Panthers vs Volunteers Game Thread 2022

Here’s hoping for a well played game today. With that well played game let’s see Win #2 on our season record. I thought Pitt vs WVU would be lower scoring and was wrong. This game will be high scoring again (I think).

See you guys after the game…

363 thoughts on “Panthers vs Volunteers Game Thread 2022

  1. A little late on my prediction. I’m thinking most POVers are heavey into the sauce, and won’t laugh too hard.

    All the talk this week has been about their high-powered O. What a great way to hide a weak defense from the conversation. I expect we thrash their D today. He who scores last shall prevail. We score last – over and over and over again (which means, they don’t!)

    Pitt 45 Tennis Balls 24

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Can you imagine what the tennis ball coaches were telling their D about Pitt:
    Holy crap – 16 completions for 300 yards. 66%! And NO bombs. Don’t you dare let a receiver behind you. Even if you have to give him 5 yards. “Slovis will have a field day!

    That’ll open up the ground game!


  3. Huge issue with electronic tickets across the country. I found out early and got them printed at the ticket office. Pandemonium if you don’t have paper tickets. Crowd will be late getting in on both sides.

    Not just a Pitt issue apparently


  4. The tailgate was awesome – saw the POV flag from a long way off. If anyone has photos of the gang I’d like a copy of them. So great to have reacquainted myself with everyone and had a great visit with Pitt QB Dave Haven.

    Up in the Press Box now – not too crowder actually.

    Joe L. suggested an article about what it is like to watch and report on a game from here (nosebleed seating actually) so that is what I’ll do for next week.


  5. Great to see Commander Reed at the tailgate!

    Checking up on his creation… 😊

    Lots of orange shirts – and some right next to me…

    Go Pitt.


  6. Really – if they were any good they’d of named ’em “Tennis A”, not “Tennis C”.
    After we get through with them today, they’ll be “Tennis F”!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I hate it but maybe this will be a offensive fight. Our defense has to tighten up in coverage. If you are in person watch their receivers. Pretty open all the time but the QB is nowhere as good as WVUs QB


  8. Pitt needs to get their helmets on the correct sides of tackles.

    Defender tripped over yd marker. Vol was forced OB. No pressure at all by front four. Our DBs are helpless.


    1. What did McDonough and Blackledge say about the receiver stepping out 3 times and coming back in for the TD catch?


  9. as much or more PUSH by the receiver as the defender but of course everyone here and there(officials and ABC announcers) sees it different

    seems like a big lean for the SEC

    close call but imo not able to turn over


  10. Hated that call. Run the damn ball.
    We are now in trouble.

    Our D backs are utterly lost. Duzz finally blitzed and every blitzer 3 was easily picked up.

    If it’s any solace Pitt gets the ball second half.


  11. Didn’t several of us say that our small, slow (except for Devonshire) dbs can’t cover their tall, fast receivers….so we need pressure and sacks. Which we aren’t getting. The QB is not that good but if he can stand there all day he can throw. Pretty simple


  12. Pitt had a 14 point swing with the INT in the 1st qtr in the end zone and a 10 point swing just now by passing on the FG and giving up the long quick TD.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Cignetti has uncharacteristically passed a ton. I’m surprised because Pitt can run the ball and needs to keep that UT offense off the field.

    This game has turned !!


  14. Matchup

    UT on Left Pitt on Right
    1st Downs 12 12
    3rd down efficiency 5-8 2-5
    4th down efficiency 0-1 0-1
    Total Yards 265 268
    Passing 188 174
    Comp-Att 12-20 12-20
    Yards per pass 9.4 8.7
    Interceptions thrown 0 1
    Rushing 77 94
    Rushing Attempts 19 10
    Yards per rush 4.1 9.4
    Penalties 2-25 1-0
    Turnovers 0 1
    Fumbles lost 0 0
    Interceptions thrown 0 1
    Possession 11:59 13:05


  15. Both lines are weak. I thought they were our strengths but alas we have to rely on Slovis. This defense provides no pressure. Thankfully time of possession is balanced so we can’t use “the kids were tired” BS if we don’t adjust at the half.


  16. We are down our two best O lineman and our 2nd and 3rd best D lineman. And Alexander our D star.

    We’re in big trouble. Don’t see how we keep this close unless we go to Patti. Rap on Slovis at USC was he hold the ball too long. Patti at least gives us mobility


  17. appears Slovis is falling apart

    this of course is something KP never did, not even momentarily last year, maybe never at Pitt


    1. and I’m not saying it’s all on him

      a lot of the early hits probably taking toll along with the big ones later


  18. Pitt losing the turnover battle 2-0 and the ref calls 4-0

    Cig needs to get his act together and call a better game. Slovis is on the verge of getting seriously injured if Pitt continues to let TN pin back their ears and rush the QB.


  19. Pitt should keep the FG kicker on the sideline until needed after a TD or at the end of the game for the W.

    Go Pitt!


  20. Patti really locks onto his receiver.
    This is kinda looking like last weeks game. Pitt looks beat but hanging in.


  21. We all knew that we hadn’t gotten elite (or anything close to elite) offensive linemen in years (Brian O’Neil was a tight end originally).
    I hope the ACC is down again this year.


  22. It’s getting to that ‘comebacks’ point if Tennessee scores again.
    Just inept on Pitt’s offense.
    And Sauls has gotta miss from there? That was a gimme


    1. By my count we have left at least 9 points on the field today just in the kicking game (one of those was the 4th down attempt that should have been a FG attempt)

      Plus the bub means drop-turned-int in the endzone.

      So that’s 15

      If we lose, that’s the story.


  23. Sooooooo Narduzzi to call timeout and forgo the inevitable.

    We’ll need that TO for sure, if they escape the inevitable


  24. Oh boy. It’s going to come to the dreaded extra-pointer.

    “If” they make it.

    We can’t leave the field without a touchdown


  25. No pressure from this defense 2 games in a row. Tenn. QB is way below average but a high school QB with 10 seconds and great receivers can be successful.

    This D line is horribe

    Liked by 2 people

  26. The award for the dumbest playcall of the game is the last play of the 1st half half where we should have handed off and ran out the clock. Slovis was getting killed the whole half. It was 2X as stupid as when Narduzzi went for it on 4th & 3.


  27. Gutsy game with 9-13 backups.
    I would have gone for two on that last score but the kids and subs deserved a shot.

    Pitt did the best with what was available. Ugh but…..


    Liked by 1 person

  28. not trying to be picky but Wayne’s catch overruled when the left toe was down the whole time?

    thought that made it a catch along with right toe down BEFORE heel touches


    1. Saw a late game where a TD was ruled OOB for same reason.

      Dean Blandino explained your whole foot needs to land in bounds to be considered a catch.

      A toe tap is ok as you go OOB, but you must have toe to heel on this type of catch.


  29. At least it was another exciting (by sloppy) game for ABC/ESPN viewers. Of course if you’re a QB recruit and have over 50 brain cells that still work, no way you want to come to Pitt right now. Our O-line is hot garbage..


  30. Any thoughts on why Duzzi saved the TO with 48 seconds left in regulation? It seems like he gave up. We could have had at least a few plays to get a FG.


    1. It’s his MO.

      He did that a few years ago a cuse with KP8 as his QB.

      Never give up – but he has in the past.


  31. nobody cares at this minute but can they go undefeated through to Miami?

    WMU next week will be very tough at this point


    1. Kansas beat Texas last year

      and practically no one else 🙂 (only S Dakota but played a few teams close including Ok and WVU and TCU)


  32. Gutsy performance despite the loss.
    Pros: D in second half, defensive special teams, Izzy, Jared Wayne
    Cons: lack of play action on 1st down, Slovis/Patti injuries, Momentum swing from 17-0 to 10-7 on INT, missed kicks


  33. We were overmatched and outplayed.
    And, if it hadn’t been for the turnovers, the score wouldn’t have been close.
    But there is no denying that we showed more fight than I’ve seen in years.


  34. Pitt volleyball is about to take a very bad loss tonight at home to Towson. Out of good Internet service at the moment so have not been able to watch the match. Have not seen any of the matches this weekend. Pitt needs to do some soul searching after this one. They should not have lost to this team.


    1. I was watching the vb game from my seat at the football game. Pitt did not have a good offensive night. Lots of hitting errors, got blocked a lot, service errors. Just a hot mess. Back line wasn’t moving like they did last night. Maybe 3 consecutive weekends of tourneys tired them out. Akeo was back, but right now maybe we have too many new people (transfers) in at once and we are not the finely tuned machine we were when everyone was used to playing together. There is plenty of time to get this fixed and everyone on the same page. I’m officially thinking fatigue is a major part of this. We need to pick it up now. That’s a bad loss to an unranked team, but Towson is very good.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for the analysis, Annie. I just got back to the connected world late this evening (Sunday), so I plan to watch the match on replay. During the first two matches of the challenge who do you think is the leader of this team. Serena Gray does not strike me as someone who could lead. There is somewhat of a leadership vacuum with the loss of Kayla Lund. Last year and probably the year before, there was never any doubt who the leader was. Stephanie Williams seemed to fill that role before Kayla.


        1. John, Your question about leadership is valid. At this point, I’m not sure there is a strong leader. The new transfers don’t have the clout to be it, the closest of the returners I can see would be Vazquez Gomez or Rachel Fairbanks. Fairbanks is young but as the engine that runs the team I think she is the one that needs to step up. I see it a little on the court but she needs to be more forceful. I guess that is the problem with bringing in so many new people. Akeo just doesn’t seem to have the rah, rah personality to ignite the team.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Agree with all you said! Vazquez Gomez and Rachel Fairbanks have to step up!

            I watched a replay of the entire Towson loss. I think Coach Fisher underestimated how good Towson was! He was experimenting with different combination of players in the match. The players may have been tired as you suggested. He never reverted back to what was working in the BYU tournament. He used Akeo, Starks, and Klika as the libero.

            Other thoughts from watching the replay. Dalton needs to work on her backcourt defense. I still think Browske is playing better than Klika. Klika should not serve. Ennis on the front row is not going to hack it. Fairbanks, Dalton, Vazquez Gomez, and Starks are all better options from the left side. Buzzerio, Dalton, Fairbanks, and Starks are better on the right side. Starks needs to be used on the front outsides if we need more than Buzzerio, Dalton, Vazquez Gomez, and Fairbanks.

            I have not sat down and charted the substitutions this, but I would put Ennis in the backrow when Dalton would rotate goes back there. The current allowed number of substitutions is 15 plus the libero going in and out. I would let Vazquez Gomez and Rachel Fairbanks be the 6 rotation players. Akeo, who I understand had/has an issue with her back needs to stay healthy. We cannot have three setters. That throws off the timing of everyone. As you stated, too many moving parts. If Akeo is still not 100%, we should use Ennis. Akeo/Ennis has to come in with a middle, so they develop a chemistry for the quick set middle attack.


  35. Just back from game. Lots of thoughts, but keeping with my no knee jerk reactions I’ll wait till tomorrow for comments, other than the Tennessee fans were very apologetic when one of them threw up over my leg, the guys in front of him and my wife’s seat ( luckily she was in the ladies room. I thought I took it remarkably well.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Look at the upsets today. Texas should have beaten Bama. WVU about to Fall to Kansas, Nebraska losing to Georgia Southern, UNC barely beat a nobody, Marshall crushed ND at ND, App State beats #6 Tex AM, Wash St beat #14 Wisconsin at Wisky, etc.

    I never say this but Pitt played with half a team and lost w dignity.
    A damn shame though. No game is a safe bet with Pitt’s QB, O line, D line, Dbacks and kicking situation.
    We’re no lock next week at W Michigan. Someone said it earlier. This is why you play Rhode Island 2nd game of the year. H2P

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Final game comment for the night – our FG kicker missed two that were not even close. Maybe 15 to 20 yards wide.

    Our back-up kicker broke all kinds of Pitt records last season and earned ACC honorable mentioned.

    We lost by 7 in OT, but were down 7 when we tied it with under 2 minutes to play. If one or both FG’s were made, we had a strong chance to win the game in regulation.

    I don’t understand how or why we switch FG kickers.

    Lastly, I don’t like FG’s and I think it is because of the Duzz decisions over the past 8 years relating to FG’s.

    Liked by 3 people

  38. Pre-season, most of not all said we could be 1-1 or 0-2 just as easily as we could have been 2-0. Well here we are.

    Ugly game and still somehow tied it late.

    I too am sick about the kicking -Sauls back to why he was benched last year. Time to bench again.

    If I see Bub Means on the field I’m going to flip.

    WRs need a lot of work.

    DBs playing soft is another head scratcher. UT should have just passed underneath all day.

    Need to get healthy and quickly.


    1. Game comments: WR’s were bunched together on several plays downfield – wrong routes being run?

      WR’s dropped several catchable balls in a game so close with many injuries to starters and SEC refs working hard for a TN win. One catchable ball was in the back of the end zone and became an INT.

      I’ve thought this but never said nor commented – Pitt and Duzz should have promoted Marion – his receivers ran good routes, caught the ball and blocked well. One was JA3.

      I believe both on this team would have lead to a W yesterday.

      Serious Monday morning QB-ing…


  39. Well, listened to the 2nd half in the car going down turnpike. I just do not think we have a overall talented or balanced team this year. That 76 yard run pretty much saved our chance at a win, but our run game is very inconsistent.

    Case in point: Izzy had 154 yards rushing but the team as a whole had 141. Even with that 76 yard run we had 3.6 ypc which won’t do the job.

    Hooker had 352 yards passing with 2 TDs & 0 INTs. We have to do better than that

    I’ll have a MMQB piece up Monday morning. It was so great to see everyone at the tailgate! Saw the POV flag flying from far away.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Reed – the OC called a run on almost every 1st down. In the 2nd half and OT it was run on every 1st down.

      Predictable is bad.

      I could have stuffed Pitt on 1st down.


  40. One last thing before we head off to Ocean City for a weeks vacation.

    Ok 2 things. Ron Cook wrote his usual Pitt hating column about Pitt “pitting” and I ripped him a new one in the comments.

    Are our kickoff receivers stupid or just undisciplined??Pitt is down to it’s 4th team and our receivers are trying to run it out of the end zone.
    Do they know they can call a fair catch anywhere on the field??? They constantly put Pitt in awful field position at the worst possible times. One of many things to fix. Pitt may be down to the Dartmouth QB next week.


  41. Nebraska just lost to GA Southern 45-42
    Scott Frost and Whipple are a joke!
    Who will be fired first. Frost or WVU Coach?


  42. One thing that was perfectly clear was that Cignetti did not want to have to call a pass play for Patti if he could get away with it. He simply did not have any of confidence in Patti executing the offense. So if Patti is our primary QB going forward for who knows how many games the Pitt offense will be handcuffed greatly by the Cignetti’s play calling.


  43. So this is why I have been against playing two strong P-5 teams to start a season. The rest of the year is now in jeopardy because of the amount of physical abuse on the bodies of our team. This was always a huge risk coming to fruition. Especially when one of those teams was the rival who most wants to kick your a$$.

    The most important factor in a winning football season is staying relatively healthy, this is why the vast majority of teams play cupcakes to start the season. That of course and to start with a bunch of wins and also work out the kinks in your game.

    This is not a new position for me, I said it as far back as when we scheduled Oklahoma St. I see no advantage in scheduling no more than one tough OOC game. Even if you win both if you lose some of your star players you have lost big time.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. GC – who’s at fault for the back to back P5 games to open the season?

      It has to be on the AD, right?

      Pitt will be a shell of itself with double digit starters on the injury list and not able to play. Could be QB 1 and 2…

      Liked by 1 person

  44. The rest of the blues being cried by our gang is pretty much irrelevant. I only saw the first half and I agree that their lines were much better than ours creating havoc all day. I was somewhat amazed that we tied the game late. We now have problems and they are many.
    Too early to give up, but geez what a depressing morning.


  45. Well, I’ve been good and slept on my thoughts. As my out of state friends said, if you don’t have a rooting interest Pitt games are the most entertaining in college football. I, however DO have a rooting interest, so here goes:
    1) I’m really trying to maintain here, but Cignetti is just plain bad. It’s the 1990s again. Multi play drives resulting in fg or turnovers. The offense scored as a result of brilliant individual efforts, not schemes. There was not one innovative set, formation, or route, at least that I observed.
    2) Despite being the hero last week, Devonshire is really, really bad. Rooting for kid, but watch him. Not good.
    3) This is why you never, ever, schedule 2 games like this to start the season.
    College scheduling today is an art and a science. Guys, this isn’t the 1960s when we were independent and took on all comers. It’s such a big business that you must schedule non conference with an eye on the polls. Perception is what it’s all about. Do you think we’ll get credit for playing 2 tough games and losing one to a ranked team in OT or would we be better playing 2 tomato cans like the Nitters and winning both? Promise you they’ll be ranked higher. PERCEPTION. This is where it falls on Heather. She was completely inexperienced in this area. And don’t try the “ oh, schedule’s are made in advance route, have you looked at our future schedules? 7-5 or worse. They are brutal.
    4) I have no idea how good we are. Thought the Hoopies might have been decent, but looks like they played on emotion in a rivalry game. Tennessee, well, other than the revivers being huge beasts, and as far as Hooker, man, he missed some big time throws early or we would have been toast.
    5) Slovis was somewhat better but still slow making decisions. With this offense you can’t have receivers dropping any passes.
    6) The Oline play is bad, really nothing else to add, just plain bad. However, can’t remember rolling qb out to help deal with pressure, but maybe wrong, just can’t remember.
    7) Please ignore Ron Cook. He’s been a tool since his days at the Beaver Valley Times.
    8) All that depth people were talking about doesn’t look so good now. Might have bodies, but can they play?
    9) Might actually start 1-2 just not way you thought. Do not sleep,on WMU.
    10) I’m now going to finish my coffee, oh, one last item. 15-18k Tennessee fans in all type of seats on visitors side, not just one section in upper deck. They were ( other than throw up guy) some of the quietest fans I’ve ever been around. Polite, and very much unlike the Hoopies. And no smack talking.

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Running on almost every 1st down ???? Rinse, repeat Rinse, repeat
    WMU is not a trap game it could be a season almost over game.
    Vols have a long way to go to be a top team. Hooker runs very HOT and very COLD
    We had some top recruits attending this game>>>say goodbye to them!
    Lines O and D are beyond bad, The OLine should be in the MAC on a mid-level team/TERRIBLE
    Kicking// I hate to tell you “I told you so”.
    So, can the intelligent young man from Dartmouth throw a pass?

    But, all negativity aside the scores coming from other football fields offers hope that this is a season to remember. Mr. Frost have you told your wife to start packing and don’t forget the dog. Notre Dame 4**** and 5***** LOADED and lose to Marshall?
    My neighbor and his wife are both Aggies (with a Pitt daughter) ARRGHHH.

    Everything is OK PSUX beat a nice cupcake for Pennsylvania football bragging rights


    1. He had to run in the 4th quarter. He had a backup QB with a severely injured ankle playing.

      Patti could hardly move. He told the OL they had to get us a score.

      As bad as they are, they did enough for the late TD.

      Duzz should have gone for 2 on the last score. Pitt was finished and OT was a 97 percent chance for the Vols to win. If he misses the 2 he gets credit for trying to win.

      Finally, Heather owns this season. The only thing in college ball is wins. Selling an extra 45,000 seats in 2 games is not worth throwing the season away.

      This team is not very good, but they compete much better then past Pitt teams. That comes from learning to win last year.

      This team is crippled and that is on the AD. The whole Big 10 plays almost zero tough games in non conf.
      Why ?
      Because all that matters is wins!

      Liked by 4 people

  47. I hope the Vols fans came away impressed with Pittsburgh. And I hope those Pitt fans were treated to the Vols band. And do you still have Rocky Top in your head?

    Looks like Vegas was right about this team. I still like the under with wins.

    A team is built on both lines first. Then you branch out and find the skilled elite position players. But never forget how good lines are the key to long term success. Pitts staff has either ignored the O line or severely missed with their recruiting and development.

    And Dabo is worth his new contract. Can’t say the same for the King.


  48. everyone here should catch Panther-lair for some level-headed and imo accurate analysis

    1) Cig’s not the problem, the average o-line is
    2) Hammond in the game is enough to change the outcome, certainly doesn’t have Izzy’s top speed capability so wouldn’t have scored like him on that 76 yarder but when we needed a few yards could be counted on far more than anyone else
    3) Slovis IS very good and gives Pitt the best chance to win, his first half quick reads on blitzes was great and covered for our average(below) o-line
    4) despite observations here the pass that was tipped in the end zone was a catchable ball on a nearly perfect throw from Slovis
    5) officiating wasn’t the reason for the loss yesterday but that push out of bounds resulted from the Tenn WR initiating contact BUT Narduzzi probably should not have challenged because it was certainly not indisputable
    6) I still don’t understand the Wayne overturn with left toe down the whole time then right front of foot first THEN heel all while ball was in control
    7) you can’t miss 2 of 4 FG’s, one in the 30’s and the other in the 40’s and have one that was fortunate to go through the uprights looking like a lame duck
    8) agree with joeknew(and Huff/probably others) about scheduling 2 tough OOC power 5 games and add to start the season, and add to that the rivalry part, is idiotic…if you don’t understand that with the injury situation and the simple fact that few of the elite schools do it, you are blind
    tell you what, let’s schedule 4 tough OOC and completely deplete the roster and have nothing left for the ACC part of the schedule
    9) there were other Pitt catchable balls yesterday, don’t think ball trajectory is the problem, the receiver is, but it happens and happened to Tenn too
    10) coaching mistakes? I’d have gone for 2, I’d have not gotten Slovis hurt to end the first half, I’d have not challenged the push out, I’d have run more play action on first down and I’d have blitzed a bit more I think(not sure if they DID but had some picked up but on the last TD there were 3 Pitt players dropped back in no mans land(#7, #31 and another as they only rushed 4)
    11) I’ve got more but need to stop 😦 , WMU next week will be extremely tough if Nick is the QB and we don’t have a bunch of guys back 100%

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mississippi State -Arizona game TD was overturned for same reason.

      Dean Blandino explained…in college FB you have to have the full foot toe to heel for this to be a completed catch.

      Paradoxically, catching forward with a toe tap only is a catch.

      Liked by 1 person

  49. Only a small subset of the Tenn band attended the game and they did not perform on the field.

    Can’t say that I heard Rocky Top at all. Too much noise.

    Vol fans were more visible than the hoopies. . Orange shirts will do that. They also made more noise. I thought they were very well behaved both before and after. I spoke with one of them after the game and she was very complimentary about her stay in the Burgh.

    Liked by 1 person

  50. If our offense has to be vanilla, at least be Vanilla Fudge…shout out to DJ Iek.
    (Saw those guys with Spirit I believe at a Pitt Homecoming circa 1969)
    If Bart and Hot Rod are out for any length the O can’t remain predictable.

    Liked by 1 person

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