Reading Between the Lines: Clemson Edition

Fresh off a convincing win against the Hated Hokies, Pat Narduzzi was feeling good. As usual, we trotted out our crack team of Football Analysts to decipher what he really meant to say.

PAT NARDUZZI: All right. How we doing today? Good. Obviously our focus all turns to Clemson after a nice team win Saturday against Virginia Tech. And when I say nice, I mean like embarrass Justin Fuente and probably make him lose his job nice. Again, as I said Saturday we probably talked enough about Virginia Tech already, I felt like that was a marathon presser after that game. So we talked probably enough about that. But I’d like to talk about it some more. You know if you want to. Forty seven points guys. Forty seven points.

But great team win by our guys again and the resilience that our kids showed going through that week will only help us going into this second week going into Clemson. You’re going to face the No. 4 team in the country in Clemson. They’ve got weapons everywhere, on offense and defense, they have got depth, they’re long, they’re fast and obviously they’re well coached. Dabo does a great job, got a lot of respect for him and always have and how he operates his business down there. We’re looking forward to a great week. So questions?

In fact it’s a complete 180 from that garbage fire of a Hokies team that Fuente has got going. Say doesn’t Fuente mean “Fire” in Italian? Hah. Oh wait, actually means fountain. But a fountain has water, can use it to put out fire. Hah. You see what I did there? I sure am going to be sad when that guy is shown the door. I just have too much fun when I beat this guy. Okay I’m done. I really am. Seriously.

Q. You’ve been around college football a long time, how do a Clemson and Notre Dame stack up among the best teams you’ve seen?

PAT NARDUZZI: They’re both really good, obviously. I’ll let you know after the game who is better, but it’s hard to — you evaluate Notre Dame on a, on the field and what they do and then you look at Clemson on videotape and until we get — we haven’t faced them for two years since 2018 down in the ACC Championship Game, so it will be interesting. Because in case you forgot, we once made it to the ACC Championship game.

But we know Trevor Lawrence and Etienne on offense are explosive. Both offensively and defensively Clemson, they have got a top-20 offense and a top-20 defense. Those are two really, really good ratings when you’re both. You got — a lot of times you see a team that’s got a top-rated offense and maybe not as good a defense and vice versa, but they’re good at everything they do. We know they’re a talent-rich football team.

Like, I see that kind of team every. single. day. And I often wonder to myself, If I had just sucked it up and made nice to Canada… and them I’m like. Hah. No.

Q. What can you point to since the Notre Dame game, since the bye week why Pitt’s offense has been performing better?

PAT NARDUZZI: You really asked that question? (Smiles)

Well for one thing Joey Yellen isn’t our quarterback…

Q. Sure.

PAT NARDUZZI: Well, first of all, when you got Kenny Pickett back that makes a big difference. Duh. When you got your starting quarterback, guys have a lot of confidence in him and we’ve got to be ready when you don’t have him. But C’mon. You know that he’s #2 for a reason. But when you’ve got a quarterback that’s got as many reps, whether it’s spring ball two years ago because I really don’t count spring ball this year, that makes all the difference in the world. Look guys Yellen has about 50 reps. Kenny threw the ball 50 times last game. Do you get it? Guy pulls the trigger, he can make plays with his feet, he’s a leader, he leads our offense again, that doesn’t say Joey (Yellen) or Davis (Beville) or whoever else was in there, it’s just that’s the case and until you have an offseason to work those next guys up at the quarterback position. We’ll…cross next year’s QB bride when we come it it. That’s the number one key. And you look at, Trevor Lawrence is spectacular, they go a couple games without him, and maybe they’re not as explosive. Maybe they beat Notre Dame with Trevor Lawrence in there, so who knows. But I would say that’s the biggest difference that I see. Trevor Lawrence is very good.

Q. Sort of at the same time how much of that is just the guys around Kenny progressing and getting better and getting more comfortable with what their roles are and what they’re asked to do?

PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, I think that’s important, but you look at the makeshift offense that we had Saturday, does it really matter? I mean we can be explosive either way, but I still believe Kenny’s the guy that is running the show and we got three linemen out, you have Jordan Addison, your leading receiver out, I don’t know. You asked me one question, I gave you my answer. You guys can have all the answers you want, that’s my opinion.

I’ve been in Whip’s ear all season to utilize Turner more. Old man finally listened to me. I mean I had to threaten to fire him but it worked. And those linemen. All Dave Borbley Recruits, so yea we could have started them earlier but then you have seniors leaving the team and no depth with the transfer portal and all so sometimes you gotta play the hand you’re dealt. Right?

Q. You mentioned Addison. Do you guys expect to have him this weekend at Clemson?

PAT NARDUZZI: You know, you hope you do, but we’ll see in time here, we’ll see how this week goes. Yea he’ll play. But you but you know how I do with injuries. With all those guys. I mean with COVID protocols, with injuries and all that you just don’t know. I’m not going to push guys out there before they’re ready. That’s not my job. My job is to play winky-blinky with the media. That’s worth at least a million a year. At least Strategery! My job is to coach the guys that are ready to go and we’ll continue to do that. And that. Coaching the guys. Also my job.

Q. Do you have players that right now you know won’t play or is everybody still at least possible that, if the testing continues to go well, this week could suit up?

PAT NARDUZZI: You know, you never know. You never know. Because there’s one thing going on in a 10- or 14-day quarantine, it’s another thing to how do those guys feel. They’ve got to come back, they’ve got to do all their EKGs and heart scans and all the things they do. And did I mention at Pitt that we have arguably the best medical technology in the ACC? Well I’m mentioning it. They’ve got to go through conditions and then they’ve got to feel good. And I think there’s a difference between guys that are asymptomatic and I think that’s maybe what the public doesn’t realize, there’s asymptomatic guys who usually come back and feel pretty good and can start up right away. And then there’s guys that, if they’re symptomatic, if they have any symptoms at all, it takes them a little longer to get their breath. And that’s like 50% of the guys…. There’s just things that linger that, it lingers with people more than others, and that’s what we don’t know. I don’t know how long things are going to linger and that’s — 14 days, 10 days, that’s bad enough as it is, but then guys don’t necessarily feel great coming back. So in short…DUCK COVID. D-U-C-K COVID. DUCK. (Damn Autocorrect)

Q. What can you take away from what Boston College was able to do in that first half against Clemson, because they’re really one of the few teams that have challenged Clemson at all. How were they successful?

PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, obviously they’ve got a really good offensive line. I think they got a deep passing game, they did a nice job running the ball, throwing it deep, and making shots and Phil (Jurkovec) is a good football player. So good that I tried to recruit him twice and then I lost to him in overtime. Yea. That kind of good. And then defensively they’re really good, they’re sound, they’re going to make you earn it and I think that’s kind of what you saw in that game. Also, lets admit this. They got a little lucky. That Etienne fumble at the 1 that went for a scoop-and-score. I mean how many times does Etienne do that? Like once in four years as a starter. And you can be damn sure if he did that against Pitt they’d say he was down by contact. So yea whatever.

Q. The emotions were revved up for Senior Day on Saturday, but for these seniors especially will the emotions be even more revved up because they get a chance to play a game on national TV against a really strong opponent that might even rev them up even more?

PAT NARDUZZI: We’ll find out when we get there. Some people say can you get jacked up two weeks in a row? That’s the emotion and energy you talk about, you want it, sometimes it’s hard to replicate that. You hope so, but you see how the week goes and you kind of see how — you just don’t know, you don’t know how that goes and you hope it’s high every week, but we’re talking about 18 and 22 year olds. If you good sir, are suggesting that I shot my emotional wad so to speak, I suggest you think again. Plenty of wads here.

Q. What do you tell your team in preparation about being such a big underdog on the road? How do you tell them about how to overcome this obstacle?

PAT NARDUZZI: You know what, you really worry about what we do, not worrying about Clemson and who they are. It’s about us executing — I don’t know what the underdog is, what are we 40-point underdog, I don’t know what we are, I don’t look at all that stuff. But really not going to focus on us being an underdog or it’s a 40-point spread, whatever it is. Just going to focus on what we do and what we, how we execute. What I’m not going to say on the Monday before the game is that we were 20 1/2 point dogs in 2016. Not going to say it. Nuh guh suh.

Q. What did you see from the young offensive linemen this past Saturday and how does that shake out this week if everyone’s healthy?

PAT NARDUZZI: Well they got a game under their belt, that’s for sure and really all three of those replacements, Matt Goncalves did an outstanding job. So did Blake Zubovic. And Carson Van Lynn, he’s played more snaps than he’s ever played maybe at offensive tackle all year, so he got his feet wet as well. I mean lets look at the gameplan. Kenny got his throws off in 2.24 seconds on average so even a bunch of unseasoned redshirt freshman and sophomores could hold the point of attack. Also that asinine Hokies defensive game plan pretty much played right into our hands, so just want to thank Fuente for that one more time. Did I mention that I sure am going to miss him when he’s gone?

Jimmy Morrissey and Bryce Hargrove really just did an outstanding job of making those guys feel good. I think it started off slow, probably why you see three field goals early and then our kids started to get confidence that, ‘Hey, I can do this.’ And our O-line got better as the game went on. They executed better and then you started turning drives into touchdowns instead of field goals. But at the end of the day, even if we had kicked two field goals per quarter and scored no touchdowns at all, we would have won 24-14, and I’ve got that in a gameplan somewhere. You can be sure of that.

Q. You guys saw Trevor Lawrence two years ago in the ACC title game. How has he progressed as a quarterback from your standpoint, from your perspective so far?

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t know how you progress, he was pretty good in (2018). He’s really, really good. Actually he’s really, really, really good. He’s got a quick release, as I think I talked two years ago, you watch it and it’s like, “zoom.” He rifles the ball out there. He knows where to go with the ball, he makes quick decisions. Kinda reminds me of Dan Marino. Sacrilege, I know. They don’t take many sacks, and they don’t make bad decisions. And he’s really getting the ball out to Etienne out of the backfield more than ever. So not only do you have to worry about number 9 running the ball, you’ve got to worry about him catching it now. Engine number nine, comin’ down the railroad line. How much farther baaack did she get off? Old brown suitcase that she carrr-ied, I’ve looked for it every-wherrre. It just ain’t here among the rest……And… IIIII’m a little up-set yes. So he loves to throw it to him. I think Etienne’s the No. 2 receiver out there. Amari is No. 2, the slot receiver, (jersey) No. 3, who really lines up all over the place. But they’re explosive in the passing game. They have got weapons.

Q. Lawrence is a guy, he’s like a consensus No. 1 pick. I mean NFL teams are tanking for him. Is he that good, in your eyes, is he kind of the best quarterback maybe you’ve seen at the college level. I mean how does he stack up in that regard?

PAT NARDUZZI: Well look. He’s no Ian Book, but no question, I mean, you know, I’ve seen a lot of great quarterbacks, through the years here and he’s up there with the top-3 or four. I mean Ben Roethlisberger was pretty good when we faced him at Miami of Ohio back in 2002. I look at what he did that year that we played against him. He’s like Ben, he’s explosive. I don’t know, and I don’t know if any NFL teams are really tanking. Take the NFC East for example. Just look at the Eagles. They genuinely suck. And don’t get me started on the Giants and the Cowboys. And Washington’s front office. I mean you don’t even need to tank when you have those clowns in charge, so yea I think it’s hard to say, ‘Let’s lose today, guys, so we can get him.’ But I don’t know if I would go that far. But there’s a lot of great players out there. Trevor is certainly one of the top two quarterbacks in the country if not the No. 1 guy — I would say he’s No. 1. Because really, who in their right mind is going to say “oh well it’s that guy from BYU, but I would say [Lawrence] is your Heisman Trophy guy. Went through COVID, all of a sudden he slips. I don’t understand how that works. We’re in a pandemic and he shouldn’t lose any votes for Heisman because he didn’t play in a couple games because of COVID. Maybe he’s one of those guys that’s short of breath? Maybe. I mean that would just make him very good. Instead of very, very, very good. It wasn’t like he made a bad decision and got whacked in the backfield and went down and threw a pick at the same time. His play on the field speaks for itself. Until it doesn’t right?

Q. I know you didn’t have a lot of guys around that were difference makers who played in that game down there in 2016, but are you able to replicate any of that travel stuff? Are you a superstitious guy, do you try to say, ‘Well we did this four years ago.’ And I’m just curious, does the COVID situation just throw that out the window and just say, ‘Hey, we just got to do what we can?’

PAT NARDUZZI: I think every year’s different, every weekend is different. It’s who is playing for you, number 1. But the big thing we’ve got to do is worry about us, and our kids will go down there with confidence. One way or another that’s my job and then they’ve got to go down and play with emotion. Because God knows that’s better than playing with intelligence. Because it’s an emotional game, you better have enthusiasm, you better have energy. But I really don’t know if you can take much of what you did there. That’s what we do every week. So what we did against Clemson as far as just getting them mentally and physically prepared is the same thing we do every week, whether you’re playing Notre Dame or you’re playing Clemson or you’re playing Virginia Tech. Also if you look at it we were four points away from being 7-2 and nationally ranked going down there in 2016...<editor rolls eyes>

Q. In 2016 I think Deshaun Watson threw for almost 600 yards against you. You still win the game, but Wayne Gallman only had like 36 yards. And then in 2018 Etienne went off and had 150 and Lawrence didn’t even need to throw. Is that step one to winning this type of game is you have to compete up front and not get run over in the trenches?

PAT NARDUZZI: I mean really man, did you just ask me a question about stopping the run? I always knew I liked you. If you don’t stop the run you look at those deals we had a chance to beat them down there, with whatever they had rushing, 50 yards rushing that day. And then they had 300 yards rushing in the championship game. So that’s certainly the deal. You’ve got to make it one dimensional. And really they didn’t throw it much in that ACC Championship Game, but it didn’t really matter. They didn’t have to. I mean we really didn’t throw it much either, but with Shawn at the helm, well it’s not like we even could, but I digress. So we’ve got to stop the run and Etienne is the guy to start off with and then as soon as you get enough guys in the box then they’re going to throw fades and Trevor’s really accurate and you’ve got to change up your coverages a lot or you’re going to be in trouble. And if there is one thing we are not good at its changing up coverages, so I’m saying right now just get ready for them to hang 48 on us so you aren’t disappointed like you were against Notre Dame.

Q. I’m curious when the schedule seems to change by the minute, and I know you anticipated being light on your feet this year, but I mean how do you — you’re preparing to play. Clemson was in Tallahassee and the game didn’t get played. Where are you at in terms of does nothing surprise you at this point in terms of how the schedule gets affected?

PAT NARDUZZI: Yeah, nothing surprises me. Can I qualify that? We have been blessed to be able to play nine so far. We have had one trip-up, I guess, if you want to call it that. But the good thing is we got it rescheduled and so we’ll get our guaranteed 11 games in. Hopefully. (Knocks on wood.) But nothing’s surprising me. Again, I think that was the first game that was really squashed on a Saturday morning and we don’t want that to happen. We don’t want to travel down there and get squashed and we sure hope it gets to be played. And if I had to pick…being trapped in Tallahassee is probably the worst. I mean of all the ACC teams. Maybe Syracuse. Yea, Syracuse in December is pretty bad. But Tallahassee, never mind the month, bad anytime. Boston. Cool. Pittsburgh, of course a great place to spend a weekend. Charlottesville has a bunch of history, and you can go hiking and stuff in Blacksburg. Turkey hunting maybe if you’re in season. <heh> Research Triangle all good. Winston Salem is underrated. Atlanta, kind of tough to keep the guys out of the club scene (and now you know why we cancelled). Miami goes without saying. So yea, that leaves Tallahassee. Sorry not sorry Dabo.

Q. I assume you’re feeling much better about your offensive line depth now even if those guys who didn’t play Saturday can’t play this Saturday. You’ve got guys not just for these next two games but for next year?

PAT NARDUZZI: No doubt about it. It was kind of a spring game if you want to call it Saturday. Yea I said that. Playing Virginia Tech was like playing a spring game. Not like playing Akron. LIKE PLAYING A SPRING GAME. You think you know how to throw shade James Franklin? Pay attention. THIS is how you throw shade. We got a chance to see who the future is at some spots and know that, hey we got a game under their belt and they’re going to feel much better whether it’s this weekend if they get that opportunity again or next year it just builds your depth for the future and you know who might be there and who might be playing that spot, no doubt about it. Next year’s our year guys. Next year…

Q. Is it just the position or has it been something else when you haven’t had Jordan Addison available, that has led to those two kind of big explosions from DJ Turner? Can you find a way to get those guys going at the same time when you do get Addison back?

PAT NARDUZZI: No doubt about it. You can only throw it to one guy though and we definitely have got to find more ways to get DJ in the game or get DJ the ball in the game, if Jordan does come back. The thing is they both play the z and Whip is like “well ummm…I don’t think we can have two z’s on the field at the same time. And I’m like “we can’t?” and then Beatty pipes up and tries to say something but Whipple just starts humming and rocking back and forth and and so I just kind of looked at him for a minute and then turned to Beatty and shrugged and we both walked out of the room and that was the end of that. So we’ve just got to if Kenny could throw like that it would be really good, but we’ve got to get to the guy that gets open. I think that’s the major thing, it’s not really throwing it to a (certain) guy. Sure if there’s some bubbles and stuff you want to get guys the ball in space but DJ’s definitely a guy that we’ve got to find ways to get him the ball more. I would also like to add that DJ is as strong as an ox, and Tech really sucks at tackling and Clemson isn’t going to suck at tackling and will probably be smart enough to not give us the short sh*t, but that’s just me talking.

Q. You guys got hit with two of those celebration penalties on Saturday. One after Patrick’s fumble recovery, one after DJ’s touchdown. I’m curious, neither of them really seemed like much. I’m curious, what do you tell your guys after they have made a big play, a massive play in the game and you know they’re obviously happy and excited about it, what do you tell them to kind of balance showing their excitement but also maybe just trying not to get hit with a penalty like that?

PAT NARDUZZI: I don’t know. That’s great question that I need to get answered. *Cough* Bull*** I don’t make those calls. Going into the season I didn’t know this was a big emphasis. Every year the referees will say, ‘Hey, this is an emphasis this year.’ A couple years ago they didn’t like the knee showing, now you can have — now you can look like Ejuan Price and no one cares. But no one alerted me that you couldn’t have fun playing the game of football any more, okay? *Cough* Bull*** There’s nothing choreographed. It’s called excitement, it’s called energy, and I want our football team to have energy and play with excitement. Now I don’t want it to be excessive, but when it’s on the sideline you kind of go, ‘What are we doing here?’ *Cough* Bull*** I mean, I don’t get it. I would like to know how many were called — maybe some of you guys can do your homework — how many were called in other games? I know they got a pick against us last week and there was a lot of talk on our sideline, because it was on our sideline and really almost taunting our sideline, but there’s no flag there.*Cough* Bull*** So I don’t know what to tell you, I wish I had answers. I’m going to try to get answers. We have had four in the last two weeks. *Cough* Bull***I mean, we’ve got someone who does this (gestures) and gets a penalty. We’ve got someone that goes like this and gets a penalty. We have a receiver catch the touchdown pass, gets excited on the sideline and we go have our dunkfest on the other side. We don’t get a penalty for that, but like, I don’t understand. *Cough* Bull***I guess we have to have a class, I guess, on how you can celebrate the right way. But I want our kids getting excited. This game of football is a fun game, you’re supposed to have fun when you do it. We talk all the time about guys celebrating together and it’s discouraging when these kids have been through a lot. *Cough* Bull*** I don’t know if anybody appreciates how much effort these guys put into the game of football, playing it and practicing it every day, going through the COVID protocols that we have and then you want to throw a flag for someone getting excited and try and squash the party. *Cough* Bull***That’s not what college football’s all about. These are all amateurs that should be excited when they make a play. So it’s probably a question for the ACC office, I guess. *Cough* Bull***

Q. The last time you guys traveled, you came back and you had a COVID situation. We don’t know if that was specific to that or not, but have you made changes to your way that you guys are traveling or anything this time around?

PAT NARDUZZI: Well, yeah, we just — you don’t know. That’s the hard thing about this whole thing is you don’t know if you got, you know — I know we’re not going to eat in a tent, you know, we stayed at the Westin Hotel this past weekend and they did a great job. They had, if I’m serving food right here on this podium here, they had a glass wall to the ceiling. It just seemed so safe and I think our kids feel comfortable when it’s like that and it wasn’t like that down in Tallahassee. But then again the whole state of Florida is a dumpster fire right now, so that’s kind of to be expected in the state capital. That part of the world is called the “Redneck Riviera” for a reason, I guess, right? . And the whole “Florida Man” thing? There’s a reason that become a thing too. So you have the Redneck Riviera and you have a bunch of Florida men running things and you have a tent, and well there you go. So, again, no, nothing against them down there, it’s just what it is. It’s what they had available. I guess maybe next time we’ve got to go out to eat somewhere where we feel better. I swear to GAWD if I ever have to stay in a Holiday Inn… But that just takes more time and then you’ve got to get there earlier and you’ve got to have a bus trip to go to a restaurant that can serve you the right way. I like Ponderosa Steakhouse myself, but Whip, he’s more of a Golden Corral kind of guy. But I don’t know and you don’t even know if it’s that, I don’t even know. So we’re pretty safe every week in the protocols that we use, sometimes your hands are tied as a coach and sometimes the meeting rooms are as big as this room I’m in right now and sometimes you’ve got to go out in a tent. And sometimes you’ve got to go out in a Tent. And I never thought I’d be agree with Dabo Swinney but he’s right Mike Norvell is a punk-a$$ bitch. We have been lucky in the city of Pittsburgh. We’ve got big-time four- and five-star hotels that we’re able to stay in and stay safe. We’ve just got to hope we can have that down in South Carolina. And we’ve got 12 days between our Clemson game and our Georgia Tech game just in case we don’t. Because lets be real. Clemson, South Carolina ain’t the redneck Riviera, but it isn’t exactly four-and-five star hotel land either.

Note that David Hale, Andrea Adelson, FSU and PITT all confirmed this did not happen. If this ain’t bulletin board material, I don’t know what is.

Q. The basketball teams around the country have had generally some tough luck in going here.

PAT NARDUZZI: Basketball teams? Last I checked we play football here on the Southside.

Q. There’s been a lot of teams shut down and games cancelled already and the season hasn’t even started yet. Since you went first, have you been in contact with the other programs at Pitt to try to talk about some of the things that you guys did that have seemed to have worked?

PAT NARDUZZI: I haven’t had time, but I know (associate athletic director) Chris LaSala has been in touch with anybody that asks questions. I think we do things the right way. We’ve got the same doctors. Jennifer Brown does an outstanding job. She’s kind of in charge of the whole athletic department, so she knows the protocols we’re doing down here. And I’m sure she’s doing it, because she works with basketball every day. The Jeff Capel press conference is tomorrow dude.

We’re all working together, I would say. But I haven’t had any contact with anybody up there in the athletic department, we just don’t have time. I’m lucky I talk to my wife, so — she knows the protocols. Look man, I just follow orders. You know what they say, “happy wife, happy life”. Well Jennifer Brown. I’m not saying she’s my wife, but I am saying she’s got to be happy so I guess it’s “happy Jennifer Brown, we get to leave town”. Yep. I said it. I’m here all day folks. Hail to Pitt.

127 thoughts on “Reading Between the Lines: Clemson Edition

  1. From previous thread:

    Ike, there is an exception to every rule. Anyone can catch lightning in a bottle once but things do even out on average. I took the rose colored glasses off long ago WRT Pitt. Is Pitt the BC Pitt or the VTech Pitt? We have been asking this question for 30 years. Translated it means mediocrity and SOP. I wish the VTech game meant more but they will need to show it on the field.

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    1. Damnit VoR …. watch college football. It happens to EVERY TEAM. But the elites are so good, they get away with it. It almost happened to Ohio St a week ago (a 20 pt fave) but they have a 4 or 5 star at every position and Indiana doesn’t. 2 years ago, Alabama was tied with The Citadel 10-10 at halftime.

      Last year, Wisconsin was 6th ranked and a 27 pt fave to Illinois …. guess what? A few years ago, OSU didn’t make the CFB playoffs because Purdue humiliated them, scoring 49 pts. I can go on and on

      In 2017, Cuse and had back to back home games in Oct. The first one to 2-win Pitt and they won 27-24. The next week, they beat #2 Clemson 27-24. You figure that one out! Cuse finished 4-8 that year

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  2. My goodness. Good job by you, MM, but will someone please tell the Duzzer to cut his answers at least in half… Where’s E.J. Borghetti when you need him. We need more questions and way shorter answers. 👍

    Duzz actually mentioned covering the Clemson RB coming out of the backfield. I know that’s easier said than done, but it’s good that at least it crossed someone’s mind…

    Go Pitt.

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  3. Narduzzi has the third best ACC coaching record since becoming head coach at PITT.

    He won the ACC Coastal division. poo poo that all you want but it remains a fact. Just like PITT clobbering VT 47-14 but they still suck because VT NOW doesn’t have a 500 record.

    You’re wasting your time fretting over PITT and Narduzzi when they are doing exactly what is asked of them.

    PITT should have fired Narduzzi and hired one of the many failures mentioned on here. The VT coach included. Many have questions but no one has any answers. Here’s mine………. enjoy PITT football and embrace them for who they are and stop wishing they become Alabama next year.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Third best record in the ACC sounds better than it actually appears.

      In 2018 Pitt with the third best record in the ACC. (Coastal champs)
      In 2019 it was fifth.
      In 2020, trending toward seventh or eighth with 2 games left in the regular season.

      It is the trend that has the fans disappointed. Next season could be worse. Then again, this season looked lyke it was going to be Duzzer’s best.

      In my heart of hearts, I know Pitt will stick with pretty much the same coaching staff – you mention Beatty being promoted to OC. That does nothing for me as he held that position a few times in his career and did NOT deliver wins. So I’m checking out from the same old…and will be fan from afar.

      My golf game is mediocre, but it is a good form of entertainment for me and a good stress reliever.

      My Pitt FB team is mediocre and is a bad form of entertainment for me…

      EE who will watch the Clemson game from afar in hopes of a repeat to see another 5-4 Pitt team surprise a very good, top 4 rated Clemson team. Just rereading that sentence seems BLAH.

      Like

    2. Pitt Football is an enigma. Kessman makes a career long FG to get to OT then 💩 the bed by missing a PAT in OT to lose the BC game. The Panthers go on a four game losing skid only to resurrect themselves with two 40+ point offensive performances to climb back above .500. And this VT beatdown is accomplished with a Panther patchworked OL reinforced with chewing gum & duct tape, no less!🤷🏼‍♂️
      Now we go down to Death Valley, already being stamped a DOA sacrificial lamb against a Clemson team. A team that Las Vegas is giving a four score point spread cushion to, just to get some betting $$ flowing Pitt’s way. So what I’m saying is that this is exactly the type of game that Pitt wins. But then again, we could just as easily lose this game so badly that we don’t even cover the spread. It’s *#?!^!! maddening!
      In any case, this season will always have a big COVID-19 Asterix next to it. It’s a weird year that will always be considered tainted because of the extenuating circumstances surrounding the season.
      Come to think of it, this would have been the perfect type of year that Pitt should have excelled in, going something like 11-2 just to emphasize how big of an enigma this program actually is. Winning big in a season nobody gives a 💩 about would seem so appropriate somehow for the Panthers.
      But alas, that ship has sailed, so no worries about that. We’ll just have to settle for beating Clemson twice in a row down in Death Valley & then end up scratching our heads in confusion on how that same squad then goes down to Atlanta to lay an egg against a GT team that’s simply trying to find it’s way out of it’s “post option purgatory” on offense situation.
      As Narduzzi said, & I agree with too, NOTHING about this year 2020 surprises me any more. May all you POVers have a safe & happy Thanksgiving.

      Liked by 6 people

    3. I just wish they become something more than a unranked team at every years conclusion topped off by a bowl loss to some scrub team in some cold crappy place.

      Pitt is the definition of mediocrity.

      Reversion to the mean this week

      Let’s not fool ourselves into thinking Kenny is the next Trevor after one good game or that Whipple suddenly became a QB whisperer or that narduzzis team is now penalty free or that a meatball won’t fall out of the mans head on another 4th and goal.

      I’ve seen enough Pitt to know better

      Like

    4. Enough with trotting out this “Pitt won the Coastal Division” business over and over. That’s one thing to say about the 2018 season, but if you’re going to say that, you should balance it out by also saying: in 2018 they got absolutely hammered by Penn State, lost to North Carolina (the worst team team in the ACC that year), and lost in the Sun Bowl to a Stanford team that could have cared less about the game.

      It’s like bragging about Alex Kressman kicking more FGs this season than anybody else in CFB without also saying he’s also missed more FGs this season than anybody else in CFB.

      Balance, balance.

      Like

  4. Great write-up, MM! I laughed at your commentary throughout. Your note about Whip preferring Golden Corral brought back memories of my now departed senior citizen Aunt and Uncle. They bragged about how they would go to the Golden Corral, order an entree that came with the salad bar, fill up on the salad bar and take the entree home in a doggy bag. They were beating the system. Puttin’ it to the man! Rebels, I tell ya.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I’m all for optimism heading into Clemson. And I’ll probably make time to watch the game because the last two games have reignited some excitement, but the reality is that because people are talking about us having a chance to upset Clemson, we will probably not upset Clemson. If history is any guide it will be quite the opposite. I hope that’s not true but I’m not going to let myself get emotionally crushed if we get hammered.

    Like

  6. Thanks for doing your usual excellent interpretation of Duzz’s presser. Not thinking this week is going to be that good even though I’m tempted to be optimistic based on the last 2 games. Anyway will have plenty of popcorn and beer around but will keep to the tv remote handy.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. against Notre Dame, not only was Trevor Lawrence out, but Clemson also had 3 defensive starters missing, including an all -ACC MLB. I believe they are all back. And if Clemson is looking ahead, it will be next week vs VT.

    I expect Clemson to win big and it won’t be because of poor preparation or coaching by Pitt

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pitt would stay close IF they had excellent preparation and coaching with a dash of discipline. A Narduzzi team is an inconsistent one. They will look nothing like last week. The roller coaster hit the top of the hill again, time to head down.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m not looking for Pitt to win the game rather they have to play a competitive game versus Clemson.

    Do they have the talent and overall depth of a program like Clemson, no but they can’t give a Notre Dame performance and look inept and pathetic.

    Like

    1. Seriously three weeks ago we were talking about the Coach losing the team, and now about being competitive with Clemson. Funny season.
      I said if we didn’t beat BC we might not win another game, so very pleased with the last two, however. Clemson is fighting to get to the playoffs so expect an a$$ whooping.

      Like

    2. James, again, Pitt looked pathetic vs ND for the very same reason VT looked pathetic last week vs Pitt

      I’m going to keep pounding this on this site until one of you POVers kills me … many times, WHEN you play is as important as WHO you play

      PS — since Pitt joined the ACC in 2013, the only 2 times Pitt beat Miami is the only 2 times Pitt finished with a losing record. That is not coincidence.

      Like

  10. Once I ascertain the empirical data, I am going to submit the following theorem to the National Collegiate Athletic Association Journal.

    In a typical football season, a college football team …

    — will bring its A game 2.3 times

    — will bring its B or C game 6.8 times, and

    — will bring its D or F game 2.9 times

    (The numbers may change after analysis, but it will be presented in a standard distribution format)

    Like

    1. And Pitt has used up its A game this year so it reverts to the mean or C game this week.

      The talent differential is substantial both in players and coaches.

      Plus it’s an away game against a well rested team in desperate need of making a statement.

      The spread might not be high enough now that I think about it.

      Like

    2. wwb — interesting way to look at it…

      As for Pitt-Clemson, I anticipate some “wide open” Tigers. Our defensive scheme just doesn’t seem to account for anyone coming out of the backfield to catch a pass… And with the talent Clemson has, our percentage on the “jump ball” will be poor… Not a good combo.

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 1 person

    3. And the powerhouses only need to bring their A games twice per annum, three times now with the playoff format. 4 and 5 star talent will beat most teams if coached appropriately the other 10 times.

      Concept has been tossed out for years on here and am glad you are looking deeper into it. The Alabama’s only needed to play well against Auburn and the opposite SEC Champ to get to the NC and why OSU only brought their A game to beat Michigan and B10 West champ. Alvarez and all other AD’s worth a half a mill figured this out a long time ago. Basic strategy.

      Heather and her predecessors are non-smart. They never figured it out and decided that Pitt needed to be on their A game 5-6 times a year. Fools.

      Like

  11. wwb, we are agreeing with you that when you play is as important as who you play, especially this year. However, just as good teams lose to bad teams, the timing can work for or against a team. ND got lucky that Lawrence was out, but the back up QB played pretty well. This is college football. But just as Wisconsin can lose to IL or Northwestern, they can upset some good teams as well, and college football fans know that over time they are a good team. Overall, look at Wisconsin’s 5 year record and they have done pretty well consistent with being a good team. Then look at Pitt’s 5 year record, or even 10 year record including the Chryst years. Pretty mediocre I’d say..

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    1. as I have been saying for years, the biggest factor is the program. How does Paul Chryst go from 6 wins in 2014 to 10 wins in 2015? And how does his predecessor (Gary Anderson) go from 11 wins in 2014 at Wisconsin to 2 at Oregon St (and 7 wins total in his 2 1/2 years there)?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Lord Barry Alvarez is the brain trust behind the consistency of Wisconsin.

        His influence is legendary and he actually persuaded a major Pitt donor into pushing Chryst for the Pitt job for on the job training prior to Wisconsin.

        Like

      2. Then what isn’t Pitt giving Narduzzi then?

        Pitt has a top third budget in the ACC. Whisky is known for being as cheap as Pitt

        Pitt plays at a posh pro venue

        Pitt plays in a conference as good as the big ten and in a very weak division like whisky

        Pitt has more backyard talent than whisky

        So how was Chryst able to be more than mediocre at whisky whereas he was a bum at Pitt.

        Like

        1. Tex, unfortunately PITT doesn’t have the overall reputation with applicants and people in general than a Wisconsin type school has. PITT’s rep went down after the University went bankrupt in the 60’s, plus being in a rust belt city, and the Campus (while being a lot prettier than NYU) still lacks the spacious lawns and quads people equate with prestige. PITT is not an easy school to recruit for.

          In the early 60’s, PITT was the school for me! I was happy to transfer from FSU to a university with stronger academic and professional programs. The City had a thriving industrial economy. Plus I was a northern city kid.

          Happy to see PITT’s ratings going back up under the present administration. Academic are stronger. Harder for an undergraduate to get accepted. Professional schools, especially in the medical field, are some of the best in the Country.

          I like the progress of our minor sports. Now in the major sports, we need super recruiters.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Well Jackie knew it was tough to recruit. He wanted kids who like concrete under their feet and not grass. City schools appeal to a certain type. The architecture and energy can’t be beat by most schools. But I do believe it can be less gritty. To soften things up, they really need to get infrastructure dollars from the feds to improve the entrances into Oakland and to take Forbes underground as a tunnel for about 4 blocks while the former street becomes a tree lined pedestrian way.

            Liked by 1 person

        2. Wisky feeds off a state than produces good offensive linemen at an incredible rate and it has been happening for about 30 years now. Its reputation for developing linemen leads to the school able to go into other states and pluck talented kids.

          If Pitt had more stability since the 90s it wouldn’t miss on the truly elite that have come from the area. I guess Pitt has no shot at the best linemen in Philly or in the central part.

          Like

  12. Just received an email from Pitt saying that due to the State mandate, no tickets will be sold to games at the Pete. Only players, coaches, staff, family, and special guests will be allowed. For now and possibly the whole season.

    Like

  13. Had a good laugh this am on Packer and Durham. They listed their own ACC conference rankings for the week. Added number 16 as “We are…Penn State”.

    I know its really not appropriate to take joy from the misery of others, but I just can’t resist.😂😂

    Liked by 6 people

    1. You should always take joy at a Nitters misery. Remember this school covered up child rape since the 70’s. And the fans said it was fake news. They can all burn in Hell.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Back in the day I rooted for all the eastern teams unless they were playing PITT…life was good and carefree…..now I hate …..could put that on the back of my jersey and be “He Hate Me” twin brother

      Like

  14. Pitt should try to get PSU’s Shawn Clifford to be our qb for next year if he goes in the transfer portal. The Nits fanbase doesn’t want him anymore and if Kenny goes, Clifford is better than Yellen. Yellen runs worse than a 40 year old with a beer gut. Beville was never even given a chance to show his wares.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. PITT loses and some take such delight. The critics have a field day. Narduzzi is a bum and Heather is in Disney World hanging out with goofy.

    PITT wins by 33 pts and PITT accomplished nothing but beat a team that sucks worse than them. BTW, what was the spread on the VT game? I know I’m beating a dead horse but it isn’t like others haven’t been doing the same thing for years except in a more critical way.

    What’s it going to take this weekend for some to appreciate a good effort?

    Like

    1. If Pitt plays a good game and loses that’s all you can ask for against a more talented team.

      But think about it Ike…when’s the last time that’s happened?

      Like

  16. I suspect that there will be a handful of QBs in the transfer portal that will be more attractive than Clifford. Of course, whether Pitt can get any of them is another issue … although it will be easier with no returning starter

    Like

    1. I’m really scared about the QB situation for next year. Kenny should come back for another year in my opinion. He is only rated as the ninth best qb coming out which means he most likely won’t get drafted. He is one of the toughest dudes I’ve ever seen play the position and I feel we truly have a chance in any game he starts. I’m really concerned about Yellen. In 2020, you need a running qb in college football unless you are playing behind an Alabama or Ohio State like line.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Not to contradict you intentionally or anything like that.

        But I would say QB’s like Patrick Mahomes(5.052 yds & 41 TD’s in 2016) of Texas Tech or all the QB’s that played at Washington State(Gardner Minshew(4,779 yds, 38 TD’s in 2018) & Anthony Gordon(5,596 yds & 48 TD’s in 2019) being the latest two) and Texas Tech would seem to suggest otherwise.
        And I could name dozens more.

        And neither TT or Wazoo had any 4 or 5 stars kids playing O-line.

        It’s all about a plug and play system. System stays the same, you just plug in different players. as they come and go.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Exactly. Pitt should hire an air raid OC. I don’t think any other ACC teams run it (too early to research) and tons of high schools and JCs run it. WMG

          Like

    1. Cool video for the BB team. 👍

      One suggestion — while on Mt. Washington, pan around from downtown until you can see the Cathedral off in the distance…

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You can see the Cathedral from many interesting vantage points in various neighborhoods. They should have done some quick collage like that. All roads lead to Oakland. The Cathedral being the beacon.

        But what do I know. I hate their gray uniforms.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Wonder if they have a ‘Road’ version of the Coal Miner’s Daughter uni’s. How much horrid could those be ? haha

          Like

  17. Tex, There is in fact a “Pitt Cathedral in many interesting settings” collection — right on campus. Quite amazing to see. Check it out next time you’re in town. In the Alumni Hall on the top floor, lobby of the auditorium, there is an exhibit —
    The seventh-floor auditorium lobby houses a collection of oil paintings, 365 Views of the Cathedral of Learning, completed in 1997-1999 by Spanish artist Felix de la Concha. Each painting features the Cathedral of Learning from a different vantage point for each of 365 days.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Anthony Gordon of Wash State threw for 12 more TD passes(48) in 1 season(2019) than Pickett has thrown for in 4 years (36).

    And he wasn’t even drafted by the NFL. And Washington State’s Rivals Recruiting ranking is normally in the 50’s to 60’s.

    So you can have great offense without a roster of 4 & 5 stars….. if you have the right coaching & system.

    Boise State is another one. TT another one.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. McCarthy’s bro coached Dinucci in bball. They have been connected for a longtime with McCarthy being tight with Cignetti, from the Normal School, which was the original name of IUP. Similar to Farmers High. McCarthy played politics with the last round pick of Dinucci who not worthy. Maybe an UFA, certainly not a draft pick. McCarthy tried to do a solid for Dinucci, thinking the kid would not have to play since he had Dak and Dalton. Nepotism Dunce.

    Will see if Narduzzi wears the dunce cap by putting the old OL out there or gives last weeks OL an opportunity against good competition. As a scientist, it makes for a great experience.

    #Hogs over (Nard)dogs.

    Like

  20. Tex, thanks very much for giving me something to laugh about. “Posh stadium” . . . . HILLARIOUS!!!!

    It’s the most pathetic professional football stadium in the entire NFL. No flow, terrible sight lines, too stupid to position the open field in the direction of the Point, worst turf in the entire NFL. Statements like this bring to question your credibility.

    Stop pretending, if you think Nardog is mediocre (which I agree) then let’s at least be honest about the LESS than mediocre stadium in which they play. Which again, is a bus ride from campus. It’s a huge negative in recruiting and that is an undeniable fact.

    Like

    1. It’s posh relative to other college stadiums. Heinz is a dump like old Pitt stadium. Now relative to other pro stadiums.

      Posh would be the Death Star here in Arlington.

      Or stade Pierre Mauroy.

      Heinz is already 20 years old. It was build to last 25 years. That’s what the architects and engineers told me. 25 years before you’d have to invest in major renovations and upgrades. It was built cheap.

      Like

    2. Agree
      Heinz is the worst stadium period.
      Pitt really got screwed by Roonies.
      The stadium is way too large, but worse it sucks.
      If it was at least a high end stadium it would be something to try and sell.
      Pitt got burned. The Roonies used them to get a stadium and built super cheap.
      It is a dump

      Like

  21. I’m pretty sure the basketball game against St. Francis is tomorrow night at 7 pm and televised by AT&T Sports or Root Sports or whatever it is called these days.

    Like

    1. Yes, both the men and women basketballers play openers tomorrow (Wednesday). The women at noon versus George Mason, the men at 7:00 pm versus St. Francis PA.

      Go Pitt.

      Like

      1. The women’s game will be televised on the ACC Network Extra and can be viewed on the ESPN app. And if you have a Chromecast or Fire Stiick (maybe other devices) you can cast the game to your TV.

        Liked by 1 person

  22. Old Pitt Grad @ 1:00, sorry just saw this post … to answer your question …

    when Pitt played Notre Dame, Pitt was the only P5 team to be playing in its 7th straight week while ND was playing only its 2nd game in 4 weeks. Thus, not only was ND the more talented team, it’s physicality just beat down a tired and beaten Pitt team. Ironically, this same phenomenon occurred last week when Pitt, playing in just its 2nd game in 4 weeks played against a beaten down VT team who had played several straight weeks …. not to mention that it was coming off 2 straight close losses. You saw how a rested Pitt played the past 2 games.

    Had Pitt played ND or Pitt played VT on different dates, the games would have likely been much different.

    Notre Dame beat a Clemson team a couple of weeks back without its star QB and 3 defensive starters. I could be wrong but I expect a very different game next month when they play for the ACC title. While I can see another close game, I will be very surprised if ND scores as much as it did in the first game.

    Another local example is earlier this year when the undefeated Steelers played at Dallas. The Steelers just came off 2 big wins AT Tennessee and AT Ravens. Now they had to play their 3rd away game against a team, who at the time, was the 2nd or 3rd worst team in the league. The Steelers barely won. There is no way that they were emotionally focused on this game. But had this game been played a few weeks before or after, chances are that Steelers would have won by double digits.

    So whether it is emotional focus or physical well being, the same team can either bring its A game or its D game

    Like

    1. Pure conjecture, predicting what would have happened with different rest stops along the way. Things can go the complete opposite way. Some might argue that teams would have worked their kinks out by game 7 and been playing smoothly, with no penalties, no need to limp over to the sidelines and such. Here on the farm, we have a saying that you are where your pigs feet are. You play in the present and that means different things to different people. ND for instance may not have been at their peak since they hadn’t played enough games and not yet worked out their kinks. So, I say hogwash to this theory.

      Interesting analysis, trying to make sense of all the nonsense that is sport. I just sit back and watch all my friends like Tom, heading to slaughter.

      #hogs over #(nard)dogs

      Like

  23. The Penn State – Drexel men’s basketball game scheduled for tomorrow has been postponed due to COVID issues. Drexel is Pitt’s opponent this coming Saturday. From what I can find, it looks like the COVID problem is on PSU’s end. An interesting note to me is that Drexel was favored at PSU by 13.

    Like

    1. Keep in mind, that is partially due to our offensive struggles to score TD’s in the Red Zone.

      Major Major even commented that on the first three FG attempts vs Virginia Tech, he wanted Pitt to go for the first down and/or TD instead of kicking a FG. Many of us were thinking that.

      It has been a very disappointing, underachieving year for Pitt FB.

      Do I want Pitt to win their remaining games? Absolutely! Will it erase the bad taste in my mouth while falling far below expectations (which includes Duzz’s high expectations)? No way!

      7-4 seems lyke SOP.

      What does 6-5 seem lyke? Or 5-6?

      At least 0-6 is NOT in the cards – Go Michigan!

      Happy Thanksgiving to all! Be safe, eat and enjoy your family time…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. exactly, this has been an issue pre-Whipple and continues to be one. So many times, Pitt has come close to the goal and not scored TDs.

        Even in 2018, when Pitt had two 1000 yard rushers, this was an issue. Remembering the bowl game vs Stanford where Pitt outgained them 2 to 1 ….. but they scored TDs both times in red zone while Pitt had to twice kick FGs after they got beyond the 10.

        Then the 2 crushing losses last season to PSU and Miami both involved not scoring TDs close to the goal line in the 4th quarter. And then, there was 1st and goal at the 2 this year vs NC State.

        I blame (1) the lack of a decent TE, (2) the poor OL the past 2 years, and (3) the Whipple mentality where short passes replace the running attack which is not effective near the goal. (not necessarily in that order)

        Liked by 2 people

        1. a 4th reason is the natural inclination of a defensive HC (remember Wanny) to rely on his FG kicker instead of gambling. Put “the points on the board” — the NFL mentality

          Liked by 3 people

    2. Ike – Love ya but you need to expand on your comment.

      Kessman leads the NCAA in FG attempts with 18 or 2.00/game. Kessman is tied for 3’rd with 5 others.

      Actually, Kessman total18 attempts are #1 in the NCAA but in a season where teams that have played either 1 (2), 2 (8), or 3 (20) (that’s 30 teams) are more than the combined total of teams that have played 11 (1). 10 (3) & 9 (14) (that’s 18), I doubt he will lose his #1 ranking..

      Some of the 8 teams in the 1 thru 3 positions (8 teams) are Oklahoma (7 games) , Oklahoma State (6), Southern Cal (3) & Washington State (2). Maybe things have changed in 2020 (Wash St- new coach) but none of those teams where known as being offensively challenged. I don’t know enough about Nevada & Wyoming to comment on their offense. The 8’th name is Arizona State & they have played only 1 game.

      It also could be the trust a HC has in their kicker. The kicker for Miami is really good. He is alone at 9’th in per game attempts – 1.8 (15 in 8 games). Miami is not offensively challenged. He could overtake Kessman if Miami plays all 11 games.

      Like

      1. Richard, I leave the driving to Greyhound guys like you btw, the only reason I posted that little blurb was in response to Pete who posted Kessman has missed more field goals than anyone in college football. Even FG % made is not a great indicator of how good a kicker is. This considering distance attempted and field conditions. ike who is a tiny bit leery of statistics at face value.

        Like

        1. Sorry Ike – missed Pete’s comment. Your observations are correct. I try not to throw stats out there for the sake of making someone look good or bad. I try to only respond to comments on stats that need further explanation & easy for me to research.

          Liked by 1 person

  24. Wisky loses another game to Covid knocking them out of the B1G playoffs. How is that for bad luck with scheduling. As WBB has been saying it sometimes is not who you play but when you play. In this instance, when you don’t play.

    Like

  25. Pitt has been an abysmal red zone team ever since Beastmode graduated. Even Ollie and Hall weren’t that productive in the red zone and since then no power backs have been recruited. Just a guess but KP probably has the most running TDs since then. The lack of quality tight ends the second reason, and weak line play also contributes.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I thought earlier that basketball was going to come off basically as planned. But COVID seems to be taking over, and it is starting to look shaky at this point. Hopefully, there are enough open dates to that rescheduling of games can occur.

    Like

  27. Some pre-Thanksgiving Random Thoughts…

    First, regarding the timing of playing Clemson, we are NOT going to catch them napping due to: (1) the ND loss, (2) them being PO’d about Florida State chickening out, and (3) and finally due to their current position of being the last team In the Playoffs. It’s foolish to think they will overlook us, so we will have to earn it if we are going to play a competitive game, and only about 0.001% of the population thinks it’s going to be competitive. Yet, I am finally looking forward to a game after (like most of us) losing interest following the abysmal losing streak.

    Second, based on last week’s “on field performance” by our 3 new OL starters relative, and comparing that to the performance exhibited by the unit for the past few YEARS, I like the idea of rotating the offensive lines against Clemson to see if last week’s unit, or maybe 2 players from that unit, outperform our original starters against Clemson. It’s a ‘nice thought’ to believe our coaches know best when evaluating who should start and that we should go back to our original starters based on that, but frankly I’ll believe they know best when I see it, all credibility regarding OL coaching and positioning has been lost in my book. And if we go back to our original unit for the whole first half and see the same crappy performance as exhibited the last 3 years, then I’d fire Borbely at halftime.

    And finally, one of my personal pet peeves during this admittedly odd season is the constant banter about the C word, and using it as an excuse for performance (thank God my employer doesn’t do that!). Yes, I know it’s out there and is worthy of a mention, but let’s keep it to a minimum and stop making excuses for teams. If your record is 5-4, or 0-5, then that’s your record (get it, James from State College?). Coaches are paid an obscene amount of money, for the most part it’s all relative, prepare your teams, perform and have fun, and zip it.

    Looking forward to seeing all our new hoops players tonight.

    Happy Thanksgiving to all, and H2P!

    PS-WordPress still sucks

    Like

  28. Clemson is well rested and itchin to make a statement. This is a bad week for any school going up against them in Death Valley. I just hope it’s far more respectable than the Domer game. And that Pitt wears blue and gold. Although black and gold would be a nice touch.

    Like

  29. The blame for the red zone issues are on the OC. Whipple’s play calling on the goal line has been puzzling. I don’t think Borebly suddenly forgot how to coach run blocking (something he has done well with in the past) and got better at teaching pass blocking. It’s all in the OCs scheme and play calling. The defense has to be kept off balance, something Canada did well. Something Whipple and Watson are/were horrible at doing.

    Like

  30. Borbely’s unit’s performance has been poor and the weakest unit on the team for a few years now, I’m not buying the “I didn’t forget how to coach” cliche anymore. Prove it on the field or hit the road. And if its not his fault then the OC needs to be fired after the season. I’m tired of NOBODY taking responsibility for bad performance year after year by the same unit. Why is it that the line played its best game with 3 starters out?

    I do agree regarding Canada, what he did was utilize our talent well, he didn’t make our players adapt to our system, he adapted to them, and worked around our personnel shortcomings. Kudos to him.

    Like

    1. Not to sling mud, because I am most comfortable there, but the TE unit has been the weakest on the Pitt team for much longer then the OL unit. The OL is tied for second with the coaching staff unit. You are where your hooves are. Stuck in mud. #Hogs over (nard)dogs.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. OK, that’s not mud slinging, that just an accurate correction, thank you. I guess the thing with the OL is, I’ve always felt its the most important unit on a team, so I’m a bit overly-focused on that area. TE not so much, but again, hard to argue with your point.

        Like

  31. Narduzzi has made horrible decisions with his OC hires. Is it lack of money?

    I have read that Whipple makes a base of 500K, he certainly isn’t getting any bonuses, LOL.
    UNC hired Phil Longo, who reportedly makes 900K. Longo is the type of hire Pitt needs to make.

    Interesting fact, Longo made a name for himself at Slippery Rock with his Air Raid offense.

    The Longo-led Rock Air Raid averaged 43.3 points and 536.5 yards per game. The no-huddle attack finished the nation ranked fourth nationally in total offense, sixth in passing offense and eighth in both scoring offense and first downs. SRU led the 16-team Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference in all those categories and set SRU single-season school records for points scored, total offense and passing yards. Senior QB Nigel Barksdale was the second Harlon Hill Trophy nominee, the DII Player of the Year, coached by Longo.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. If those numbers are true, it is embarrassing.

        Also, if I’m spending that much less on an OC, I take a chance on a young innovative OC instead of pulling an almost retired guy off the golf course. LOL

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Pitt has the money to spend. If Narduzzi wanted a hot shot coordinator for a million, heather would give him the money.

      So either no hot shot wants to work for him

      Or he doesn’t go after the hot shots due to several reasons. He thinks a big ten offense works. He doesn’t want to be shown up. He doesn’t care about offense. He doesn’t want a replacement in waiting. He thinks he’s worth 8 times what his assistants make.

      Take your pick.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. As some have posted, a decent TE would do wonders for this offense — both in converting 3rd downs and in scoring TDs in the red zone…

    Shame on Pitt for being so poor at this position for so long. You need 5 offensive linemen; you only need one tight end…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Question in regards to Pitt’s restructured offensive line.

    Was the line that much better or was VT ‘s defensive line weakened for the game due to some covid issues?
    Just wondering.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t think it was a Covid issue. VT is not good at run defense. There is a reason they are NCAA ranked in the low 90’s.

      Like

    2. We may never know the answer to that question, but we rushed for 4.2 ypc against Austin Peay, 2.9 vs Syracuse, 2.5 vs NCST, and 3.9 vs Louisville. More recently we averaged 4.0 ypc vs Florida St. But against Tech we rushed for 4.8 ypc. Feel free to dig further, but our pass protection was solid last weekend and our rushing average was significantly better than performances including against lesser teams.

      Liked by 1 person

  34. as I recall, I tried to calm down many of you POVers after the first game this year who seemed to be convinced that the Whipple offense had finally taken hold. Of course, that euphoria lasted a week

    I also caution you to not get too overexcited about the O-Line’s play against what is currently the 105th ranked defense. Yes, I love the fact that 2 or 3 unproven underclassmen showed very well, but I’ll be the most surprised guy here if the OL does anywhere near as well this week.

    If Fuente gets the axe, it will be due to his defensive failures this year. VT is somewhat the antithesis of Pitt in that regard

    BTW, UNC is currently ranked 20th in the BCS. It’s 2 losses were against underdog UVa and Fl St … yes the same FSU that Pitt played. Just one more sample of the crapshoot. We’ll see how they fare vs ND on Friday and Miami in a few weeks

    Like

    1. And I thought Whipple would be the QB whisperer. Stupid me. But I’m no fool.

      Tech has high expectations. A 8 win average coach won’t cut it in Blacksburg. They demand ten win seasons, top 20 rankings and nice bowls.

      Whereas a 7 win average coach is fine here at Pitt. Pitt doesn’t have the boosters anymore that forced Walt out after he reached his ceiling.

      Fans here have grown complacent and accustomed to mediocrity. It’s like ketchup now. The standard condiment for everything.

      Tex who prefers the wide and creative variety of mustards

      And don’t you ever have me catch you putting ketchup on a dog.

      Long live the O mustard stick.

      Like

    1. I prefer ballpark mustard myself, but also like honey mustard also. BTW, Fathead’s on Pgh South Side has the best dipping mustard for pretzels ever. Don’t know if still available, haven’t been there for about 15 years

      Like

        1. I’m still upset at the loss of the O

          One of the many reasons I picked Pitt over Penn State

          Could anyone imagine me as a Nitter?

          Like

            1. You are correct but not nearly as much. I might be complaining more about the fried green tomatoes and catfish down by the riverfront in Tuscaloosa. Believe me Ike, kids don’t go there for the entertainment. In laws lived there for years. Made plenty of visits. Just doesn’t appeal to me. Unfortunately, everything is fried down there. I prefer Tex Mex.

              Like

        2. Ah, yes, Gordon — the wings at Fat Head’s, they’re great. Popular place for a reason — the last time we were there (pre-Covid) there was a wait for a table on a week night.

          Like

          1. But can they beat the wings from the Brew Pub in Buffalo off Main and Transit in Williamsville. I think not

            Tex who lived in buffalo for 8 years and frequented the Pub practically every weekend. I luv a place that allows you to eat peanuts and throw the husks on the floor. The micro beer was also tasty. Good times.

            Like

            1. Worked in Beefalo….in the early 80’s. Before Buffalo wings went National. Anchor Bar baby.

              Beef on Wick was a fav too and a split of OV.

              Like

  35. TX_Nittany_Lion just doesn’t have the same ring. And that lion is a mythical creature anyway. I’ve never seen one while hunting. And if I did, I’d shoot it dead.

    Like

  36. I think the Pitt administration doesn’t want all of the baggage that goes with top 10 football. It can’t be done without a significant boosters organization with money and tentacles all over the country to sniff out talent. Then these boosters actually want to stick their nose in the administration’s business as to how the program is run. It’s worth it to the administration to budget $10 million a year on top of the ACC money to keep the rednecks out so long as Pitt is not embarrassed. So 7-8 win seasons are probably just fine.

    Like

  37. Stiller’s game off for tomorrow nite. Apparently a player’s Turkey developed Covid. Poor thing.

    Don’t forget people…..Mask your Turkeys while prepping and cooking. be considerate of other Turkeys !!

    Like

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