Disclaimer – This article will make some people very happy. It will also likely piss some people off. That is fine. If you are part of the small population of Pitt fans that are pissed off, well that’s too bad. It is not meant as a personal slight, and I am simply harnessing your energy to further prove my point. Despite my opposition to your views, I continue value your perspective.
My first year at Pitt was 1997. When I stepped onto campus, Pitt football was on the brink of extinction. The team had averaged three wins over the previous five seasons under Paul Hackett and Johnny Majors II. Steve Pederson had just dropped the Script in favor of the Dinocat. New head coach Walt Harris had won just 11 games over three years at his previous head coaching job (University of the Pacific from 1989 to 1991). Indeed these were dark days for Pitt football.
And yet the team slogan was “We believe”. Perhaps that it was minted partway through the season, because after wining just three games the year before, Harris’ Panthers were starting to give the fans something to believe in.
In the first game, Pitt beat the Southwestern Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns 45-13. Pitt then lost to #1 Penn State in Happy Valley, but not nearly as badly as everyone expected (17 – 34). In game three, Pitt downed Houston on the road, scoring 35 points in the process. Lo and behold Pitt was 2 – 1 heading into a nationally televised Thursday night matchup with Miami. Continue reading “Time to Believe”