like

  50. After being ahead in the first half, I predict we lose the second half in all our games. This results in two wins overall. Who those wins will be against? Your guess is as good as mine. Actually yours is probably a better guess than mine. Not planning to watch or listen to any remaining game because Pitt continually breaks my heart if I do. – Hobie, the tortured soul.

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  51. 3 wins. Let’s say Duke, UVA and the “annual teaser game win” to finish 5-7. Teaser win maybe vs VT at home (Pitt scores on 4th and goal in the last minute to pay VT back for last years sorry effort at the end of the game…or our fastest WR does not get tackled a the1 yd lard line and instead dives into the end zone for the win). Also, I am with JoeKnew’s 8 point want list. Pitt’s play is so inconsistent. Their is no steady improvement over the course of the season. Players do not show improvement from game to game. Afraid we may see 62-21 on the short side this week. Why did Heather extend PN for so many years? 3-4 years with the assurance that if team did well she would consider extending further would have been the wise thing to do. Seems that Heather was still starry eyed after the big win vs. Miami. At least PN seems to hold the players accountable off the field. Too bad Wanny had so many off the field issues with players. I remember the embarrassment of the SI article:(

    Like

    1. And some Pitt fans still refuse to believe that it was that embarrassment to the university that got him canned but it was very true – that’s exactly what it was.

      Which is too bad because he would have probably filled it and great team in 2011 and would have been our head coach still probably because he was active recruiter and he was not really that bad of a game-day coach. I think about Juan status because they wanted to be on his staff because he was a professional and he knew what he wanted to do and he knew that he could let those guys too what they could do under his systems. I don’t think that’s the case would not be at all I think he meddles in everything.

      Like

      1. for all I know Steve fed SI that article. It was used by Steve as a justification. I’m not sad to see Wanny go, but how Steve handled the ‘resignation’ was unprofessional. Wanny wasnt that good of a coach…he choked on every meaningful game and couldnt win a weak Big East. His recruiting was decent but he couldnt tell the difference between an x and an o.

        we all knew the two hated each others guts

        we all know that Heather and Narduzzi are very chummy

        Narduzzi helped hire Heather and she reciprocates with extending him

        it will be interesting to see what justification she uses in keeping him or forcing his ‘resignation’

        Liked by 1 person

  52. This weekend will be another PSU-type score. I honestly only see one more win by this team. I’m not even sure where it will come from. The big thing will be to see if the coaching staff can hold this team together through the remainder of the season. One of the big disappointments for me beyond the losses is the lack of discipline on the field. This is somewhat on the players, but typically it is a result of a poorly coached team.

    I have long been an optimist and have had years of blind hope – a “Pitt fan”, but I again find myself souring on our coaching staff and Narduzzi. Do we have the best athletes in the nation? Probably not, but I would say they are above average and should be able to compete better against our opponents.

    For some reason, this season I have resigned to the fact that we just don’t do well as a program. I watch every Saturday, hope we win, but fully expect to lose – it’s just a matter of how badly. I’m drinking and swearing a lot less these Saturdays – that’s good, but it is sad that I have come to this point. We should all demand better.

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  53. Reed, I thought the punter was VERY accurate when he punted low and directly to the Pedo returner for that TD return. The returner didn’t need to move one foot to catch the ball! Could someone maybe tell the punter to kick away from the return man in that type of situation?

    Heather needs to be looking intently at the coaching situation at hand RIGHT NOW, and while there will likely be no decisions made during the season, she needs to be prepared to move quickly if there are only 3-4 wins and a number of players transfer and assistants bail out.

    Like

  54. I see two more wins. UVA and VT.

    When I say VT, I know they lost their starting QB last week, I have no idea who their backup is and if he’s any good. At the end of the day, VT is a better matchup compared to some other teams.

    Like

  55. and here I thought PITT played a good game against Georgia Tech? That’s right GT is the worst team in college football now.

    I’m thinking that when we gave our predictions before the season started, the consensus would have been a 2-2 start to the season? I did. ike

    Like

  56. I haven’t studied our offense on pass plays, but why can’t the running backs stay in and block, and then let the TE go out in the pattern? Or do the RBs also block, so that on most plays we only have 2 players running in the pattern?

    Like

  57. If you are a true Pitt football fan, you need to root for Pitt to tank the rest of the season as hard as that may be. It is similar to being a general manager of a professional team that is low on talent and generally not competitive. There the idea is to get the first choice in the draft especially if that player is a game changer such as Sidney Crosby would be in hockey. As Reed pointed out, we are lacking in talent for next year and we do not have a coaching staff that knows how to develop players. The obvious solution would be a change of coaching staff especially one that knows how to recruit and build relationships. Pitt will be in an ideal spot for a good recruiter. He can sell immediate playing time to the high rated recruits. He will also have the maximum number of spots allowed as there will be players transferring once their guy has been canned.

    The worst scenario for Pitt now is that they finish at 5-7 or 4-8 with a big upset being one of the four wins. This puts Lyke in a gray area. It is better we end up 3-9 or 2-10 with a real dumpster fire. With those sorts of results it is pretty black and white what needs to be done.

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      1. Ike, my good friend from Laytrobe! I fear that not realizing it you may have become an Enabler of a sinking football program. Most Enablers think they are helping the situation by staying positive with the drug addict, etc. Are you a well meaning enabler? I honestly don’t know friend. That’s for you to decide on your own.
        Your buddy in good times and bad.
        Jim

        Like

        1. Jim, that’s not a bad analogy and it makes a little sense except for the fact I don’t have any powers to enable anything PITT. What I could be doing is enabling myself to stay as sane as possible?

          I honestly have way more important things going on in my life to get upset over a football game no matter how passionate I am about that football team.

          Like

  58. Agree John in South Carolina – we need to win at most 1 more game this year. If we only have 3 wins – I think Lyke has no choice but to fire Duzz. 5 wins and he is safe, only 4 wins and it is a tossup.

    Like

  59. Reposting from earlier thread (as well as late fall last year) 5-7….even now I am starting to have doubts that 5 will be there now

    Sat, Sept 1 vs Albany W
    Sat, Sept 8 vs PSU L
    Sat, Sept 15 vs Georgia Tech W
    Sat, Sept 22 @ North Carolina L
    Sat, Sept 29 @ UCF L
    Sat, Oct 6 vs Syracuse W
    Sat, Oct 13 @ Notre Dame L
    Sat, Oct 27 vs Duke W
    Fri, Nov 2 @ Virginia L
    Sat, Nov 10 vs Virginia Tech L
    Sat, Nov 17 @ Wake Forest W
    Sat, Nov 24 @ Miami L

    Ultimately I believe there will be a W I have prognosticated that will be an L (Syracuse maybe?), however Duzz aka (Lucy Van Pelt) will have his signature win against a ranked team (V-tech? Miami?) that will make a lot of us Pitt fans see unicorns & rainbows…and we will once again try to kick that football and he will ultimately pull if out from under us and we will fall straight on our butts saying to ourselves “why oh why did I believe the Duzz would let me kick the ball this time?”

    Sigh

    Dave Dellett

    Like

  60. I know the SI article was an embarrassment and the driving force behind his firing, but if he won 10 games in 2010 (heck, maybe if he only had won that UCONN game or the WVU game), I would bet that Wannstedt wouldn’t have been fired. If the SI article was such a big deal, why didn’t they fire him at the time of the article’s publication?

    Like

    1. Steve then hired Mike ‘Haymaker’ Haywood who gave that Freddy Kreuger presser and was let go after less than a week on the job for being accused of assaulting his former girlfriend and mommy of his child.

      Hollywood couldnt have come up with a better script.

      Then Pitt hires ‘High Octane’ Fraud and he’s gone after less than a year because Penny didnt like us Yinzers and there was a sick relative in Arizona. The dude sends out an e-mail when he’s half way to Arizona to Steve saying ‘see ya.’

      Chryst gets brought in because of Godfather Barry and he leaves after 3 short years after having Pitt pay for his learning on the job.

      Now Narduzzi gets hired by a guy who is a career physicist and government bureaucrat. And he helps select the new AD or his new boss. The new boss then leaves him alone, she gets an extension, and then she extends Narduzzi.

      Again, Hollywood couldnt write a better script. Its so unbelievable.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I’ve written extensively about this but here goes. The Chamcellor gave DW an ultimatum that had do be done during the season and DW refused to do so. He thought he was bigger than the University’s administration and found out that he wasn’t.

      Believe me, that firing only came as a surprise to DW because he was in a game of chicken with Pitt and Pitt didn’t swerve off the road.

      Like

  61. Every week teams can have surprising performances both up and down. Pitt has played decent to good first halves. If they can extend that level of play into the game, Pitt can have a good year. However, I expected the defense to carry the team early as the offense found it’s stride. With out a good defense that holds NC to 17 points or less, it is clear the D is not good enough. UCF has to game to really run up the point total and I think if that happens, things could get tough for Narduzzi to sell his vision.Confidence is a very tricky thing.

    Like

  62. All we heard coming in to the season was what great senior leadership we had this year (I guess as compared to last year) and yet those great, 5th-year seniors couldn’t even get the coin toss right in the Penn St. game, supposedly due to the fact they didn’t understand what ‘defer’ meant. Even when PN explained it in the paper a few days later he got it wrong saying “Just tell them you want to play defense…”, which is totally wrong because winning the toss and stating you want to play defense means the other team gets the choice in the second half and I am sure they would want to play offense! So bottom line it’s a good thing the captains screwed it up and took the ball otherwise we might have been the first team in history to kickoff in both halves of a game.

    Like

  63. I see Pitt winning 2 more games. One surprise win and one against either UVA or WF.

    It’s gotten to the point where I can’t listen to HCPN anymore. He talks nervously fast with “snarcasm.” He doesn’t even dodge questions without coming off as a nimrod. I never thought I’d yearn for Milktoast Paul’s pressors.

    Like

  64. The HUGE WARNING sign back in 2016… we all missed and it was due to beating Clemson a few weeks earlier, in a very unexpected win, was the 61 points Nardo’s defense gave up to a bad Syracuse team(4-8). Who was also playing with their backup QB, as Dungy was hurt and missed the game.

    Syracuse rolled up 668 Total Yards of Offense with their 2nd string QB. Actually outgained Pitt 668 – 644
    The 2nd string QB threw for an incredible 440 yards and 5 TD passes.

    After that putrid defensive performance it is any wonder we lost to a 6-6 Northwestern team in NYC.

    Like

    1. I’m not sure all that many missed this red flare of a game. I am sure I didn’t.

      However there were some who tried to rationalize the defensive performance in this game as the result of a Syracuse team that was playing from behind all game and should have given up, but wouldn’t give up. This was also the assertion for the defensive performance in many other games that season.

      I attended this basketball game on turf. I remember thinking that surely Narduzzi, the revered former DC, would implement some scheme adjustment, player substitution, or motivation to stop it. However it seemed as if Syracuse could run whatever they wanted including repeating plays, sometimes in the same possession. It was a darn good thing that Pitt had the offense (melding of personnel, scheme, and playcalling) that they had that season.

      Like

  65. “I’m thinking that when we gave our predictions before the season started, the consensus would have been a 2-2 start to the season? I did.”

    Correct, ike. I, too predicted 2-2 to start the season– and because of that, 5-7 overall. But HOW we got to 2-2 is important when looking at the rest of the season.I didn’t expect to get BLASTED by 45 against PSU. I didn’t expect to go scoreless in the second half against Albany. I thought we’d beat GT but didn’t realize how BAD they are. And I knew we’d lose to UNC– because we always lose to UNC– but they are ATROCIOUS and that makes it even more embarrassing.

    You have to realize that a 2-2 record would look MUCH different if say it happened THIS way:

    Albany W 42-7
    PSU L 35-31
    GT W 28-24 (and GT wasn’t 0-3 against FCS schools)
    UNC L 38-35 (and UNC wasn’t winless and playing with backups)

    You have to be able to understand that, right??!!?!? This team is AWFUL. How is it that you refuse to see that?

    Liked by 1 person

  66. MInd you the 2016 team had 4-5 future NFL defensive players on it.

    Any coach would have to start questioning his scheme, with that talent and those results.

    2 years later, same losing scheme.

    Like

    1. I think this not changing the defensive scheme is one of the hardest things to deal with. A better defense in 2016 would have immensely helped the program. Fans could see it was not working, but being it was PN’s second year perhaps there was some value in staying the course. (Most would likely disagree as it unfolded and almost everyone in retrospect. However, as a young first time coach, it takes time to implement your system. It may still take time to implement the system, but now even with a new DC it looks like mere stubbornness.)

      Like

  67. I see another 600+ yard defensive meltdown this year in the Real Feel 100 degree temps of Orlando
    on Saturday at High Noon. Could be over 700 yards

    This is UCF’s only Power 5 opponent of the year and they are going to lay it on us, in an attempt to impress
    the voters for the Bowls and they feel they got slighted last year.

    Like

  68. “And some Pitt fans still refuse to believe that it was that embarrassment to the university that got him canned but it was very true – that’s exactly what it was.”

    And that’s why Pitt is an athletic “embarrassment” today. That “article” was a blip in the over 200-year history of the University of Pittsburgh. Virtually no one outside of the athletic world even knows about it. And most in the athletic world has long since forgotten about it.

    The conclusions made in the article were overblown when compared with the actual incidents and their consequences. I do not wish for Pitt to “sell it’s soul” for wins but REAL leadership would not have fired Wannstedt in that situation. While I agree the firing was because the administration was “embarrassed”, had Pedersen reassured the Chancellor that everything would be dealt with, rather than using it as an excuse to get rid of the man with more power, he would have been retained.

    Instead, we got “Wife Choker” He Gone Haywood, “Hammer Down” Fraud Graham, “Gee Shucks” Potato Chryst & “Not My Fault” Calves Narduzzi.

    SOP!!!!!!!

    Like

    1. Sports Illustrated of 2010 was a shell of what Sports Illustrated of say 1975 was.

      Just as ALL print media of 2010 was a shell of what they were in 1975.

      Very few folks even saw and even less read that article. Perhaps the Pedders on the BoT,
      put some pressure on Nordy or whoever, to get rid of Wanny, since they all knew
      their was an ongoing investigation in Creepy Valley. And that was a ticking time bomb.

      Like

    2. It was used as justification. Pitt may say it was the primary reason but that’s bs. Wanny needed to go regardless. But how pitt handled the resignation was very bad. How they hired his replacement was very bad.

      Like

      1. Wanny needed to go ? For what…winning the most games at Pitt in 3 seasons since Jackie Sherrill.

        Might be another 30 years until we see 10 wins in a season again.

        Like

        1. Wanny never won a meaningful game
          Lost to Cincy twice when it mattered
          Lost to UConn in that infamous game
          Lost to WVCC when it mattered and thats the game his team flat out quit on him
          Was 2-4 versus Butgers
          10 wins in a weak Big East isnt saying much

          And if Holgy can get 10 wins (twice) in his first 5 years at WVCC, there is a guy out there that can get 11 wins in his first 4 years at Pitt

          Waxing nostalgic over Wanny is like wanting to go back to big tube TV’s

          Like

        2. Wanny might have worked out if he had better assistants, a QB, and someone other that Cornhole as his boss. The fact that his players got into some trouble is nothing compared to what happens elsewhere. See Baylor, Michigan St, tOSU and Pedo State. If Pitt thinks their crap doesnt stink, they are full of it. Again, that SI article was cover for Steve to fire Wanny.

          Like

      1. It was a bad decision then. In retrospect, it was a HORRIBLE decision.

        The “egg heads” have set Pitt football back every time they felt the “dumb jocks are getting too much attention.”

        No one can tell me we are better off than we were on Wanny’s last day.

        You know why? Because we’re not. Make fun of losses to UConn and Cincy but Pitt was RELEVANT then. We were talked about on sports shows.

        No one outside of Pittsburgh even cares about Pitt football.. and neither do most in Pittsburgh.

        Like

  69. The real question for me is : Has Heather begun a coaching search?
    There come a point, where ignoring the behavior (poor recruiting, poor performance, sideline tantrums, and in-house squabbles -Ox) translates into condoning it.
    Heather didn’t tolerate it with the woman’s hoops program and Susie got shown the door.
    So, how can she look the other way with HCPN?

    Like

    1. Maybe it will not be her call to make. This was a Gallagher hire, maybe she will not have the final say. I still think if he keeps his players out of trouble, wins 6-7 games and enough fans show up for games the BoT is cool with this.

      Like

  70. Well, I can’t say for certain how the rest of the season will go, but it doesn’t look good.( brilliant statement, huh?). If it slides as most believe the decision to remove Narduzzi becomes entirely financial. What exactly will you lose if he’s gone? I mean, the recruiting stinks( ya, it really does). Other coaches won’t take the job because we fired him after 4 yrs. Really? It makes us look bad. ( are you kidding me)? Believe in the process? ( ya, and the checks in the mail). Things will be better next year with 15 starters gone? Nope, it’s a financial decision plain and simple.
    Now, if we somehow go 6-6 or even 5-7, well, that gives pause. But even then, which of the things I mentioned will not be true? And if it is a financial decision, who does that fall on? Maybe, just maybe, a 7 yr extension has no buyout, or a favorable buyout? Could be, but chances of that are around as good as us going 7-5.

    Like

  71. Three.

    I agree with Reed that Virginia and Wake are the most likely of POSSIBLE wins, but both of those are away games, and I don’t see Pitt winning both of those on the road.

    Like

  72. So here I am feeling like I got a swift kick between the legs and or a punch in the gut to top it all off. Yes I’m disappointed and a good bit disillusioned with this past week’s outcome. Struggled more than usual to get over this loss but

    I’ve come around and tell myself that PITT’s record is 2-2. What has been my bigger problem getting over that loss is the game looming Saturday. It don’t look good and I know it. At the same time, UCF is one of those OOC games that I wish PITT didn’t have to play but the implication in a loss won’t be all that dramatic in the grander scheme of things.

    Waiting for this UCF game reminds me of Flo, we know whats coming and hope the damage is minimal. Emphasis on the word HOPE. I won’t allow this one game to get to me to the point that I hope they lose. That crap will take care of itself… H2P!!

    BTW…. I’m not and have never suggested I’m a better PITT fan than the next guy or gal, we all have are individual ways and means….. ike

    Like

    1. Hi Ike, been taking some time off from posting but I’ve been monitoring. I’ve found that it helps me to enjoy the games more.

      Anyway, this comment “I’m not and have never suggested I’m a better PITT fan than the next guy or gal, we all have are individual ways and means” was too much to overlood. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, self awareness is not your thing.

      Here was this beauty that you posted from last weekend: “I’ll call you “the coward so called pitt fan”. or barvo-2.. either one” You posted that in response to another poster with whom you disagreed. So you got a 2fer in your expression of fan superiority. Good job!

      So I think it’s pretty clear that you do think you’re a better fan than anybody that doesn’t provide 100% favorable support of the team. I also am not sure why you think I’m a coward. I’ve always taken you on and in fact stopped posting after Reed advised us to stop personally attacking each other. Heck we’ve occasionally even agreed on some things. If you still believe that I’m a coward I’d be happy to meet you at a tailgate for a chat to clear that up. Let me know. I’ll be attending the Syracuse game.

      So for the record, I’m a Pitt season ticket holder in football and basketball (again). I have attended every football home game for the past five years. Prior to relinquishing my basketball tickets during the KS years, I missed exactly 3 home games in four years. The first half of this support occurred while I was living 2 hours south of Pittsburgh. I’m a Pitt alum. My daughter is an on-campus Pitt freshman this year. I add that she has attended every game. I’ll therefore match my bonafides as a fan against your’s any day.

      Like

  73. Do I expect Pitt to get whacked on Saturday, yes. Would I be shocked if they won, absolutely not!! It’s what we do. And I have NO idea why that happens. In the meantime, I will not mention the goat for the rest of the year ( ya, right) lol.

    Like

  74. Found a very weird thing looking over Pitt’s opponent this season. And what this could possibly
    tell us.

    They all have at least 5 players injured, to highs of 12 + with Wake Forest.
    List of numbers of injured:

    Wake Forest 12 Total Injured – 8 are Out for the Season
    Miami 9 Total Injured – 4 are Out for the Season
    VT 6 Total Injured – 3 are Out for the Season
    UVA 5 Total Injured – 4 are Out for Season
    Duke 12 Total Injured – 4 are Out for Season
    ND 6 Total Injured – 3 are Out for Season
    Syracuse 9 Total Injured – 2 Are Out for Season
    UCF 4 Total Injured – 2 are Out for the Season
    UNC 5 Total Injured – 1 Out for Season
    GT 6 Total Injured – 3 Out for Season
    PSux 4 Total Injured – 1 Out for Season

    Pitt 1 Total Injured – Phil Campbell, listed as Questionable for UCF with an illness

    Kinda Strange isn’t it.

    Like

    1. If Pitt had 8 players out for the season, some on here would give Pat an extra two years.

      Every year posters make excuses. Some guys got injured. We only lost 4 games by 9 points. The other teams had good QB’s. We were only .002 from 4 recruits being rated 4 stars. The refs cheated. Our team is to young. The coaches have a plan, you just have to trust them. There are others as well.

      These excuses have been going on for decades.

      Like

  75. If they drop the next 3 in lopsided losses, then they won’t win another game this year. After ND, HCPN will have lost the team and they will know they aren’t going to a bowl and all hope is lost. It will be hard to get the players up for the rest of the season. The only hope is that they pull off at least one win in the next 3 games and we see a steady growth from KP during this time. Anyone who has coached a bad team knows how hard it is to get the team up when they continually expect to lose. At that point, you start playing for next year and play the younger hungry guys who are eager to make their mark. That will be tough when HCPN will be coaching for his job. Could be a lose lose there, with very few of the young guys getting to play and Pitt still continuing to lose games. I’m going with 4-8 and will predict an upset win over ND. I’m still not sold on ND’s QB play. If they beat ND, I’ll buy my son-in-law some cigars and bottle of slivovitz.

    Like

  76. As bad as a Game Day Coach Wannstedt is, I would support his hiring at this point. I know personally Wannstedt to be a really good Guy. Many share this opinion.

    His hiring would create an IMMEDIATE STIR around the Program.

    However, I would certainly prefer starting NEW with someone PROVEN to be GOOD if not GREAT on Game Day.

    Like

  77. Folks understand this. At Pitt the AD doesn’t have the power to fire the HC. That is the Chancellor’s prerogative and his alone.

    It has been that way for decades all the way back to Sutherland when Bowman cut the fooball budget and held the door open for Sutherland to leave.

    Like

  78. In the preseason prediction post, my response was 7 – 5. 1-3 in ooc & 6-2 in conference play. I still think PITT will go 1-3 in ooc but now 5-3 in conference for a 6 – 6 record.

    In my prediction, I had PITT losing to Syracuse & the season final (for division championship) to Miami. In my opinion, Virginia & Wake Forest are wins for the reasons Reed had in this post.

    Va. Tech before the season began lost a lot to graduation, going pro, dismissals & transfers. Top that off by now losing their QB (broken leg) & the dismissal of one of their starting DE (leads in TFL’s) for the ever popular team rules infractions. So this a W.

    https://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2018/7/9/17549086/virginia-tech-defense-losses-starters-bud-foster

    Duke is also a win. Yes they are 4-0 but they started off 4-0 last season & ended up only winning 2 of their last 8 to squeeze in a bowl bid. Besides they have also lost their starting QB. Starting strong is more than a record. It also depends on who is played. Wins over Baylor (still reeling from the Art Briles situation), Northwestern (rebuilding), Army (probably best win) & FCS NC Central (for the championship of Durham)isn’t the schedule of champions. Actually Duke’s OOC schedule is the same as last year.

    Like

  79. I said 7-5 before the season, but that was predicated on winning 1 of 2 between UNC and UCF. No chance Pitt beats UCF in my estimation. Based on what I’ve seen from this team, I have a hard time finding 4 more wins, but here is an optimistic effort: 1) Syracuse; 2) Duke; 3) Virginia Tech; and 4) Wake Forest. Of these four, I really don’t believe the Pitt defense can stop a Dino Babers offense if Dungey is healthy. Sadly, the Coastal side is really weak this year. Another lost opportunity. I’m afraid I will be taking UPitt to dinner in December when they turn in a 5-7 record.

    Like

  80. Reed, what was the ultimatum that Pitt’s Chancellor gave to Wannstedt, that he dump some coaches and cut some bad apple players? Surely DW had to know that he couldn’t win that battle, but he seemed surprised that he was canned when it happened.

    Like

  81. Off of that 2016 we had quite a few boys make NFL rosters : on D -Galambos, Maddox, Lewis, Whitehead and Price.. on O- Conner, Peterman, Orndorf, Bisnowaty, Johnson and ONeil… not too shabby but Duzz and Co hasn’t been translating the talent into wins…

    Like

  82. ike is right that most of us agreed that a 2-2 start would be the minimum acceptable. But I also agree with Jay that the substance of that record matters. We didn’t expect such poor play from the defense, and with so many Srs it is totally surprising the number of mistakes and busts on defense. Player deficiencies are pretty much what we expected, but the over hyped defense (and WR corps) coming from Narduzzi (one ACC coach actually said the Pitt defense would be nasty this year) typically raised expectations and lead to a major disappointment.

    Like

    1. (one ACC coach actually said the Pitt defense would be nasty this year)

      Go back to the VT and miami games to end 2017 – Phil Campbell, Chase Pine and Elias Reynolds played key roles in those games. All three have been either in the “dawg” house or injured – either way, missing in action.

      Like

  83. There is nothing worse thane a hard head .A good college coach knows how to make the most of what he’s got. Good coaches make good halftime adjustments and on and on. All the axioms of the game are being defied by this coach and his assts. Also, as it has been said here before and by two other top college coaches I heard the past week, you recruit your way to success.
    Reed you printed out Narduzzie’s presser but what was important was his body language and voice tenor as he said these things. For the first time no cocky quips but, I am whipped or do not ask me why. DESPAIR! The Peter Principle has been proven. That’s why we need a proven top coach and all the support he needs to get out of this hole.

    Like

  84. If the AD cant fire coaches, why does Pitt have an AD??

    If Gallagher is the only one, he needs to get permission from the BoT then right since he is their chairman. That 36 member BoT comprised of government bureaucrats and Nitters should have nothing to do with this decision as to whether a coach should be retained. Gallagher – that career government bureaucrat who knows more about counting atoms than business and athletics.

    That makes no sense whatsoever.

    It should be a business and financial decision. What an AD is being paid to perform. Heather has control over the athletic department’s budget doesnt she? She’s accountable for revenues, and the program’s profitability.

    Pitt’s Chancellor hired Narduzzi. Heather extended Narduzzi. Both will look ‘bad’ by firing him since that is an admission of a hiring mistake. Really exposes their ignorance when it comes to football.

    So I guess its o.k. then to keep Narduzzi and lose millions and suffer irreparable damage to the Pitt brand and fan goodwill.

    Pitt and Narduzzi are a match made in Heaven then.

    Like

  85. Call me crazy but if you want to make money then take Pitt + points.

    Pitt should get smoked and will lose the game but they will cover the spread.

    I’m taking Pitt all day. Easy Money. +13.5

    Like

    1. they will score 60 against us
      so youre saying Pitt will score 50?
      no way

      and will Gallagher really fire Narduzzi since our AD doesnt have the authority?
      and will either Heather or Pat be willing to admit their mistake and bite the financial buyout bullet?

      to me, the longer this dumpster fire continues, the harder it will be to turn things around and the more money lost.

      Like

    2. OK I’ll call you crazy for taking the points and Pitt this week. I can’t see how Pitt’s defense can stop any pass happy offense. I’d pass 80% of the time against Pitt and on the 20% runs Pitt would probably still get smoked.

      Like

    1. I agree UPitt. Heather seems to be her own person. I’ve been a Narduzzi apologist, but even this early in her administration I trust her judgement. I think 4 wins and he is gone.

      Like

  86. You knowUpitt, I absolutely think you’re right. By all reason, you should take UCF and give till the cows come home, but that’s a suckers line. Pitt, which has no business covering probably will. But then again, that’s why ?I quit betting in 1981, lol.

    Like

  87. Yes… I took Buffalo last week +16.5 against Minny at Minny. Haha.

    Pitt will play them tight and it is just bc it is the way it is.

    UCF has a little bit better players. A way better coach and system.

    Plus a excited fan base.

    Pitt loses by 6/8

    They won’t stop our run and that is all that keeps it close other than UCF mistakes.

    Like

  88. If Coach Narduzzi makes some minor but important tweaks with Pitt’s defense, to better defend the spread offenses…
    And..
    If Pitt learns to score points in all 4 quarters offensively, then we can win out. No team on our schedule is unbeatable.

    Big ifs though. So I will go with wins over Virginia, VT, Wake, and UCF, for a 6-6 season.

    Like

  89. I appreciate your sorry’s for me Mark but please save that. I could say the same thing about people who walk around in life looking back and complaining, that’s just not me. I wouldn’t be sitting where I am if I ever did that. Always been a leader and only a follower when and if it would lead me to a higher place in life.

    To all and each their own. Also a mantra I live by. Just don’t step in my space if I do not consider you a friend of mine, if you are, then it’s ok. Like you are Mark.. a friend

    Like

  90. I don’t know who Bill Brasky is, but I bet the heavily tatted woman working the morning fry shift at the O can launch better punts than the Aussi.

    And if tantrum only wins 4 games this year, he is gone.
    Will bet UPitt’s ‘78 DeVille on it!

    Like

  91. upitt.

    Allow me to respectfully disagree. I can’t, in good conscience,a dually bet against Pitt…

    But, I do pretty well on Saturdays with the “bookmakers” and I told everyone PSU would cover easily. I feel the same this week.

    I hope I’m wrong… I’m not. LOL

    Like

    1. Jay – I took Pitt but got 15.5 and took OSU -3.5.

      I was born in 77 so more like a 97 Deville. Haha.

      Ike – You are a friend and I don’t complain or look back in life but to use as fuel for future.

      Like

  92. Great article in the Post Gazette about what happens at halftime.
    To paraphrase:

    Coach Watson: Well folks, that’s the half. You know what that means?
    Grad Assistant: 6 Cokes, one cherry Coke, and nachos – three with peppers, three without.
    Coach Watson: I was hoping for a chili dog.
    Grad Assistant #2: I want a burger, if that’s OK. I can use my per diem.
    Coach Watson: They have burgers?
    Grad Assistant: And ribs. This is Carolina, after all.
    Coach Watson: What kind of sauce?
    Grad Assistant #2: All kinds. I saw a Bojangles guy and he told me..
    Coach Narduzzi: Get me the kind with chipotle…I can eat those all day.
    Grad Assistant: But they’ll leave a mess on your shirt, sir.
    Coach Narduzzi: So?
    Grad Assistant: Well, this is televised.
    Coach Narduzzi: Can’t we get Ox to do a spot clean afterwards?

    And that is why we are so prolific in the second half.

    Like

  93. Bill Brasky was a fictional character on snl. Each the talked about him, he got bigger and stronger.

    He starts out at like 6’4″ 260lbs and ends up like 7’6″ 510 lbs able to do anything by the time they are done talking.

    Like

  94. Does anyone have any idea what Duzz’s buyout is? I mean with Lyke extending him, I have an idea it was more about optics but she protected the university and didn’t have a huge buyout.

    Thoughts? I thought a contract was supposed to be made public at any state affiliated university.

    Like

  95. OK, I could see Pitt winning the two games that Reed suggested. In the end I don’t care if they lose them all just play with some heart!

    H2P!

    Like

  96. So what is wrong with the defense, besides everything.
    Do they go back and watch the film from last week to identify fixable mistakes?
    Or do they just concentrate on UCF film?
    After you have the most inept defensive game maybe since Syracuse or Navy where you had no answers,
    what do you do? How do you prepare for Saturday vs a strong offensive team?
    Where are Campbell, Pine, Reynolds, McKee, do you replace Wirginis with Blackwell who started last year?
    Did Blackwell ever have as bad a game as Wirginis? Gouged up the middle, clowned by his man on two touchdown plays?
    I there no one that can make a play?

    Like

    1. While Wirginis is fast – again not to pat Reed on the back too much…but Reed voiced concerns over Wirginis picking up schemes and playbook. He was wondering why such a good athlete with size – he couldn’t beat out lower tier athletes at Middle LB in previous years.

      Like

    2. I will tell what is wrong with the defense. When you have a WEAK DL, safeties that are WEAK and Narduzzi wants to put his CB’s on a island. For 4 years the man has been begging for failure and he’s been getting it. This is a stupid strategy.

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  97. I fully expect a win here. It is the Pitt thing to do. A WTF loss to VA Tech, a win against a red hot Duke, and a win against Wake. So I’m thinking another 5-7, streak of no seasons under 5 wins continues (longer than PSU, WVU, Michigan, Florida, ND).

    Everyone goes home happy and gets a participation trophy.

    Johnny C

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  98. QW is one of the leaders in almost all defensive categories in the ACC. Not too shabby for a young man without a nose for the football. Just dumb luck I suppose?

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    1. When teams score 38 points or 60 points, there are a lot of tackles to be made, that is where the stats come from. The problem is the tackles that were not made or the receivers that were not covered, no stats on that.

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  99. My take on PITT’s defensive struggles right now are not necessarily personnel, its not a good scheme for the ACC. As we all know it’s predicated on pressuring the QB. Well, it’s hard to get that pressure with 3 step drops and an offense that wants to get rid of the ball fast. This is where Narduzzi fails.

    That said, the defensive numbers don’t look as bad as they have in the past.. The monsoon game and playing GT do help those numbers..

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  100. With respect to 3 step drops, that’s why you play press coverage — if you get a good jam on the receiver, you mess up timing, and the QB is throwing to a sport for most three step drop passes, so the play doesn’t work if the timing is off. The weakness of the press is that you are starting basically even if the receiver, so it’s tough to stick on him deep down the field or any long developing route. Of course, under Narduzzi’s scheme, someone has to get to the QB so he can’t throw an accurate pass after holding the ball that long. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to happen early enough.

    Liked by 1 person

  101. Narduzzie recruited a punter from Australia who can’t even hold the ball let alone punt it how can anyone still have hope with that level of football smarts. Babers inherited a real mess at Cuse and was hired 1 yr. after Duzz yet he is 4/0 this week and Pitt is 2/2. What’s that say?

    Liked by 1 person

  102. It says Babers can coach, create a winningh culture, recruit, hiring better assistants and excite a fanbase.

    You know the exact opposite of Gorilla calfs.

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    1. I do know that his man ran wide open and caught two touchdowns and that UNC ran up the middle which is what he is supposed to stop. You don’t have to be a defensive guru to understand that.

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  103. I’ve seen Jack Lambert and Mel Blount make mistakes on a football field. Look, I see mistakes all the time or what I think are mistakes. A mistake doesn’t discount good plays made unless you want them to and if that’s what you would like, then by all means, go right ahead. My point was the nose for the ball remark. To me? That doesn’t add up. No sweat.

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  104. Ike, everyone makes mistakes, but good players also make big game changing plays. They also become starters before their redshirt senior year.

    Like you, I have watched football for over 50 years, I know the difference between a guy that is getting the job done vs one that is not. The middle linebacker like the QB has the most opportunity to make plays. KP has been making enough plays even though he makes mistakes. In my opinion QW has not. Guys with a nose for the ball blow up plays and make them in critical situations. They have vision and anticipation, in a game where your defense can’t get off the field, the middle linebacker is not having a good game.

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  105. I think the offensive line is doing a great job run blocking and this is helping Pickett and PITT move the ball and score pts. I really have been disappointed in Pickett’s play so far. I don’t think he’s comfortable and rushes his reads.The o-line has had some breakdowns in pass blocking but I think he fails to let the ball go and let the timing of the play work for him.

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    1. It is only his fourth game as a starter and he is a true sophomore who left high school early so I think he is doing pretty well behind that line. He can’t afford to make the big mistake of throwing the ball up for grabs.
      So rightfully he has erred on the side of caution. I am not happy with the under thrown deep balls and hopefully he can correct that. Same with the two sacks. But overall, he is getting the job done, while the defense has not. Thirty five points vs UNC should have been plenty.

      I see him getting better as the season goes on. I don’t feel the same way about Wirginis, although i hope he has some better games and makes a few game changing plays. They both will have plenty of opportunities.

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  106. Ike – don’t you think Duzz is somewhat to blame with Pickett. The staff in general went out of their way to compare him to Teddy Bridgewater, go on and on about how he hasn’t thrown any interceptions in practice. Pickett was built up to unfair expectations and throw in a bad OL and not so great WR’s and this is what you have.

    Now he has to rebuild his confidence – since the coaching staff had him built up to be this great QB right away after only a few starts.

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  107. How does everyone think we are scoring a lot. We really aren’t.

    Even with the 33 points against an FCS team – with zero in the 2nd half we are scoring 24.5 ppg. Which is low.

    But against D1 teams we are scoring only 21.6 ppg which puts us at 102nd (out of 129 teams).

    Here that is again:

    Total Offense – 101st @ 61.0 ppg

    Rushing Offense 35th @ 212.3 ypg

    Passing Offense 117th @ 148.8 ypg

    Scoring Offense 102nd @ 24.5 ppg and Against D1 teams 21.6 ppg

    We suck on offense this year guys.

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  108. Not a fan of Watson’s at all.. Didn’t like the hire and not liking the results so far. I really wouldn’t blame PN although he did make the hire I guess. imo, Pickett needs to revisit his approach to last year Miami game. << That is more his type of play. Letting it all hang out.

    Yes gc and I agree with what you’re saying, disappointed may be too strong a word, maybe I should say a little surprised. But then it goes back to him being young.

    The defense has been disappointing to me though and that’s the word I’ll use for that unit. Although the season is still early. I had PITT 2-2 after these first 4 games. I’ll bet I wasn’t the only one. 2-3 after the first 5.

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    1. Ike – I agree with you on Watson. With regards to Pickett and the Miami game, Watson actually game planned and called a nice game. Throws on 1st down, designed runs early to force Miami DL to stay in lanes and watch for the run. Gutsy play calling and reasonably good execution (with the exception of the two early fumbles) kept the aggressive Miami D off balance enough to get a few scores. What I’m saying is that it may not be Pickett who needs to revisit his approach, but rather Watson. What do we have to lose at this point?

      Liked by 1 person

  109. Most expected that the defense would be the stronger unit this year, taking some of the pressure off the offense.

    The fact that the defense has been so poor and not given the offense any kind of decent field position also affects scoring. Special teams has really hurt in the field position game affecting the performance of both offense and defense.

    I am not as disappointed in the offense because I was expecting it to not be very good so they have exceeded my expectations. The defense has just been a complete disappointment. No one is making plays.

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    1. @gc When you say “most” those same people have been wrong multiple years in a row. Some will not accept the truth.

      As far as the offense goes, lets take a wait and see on that. We’ve put up points against Albany, GT and UNC. All three have a horrible defense. With that being said, the offense should be able to put up points against UCF and Syr in the next few weeks. More teams with bad defenses.

      I’m guessing the plan this week will be to run, run and run the ball some more. Which limits the amount of possessions from UCF’s offense.

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  110. Anyone think that some of KP’s struggles are due to now opposing teams have tape on Pickett. Before – he kind of surprised teams but now they can gameplan for him a little more.

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  111. If, when describing another teams touchdown, it requires referring to 1 person not making a play, then there is something wrong with the defensive scheme.

    It’s supposed to be a team game. No play should come down to 1 guy makes a play or the other team scores a touchdown.

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    1. I beg to differ, it always comes down to one guy making a play or not. It is a team sport but individuals must make plays. Unfortunately our guys are not making nearly enough.

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  112. On balance, the offense is performing about what we thought it would be given the new QB and the poor OL. On defense, however, there is nowhere near the level of performance that was expected. I prefer to measure defense on the more traditional methods of total yrs, both passing, running, etc., the number of first downs given up, pass completion %, points given up, etc. The number of tackles Wirginis has, therefore, means nothing if the defense can never get off the field. Busted plays, out of position, etc. are what counts since they will lead to quick scores by the other team, and Wirginis has not played well in these critical situations.

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  113. I believe Pitt will finish 3-9 this season. They will surprise somewhere on the remaining slate because somebody will play down just like Miami did last November. UVA might be that team because they are not accustomed to winning. So many bought in after the Miami game fool’s gold.

    I was dead wrong in my preseason prediction/expectation that Pitt’s defensive back seven would be a strength this season. I do however still think that junior Dane Jackson is a player.

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  114. Barvo posted this among many other insults directed at me:

    “I haven’t posted in months but “I’ll call you “the coward so called pitt fan”. or barvo-2.. either one”

    But no looking back?”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Hey barvo, what is your deal with me and what makes you think I’ll take this bullcrap off you? You know my full name, you know what I look like, you know where I live and you know where I’ll be for the Syracuse game. Come see me you big mouth internet punk! That’s if your mommy allows you out of her basement.

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  115. Sorry, about being really late to the game here. I really wanted to have my $.02 on record. Looking at the rest of the schedule I think having actually two wins at the end of the season is very reasonable. The only game remaining that I see is a tossup is Duke. So when people above say it’s unrealistic to think we will only to have two wins I disagree totally.

    Like

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