Of all the games to miss.  I was in Germany all week and got back on 2 p.m. Saturday.  Needless to say, it was going to be tough to justify spending an additional four hours away from my family, so I didn’t even try.

But I did watch the replay on Sunday, and what a replay it was.  From Pitt’s near perfection through most of two quarters, to their slide into Same-Old-Pittiness after the AJ Davis Fumble, to the self-implosion of a physically beaten UCF team late in the game,  to the Play that will go down in as one of the greatest in Pitt Football history, this game was nothing less than an instant classic.  I am supremely proud to be a Pitt football fan at this present moment, and I am supremely jealous of those who were able to attend this game in person.

Here are my goods, bads and uglys, and please be assured I’m sorely tempted just to list the goods.


That defense.  Down to their third string cornerbacks and backed against a wall in the fourth quarter, they stood up again and again and again and gave Pitt a chance to win. Those who say Pat Narduzzi can’t recruit haven’t watched these guys over the last three games.  Also, I now believe that this defense can be the cornerstone of the program for the foreseeable future, and Randy Bates needs to get paid whatever he asks after this season.

Aaron Matthews.  I can’t say it any better than this, so I will steal a fellow writer’s words:

First Half Kenny:  Accurate and composed.  Really moved the offense well.  Ran effectively but still stayed in the pocket when he needed to.  If this Kenny shows up for the rest of the season, our offense should be in pretty decent shape.

Last Drive Kenny:  Go look up grit in the dictionary.  You will find his picture.

Taysir Mack:  How clutch is Taysir Mack?  That 19 yard catch that got Pitt to UCF’s 11 with 1:32 left to go will be forever etched in  my brain.  He also led all Pitt receivers with 6 catches for 87 yards.

Nick Patti:  I think we can all see why Kenny is starting ahead of him (That pass into double-coverage where Butler-Jenkins had to bail him out with a nice “defensive” play -oof).  Still, there aren’t many quarterbacks I know that can come off the bench, spin out of what should have been a sure sack and then throw a touchdown during a crucial time in the game.  Patti helped this team win today and he looked good in the RPO game.

The Offensive Line:  Kenny was under pressure, but UCF was clearly coming after him.  Still, the pass protection held for the most part and at the end of the day Pitt gave up only one sack and five TFL.  Also, their run blocking was light years ahead of what it was against UVA and Penn State.  It seems hard to believe because no runner ran for more than 65 yards, but Pitt totaled 196 on the ground.  Morrissey and Company stepped up big time.

Mark Whipple:  He did a nice job with the game plan.  Still want to see a more balanced run/pass mix, but heck we scored 28 points on offense.  If we can do that every game we have a really good chance to win eight games, maybe even nine.

Jaylen Twyman:  I’m not putting him in here because of the sack.  I’m putting him in here because of the obvious UCF troll-job after the sack.  That folks, was no leg cramp.  Well played Mr. Twyman.  Well played.

Pat Narduzzi.  Again I’m stealing this from another writer because he said it better than I ever could.

Also there is this:

Pitt Special:  Poetic justice in so many ways.


Injuries to the Secondary:  Both Pinnock and Mathis knocked out of the game.  The good news is that we play Delaware last week and if there if we absolutely need to sit them. the younger guys should be able to fill in.

Mid-Game Kenny:  As good as he was early, and as gritty as he was after he came back into the game, he still needs to work on putting touch on his short passes, and putting air under his long ones.  The entire team went to sleep in the third quarter but as a leader he needs to be more consistent out there.


Not Strong in the Kicking Game:  Alex Kessman is now 3-for-8 on field goals.  He’s 1-5 outside of 30 yards.  Technically Kessman’s slump has not cost Pitt any games yet, but Special Teams coach Andre Powell better get Kessman right soon, or it probably will.

The Entire Third Quarter:  Tell me you weren’t thinking “here we go again”.  I was following along on my phone on Saturday, and I know I was.  Whatever Narduzzi is doing in there in during halftime IS NOT WORKING.  He needs to change it up.

That Defense:  (And I mean ugly in a good way). Six Sacks.  12 TFL.  Two INT’s (one of them a leaping end-zone grab by Jason Pinnock that was a thing of beauty).  Thunderous tackling.  Speed to burn.  And four plays of final-series dominance that brought Heinz field to its feet and UCF to their knees.  Light ’em Up & Hail to Pitt.

Michaelangelo Monteleone

Postscript:  The Pitt POV Tailgate hosted by Fran “Lastrowofsection4” is always a good.

Fran (front and center) and the crew
Gotcha Knights – JoeL


216 thoughts on “Monday Morning Quarterback – UCF

  1. Mike, nice job…
    I can see Kenny as John Wayne in True Grit with that eye patch and cowboy hat.

    You have the defense listed under ugly.


    1. Yea because they were downright UG-LY in the way they got after that young QB.


        1. Ah no worries. I sometimes forget that just because it makes sense in my head it doesn’t always translate that way on paper. Appreciate the heads up


    2. Fran I added a disclaimer under the defense to eliminate any ambiguity.


  2. I love our coaching staff right now and think Narduzzi finally got the right hires. This may not be his best team yet, but it is his most complete team.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I look for AJ Davis to be a 4 star player the rest of his career and Vincent Davis to be a nice diamond in the rough 3 star RB.

    That alone will save Duzz from the hot seat.

    GOOD – Davis twins at RB
    KP and NP
    The Aussie
    The D most of the day
    D. Hamlin Paris Ford’s 4 star performances
    The D on the final series
    OC and DC

    BAD – Kicker Kessman
    AAC refs
    Missing the game in person due to wife’s unfortunate health issues (more sad than bad)

    UGLY – UCF QB flop
    Injury bug


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good: The team’s resiliency as PN aptly noted in post-game interview

    Bad: UCF brought the FL weather with them — 88 deg and muggy at gametime. As a result, many Pitt players with cramps (I hope)

    Ugly: Many will once again point out Pitt’s 2nd half woes but I vividly remember three third down plays when KP overthrew wide open receivers …. beginning with the opening series in 3rd quarter when he missed AJ Davis in the flat (he could have run for 20 yards before a defender reached him)

    Liked by 2 people

  5. What a nice win! “Special” happened right in front of us and I had no idea what was going on!

    Good: Getting out early, surviving the middle, and coming back late. This game had something for everyone. Those who are rah- rah, those who are negative, and those who enjoy Pitt football.

    Oh, and running into Bernie and Jeanie B after the game. Aaron Mathews. The closing SPEED by the defensive backs was truly impressive. We were at least as fast as they where!

    Bad: Injuries in the secondary. Like most teams, third stringers cause issues. Doing a Pitt. 21-0 to 31-21 is enough to raise the blood pressure to unacceptable levels. Pickett throwing frozen ropes without any touch to wide open receivers. Lack of breakaway by RBs.

    Ugly: the choppiness of the game. Did you ever watch a game with so many stoppages in play? Why complain about a win few of us saw coming?

    Going to Germany etc for 3 wks. Maintain, and Do Not sleep on Delaware, they are the type of team that can cause trouble if overconfident. 

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great game to be at, which I was. We finally came out on the right side Hadn’t seen that for while. I would add that as ugly a significant number of the students who left after half time.


  7. I’ve watched that “Pitt Special” play a hundred times, I can’t believe Pickett made it out there to make that catch, the dude had to slide off of two defensive men, looked like he was about to lose his footing, barely made it out there. Unbelievable gutsy call and execution.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep. And then he caught a ball that was slightly off target. Heck of a play. Heck of a play.


  8. Note that 3 different Pitt players threw TD passes. The fact that all of them were less than 10 yards leaves me wondering whether it can be classified as Good, Bad or Ugly

    Liked by 2 people

  9. pittfan1…regarding the students leaving-my wife saw that too and commented “Most of them probably don’t have cars and try to get out to load on busses to get back to campus” or they would be standing in line for a very long time if they all exited en masse. That is maybe one of the biggest downsides to playing off campus IMO.

    I was at the game. Good:What an atmosphere. I really experienced the full experience pre-post tailgates with the POVert Nation, band, cheering, noisy boisterous crowds for each team..i literally felt the floor under my feet bounce and it was not caused by the “bounce house UCF crowd!”

    This team continues to improve. The talent is there on the D and lots of different kids are getting game experience. Not much drop off from the 1’s to the 2’s even saw a couple of 3’s playing as DBs.

    OLine has improved every week. I would say they are becoming formidable pass blockers and KP, though he can drive me nuts with his inconsistency in his delivery, is working in the pocket. Whip, can you teach him how to “change-up!?” The run blocking is coming along. Hopefully, Delaware will be the game where the running attack takes a jump forward. I will say I miss a big bruiser carrying the ball 25-30 time a game. Just love the affect the big back has on opposing D’s in the 4th quarter. Predict next week we finally break several long running plays.

    Punter can really boom them and has been consistent. He out-kicked the coverage on the one reutrned for a TD. Darn ball looked like it was 60 plus yards in the air.

    LB transfer from Fla` looks the part and plays it too. He is a stud-size compared to the others. In fact. I think the transfer portal has shore up some weaknesses and are contributing- Mack, Johnson and Uluzio! As long as there is free agency PITT needs to be in the market…if the PITT experience is good for these players that’s a great thing for us-word of mouth is the best advertisement “Go Shout It On the Mountain.”

    OC and DC!!! Love what they are doing. Bates is a keeper. Whip is proving his worth. Our RB coach has an excellent track record and we have receivers who are actually getting separation this year. You get some good and they will elevate the coaches around them

    Bad: Poor Alex and I truly feel for him. Anyone who has missed a 3 ft par or birdy putt has been there…he’s a great kid, wonderful parents. Hope he can shake that demon. If he gets on and it can start with his next kick then we got another weapon. Duzz probably screwed his mind by going for a FG on 4th and 1 vs a TD-Alex was probably thinking go for 6…Let’s blame Duzz for Alex’s conondrum-kidding. Duzz for ACC Coach of the year!

    I made the comment on the Blog KP was stinking the place up in the 3rd period-maybe that was too harsh but gosh darn he drives me nuts with his constant fast ball when a change-up is called for, throwing to low or behind receivers running in the flat. He did throw one nice deep ball that was a foot short as the defender got a hand in there..woulda been a TD… can’t remember the target.

    UGLY: I try to say welcome to PITTSBURGH to every visiting fan I see. If we strke up a conversation I want to tell them of some of the sites they should see including our beautiful campus, Carnegie Museum..ect. Some of the UCF folks were a bit arrogant is the best way to put it. I was consoling a fellow and his wife at the bar in the hotel..he was besides himelf because they lost reasoning it was on the coaches because they didnt run the ball enough..he didn’t here me say 3 time the we were going to take away your running game..they expect to win….I told him the P5 conferences will be looking to add the (just BSing him) I said SEC or ACC…he wanted ACC…I told him the downside of being in P5 FB”You will get used to losing more!!!”

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It was Ffrench on the long ball. Was probably Kenny’s best deep throw of the season. Anything less than perfect coverage and that play was a TD.

      Whip needs to have Kenny throw rainbows and only rainbows all week

      Liked by 2 people

    2. About KP and the demon – do you suppose that while the curse of the Demon Deacon lifted from the second half offensive effort, it still clings to KP? I will again light 76 candles and chant 76 MPGAs to finally fully lift the curse off the entire team. – Hobie


      1. Well that will certainly be a good insurance policy, but since KP actually caught the touchdown and nobody got hurt I’d expect to see good things moving forward


    3. Great comparison with the missed 3 ft putt, Bernie. Nobody misses those, right? Well, yes, yes we do. Never thought about the term “chip shot” for short kicks before your post. If they are anything like my chip shots, that just means they are short …. but always an adventure.


  10. GOOD:
    Pickett when he sets his feet properly. (The announcers stated that Whipple told them his QB’s feet were a key to the game.) Pickett is still a work in progress. Last years OC Watson should never be an OC again, nor should he ever be permitted to talk to a QB again.

    Pass blocking again. If you watch Warren, he struggles some but you can see his athleticism is saving him on some plays. He has a bright future. Four of the five OL are back next year.

    Defense: Talent, scheme, coaching – takes all three to be successful.

    Offense: Has gotten better every week. Whipple must stay at least through next year and mentor Chris Beatty (who was a former co-OC and called plays during the spring) as his successor.

    Emergence of Butler-Jenkins and TEs. Griffin-Stewart is getting open and plays a little mean like a TE should.

    Vincent Davis is going to be a star. He finds yards when there appears to be none. His Penn State TD, the final drive this past Saturday.

    Paris Ford is a ridiculous talent.

    Depth. Narduzzi not rushing to push older players like Shane Roy, Dennis Briggs, Mike Herndon, etc. off the roster to allow development of younger guys. It is paying off.

    Pickett when he does set his feet properly. It is making him miss easy throws that would have been huge gains. In his defense, took him a while to get over his injury.

    Kicking. UGH.

    DB injuries. Yikes. You can only withstand so many injuries on one side of the ball. With V. Davis emergence, maybe Carter should go back to D.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. I just read from Chris Peak that Pitt used 25 players on defense …. now of course, some of it out of necessity but there is no question that this team has more depth than before

      Liked by 1 person

  11. The Good:

    We beat the #15 team in the country in spectacular fashion

    The Bad:

    The downhill slide after the fumble. Still too many errant throws and dropped balls.

    The Ugly:

    Too many injuries, hope they are not season ending.


    1. Hear hear! How many redshirt frosh had a sack or a TFL? He’s really building some depth.


  12. Kenny still scares me. I don’t have confidence in him yet, even though outsiders keep telling me how much they love him. His accuracy leaves a lot to be desired. I know he’s gritty but you need more than grit. I know he’s confident, but you need more than confidence. You need consistency.

    The Defense played very well. I almost wish they put Ffrench (or V. Carter) out there for Pinnock since all UCF was doing were go routes on that corner. Plus, Ffrench (and V. Carter) came to Pitt as a DB’s. That’s where guys like Beli made their money. Anyone remember him playing Troy Brown flipping to defense for a few games in the early oughts, as a corner? Just my 2 cents there. Much rather give up a reception on an actual route than 50 yard bombs. Think outside the box there Duzz … oh wait, that’s not going to happen.

    Kessman is shook. I hope he’s doing yoga, meditating, and smoking a lot of weed this week. Is that legal in PA yet? It is down here in DC. Lol. Only he can get out of his head. He obviously has the leg for this.

    The punt return was unacceptable.

    The team attitude was excellent. I agree with Zeise. Duzz has his issues but the team generally comes to play (minus Oklahoma St.). And Zeise would know best since his son played for him. That’s more than a talking head’s tweet.

    The exception is Pitt coming out of bye weeks. Pitt, under Duzz, has been really poor with extended layoffs, whether it be a bye week or just an unusual schedule like Thursday to the following Saturday (and, yes, Bowl games). The team’s generally come out very flat and rusty.

    Where is Shockey? Are they planning on redshirting him and have him fill in for Ffrench next year? Saving a year of eligibility?

    Pitt’s defense has the speed to keep up with fast teams. The offense, however, leaves a lot to be desired. Pitt really needs an influx of speed on that side of the ball. Even the fast guys like Ffrench don’t play fast IMO until they have the ball in their hands. RB’s don’t hit the hole fast. WR’s don’t break in their routes fast. QB doesn’t make fast decisions.

    The criticism of Duzz’s recruiting on defense is overrated. It’s a system so he recruits for the system and we finally see what that system looks like. The criticism on offense has some merit. The offense has to play faster from the snap thru the entire play.

    Pitt has to do something about Pickett running to the sideline. I know Pickett likes it and prefers it over the wristbands but it’s embarrassing. Lol. If I have to respond to another text about him jogging to get the plays …

    There are 8 games left and every single one of them is winnable. Good coaches take advantage of the opportunity … there is a lot of opportunity ahead. Not a single ranked team remaining on the schedule. If there was ever a year for Pitt to break from tradition and have an outlier year it’s this one.

    Here is to Pitt exorcizing some demons and breaking the 3 loss curse … 10-2 regular season. I’m almost hoping that UVA runs the table in the ACC and wins the tie breaker so Pitt can avoid Clemson in the title game and truly have a shot a two win season with a bowl win over WVU.

    Again, not being delusional. Completely rational thoughts. H2P!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. TT — agree on the need for more speed/quickness on offense.

      I think we have some speed at WR, but we need more everywhere else except QB.
      I keep hoping AJ Davis will be able to play “quicker” as he gains experience…

      We need to find a TE with enough speed to go downfield…

      Go Pitt.


      1. I don’t think they play fast though. That’s my issue. We definitely have enough speed but I don’t see it in the route running.


        1. I get what you’re saying.

          The good news is we may look faster from here on because we probably just played two of the faster teams on our schedule…

          Go Pitt.


          1. They’ll also play faster as they gain more confidence and experience in the system. There is some upside to this offense


  13. Most games are won by the team that makes the most big plays and Pitt made plenty.
    Starting off with the pressure on their QB, bet they were not expecting that.
    Also, the great start by the offense, no early three and outs.
    Big plays by guys on the two deep or below, certainly not the norm for Pitt.
    Hamlin and Ford both making big plays all over the field.
    The O-line getting better from week to week, like we hoped it would.
    Great coaching which had the team ready on both sides of the ball, especially after last week.
    Never giving up, like many previous Pitt teams.
    This may be another one off, but it sure looks like this team is ready for ACC play.

    Good to see the tight ends getting involved, Mack redeeming himself after too many early game and early season drops. Still want more throws to Mathews, what a football player!

    Liked by 3 people

  14. MM – your article is excellent — almost as good as the game. 😊

    —Of course, the pre- and post-game Fran/Wolfe tailgates!
    —Being there to share this memory with my son — a top five memorable Pitt game at Heinz…
    — The noise from the crowd at the end of the game. Shows we can have atmosphere even with a small crowd if more people would help make some noise (and no one is louder or more rabid a fan than my son…and he didn’t even go to Pitt…)
    —The interceptions! Was like the good old days… Like Tom Flynn came back!
    —Coach Bates! ‘Nuff said.
    —Aaron Mathews! ‘Nuff said.
    —“The Pitt Special” — will any Oakland restaurants pick up on that?
    —Kenny Pickett catching that TD pass — not an easy play…
    —(And I must give some props to the UCF QB for his ability to throw the prettiest and most accurate deep passes I have seen in many, many moons…)

    —The continuing post-half-time Pitt swoon…
    —The missed offensive opportunities. BigB and others said it well – no reason to gun the ball to a guy wide open in the flat, give yourself some margin for error by putting some air under the ball at appropriate times…
    —Place-kicking woes. I suspect he’s peeking even though he’s telling himself not to peek… I do the same thing on the course…

    Injuries. Feel bad for Tre Tipton. Seems like he’s been injured every year.

    (But give Tre credit, he was out on the field helping get the students fired-up… He seems like a great teammate… He turns an “Ugly” into a “Good.”…)

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 5 people

  15. The long pass we are talking about. Mack would have high pointed that ball for a long gain. Ffrench wanted to keep running for a TD, the DB made a nice play.

    Not at the game but the crowd did sound loud.

    Pat Narduzzi, Randy Bates, Mark Whipple and all the other asst coaches and a special shout-out to Charlie Partridge.

    Kenny Pickett and the guts he showed. He reminded me of Kellen Winslow senior years ago. They practically carried him off the field he was so banged up.

    The fortitude the whole team showed coming back after going down by 10.

    The defense especially when UCF gets the ball back with 59 seconds left.

    Kirk Christodolu-tu2 Great punting.

    Just should have just wrote the whole PITT team.

    THE BAD:
    The fumble.
    The injuries.
    A few dropped passes.
    Special team a little.

    The Ugly:
    I’m not get on the young man anymore, Kessman feels bad enough already.

    Someone mentioned above and it’s important to note that Pickett missed many passes and wide open receivers. Between the dropped passes and the missed receivers UCF got at least two or more possessions. Let’s hope PITT heals up fast…

    Liked by 2 people

  16. MM—GREAT article!

    You guys have totally nailed the good, bad, and ugly. So I will just add this item I saw online a little while ago and one additional comment:

    NCAAFNation247 Week 4 #CFB Teams of the Week

    Appalachian State

    My version of the first ever Good, Bad, and Ugly all in one:
    Duzz being so excited during his field interview after the game that he did a “full Palko” and dropped an F-bomb on live TV! Now, that’ll win you some recruits. 🤪

    Liked by 5 people

  17. The Very Good…

    The fact that the Players were obviously JACKED for the Game coming off the DISAPPOINTING Loss just a week ago.

    Narduzzi certainly deserves CREDIT for this!

    The Good…

    PLAYMAKERS… this year Pitt has them on BOTH Sides of the Ball and that in itself gives you the ability to COMPETE on any given Saturday.

    Two of those Playmakers… Ffrench and Mack. There’s a reason why they are Whipple’s MOST gone to GOTOs!

    Two on the Defensive Side… Brightwell and that French Car Company.

    And not last by any means… Pickett’s TOUGHNESS which he shows Game in and Game out. And what seems to becoming more apparent week by week… Aaron Matthews MATURITY as one of the TRUE Leaders on this Football Team.

    The Bad… Despite ALL the Good… Pickett still 25-47 for 224 which equates to a TROUBLING 4.7 Yards Per Attempt. Unless this changes, this WILL prove a problem in a Game or TWO ahead!

    And the FACT is… it was THIS close to being the DEFINING Difference Saturday with UCF’s 18-year-old TRUE Freshman QB (the next Drew Brees Lol) barely missing on not one, not two, but THREE LONG TD Catches that were out by just INCHES.

    The Ugly…

    Narduzzi Post Game Interview… ACT like you’ve been there before… because YOU HAVE!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Pickett’s YOC will only go up but he needs to hit a couple of deep balls/game and receivers need to get loose after the catch… UCF did a great jog of tackling after the catch minimizing gains….Whip does throw a lot of short passes around the LOS which are basically running plays- we just aren’t breaking them into longer gains.


      1. I agree. I started to see ffrenchy do a little of it but we need more. I also suspect the running backs aren’t quite running the right routes in the flats. There should be more space between them and the defender after they catch the ball so they have the opportunity to make a move in space. Didn’t see a lot of that


        1. Our backs seem to have problems catching the ball cleanly too. Us juggling the ball gives the defender time to close before we can make a move…

          Ties in with the constant fastballs, I think. KP needs to get a radar gun in his head…

          Go Pitt.


  18. That UCF QB will be in the NFL someday. Those deep balls he threw were as accurate as I’ve seen a college QB throw in a long time. Talk about timing the WR speed and laying them in there. Pretty impressive.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Again… would have included Kessman some where in the BAD or worse… but at this point it goes without mention.

    I will say this… Hopefully now Chris Blewitt is finally getting the level of respect he DESERVES!

    Not an easy job being Kicker.


  20. And I agree with PoD. Narduzzi needs to show some better decorum on the sidelines during a big win. Always act like you’ve been there before. That post game on air interview was a bit unprofessional.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Right wrong or indifferent Narduzzi has passion, and he wears his emotion on his sleeve. It’s why players love him and why they will run through a brick wall for him. It’s also why he sometimes makes bonehead mistakes and says things like the aforementioned f-bomb. As a former high school football player and someone else who tends to ‘wear them on his sleeve’ from time to time, I accept and even like to see Narduzzi’s passion. I understand and respect the opinion of those who don’t however.

      Liked by 4 people

  21. Good: What more can you say, winning the game! Holding UCF to a FG on their last drive, thus setting the stage for a TD to win it. Too many other “goods” to mention…..the defense, Aaron Matthews, etc..

    Bad: with such a great win, hate to mention any bad but Kessman has to shake out of it.

    Ugly: again, not much here except that the corners still struggle a bit with one on one coverage. But speaking of that, pretty dumb play calling by UCF. They had most of their offensive success with the long ball and isolating the receiver. So what do they dial up when they needed yards the most? Runs up the middle which were stuffed.

    Ugly2: UCF fans. What a bunch of arrogant losers. Go back to group of 5 wonderland. Oh, and thanks Steve Pederson for keeping us out of the hell known as the AAC! That would have been the death of this program.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Please don’t give Cornhole credit for anything that was not his doing. He had nothing to do with us joining the ACC. That move was above his pay grade.


  22. Great win, obviously, but I have a few additional nits to pick:

    Pickett seems to have made some tremendous progress in the last few weeks, but he still has a ways to go in terms of consistency. Maybe he really does get tuckered out from all the running from sideline to huddle, and that’s what hurts him in the second half? For the life of me, I can’t figure out why they can’t just rotate receivers in and out and have the guy coming in from the sideline bring the play with him. Tons of teams do this, at all levels of the sport. Why the eff can’t Mark Whipple? Quite frankly, this does not inspire much confidence in our new OC, long term.
    Pitt’s skill position guys are not breaking enough tackles. There’s a couple reasons we’re not getting many explosive plays from the offense, and one of them is because when our speedy guys get the ball in space, they don’t really look all that speedy, they’re not making people miss, and they’re not breaking tackles (with the notable exceptions of Mo Ffrench and Vincent Davis). AJ Davis, Sibley, Carter, DBJ…these guys have not impressed me when they’ve had the ball in their hands, so far.
    That said, they did run the ball better today than in previous weeks, so maybe the O-line is coming together a bit? That’d be nice.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. And M… guessing you didn’t see the SAME Nick Patti I saw?

    Based on the COMMAND he took heading into the Game and that SMOOTH, COOL roll-out Pass… he just might be BETTER than Pickett.

    Understandably, he’s not going to be getting the OPPORTUNITY to show it anytime soon!

    But one thing for sure, we do know that he is the BACKUP… not George.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Patti threw tree passes.

      One was outstanding and gave Pitt six points.

      One was an ill advised throw into double coverage that except for an outstanding heads up play by the receiver should have been an interception.

      What was the third?

      Pickett may not be the most consistent of throwers and he may lack touch passing, but he’s protected the football.

      That’s important

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I thought the same thing when I saw that touch pass. He looked as good or better than Pickett with no practice or preparation. .


  24. I had penciled in to attend this UCF game but changed my mind and will attend the Duke game in Durham. Mistake?

    Anyhow this game reminded me of the 36-35 win in 1970 over WVU that I attended. H2P

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Please read closely, I totally understand the sentiment that Narduzzi should learn to show more class BUT the way Narduzzi’s coaching has been disrespected on social media (not that he reads any) I can see why he wants to give it back to his detractors. Take the POV game threads this year as examples, they are brutal to read and certainly many are not spot on. Too many people bashing Narduzzi and jumping overboard way before the PITT ship is close to sinking.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Good- Great win over a ranked team! Finally a win on national TV! Atmosphere looked electric from the beach bar where I was watching the game. A Resilient effort!
    Bad – The 3rd quarter let down.
    Ugly- Will pass here as the good greatly outweighs anything I can call Ugly.


  27. Just take a look at last weeks game-day thread against psu and the Monday Morning QB articles and the screen names that commented negatively. Most of those names do not appear this week. Why? Are they PITT fans or not?

    Liked by 3 people

  28. The Very Good—MM’s post from earlier in the week telling us that there was no way UCF ( a team that can only recruit 2 and 3-stars) would be able to win. Oh wait, MM was being ironic. Love ya, MM. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Good and very good… Pitt learning how to overcome adversity. That one huge thing is going to make their season.

    Bad …. the many profane words I used from the last 5 minutes 2nd quarter to the 4th quarter.

    Ugly – I know we have some POV HS kickers on our board. Kessman is lining up askew. His hips are not facing the target line. Easy fix. For you golfers, it’s like setting up on a drive to hit it dead left, then trying to maneuver to actually push it right. How your hips go is where the ball goes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Actually we have two backup kickers, both freshman…but will Narduzzi use one of them? First chip shot miss on Saturday and Kessman should get the hook.


  30. The Good:
    Well, we can put another notch in the bedpost of the “Bed of National Champions We Have Defeated”!!!

    The Bad:
    88 Degrees and muggy;

    The Ugly:
    Frickin ACC referees. On F. U. C.’s (that is, Florida University Central) punt return TD, our #24 (I think) was the last man with a chance to make the tackle, and he was hit and tripped
    from behind just before his tackle attempt – the only yellow I saw was in the upper decks.

    I admit that I didn’t know that you can’t have pass interference if the thrown ball isn’t past the LOS.

    Liked by 2 people

  31. About the win: – Joyous celebration and H2P – Heightened expectations and happy as can be – Pitt’s upset win feels like a personal win for me – Joyous celebration and H2P – Hobie

    Liked by 2 people

  32. The Good:
    * We were the better team (by a little bit) and actually won where it matters, on the scoreboard.
    * Kenny Pickett, though far from a finished product, has improved significantly over last year and almost all of us saw this coming (or at least hoped…) for one reason: the Whipple Effect.
    * As mentioned above – Resilience, a sign of character.
    * The defense is just plain tough, they hit opposing QBs with regularity and seem to be hitting their stride, good enough to keep us in just about any game.
    * Kessman’s second miss, without which we would not have had that historic, elating ending.
    *Knocking UCF out of the playoff picture for the year.

    The Bad:
    * Keeping Pinnock in the game as long as they did.

    The Ugly:
    * Kessman’s kicking, though I predict he snaps out of his mental funk next week.


  33. The Good: slapping a P5 wannabe back into reality

    The Bad: passing accuracy

    The Ugly: field goal misses

    Bonus: narduzzi is no longer the worst football coach in Pittsburgh.

    Liked by 4 people

  34. This may have been mentioned previously, but Pickett mentioned that he gets the play from Whipple with 20 seconds or more on the play clock, and has a chance to think about the expected coverage on the way back to the huddle. I noticed that he sent A.J. Davis to the sideline on his way back to the huddle once because he knew that the play call didn’t include him.


    1. Interesting comment from Kenny on the jog to Whipple for the next play, VoR. I hadn’t heard that. It bothered me for a while but I don’t remember a delay of game penalty so far. Thought we came close to a delay in the Virginia game when Kenny appeared to have to direct Ffrench to the proper alignment for the play call. But it seems to be working.

      Liked by 1 person

  35. Nard has always said: when you play Pitt, you’re gonna know you were in a brawl.

    Their QB and OL got an intro into D-1 ball. We knocked them on their AAC! Literally, ” the shot heard ’round the world”.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. South Florida thanks us

      Seriously central Florida is a diploma mill. I can’t respect a school that makes WVCC look Ivey league.

      I hope the knight fans who made the trip up North got a good immersion in the character, culture and sophistication of a most liveable city. A true world class city with a world renown school taking the city’s name.

      Go back to your swamp and Mickey Mouse city.

      To all you Florida recruits. If you want to build character, go to school in a great vibrant city, play in a real legit conference, get a great world class education and have a good chance of getting to the pros, why would you pick central Florida or any Florida school over the City of Bridges, the Steel City, the Paris of Appalachia.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Not to mention Carnegie and Heinz Halls ant the Dirty O!!!! We got all the sophistication and culture a young man can handle….


  36. After watching the replay, I need to add a GREAT couple of lines to my prior Good, Bad and Ugly Post

    Pitt Defense! The last drive! Pitt Special! Tasir Mack! Pickett and Patti! H2P!


  37. Who here had PITT at 2-2 after four games with a close 7 pt loss on the road in front of 110,000 fans? I think I remember reading lots of 1-3? Hell, maybe I did too? This team has the potential to mess up many preseason predictions.

    Jerry D has a great article in the trib briefly breaking down the rest of PITTs schedule. It is a slight possibility that PITT could be favorites in all games the rest of this season.


      1. Tex

        Was thinking about your college spending analysis watching Harbaugh get has A$$ handed to him once again. 7 million a year plus ridiculous perks like million dollar life insurance policies and he can’t beat the top teams in his league with all the talent in the world.

        The didn’t hire him for that money for occasional 10 win seasons.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Sometimes a school isn’t wise about how it spends money. Harbaugh is a very poor investment. He should be jettisoned. Franklin will be next. Those schools just aren’t getting good value for their money.

          Liked by 2 people

      2. I think I remember Tx, you sometimes borderline and belie your position. But not when it comes to the BOT. Narduzzi or Heather. You are a really great PITT fan.

        BigB, I agree.

        Mark I miss your posts as well. I post many comments that are not well received but I remain undeterred. Hope all is well with you and your family and hope your Dad is coming along health wise while getting better and better!!


    1. I thought we’d beat Virginia. A lot of people figured 2-2, but no one thought the Steelers would be 0-3 😉


  38. shek… you are pumped my man…. ain’t it great to feel this good about a PITT game…. next big game is Saturday vs Delaware… didn’t they have a QB named Joe Flacco????????


  39. No doubt that 2-2 is exponentially better than 1-3, figuratively if not literally.

    It was really unfortunate that we had to start the season with VA, instead of after the bugs had been worked out of the new offense.

    In any case while we have new optimism, you are never as bad as your losses or as good as your wins.

    We still have to play them one at a time and they will all be tough. There are no gimmee wins on the ACC schedule for Pitt. We still have to earn everything, but a winning season is far more achievable after 2-2 than 1-3.

    I would love to know the extent of the injuries to our corners, because without them a winning season may not be possible.

    If they are both down, do you move Ford to corner and use Stocker? Do you move Campbell back to Safety?
    Do you have Ffrench play ironman?

    In any case, It has been a long time since Pitt has been hit with this big of an injury bug.


    1. Totally agree on the injuries… reminds me of one of DePasquale teams in the early 70’s which had the looks of a promising season… Ralph Cindrich went done in the home opener vs UCLA… think we lost 6-7 defensive starters that year…. could not pull out of the nose dive!


      1. Bernie – we opened with UCLA at home (Heisman winner Gary Beban at QB) in 1968, my Jr year. Ralph Cindrich and Lloyd Weston (Westinghouse HS, I think) were stars on that D!

        Liked by 1 person

  40. I was bummed out after the lack of aggression last week by the coaching staff as I truly believed they coached not to lose big instead of to win. This week even if they hadn’t pulled it off I still would have been pleased as they played aggressive and took chances which is what this team needs to do as an underdog. Great effort all around and Narduzzi’s demeanor and passion are the biggest reasons I have been a supporter for so long. This game needs fire and passion and he has that. I am so excited to bring my son to our first game/s at Heinz Field this weekend and that is all because of Pitt (certainly not because of the Steelers, oof…). Can’t believe it has been 20 years.

    Liked by 2 people

  41. Love Duzz’s fire and candor on the side-line post game… was like having my buddy UPitt back in the fold…. dammit Mark, a lot of us miss you on here!

    Liked by 2 people

  42. The Good/Great –
    -The character and tenacity of the Pitt players
    – OC and DC coaching, HCPN finally gets these hires right
    – KP’s 1st half and overall grit
    – RB by committee is working, but hope V.Davis emerges as a stalwart
    – The best DL across the board that I can remember (AD was a 1-man wrecking crew)
    – Defensive speed at the LB and DB levels comparable to PSU and UCF
    – Incorporating TEs . . . YEAH!!
    – The improvement with each game of the OL
    – Backup QB showing cool and being clutch in tough situation
    – Pitt Special!!!
    – Pitt’s readiness to play at the beginning of the game
    – Turnovers . . . . . FiNALLY
    – The students who hung on till the end, what’s the damn hurry to go back to campus
    – HCPN’s emotion and support for his players

    The Bad
    – KP’s 3rd qtr+, although you wonder if his inaccuracy was due to shoulder injury
    – Injuries to CBs, will be a real test to the depth on this team
    – Pitt’s lack of readiness after the half . . . AGAIN
    – Fumble at critical time and place
    – Punt coverage
    – WR drops when KP was accurate

    – Well . . . . . . you know

    I know I may be swept up from the emotion of this big victory, but I don’t see a single team remaining on the schedule that is even close to “Dairy U” and “Diplomas R Us”, which we either beat or should have had a chance to beat (with some better game day decisions). 10-2 anyone?

    Liked by 1 person

  43. Maestro and notrocket really did a nice job of summing things up, so I will try to be brief.

    Good, Bad & Ugly has a negative bias and so Im attaching Great onto the end.

    – The kids really showed up for this one and the D was ready and conditioned for the uptempo UCF offense
    – More kids got game experience – building depth for the future.
    – Kenny’s play overall. The QBR rating is flawed and cannot account for the intangibles, which he clearly has.
    – Solid play by the OL, our biggest question mark entering the season is becoming a decent unit.
    – The running game made some strides. Averaged over 5.0 yds/carry.
    – Wendell Davis, making we Richmonders proud he’s a Panther
    – Pinnock’s solid performance

    – Davis’ fumble and the resulting score by UCF. Had Mardy Gilyard in my head at halftime.
    – 31 unanswered points by the Knights.
    – Deep completions by UCF.
    – AAC refs. Bad calls both ways, but the ones against were more penal.
    – Punt return coverage when UCF took it to the house.
    – Case of the yips by our K.
    – The folks who left the game before the end. Bad as in I feel bad for them.

    – YIKES! To my horror, my face showed up at the bottom of Maestro’s post. I will have to learn to wait to send celebratory messages to Maestro the next day and when Im not in “game form”.

    – The call. Gutsy. Unexpected. Beautifully executed. A lasting memory. Took me 30 minutes to calm down.
    – The total shutdown of UCF on the four final plays.
    – Hamlin and Ford’s closing speed is amazing. Who says Florida kids have all the speed? Remember the JoeD guy who said WPIAL kids were slow, slow, slow?
    – Defensive pressure most of the day.
    – The final drive. 4 minutes of excitement.
    – Game ball to the coaching staff.

    Epic tailgate. Great people, great food.
    Attack of the Killer B’s from Camden, NC. Nice to clink glasses with you Bernie. Love your Mrs. – a great lady.
    Fran and Wolfe holding down the fort. They are wiating for the lot to open every week and have everything ready to go for the rest of us. A tip of the cap to both of you!
    A big shout out to the folks in our section (114). Great group of folks and how special to enjoy that win with all of you.

    Football is a game of not only strategy, but emotion. Duzz clearly knows how to push those kids buttons as they showed up big time. Trajectory is pointing up right now; lets see how the kids attack the rest of the schedule.

    Liked by 5 people

  44. Narduzzi blurts out something that is kinda like an “F” sound, but it doesn’t sound like the F word to me. The folks on the ACC Network recap show (don’t remember what it’s called but it features EJ Manuel, Mark Richt, and others) thought Narduzzi did a good job of “censoring himself” during that interview, so they didn’t hear the F word either. Regardless, I am a fan of Narduzzi’s passion for his players and the game.

    I don’t want to be Debbie downer here, but I’m not convinced that beating UCF is as amazing of a win as it is made to be. Yes, ending their regular season streak is a nice accomplishment, but Pitt was the only power 5 school they beat last year (they lost to LSU, although they didn’t have Milton; with him they might have ended up being declared a national champion for the 2nd year in a row). Last year they had a game against UNC canceled, leaving us the only regular P5 opponent. In 2017, the only power 5 teams they beat were Maryland (who was 2-7 in the big ten that year) and Auburn in a bowl; a game against GT was canceled. In 2016 they lost to two power 5 teams, Michigan and Maryland.

    Narduzzi has received his fair share of criticism for bad coaching decisions. Josh Heupel’s bad decisions probably cost UCF the game on Saturday.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good points but perception is reality in college football.

      Tech may have given them a run for their money with the option but (and I know this sounds bad coming from a Pitt fan) I don’t think they’d have beaten UNC.

      They are the Boise state of the southeast and they have the reputation as giant killers. Well Pitt ain’t a giant but we beat that knight that is in mortal combat on Saturday. That’s good enough for me.

      With all that being said if we don’t play with the same intensity in our ACC games we can lose any one of them on any given Saturday


      1. Regarding Debbie Downer – What I like best about the win is that it makes Pitt nationally relevant for at least a week. We haven’t had national recognition since bumping off Clemson and Miami and that was two and three years ago. – Hobie


      2. No doubt that UCF’s reputation precedes them and the win was exciting, got us all over the headlines, and the “Pitt Special” was the #1 play on ESPN’s college football final. That’s all well and good. But there’s no way you are going to convince me that by beating them, it is realistic to think we can go 8 and 0 the rest of this season. Heck, I think Delaware is better than folks think. I think we win comfortably, but I don’t expect to blow them out … it won’t be a “rest your starters for 3 quarters” game.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Completely agree. While I love the enthusiasm this win has generated I’m seeing the prediction pendulum swing from 5/6 wins to 9/10. Now don’t get me wrong 9/10 would be great but I still think Pitt will let a couple get away from them and finish with 7 or 8 wins on the regular season.

          Injuries can play a factor too…if Pinny and Williams are out or hobbled for any extended amount of time our pass defense takes a hit. That means more cover safety help over the top and a tick less safety involvement in the run game. That not what you want against the likes of Duke or even UNC with that young gun quarterback


          1. My implication about 10-2 was offered in jest, this team has not established itself, but you have to admit Pitt has likely just faced its two most talented opponents, and including Va, maybe 3,


            1. I know I know. And yes I 100% agree with the fact that the schedule lightens up from here on out…at least on paper.

              I was referring more to the Facebook Pitt group. Some kool aid being consumed over there!


    2. While I don’t think Pitt wins if Milton Mackenzie was the QB, this QB racked up 38 pts in the first half alone vs Stanford. Stanford probably has more experience in facing fast-paced high scoring offenses each year …. Wash St, Oregon, Arizona and UCLA


  45. How about the play from our DE youngsters Baldonado and Morgan? Chris Peak thinks Morgan might be our fastest defensive lineman. When Weaver went down for the season I just didn’t know what kind of play we would be getting from our DE backups. If they progress from the current level our DL may scare the hell out of our remaining ACC opponents.

    Liked by 2 people

  46. From PSN, Pickett named ACC QB of the week(anyone that can beat out Trevor Lawrence can’t be all that bad), Hargrove ACC offensive lineman of the week(who would have thought that from our low rated starred linemen) and Mathews ACC Specialist of the week(well deserved).

    Liked by 4 people

    1. When you successfully rep the ACC against a strong OOC team, you have to be recognized.

      Still haven’t been able to watch but will as soon as can


  47. Bernie plans on winning the Bojangles Tailgate of the week Saturday at Duke…mainly because it starts on Friday!


    1. I am bringing Larry Cartwright (remember him)from “Get your Ice cold Dr. Pepper here!!!” getting him out of forced retirement to serve our beers….we will have 2 tailgates!!!! Friday and Saturday…..

      Liked by 1 person

  48. Creation of the ACC Network has hurt us big time … we originally were supposed to open the season with Delaware, not play them week 5. That would have been a much better opponent to break in Whipple’s new offense than UVA which had an experienced defense.


    1. newbk, network is just trying to create some buzz and have viewers…PITT vs Virginny had as good of a back-drop story line as any other game in the ACC..I see your point as we would have been better pacing them after a couple of non-cons…just the way it worked out for us…bring on the Blue Hens (always thought that was a cool nick-name but begs the question’why not the Blue Roosters)


      1. I get why the ACC did it. But it really hurt us this year. UVA looks to have regressed, at least based on their performance the past two Saturdays when they have not looked sharp. Of course, if we don’t have any healthy DBs, we are going to regress real soon too.


  49. Anyone making an assessment on Patrick Jones on the Blog..I haven’t seen a replay yet but was really thinking he would be leading in sacks since Weaver went down…does Patrick even have a sack this season???


    1. 1.5. For them both in Saturday. Has been a physical presence in setting the edge but hasn’t done much to get at the passer. Not sure if this is by design or not

      Tyman leads with 5.5
      Alexandre second with 3.5

      Both on pace for double digits if they keep up the pace…


      1. My guess is that with Weaver out many of our opponents have slid some help over to defend Jones. But with the strong play we are getting out of others on the DL that may not be possible in subsequent games.


      1. That look is priceless. I think all of us sitting in the stands had that exact same look!.

        Did “the look” help get Hargrove the ACC OLineman of the week award?

        Oh yeah, no other ACC teams played anybody so we had the inside track on all awards…

        Go Pitt.

        Liked by 1 person

  50. Also, the Very Good. My wife and I are buying a house near Charlettesville. So, next year, I will get to finally meet some of you POVerts when Pitt comes to get revenge.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Hey pmd, look one comment below. JoeL will be you friend. BTW get your butt to Durham for the Duke game and introduce yourself to one hell of a group of PITT fans. Breaks my heart (again) I wont be there.


      1. JoeL
        When we move (hopefully by November) we will be about four miles west of Cville off Barracks Road. Hope to meet you at the games.


  51. Anyone with a pantherlair subscription should read at the Between 5th and Forbes site a post titled “The Defensive Gameplan”. The initial comments come from a twitter follower/analyst named Mike Felder. This should be some good bed time reading for all the Narduzzi detractors that want him replaced ASAP.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Here’s one:


      1. Another: (He had way more comments on the Pitt game than any other. It shows we had a good national audience for an exciting game)


  52. After Saturday the new pups name is officially Eli The Lucky!! He’s doing ok… but raising a pup starting at 8 weeks…. You should be asking how I’m doing 🙂 Laid by my side during the game, I didn’t want to yell too loud so I think he help with my blood pressure. It’s like college football, it’s a young mans game. Thanks for asking pmd my friend.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ike, my wife and I have three border terriers. A puppy, a three year old and a 14 year old. So, we have the whole range of “dog” issues—and would not trade them for a second. Our best to Eli the Lucky (and you).

      Liked by 1 person

  53. The Good: Everything about the demeanor of this team, the coaching and the fans…except:

    The Bad: Losing 2 starting corners then allowing a 21 point comeback.

    The Ugly: Kessman’s kicking.


  54. I did hear the F word but that was all I heard. The “F” although I know where Narduzzi was going with it… Another example of him being a defensive guru perhaps??

    Liked by 1 person

  55. If ever there was an opportunity to see how thin the line is between a win and a loss, these last two game should have done it. By my count that Pitt Special had at least 5 components that had to go right and somehow they all did. The snap to Davis, the toss/handoff to Matthews, the collisions between Pickett and the defenders, the throw by Matthews (which was shaky), and the catch by Pickett. If any of those go bad, CF gets the ball back with less than a minute and runs out the clock. And we are 1-3 and talking about what woulda, coulda, shoulda.

    Liked by 5 people

  56. I was curious so I looked it up.

    UCF QB Dillon Gabriel was a 5.7 rated 3-star recruit. He had 2 big-time offers — USC and Georgia.

    I watched him some in warmups and on sideline out patterns I wasn’t impressed. But he sure impressed with the deep balls.

    The first couple of deep throws, when the ball was about a quarter of the way there, my impression was that there’s no way this can be caught — it has to be way overthrown. But then here comes the ball falling from the sky perfectly leading the WR.

    I soon realized they were not being overthrow, they were being perfectly thrown with an exceptionally high arc.

    We need KP to study the physics on those throws. The launch angle versus distance versus descent angle…

    The great thing about the high arc is that when thrown accurately the DB, even with good coverage, has no chance to bat the ball — the ball is coming down at a steep angle out ahead of the WR.

    Big contrast with the lower incoming trajectory of KP’s bullets…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. MM — that’s outstanding. Have all the QBs take it pass/fail, and the final exam is being able to demonstrate all the throws and when each trajectory and speed is called for…

        (I still say varsity athletes should get some credits for all the time they put into being varsity athletes…)

        Go Pitt.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes! And it gets better because the physics profs could have them do written proofs on how the higher trajectory of the ball increases catch rate

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Bernie – we opened with UCLA at home (Heisman winner Gary Beban at QB) in 1968, my Jr year. Ralph Cindrich and Lloyd Weston (Westinghouse HS, I think) were stars on that D!


  57. This discussion reminds me about something regarding old Panther favorite Tino Sunseri.

    See who remembers this trivia:

    In pre-game warm-ups, Tino had something that he did every game as the last thing he did just before going back into the dressing room. What was it?

    Go Pitt.


  58. ^^ H e had a charcuterie board from the strip district at midfield? Maybe that’s why he turtled…. He had a belly ache??


  59. HCPN is right, there has definitely been improvement from game to game and that is important since the season is a marathon.

    Glad to see the coach immediately focused on the next game, enough reveling in the past. I also like how he’s developing his press conference demeanor, its much less confrontational, and showing some humor.

    Lets be sure Delaware leaves the ‘burgh as the Black and Blue Hens.

    Liked by 2 people

  60. KP absolutely knows how to throw a football with touch. He needs to take deep deep breaths and relax. He puts too much on his own shoulders and he plays like it. Kenny is just fine.


      1. Great news if they are back to 100%. The last thing we need is for pinnock to aggravate his hammy against Delaware


    1. I will take any national press love. But I would give more credit to bates than whipple for Saturday. But I thought they both have been excellent.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Herbstreigt, like 99.9999999% of the population, doesn’t know a thing about San Jose State football coaches. Names 6 teams but only 5 coaches. Outside of beating Arkansas, having uniforms that are similar to Pitt’s & being consistently bad.


  61. Didn’t see anyone call out Coach Borbley’s name. The OL is really coming I to it’s own. This summer, all I heard was, “Borbs is good with the run game, but can’t coach pass protection”. WTF!

    We saw what he did with the run game last year – of course with two 220 lb backs, that’s what you do.

    Just under 200 yards this week in a 50 – pass attempt game. Doesn’t leave a lot of room for the ground game.

    The things I like most are the passion and the IMPROVEMENT since the 0-1 start.

    And — I’m not usually a conspiracy man, but I think the ACC and the ACCN started us off with UVA as the best way to keep us from a repeat.

    I’d really like to see a rematch with Clem’s Son (that Clem was a real redneck…..and so is his son). That’s how you measure your progress – against the best!

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Agree on borbs. He is making the most of a young and inexperienced oline. They will continue to get better this year and next. Excited to be a pitt fan right now.

      Liked by 1 person

  62. I mentioned Panther great Tom Flynn above – in reference to us getting a couple of interceptions against UCF.

    Which got me the business from Eric for being an old geezer. Guilty as charged!

    Tom Flynn lives in nearby Murrysville. I remember seeing him at a Pitt golfing event either this year or last year.

    Anyway, for you youngsters, here’s some Tom Flynn info:

    “Thomas Flynn (born March 24, 1962 in Verona, Pennsylvania) is a former American football safety who played five seasons in the National Football League. He played college football at the University of Pittsburgh where he had 10 interceptions and returned two punts for TDs over his career.

    Flynn was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the fifth round of the 1984 NFL Draft. In his rookie season he led the NFC in interceptions with nine, and was voted Pro Football Weekly’s NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. He was unexpectedly cut by the Packers early in the 1986 season, but was signed by the New York Giants soon after. He is remembered by the Giants for his big play in the last game of the 1986 season, against the Packers, where he exacted revenge on his old team by blocking a punt and returning it for a touchdown. “

    Nine interceptions as a rookie in the NFL!

    End of Pitt Football History Lesson…

    Go Pitt.


    1. I was born in Verona too. 801 8th St. Of course actually it was at Magee Women’s Hospital, but I digress…


  63. All of a sudden, we are listed in the AP poll. Who knows where we would be if we had found a way to beat the country bumpkins last week. We must absolutely put our feet on the gas and press down hard…

    Liked by 1 person


    Guess I’m trying to win the “Most totally off-topic” award, but in honor of a few of our “Latrobian” posters here, I felt obligated to pass on something I just learned moments ago:

    David Evans Strickler, a 23-year-old apprentice pharmacist at Tassel Pharmacy, located at 805 Ligonier Street in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, invented the banana-based triple ice cream sundae in 1904.

    Yeh, big wins like the one that happened Saturday makes a lot of us giddy/goofy, I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

  65. Good – 1) Credit to Narduzzi’s ability to get this team to bounce back after a tough loss in a rivalry game and come out with a chip on their shoulder. I have been watching Pitt football for a long time and haven’t seen that level of intensity in Heinz outside of a Penn St. game. Really tough to do 2 weeks in a row.

    2) Resolve. Once the adrenaline wore off, Pitt could have folded their tent at 31-21. Frankly, I expected SOP with UCF running away in the 4th quarter. Those kids showed incredible mental toughness and belief in each other to come back and win that game. Did anybody really think they would come back at 31-21?

    3) Clutch Pitt??? A game winning drive with an unbelievable call on 4th and goal. I wish they would have run the “Pitt Special” last week to send that game to OT. While Pickett can be maddeningly inaccurate at times, you cannot question his heart.

    4) I was counting on 1-3 after 4 games. Lot of football left, but that game should pave the way to at least 6 wins and another bowl trip.

    Bad – Inability to play a consistent 4 quarters on offense and defense. Injuries starting to add up.

    Ugly – Kessman. I think he’s mentally done. I would sit him.

    Liked by 2 people

  66. The Good that has not yet been mentioned:
    -Taysir Mack and Aaron Mathews’ worklike professionalism. They don’t celebrate too much too early, they are all business for 61 minutes.
    -Vincent Davis reminds me of swervin Curvin Richards. He’s more elusive and should get more touches than AJ to see what he can do IMO.
    -Us Fans. I nearly lost my big booming voice near the end of the game, but our fans got really loud for UCF’s final 4 plays. The anti-inflammatory nature of pregame ibuprofen certainly helped. The body language of the UCF QB said either he couldn’t hear the plays or didn’t have the experience to handle the noise. It was very loud for a crowd that size.
    -the Duzz interview sounded like he said Fuppal team, so either it was censored in time, or he said Football
    -Kylan Johnson LB
    -the second and third stringers – friggin admirable
    -the team coming back from 31 unanswered
    -Kessman – support him – it’s a confidence thing – he’ll be fine once he strings together a few

    The Bad that has not yet been mentioned:
    -Kenny needs to be told to take 1 millimeter off his throws since he’s consistently overthrowing. Minor adjustment.
    -Nakia Griffin-Stewart doesn’t catch all that well. He didn’t leave the ground as that one pass sailed just out of reach. Maybe time to give the other TEs more opportunities.

    The ugly: already mentioned but whatever Duzz is saying/doing at halftime or extended layoffs – consult with a pro on what he could do to improve

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Nice comment Pete. I agree with all of the above … except for maybe kessman but he’s all we got so need to get behind him


  67. Great writeup MM, and love the comments from the rest of the posters. As we were leaving the game, 3 guys (UCF students, I suppose) walked past us. One of the kids said, “Man, I can’t believe we lost.” I laughed and said to Kurt, ” We do it all the time- you’ll get over it.” I wish I had said it to that kid instead….
    Great win, a MUCH-NEEDED win- both for the team and all of us long-suffering fans. Also great heart and character shown by the team. I feel much better about the rest of the season.

    Our wonderful women’s volleyball team is now up to #4 in the country, passing PSU, which is now #5. I was lucky to get seats on the floor of the vb match Sunday. Fantastic atmosphere- I hope fans continue to support this team as they begin their ACC play. H2P!!

    Liked by 5 people

  68. Will be tough to get students to attend volleyball games. Games aren’t played at the Pete. Played at fitz in 90 degree humid temps. No marquee teams in the ACC except for Pitt. Louisville and FSU might be top 25

    I’d give students credits for any game they attend. Goes for any Olympic sport. Say ten credits per game. Can be redeemed in 50 point increments…must attend 5 games. 50 credits might be worth $50 bucks that a student can spend on books, food or merchandise at Pitt stores and affiliates. Might cost the university $500k but you’d get students to attend games and maybe find out they like it.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I like it Tex. Pitt Athletics Reward Card. Make it redeemable for concessions at those same events. That way you have to go back to spend your points.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly.

        Great way to promote Olympic sports which are not well attended. Gives students an incentive to attend. Gives those programs some exposure.

        You could even flex the credit based on sport if you want to get real sophisticated. Like 15 credits for a wresling match. Only ten for volleyball. Wrestling is a tough sport to watch but our men are a top 20 team.


        1. If you paid me, I still wouldn’t go to watch wrestling, but I realize some people get into it.

          Perhaps we should see if we could come up with a POV “reporter” on each Pitt Sport besides football.

          Annie might be our Volleyball reporter.

          Someone (Dan?) was giving us good reports last season on how the Men’s BB team was doing.

          I know that few people have interest in the Women’s BB team, but I go to some games and could keep the POV posted on their development (which I think is going to be pretty interesting, though the ACC competition can be pretty tough…)

          Still leaves several sports…

          Go Pitt

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Tex – in the late 60s, a bunch of us attended every wrestling match. We had a blast, and cheered louder than at football games. But then, at 1-9 for 3 years straight, there wasn’t a lot to cheer about! So maybe not a good comparison!

          Liked by 1 person

        3. I volunteered for the wrestling team for 3 years while I was there. I loved those guys. So dedicated and such a hard sport- an individual and team sport all in one!


  69. I think the kids will show up for volleyball, everyone loves a winner.
    Temp dropping fast in PGH, won’t be 90 degrees for long.
    Many great memories of the Fitz, high school indoor track meets,
    playing squash in the sub-basement, Billy Knight, the Amoeba defense,
    Tiger Paul.

    I’ll be sad to see it go, just like Pitt Stadium, but time marches on.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The women’s volleyball team was nationally ranked when I was in school. Fewer than 500 total people ever attended. Winning alone won’t do it. At least Fitzgerald is on campus. An easy walk for students.


      1. At Case Western where my daughter went, they had sign-in sheets at each event for the athletes (of other sports) to sign in. They tracked how many attended each event, and at the end of the year the team with the most attendees got $$ for their program. Don’t know how much it was, but it was incentive for the kids to support the other teams. I’m guessing it was pro-rated somehow so the football team didn’t win every year.


  70. Since only ike took a crack at answering my Tino Sunseri Trivia Question, I am declaring ike the Reigning Tino Sunseri Trivia Champ!

    The Question — what did Tino do at the very end of every pre-game warm-up routine?

    The Answer — Before returning to the dressing room, as his last act in warmups, Tino would go somewhere between the 30 and 40-yard line and loft a pass trying to make it land just in bounds in the back corner of the endzone.

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This was the Pitt QB who NEVER led the team to a 4th quarter comeback win. Along with his propensity for sacks.

      Kenny already is far better than Tino just on willing the team to win. Stats be damned. If you looked at Tinos senior year stats, you’d think he was a first round draft pick.

      Liked by 1 person

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