2022 WTE Production Lost – Virginia

Tony Elliott became HC of the Virginia Cavaliers on December 10’th 2021. He replaced Bronco Mendenhall who very unexpectedly resigned.

From the Deseret News :

 “I would love to say there’s been this buildup and a long amount of epiphanies and thought, but clearly this week, there was a sense of clarity to me that I needed to step back from college football and reassess, renew, reframe and reinvent — with my wife as a partner — our future and the next chapter of our lives,” 

I am happy for Bronco. I did the “reassess, renew, reframe and reinvent” twice in my life (but without a wife). After deliberation, I moved to Texas to become a rancher. Later, after my first wife died I did it again. I decided to retire early if I got remarried. I did and I did.

But this is not about me, it is a review of the Cavs 2022 season.

It was a bad year for Virginia. Not only on the football field but for an incident resulting in the death of two players and the wounding of a third.

On to the review starting with the 2022 and 2023 schedule:

Due to the shooting, Virginia cancelled their last two games. The record (3-7, 1-6 conference) was not what Elliott expected when he took the position.

NCAA 2022 offensive stats:

Virginia is the last of the five ACC teams Pitt does not play. As I said in the first review (Clemson), I reviewed the five teams in order of their chance to make the ACC Championship game.

These offensive stats were one of the contributing factors in listing the Cavs last.

What went wrong? As usual, I will start with the QB’s:

This chart is busier than normal. IMO, Elliott expected Armstrong to continue his upward QB trajectory. (See his 2020 and 2021 QB stats). What happened is the 2022 results and Armstrong’s entry to the TP.

Virginia did pickup Monmouth ( 5-6 in the Colonial Athletic Conference) QB Tony Muskett. Muskett had particularly good but not impressive stats albeit at a lower level of play. He is a Virginia native. He is also the presumed starter.

2021 recruit Jay Woolfolk did start one game in 2021 but had limited playing time in 2022.

Besides Woolfolk, Virginia recruited a QB in the 2022 class and two in 2023.

On to the Running Backs and Wide Receivers:

You would think Virginia continued the Anae offense of de-emphasizing the running attack. But Elliott as offensive coordinator at Clemson wanted a healthy run game. IMO, Virginia just was not able to recruit impact level RBs based on prior OC Robert Anae’s offense.

The Cavs are returning their top three RB’s. They did add Kobe Pace who had an up and down career at Clemson. He had his best year in 2021 when Elliott was the OC.

Virginia lost their top four WR’s.

The OLine review:

This chart shows the problem with the Virginia offense in 2022.

After Mendenhall left, the top six Linemen by starts either ran out of eligibility or entered the TP. Only one remaining player had starting experience (Jonathon Leech-two games).

The result ended up with an Oline that was inexperienced with problems protecting the QB’s and opening holes for the RB’s.

At least the Cavs will have four players with starting experience returning. But Elliott is worried and plucked three from the TP.

That wraps up the offense except for offense TP and recruiting activities.

On to the defense starting with the 2022 NCAA stats:

If you have noticed, I highlight any NCAA stat where the reviewed team is ranked number one as the National or Conference leader. For Virginia, they were the ACC leader in First Downs Defense.

The problem with that stat is that it is a “Total.” Most of the NCAA stats are based on a “per Game” basis or as a percentage, A few others (Passes Intercepted, Fumbles Recovered, Defensive TD’s, and Turnovers Gained/Lost) are also “Totals” and I agree with that basis for ranking.

With Virginia only playing ten games, their ranking should be lower. On a per game basis, they allowed 20.8 per games. Pitt played 13 games and allowed 228 first downs (ranked 25’th nationally and fifth in the ACC). Pitt’s per game basis is 17.5.

I have not gone on a rant in a while, and I feel better now. Fun with numbers.

The following chart lists all defensive players who made at least one defensive stat.

Virginia lost only six players of the 34 players with a defensive stat. The Cavs are the first team that by my calculations who lost only 20+ % of their 2020 production. LB D’Sean Perry was one of two players murdered.

Virginia ran a 4-2-5 defense in 2022.

The DL is intact. The LB group lost a major contributor in Nick Jackson to the TP. He led the team in tackles (41 more than the next leading tackler) and was second in sacks.

The DB group was impacted by an early NFL draft entry and the TP. Virginia’s two defensive pick-ups from the TP where both DB’s.

The defense coming and going chart. It includes TP activity (both In and Out) and 2023 recruiting:

The NCAA Miscellaneous Stats:

Without having to rewrite my rant, Fewest Penalties and Fewest Penalty Yards are also “Totals.” Notice how when penalties are on a per game basis, the rankings go from 42 and 45 respectively to 104 and 106. Add any type of blocked kicks to the “Totals” group. The Returns group are a subset of the per game set but are on a per return basis. I fell even better. More fun with numbers.

Like Georgia Tech, Virginia needs to work on their special teams. They also should be welcomed to the ACC teams with penalty problems group.

Kickers and Punters stats:

I can see why Brendan Farrell entered the TP.

I had to research QB’s Armstrong’s punting exploits. One was a fourth down punt from the Duke 39. He nailed it and dropped it at the Duke 13-yard line. The other was against North Carolina on another fourth down. From the UNC 32, it ended up in the end zone for a net punt of 12 yards. Narduzzi would have sent in Ben Sauls at least against UNC.

Virginia was another team that ranked below Pitt in punting. But that could be because of the punting of Farrell and Armstrong. Sparks is not a bad punter.

That wraps up the Virginia review.

Draft Kings has the over/ under at 3.5 wins. I can see 3 wins. But not sure if there is a fourth.

This article wraps up the reviews of the five ACC teams that Pitt does not play in 2023. We will see them in 2024.

I am planning to do articles on the eleven FBS teams that Pitt will face. I am not doing one on Wofford.

I plan on writing them in reverse order of scheduling. I will do Duke first and work my way down to Cincinnati. Why, you ask? Because these reviews are worthless once you get to the fourth or fifth game of the new season. They do give you an idea of what Pitt’s future opponents need to replace and improve to beat the mighty Panthers. I plan on being finished by early August.

174 thoughts on “2022 WTE Production Lost – Virginia

  1. Richard, your energy for firing out articles amazes me.
    Outstanding work my friend.
    OT, looks like much less than predicted rain for the Dick Groat Golf Outing today.
    Looking forward to seeing some quality POVerts. 😎

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I am happy for Bronco. I did the “reassess, renew, reframe and reinvent” twice in my life (but without a wife). After deliberation, I moved to Texas to become a rancher. Later, after my first wife died I did it again. I decided to retire early if I got remarried. I did and I did.

    ^^^admirable and amazing P-cF

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Bronco had a good thing going in Virginia. The guys a very good coach. He caught UVA off guard. Anae leaving really hurt Armstrong.
    I don’t see them bouncing back any time soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great job, Richard! Looking at UVA, many of us are now beginning to appreciate the long term stability that Heather and Narduzzi have provided for the football program. At some top colleges, almost anyone can walk in at the beginning and recruit top players based on brand and success. It takes some time to screw things up.

    I was ranting about Fraud the other day, and even Fraud did okay for his first few years at ASU before the character issues set in. The important characteristics such as stability, continuity, honesty and commitment do mean something over time as a coaches reputation for treating players fairly and with respect becomes known. So many of our players talk about the family atmosphere that exists at Pitt. This is definitely worth something in the recruiting process..

    Liked by 4 people

  5. At a recent Hopeland Gardens Monday concert here in Aiken, I met a gentleman wearing a Virginia hat. He asked me what I was doing wearing a Pitt hat down here in Cavalier country. We got to talking about Virigina football and basketball. He thinks the football program is going to be bad for a while.

    He really likes Tony Bennett as their basketball coach. I offered my thoughts that he reminds me a lot of Jamie Dixon when he was at Pitt. They both have a similar approach to the game. The team does well during the regular season but unfortunately that type of basketball doesn’t do well come tournament time. He agreed wholeheartedly with that comment.


    1. Surprised to see a Virginia fan in South Carolina. I have never seen one even at the casino I visit in North Carolina. Glad you two talked.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I think Bennett is the best coach in College Basketball. I’m always impressed with his team discipline and game time adjustments.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. The U.S. team continues to dominate in the 2023 NORCECA U19 Girls Pan American games.
    They swept Mexico in three straight sets, 25-14, 25-11, 25-17.

    The US team will play Costa Rica, for the second time, tonight in one semi-final while Mexico plays host Puerto Rico in the other. Puerto Rico finish undefeated in pool play as well. I would expect a U.S. versus Puerto Rico final. Puerto Rico will give our girls a good test!

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Mike Bell’s boys just beat #11 Miami in Pittsburgh 7-4

    The canes out hit Pitt 10-4

    Very odd game, but a Panther victory none the less.

    Go Pitt!


  8. US U19 Women’s volleyball team swept Costa Rica as expected tonight in the semifinals. The scores were 25-14, 25-20, 25-6. Bayless and Babcock only played the first set. Babcock was held scoreless but Bayless was the team’s second highest scorer for the match with 5 kills and 4 aces in the first set.

    The finals are tomorrow. The expected opponent will be host, Puerto Rico.


  9. Mexico actually upset Puerto Rico in four sets! U.S. plays Mexico again tomorrow.


  10. Richard,

    Excellent article. Love the well-justified number/ranking rants!

    I will miss playing UVA every year. I liked it when our student-athletes beat their student-athletes! 😊

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Heading to Pirates game today. Ugh! More worried about heading into the snake pit of crime than the game outcome!


    1. I’m an Orioles fan from the late 60’s – I had a 13 game season tickets plan up until the riots a few years ago where business were burned, shut down and looted.

      I’m also a Pirate fan and would have gone to the whole series prior to the riots. The crowds have been good for this series.

      I haven’t returned to Baltimore city since.


  12. Richard – you do an incredible job with your team evaluations. I’m not a betting man but I would lay money that other ACC fans take a look at your fine access menus of their teams for the upcoming season.

    The cow patch peds are getting hyped up again for the 2023 season – psuX and Michigan have extremely weak out of conference games –

    The nits play wvcc, Delaware and Umass

    The wolverines play East Carolina, UNLV and Bowling Green

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Rick – Thanks
      I listen to SiriusXM whenever I am in the car. Yesterday, sometime after 5PM, I drove to my local grocery store. The host mentioned something about the B10 no longer mandating a P5 opponent. I didn’t hear what he said because I got to grocery store and went in. He mentioned it again on the way home but never expanded.

      Have you heard anything? Maybe I missed heard & confused B10 & B12. I don’t remember reading anything about it for either conference.

      I know they had already walked back the ban on playing an FCS team but only if it’s in a year when a B10 team has only 4 home games against B10 opponents.


      1. Yes, I heard it Friday morning on XM 84 college sports radio.

        The premise that the commentators mentioned is winning games – no one looks at anything in college FB but your record for TV ratings. So, the Big Joke teams can and will schedule light and focus on the almighty dollar – win and don’t worry about the fans wanting the big game match-ups.


        1. Thanks. When I heard the host say what he said, the first thing I thought was it was to improve wins and wins only.

          Surprised that there was not an article on either ESPN or CBS college football home page. Everyone at those sites must be on vacation.


  13. I’m still sitting here impatiently waiting on another recruiting announcement from the Capel regime. Starting to worry that two needed slots will not be filled. Come on JC, time to land a couple of recruits to finish things off for the recruiting year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No NIL money I think hurt Pitt with some of these late kids heading elsewhere. Capel might just have 11 scholarship players at his disposal. Then the yearly injury; arrest and things are think again with the roster.

      Where’s the big Pitt alum who’s a trucking tycoon and allegedly wanted Dixon fired and got his wish? Does he have alligator arms nowadays to donate? I guess transfers weren’t too impressed with Pitt’s postseason and three-point friendly offense.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Capel needs more bodies just for practice. Maybe he brings in a foreign player or two, but there must be some cutoff to be eligible to play this fall. The ACC coach of the year must be able to at least recruit a couple more TP players.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. High Point and Rhode Island don’t have any transfer in the portal that Capel can sign. There is 6’11” PF from RI but I believe he committed to Detroit last week.

    UMass has a 6’4” SG with 2 years of eligibility who averaged 38% beyond the 3 pt line and 72% from the FT line.


  16. Capel is really struggling in the TP. No idea why but it’s contagious! No one wants to play for him and it has nothing to do with NIL money. His brother’s behavior and actions as Asst Coach have gotten around! Maybe his lack of in game adjustments. My opinion there.

    Great game by Keller today. At least a third of the crowd dressed in black and gold! Beautiful 80 sunny day.

    Oriole Park at Camden Yards is a broken down relic. We have it so good with PNC Pirates Park of whatever they call it now.

    Sat 3 rows up from Third Base. A wonderful gesture by Hays today giving a young girl a signed ball!
    Wish he could hit!!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. U.S. U19 team dominated the tournament. They did not lose a single set. The most any opposing team scored in a set was Costa Rica with 20 in the one set. Mexico did score 18 in the last two sets of the finals. I think that was more the result of the U.S. making sure everyone played than anything Mexico did. In the first set of the finals against Mexico the score was 25-8.

      Bayless is better than I thought. She is a very good server or at least was against the talent that was in the tournament.

      I do hope that Vazquez Gomez does not turn pro even with all these very talented incoming outside hitters joining the team in the fall. Babcock is an opposite OH and will be in contention with Dalton for the role Buzzerio played on last year’s team. She also may play a little in the middle.

      That leaves Bayless and Stafford competing for the other OH spots with Vazquez Gomez, Flood, and Fairbanks. It will be interesting to see if Fisher thinks Fairbanks is a better option up front than the incoming freshmen. What I would expect is that the upper classmen will play earlier in the season and the incoming freshmen will slowly displace them as the season progresses. Flood is looking like the odd player out as this occurs.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Fairbanks plays right side not outside. Flood looked much improved. I have not seen any of the freshmen play so I can’t comment on who is better. But generally freshmen need some time to adjust to the pace of the game.

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Mark – I’m getting old, but the name Wally Pipp just popped into my head…. Something related to Saturday’s golf-course banter…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Capel and the transfer portal thoughts. Who wants to transfer to Pitt just to be a practice commit? Capel’s problem and as such Pitt’s problem is that he really can’t guarantee much playing time for any player transferring in to be either #12 or #13 on the roster. Transfers want to play and right now at least on paper Pitt has plenty of players to slot in for its top 10.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. There is a starting SG position open, I think. And there isn’t a starter returning at the 4 spot if Hinson plays the 3 spot.


    1. Agree we need a shooter and a big forward, but I’m guessing the twins are going to play a lot more in those roles than most are expecting.

      Now that they have gained some experience, I think the twins are going to end up being our big-time 3-point shot guys…. Their height let’s them get the shots off without to much pressure; and their length allows them to still defend somewhat, even if someone drives past them…

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 3 people

  20. The freshman coming in could compete for starting roles pretty quickly. You bring in some additional experienced others and i wouldn’t be surprised to see some freshman de-commits following.


  21. I expect Pitt to release their Tax and Right to Know tax reports sometimes in the next few days.

    The release always drew a lot of commentary from a certain subsection of the POV commentors.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Enlighten those of us in the dark what those reports reveal about Pitt. Please use the KISS principle.


  22. Just a couple comments about Saturday’s Dick Groat (Memorial) Pitt Celebrity Golf Outing at Champion Lakes…

    Thought it was a really nice turnout and well done by the folks in charge. Hats off to Guido and Bill Hillgrove.

    Some of the luminaries in attendance included Duzz (and his son), Cale Berger (and his dad), Guy Junker – retired from WTAE and now the PA announcer at PNC Park, Jeff Delaney from the 1976 team, Rob King of AT&T Sports, Cesar Aldisert and John Rees from the early 80’s, Tom Ricketts, of course Bill Hillgrove and his brother John, Pat Bostick. Local Jazz legent Kenny Blake. Heard – but did not see myself – that Sally Wiggin made an appearance. Any others???

    A subset of the Pitt band including Jack Anderson (who I later leanred was legendary). One could hear them ALL afternoon from different parts of the course. Our teammate Dave from the Trib had to contend with that every time he addressed the ball in the tee box…. or so it seemed.

    POV luminaries – Fran, kman, Major, PittPT, Richman.. who’d I miss?

    Our team with Major, PittPT, my buddy Tom, Guy Junker and Dave (?) from the Trib posted a -6 …. winning score was -12.

    I learned why Colin Dunlap and Chris Mack are absent from The Fan Morning Show… does anyone miss them. I can reveal the details for a fee. 🙂

    Not so nice weather – especially compared to the past couple of years. Hopefully those playing in the FRANKCAN.

    A wonderful outing though and I hope they keep it going. Its a lot of fun and really neat to get to talk with folks connected to Pitt and the media.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I had season tickets in front of Jack Andersons wife and family in Section 23 for 15 years. Huge respect for Jack as a musician and leader. Met him many times.


    2. Good summary, JoeL.

      Brooks Koepka’s father was there. He auctioned off some BK autographed items. Dick Groat was Brooks’ great uncle…

      Ken Macha, MLB player and manager was there. Played on the baseball team with him at Pitt. For yet another year he won a long-drive prize…

      Joe Starkey from the FAN was there. I heard him say on the radio today that the Pitt band tunes were stuck in his head and he kept singing them – much to the annoyance of his golf-cart mate…

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 2 people

    3. Joe, I also spoke with Walt Harris and saw TV/radio personality Paul Alexander (another Nitter) at the outing. It really was a great time!

      Liked by 3 people

  23. Some rumors like this pop up from time to time, many without any merit. The details on this looks much more extensive than normal though. And I understand Brett McMurphy has been suggesting similar things…. could be some steam coming from fissures before the top blows.

    I’d hate to see it play as projected for Pitt if so.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Thanks for the post. It was interesting.

    Click on the “show more” at the end of the tweet. It takes you to the full article. I also suggest reading the responses.


    1. I understand the argument that FSU, Miami, Clemson (and perhaps UNC and VT) are considered to be most attractive by other conferences as argued by McMurphy. But UVA? That’s a reach.


  25. Three 20-team conferences are looking to be in the very near future. I’d love to see the ACC together through the GOR, but the TV deal simply stinks. The ACC commish is taking a lot of heat, but what can he do really? Can’t expand and re-open the GOR as others looking to bolt will do so in a hurry.

    Pitt should land in the Big 12 down the road. It stinks others will be left out in the end.


  26. As far as conferences moves “what will be, will be”! I trust Heather to position Pitt for the best deal possible.

    I’ve hated the ACC for football since I moved to MD 40 years ago. Still do. As long as Pitt isn’t completely left out, I don’t care where we go.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. It is sad to see that these supposed break away teams in the ACC are so concerned about money that they would destroy what is a very good conference in the process. When looking at academics, the minor sports and overall performance of the FB and men’s BB teams in the conference, there is much to be proud of.

    Maybe they should just concentrate on making more money within the existing arrangement and find new revenue sources if more money is so important. There is a new world of streaming program content that could offer some opportunities. And sooner or later they will be able to upgrade the existing ESPN contract.

    Conference structure is important to give players something to strive for when they are having years when they are not in the running for a playoff position. It’s hard enough to find motivation when a team loses 2-3 OOC games early and knows that national recognition is not going to happen. These are college kids who need motivation, and deserve some recognition for winning a conference title rather than having nothing to play for.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. I believe that the 7 that move from the ACC would have to pay millions because of the grants of TV rights or would the league simply dissolve? Who would get any money? The lawyers would love it.
    Anyway, Pitt, BC, Cuse, Duke, Wake and Louis will be playing FB. Maybe the networks will finally say enough is enough and put their money into streaming movies. Less fans are showing up at college FB games anyway. The IRS loves NILs.


  29. Come on. UNC, VT, Virginia and NC State carry no weight in football. I can see FSU, Clemson and maybe Miami. Miami really hasn’t been relevant in 20 years.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Bottom line, the ACC has to do something about the revenue gap. They are sitting there idle like fools. Be aggressive. Try to pull in more teams to expand and get leverage to redo the TV deal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Whereas the B10 does not need Pitt at all, One would think the SEC might find Pitt an interesting foothold into the Western PA/Eastern Ohio TV market. Add Syracuse, BC and one of the Virginia schools and the Northeast gets well covered.


      1. The SEC grabbing PA, NY and Boston markets certainly would swell the revenue to possibly maintain what each member takes from the pie. This expansion talk though is way over my head. I shouldn’t even type like I know what would be good or bad for certain schools and conferences.

        I just hope the GOR is iron clad, as it sounds. FSU’s bureaucrats can yell all that they want about how unfair life is for the university.

        Liked by 2 people

  31. Being sarcastic here, but maybe it would be good for us as fans if after all of the realignment, we end up in the MAC or American Conference. We could dominate in several sports and fandom would be much less frustrating.


  32. If the idea is to create superconferences for the TV revenue sports, it doesn’t make sense to force the non or rarely televised sports into the superconferences. Create a plan – 3 twenty team conferences, 4 sixteen team conferences for FB, MBB, WBB, BB/SB/LAX/Hockey for some schools. Have all the other so-called minor sports from those schools continue to play in their current conferences. Don’t try to make every sport fit the same competition model.


    Liked by 1 person

  33. So according to ACC it would cost any team $200 mil to $300 mil to leave. ACC pays each team $35 mil
    a year. Big Ten $100 mil. Don’t know SEC or Big 12 payouts but do the math! This ain’t happening any time soon if at all.


    1. That is why I do not understand why this story is making waves again. Some of the ACC schools can yell all they want and nothing is going to change any time soon.

      Did the “Magnificent 7” all of a sudden find lawyers who can break the GOR? The Big Ten and SEC just redid their TV deals. If they added new teams, it would dilute the payments.

      The B10 cannot go back to NBC and say “Hey, we just added two more teams, time to renegotiate despite the fact we’ve yet to play a single game on your network.”

      The ACC schools only have themselves to blame for its terrible TV deal.


      1. The ACC doesn’t teams don’t have the same name star team recognition as do the other conferences. Thus we are stuck with subpar TV deal. If ND joined that would make a big difference. But why join when you have a NBC exclusive contract.


        1. ND makes around $23 million a year from NBC but just told the network it wants $75 million a year when the current deal expires. If the Irish don’t get it, I wonder what its next course of action is?


  34. Interesting that the GOR is not written or available on line. You have to trek to ACC HQ in Greensboro to read it in person.


  35. Would three 20-team superconferences be all that super? It would just be the current P5 conferences minus four of the following schools:

    Texas Tech
    Wake Forest
    Boston College
    Georgia Tech

    And I only see it impacting football. Plenty of non-P5 schools like Villanova, Xavier, Gonzaga, UConn … have shown that you can compete on the national stage in basketball without being in a big conference.

    So, if the end game is more football revenue for the big schools, I don’t see three 20-team conferences unless they manage to negotiate severely lopsided revenue distributions. I would expect one 20 or 24 team conference and everyone else.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree. Eventually, at least for football, it will resemble the Premier League, 20 or 24 teams playing each other at least once over a two to three year period. There will be 2 to 4 regional leagues below that. At the end of the two to three year period, the bottom 4 or 8 teams will be relegated to the regional leagues and the top regional teams will be promoted. All the other sports will be run by the current conferences or the regional leagues or some subset of the regional leagues. It’s still a business. The monied interests will figure it out. Which college will Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney try to buy?



  36. Would there be any parallels between the college football superconference concept and the LIV Golf experience that might give ESPN/ABC/NBC/CBS reason to salivate or conversely to give pause? LIV Golf siphoned off the best of the best with huge bags of money. Yet I have to believe that their broadcasts on the CW network and streaming services can’t possibly be bringing in the ad revenue that the PGA still receives. I know that the football superconference would not be relegated to some obscure network but are there any lessons to be learned from that comparison?


    1. LIV gold gets international fans and viewers so I doubt they are hurting. US TVs love college football. I think any conference alignment will get watched.


  37. I have no interest in the Big 12. I wouldn’t mind being in a conference with Cincy again, but prefer an eastern, or eastern midwestern center of gravity.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. There are only so many TV eyeballs. Expanding to new markets does not necessarily mean more eyeballs for your team or even for your new conference.

    FSU getting slugged by AL or GA would not be fun if I was an FSU fan. TXA&M and MD have found that out.

    The 7 schools that leave may get more money to spend more money but their stadiums better get a lot bigger and their athletes, well ???

    Liked by 1 person

  39. The Pitt women’s BB team roster now lists 7 players! That’s 4 returning players and 3 transfers. Plus we still have 2 freshmen recruits coming in.

    So, as of now, we’ll be able to have 5-on-4 practices! 😊

    Our tallest players are two 6’2” forwards. Much work to do…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. Pitt WBB signs JUCO Guard transfer Mia Simpson. She can play! One more to come very soon. Looking at two 6’5 centers.

    Liked by 3 people

  41. An interesting take on conference realignment for an long time Pitt fan and friend of mine:


    The subject of varying payouts per team has been a subject since Florida State’s AD started implying that FSU and Clemson could leave. Well, apparently there is more to it now with North Carolina and Miami believing that they are bigger than the remaining members, so they need to be coddled as well.

    My long-time friend, a fellow lawyer and also a pastor, and I have tossed the football around on what the ACC can do as the ESPN deal did prevent further raiding of the conference but has locked the ACC teams into a terrible financial comparison. So, after much consternation, here is what he suggested:

    “How about a Big 12 ACC merger? The Big 12 has 12 teams, the ACC 15. Add one more for 28 and create four seven-team divisions. The winners of the four divisions have a final four playoff for the conference championship.

    Each team plays all six of its division members and two from each of the other three divisions on a rotating basis. That leaves one game to be scheduled by the member school with whomever they choose (a cupcake if they want a scrimmage to start the season.)

    The new conference comes out as the premier basketball conference, and an interesting football conference. Pitt gets West Virginia and Cincinnati back as regular opponents.

    Just a crackpot idea. But the whole conference thing has gone nuts anyhow!”

    Liked by 7 people

  42. Blast from the past:

    That Walmart greeter’s job will have to wait for Ben DiNucci. The former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and recent XFL star signed a contract with the Denver Broncos on Tuesday.

    DiNucci made a good impression over the weekend at the team’s rookie minicamp that included five veteran try-out prospects. His only mistake was a high pass that third-round pick Drew Sanders returned for a pick-six.

    The play happened right in front of team owner Greg Penner, who was talking with general manager George Paton.

    Coach Sean Payton said he had just been bragging about DiNucci to Penner, the son-in-law of Walmart heir Rob Walton, whose ownership group bought the Broncos last year for $4.65 billion.

    “He told me I’d have a job at Walmart working somewhere if football doesn’t work out,” DiNucci said. “So, a good laugh.”

    DiNucci won’t be greeting shoppers but competing with Jarrett Stidham and Jarrett Guarantano to back up Russell Wilson.

    His quarterbacks coach is 28-year-old Davis Webb, who played for the New York Giants last season and is just two years older than DiNucci.

    When Webb called ahead of his tryout, DiNucci said he was taken aback.

    “I said, ’Aren’t you still playing?” DiNucci recounted. “I had no idea he was the quarterbacks coach here.”

    DiNucci led the XFL with 2,671 passing yards for the Seattle Sea Dragons this spring, when he also threw for 20 touchdowns and a league-high 13 interceptions.

    He was drafted by the Cowboys out of James Madison in 2020 and all three of his NFL appearances came in his rookie season, including his only start, a 23-9 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

    DiNucci said his XFL experience helped him get a second chance in the NFL.

    “I’ve been playing for the last 12 weeks, didn’t have to get in shape, didn’t have to go through a bunch before this,” he said. “I think for me, a second opportunity to be in an NFL locker room feels a little different this time around. It might be my last chance. The XFL was awesome, exceeded my expectations tenfold.”

    DiNucci thanked Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Dany Garcia, who partnered with Gerry Cardinale’s RedBird Capital to buy the XFL, for giving him an opportunity to keep chasing his NFL dream.

    The Broncos also signed another XFL alum Tuesday: running back Jacques Patrick, a second-year player from Florida State. He played for the San Antonio Brahmas this spring, rushing for 443 yards on 115 carries with five touchdowns and catching 30 passes for 238 yards.

    The signings came a day after the Broncos re-signed veteran safety Kareem Jackson and running back Tyreik McAllister.



    Liked by 1 person

  43. Pitt has released it tax report for the fiscal year 2022 (7/1/2021) to 6/30/2022.

    Reported for HCPN: Base Compensation – $4,460,199, Bonis/Incentives – $1,100,000, Other Reportable Compensation – $60,002, Retirement/Differed Compensation – $60,002 and Nontaxable Compensation – $20,816.

    That is a totsl of $5,875,817. The prior year total was $5,644,937. That is an increase of $230,880 over the previous year.

    Pitt reported under the Right to Know Law $5,566,508 up $269,769 from the prior year of $5,296,739.

    You heard it here first.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. The numbers from above are located on Page 91-92 of the Pitt tax form. The Right to Know (RTK) is on the very last page.

      Also, on page 91-92 are figures for Jeff Capel, Heather Lyke, and Randy Bates.

      RTK, besides the 4 on page 91-92, includes Lance White, Charles Partridge and Mark Whipple.

      Below is the link to the Tax report. Click on first one – “Fiscal Year 2022”


      Liked by 2 people

      1. Richard – don’t know if you check out the New York Times online, but you might enjoy their “Spelling Bee” game in today’s edition…

        Go Pitt.

        Liked by 1 person

  44. The networks and now the streamers have the money. (The NFL on Thursday nights now knows this.) They will tell the colleges what they want and will get. The ACC might want to look at Amazon, Netflix, and Disney/Peacock (ESPN again). etc.


    1. More likely Bein Sports or the Weather Channel. Wait the football on Bein sports is the kind the rest of the world plays. Goooooooooooooal!



  45. I see 3 teams here from the Not So Magnificent 7 with worse TV ratings than Pitt. I’m surprised that Cuse has about 190K more TV viewers. Yeah….NY market. But they stink.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. TV eyeballs: Pittsburgh does not exist very far from the area around the 412…sorry that is reality. Note that Syracuse is Noo Yawk’s team… Rutgers has almost no following in and around NYC where the college football eyeballs and the large number of alumni favor the CUSE. You rarely see any Rutgers sweatshirts, hats, etc in NY but Orange stuff is everywhere…end result is more TV eyeballs. Also, and let’s be bluntly honest Pitt plays a very poor second fiddle to PSUX in TV ratings. Huge # of rabid alumni, 104,000 seat stadium being upgraded to the tune of $700 million, and a team that whether we like it or not has had a ton more success than our On again OFF again Panthers.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. isnore – there is something wrong or at least fishy with the 650k for Pitt. If Pitt is wrong, then the whole listing is wrong.

        If you click on the listing, it takes you to Stephen Schmidt’s twitter account and he then provides a link to an article he wrote. In the article he wrote he has Pitt at 650K but that includes 4.46M who watched the Tenn-Pitt game. (He provided a listing of all games over

        12 games at 650K / game = 7.2M. Subtract the 4.46M from Tenn-Pitt = 3.340M for the 11 other games Pitt played. (303.6K/game). I remember the Pitt/WVU game had way over 2M viewers. I’ll use 2m viewers. Subtract that number from 3.340 and you get 1.34M or 134K average for the remaining 10 games. Unless all Pitt games where on ACCN with a Noon start, I doubt his numbers are correct.

        That’s why I try to provide and explain the methodology I use in providing info.

        Link to Schmidt’s article:

        View at Medium.com

        Liked by 1 person

  46. The NFL has always honored its commitment not to play games on Saturday during the college football season. But they are way ahead on streaming, and playing games during the week such as the Monday and Thursday night games. The college teams are virtually squeezed out of these periods, and there are not many more options since it is not practical to play on Tuesday and Wednesday nights for travel and academic reasons.

    Playoff expansion is probably the only real way to enhance revenues, and the allocation of these revenues should help the ACC as well as other conferences. Conference championships offer the best chance to get into the future playoffs if the formula emphasizes this. Teams like the Nitters and UCLA may find it very hard in the future to win a conference championship with the expanded number of teams, and one could make a good argument that being in the ACC Pitt would have a better chance than many teams in the Big 10 and SEC to get there.


    1. Dan Rooney is the reason why they play on Thursday instead of Friday because of high school football too. The Steelers will ironically be paying for that rule this coming season.


  47. Just wondering>>> Does anybody think that is about time for Coach Capel to find a shooting guard and some semi-athletic beef to help our cause in the paint?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think there is over 1600 players in the portal. I hope he can find some more.


  48. Think about it.. In the NFL, Divisions are the major focus rather than the conferences which determine the seeding, and at the end of the season the teams fighting for playoff spots get the TV appearances to maintain fan interest and ratings. The best way to make the playoffs is to win the Division.

    This is roughly equivalent to winning the conference in the college world today. So why would the networks want to reduce TV interest by showing a late season Big 10 contest between Northwestern and Indiana, for example, when a conference game that could determine play off eligibility could be televised?


  49. Here is something Pitt fans already knew. Granted we have done well over the last two seasons but when you look back at the number of Pitt players drafted into the NFL, and in the College and NFL HOFs, you have to scratch your collective heads on why we are historically an average FB program…


    Liked by 3 people

    1. Poor game day Head Coaches! Wanny was one of the best recruiters and talent identifiers but come game day, things went downhill!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. We have had this discussion before

      Pitt has not had enough depth at all positions.

      Great players surrounded by average Joe’s, except in the Johnny and Jackie era.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Solid depth from top to bottom is the key. The elite teams always have it.

        It is remarkable that Pitt has had as many future NFL HOF guys though

        Posted from the train station in Geneva Switzerland

        Liked by 1 person

    3. Lack of top QBs
      Terrible administrative leadership.

      Look at what Pitt could’ve had at QB after Marino left:
      1983-84 or -85: Bernie Kosar
      1987-89 or -90: Major Harris
      1993-96: Charlie Batch
      1997-99: Marc Bulger
      2000-01: Mike McMahon
      2007-10: Thaddeus Lewis

      It’s been better since Narduzzi arrived sans 2017. Even then if the two best players that season made one simple play to score that team finishes 7-5.

      Liked by 1 person

  50. So as we know the key is OOC games both for money and TV eyeballs. Playing WVU, ND, TCU, OSU, TN, etc. is the Mandalorian Way.
    The ACC should mandate that ACC teams play only one OOC fodder game.
    The B10 and SEC can get away with several fodder games and they do that now to pad their soft records. PSU is stuck behind MI, OSU and MSU.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pedo Joe made a living scheduling bum teams like Temple every year and getting 7-8 home games. He got zero flak for it too.


  51. We all know that money runs the show. However, if Pitt doesn’t want to be on the outside looking in, it is essential that HCPN continues to win and keep Pitt in the top 25. Now is the time- more so than ever before – for Pitt football to be favorably viewed on the national scene.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Agree, win in football and men’s basketball and Pitt will wind up in a good spot. Heather is slowly upgrading our minor sports programs.

      The ACC needs to get Notre Dame to join especially if the Irish cannot reach a deal with NBC. I am sure ESPN will match any deal NBC is willing to put on the table. The only problem then becomes the Irish will have a full vote at the ACC table including GoR.


  52. Voice – remember when Pitt wouldn’t schedule any Friday night home games so as not to compete with local HS games?

    That went by the wayside once ESPN started calling the shots.


  53. Reed, I know there are some Friday and even Thursday night games. But they are not the rule, and especially on Friday night the top teams don’t usually play. Pitt may occasionally play but I think it is usually an away game so as not to affect HS attendence.

    It just seems the opportunities to open more slots for games are not there unless fans start watching 2 games at once!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think it happens less now. If I remember correctly there was a big pushback in Texas when some of the college teams played on Friday night because high school football is so huge there. I’m not sure it happens much anymore but I don’t really follow everyone else’s schedule, just Pitt’s.

      Huh, think I’ll start watching the Friday Night Lights TV series again. That was a great show.

      Liked by 2 people

  54. I remember thinking what a difference local City League high school football was between the time periods when Curtis Martin played so well at Taylor Allderdice and back when I was going to school there, before I got kicked out, in the mid ’70s.

    We really sucked maybe winning one or two games a year.


  55. Pitt’s tax report for the fiscal year 2022 (7/1/2021) to 6/30/2022 contains one other important piece of information. It lists information about Pitt’s Endowment.

    On 6/30/2023 Pitt’s endowment stood at $5,557,014,429. Contributions for the year were $59,744,000. The fund contributed $20,435,624 for scholarships. Expenses look high to me at $15,057,968. That is a charge of over 2.5% based on the previous year’s ending balance. Somebody is making money administrating the endowment! The endowment actually decreased from the balance at the end of the previous year of $5,680,225,886.

    This information is from Schedule D, Part V.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. My sentiments on Kenny Picektt are well-documented here. So, it will come as no surprise when I say that he is underrated by “the list makers”.

          He’s smart, mature, has moxy, decent foot speed and is an accurate passer. Mark me down as someone who believes the Steelers did him – and the team – a disservice by giving him zero snaps with the ones in camp last summer.

          This is not to say that I believe he will be as good as Mahomes. And I don’t. But I do agree with Bruce Arians, who said yesterday that Pickett is good enough to win championships.

          Don’t bet against him.

          Liked by 4 people

  56. I spoke with someone close to the FSU baseball program, who says that coach Bell was used to getting superior baseball talent at FSU, and was not known for developing players. This could prove to be a significant deficiency at Pitt where he would normally expect to get more local kids with some raw skills but in need of development. Maybe he has found assistant coaches who can make up for this, but I wonder…


  57. I haven’t been to a high school baseball game for many, many moons, but I went to one last week to see my great-nephew pitch. It was the city championship game between OBama Academy and Carrick. Yes, Carrick.

    My great-nephew pitched the final two innings to nail down the win for Carrick. Yes, Carrick.

    He’s only a Sophomore. Has a nice curveball. Needs a growth spurt…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Carrick was a tough baseball and swimming team out back in the late 60s. Baldwin beat them barely my Sophmore year 66. I was on the JV team. They crushed us my Junior year. They were great in the sandlot leagues throughout the 60s.

      Liked by 1 person

  58. Rachel Fairbanks once again made the USA U21 team that will play for the Pan AM cup in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico starting My 23rd. Emmy Klika did not make the starting 12 and will travel as an alternate. Rachel was one of 7 players selected who were on the Gold Medal team from last year. Don Fisher is the head coach of the USA team.

    An interesting note is that Bre Kelley a 6’4″ middle blocker who made the team is still undecided where she will play her college ball next year. Last year she played for Florida. She would make a great addition to Pitt’s team. Doubt she will come, but one can hope!

    Liked by 1 person

  59. Richard – thanks for the analysis on UVA. I don’t know if Tony Elliott can resurrect the program…hasn’t been relevant since George Welsh, Herman Moore, the Barbers – Tiki and Rhonde, James Farrior, Jamie Sharper & Co. I think this fall will be a tough one for the team.

    TV ratings/viewership – there are lies, damn lies and statistics. The Virginia schools’ viewership figures look low in the linked article. Their TV market includes Roanoke/Shenandoah Valley, Virginia Beach/Norfolk/Hampton, Richmond/Petersburg ans Norther Virginia… in addition to places like Charlottesville and Radford/Blacksburg. Its pretty big – even when the teams are bad, people watch.

    FSU – That AD Alford can go suck an egg. The Noles have been wandering the desert since the last five years of Bobby Bowden. They appear to be re-emerging and this fella is starting to squawk. Sit down and STHU (heck since this is a family blog). Gosh, I hope Pitt beats them at AreYinzSure Stadium this fall…

    The ACC – Nothing is going to happen soon as the Grant of Rights language is airtight. But, why would those schools even look at it?…. they are the ones who drafted the language. What I do think will happen is a school or two – Clemson perhaps – will reach an inflection point where the buyout has shrunk to a level where the SEC/B10 money will make it really easy to buy their way out. Perhaps thats in about 5 years.

    If Im ACC Commisioner and the other schools, I might consider unbalanced revenue sharing in return for a surrender of buyout rights during the entire remainder of the GOR term. But I’m not doing it without some consideration like that. And instead of spending time trying break the GOR, perhaps they should look at the ESPN deal itself and find an out. Go market the conference to another player/platform. While the conference value may not have jumped, the market for content has.

    Big12/ACC merger idea – (Reed’s post). I don’t think its that crazy of an idea. Especially if the TV deals for the merged parties can be re-worked. Would be a helluva BB conference as well.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yes he was. My daughter was sorority sisters with his sister there. He was early 2000’s – I believe Al Groh was head coach by then.

      Oh and the #1 all time UVA FB great is considered by most to be Henry Jordan of the Lombardi Packers. My mom dated him for a spell 😉 before she and my dad started dating.

      Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks, now in Lyon, gastronomical champion of the world, 95 Michelin restaurants.

      Saw that Jim Brown passed. To me he will always be the GOAT.

      Liked by 1 person

  60. Pitt baseball in a series they need to win to make the ACC tournament against NCST who they are neck and neck with at the bottom of the ACC gives up 5 run in the sixth to go from a 5-3 lead to an 8-5 deficit.

    Coach Bell then goes to his bullpen to bring in a reliever with a 9+ ERA.



    1. It is now 15-7, with the Wolfpack batting in the bottom of the 8th with Bell throwing a relief pitcher with a 7.71 ERA.

      Go Pitt…


  61. Pitt entered this last ACC regular season series with NCST with a 10-15 record in conference and the Wolfpack were 10-16. The teams are battling for the bottom spot in the ACC tournament.

    Pitt lost the 1st two games of the series, with last night being clobbered 17-8.

    Pitt is now 10-17 needing a win today to get the last spot for the ACC tournament and NCST is 12-16, securing their spot.

    Pitt’s best pitcher started the game last evening and gave the Panthers 5 solid innings, leaving the game with a 5-3 lead. The relievers, recruited by HC Bell proceeded to give up 12 runs over the next 3 innings – two of the relief pitchers had ERA’s over 10 as they entered this game.

    If Pitt loses today, there is a chance they still make the ACC tournament with a Louisville loss. Backing in with this pitching staff and HC is like going to the prom with your sister.

    I hope no one is offended by that – if you are, I’d like to understand why…

    Liked by 1 person

  62. I heard on the radio yesterday that one of those way-too-early projections for the football season had Pitt being the underdog in only two games – ND and FSU.

    On the other hand I heard the over/under was 6.5 wins…

    Looks like a crazy season coming in the fall.

    Go Pitt.


    1. QB will be key to our win total – having a good back-up behind injury riddled PJ helps me to think we will win 9 or 10 games.

      We will beat either ND or FSU and lose to a lesser opponent or two. The D May struggle early in the season, forcing PJ to play hot to start.

      Later in the season I can see us being run heavy and tough on D. I have much confidence that Bates and Partridge to win some game late.

      Go Pitt!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Heard the over/under 6.5 on the radio; I don’t remember the site they attributed it to…


  63. How long before Narduzzi sarcastically jokes about the ACC magnificent seven to the media? I say his next interview.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good point.

      And any time we beat one of those teams, Duzz should start off his interviews with “That was a magnificent win!”

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 5 people

  64. Shave his head and don all black with the Yul Brenner cowboy hat…walk out to the movie theme song. An all time classic!

    Liked by 2 people

  65. Looking at those payouts for P5 schools, it doesn’t seem to me like such a big deal. With Pitt getting $41.3 million, they are not that far behind the SEC and Big 10 schools. Would the ACC teams really want to bolt from the ACC for a difference of about $5-6 million per year? Travel costs alone could eat up much of the additional revenue.

    The other P5 conferences would then split their money among a larger number of colleges in good years and bad. If the ACC colleges project revenues over the next 10 years, it doesn’t seem that materially worthwhile to move to other conferences and further dilute their conference revenues with more colleges.


    1. It is what is in the future revenue that makes it a big deal.

      The ACC’s current deal runs through 2036 and the other conferences have deals that will renegotiate prior to 2036 with the SEC and Big Joke having current deals that are larger than our conference.

      Liked by 1 person

  66. Pitt baseball starting pitcher today with a 7.11 ERA in a game vs NCST where if they win they are in the ACC tournament.


  67. Pitt Football won’t keep it close against FSU. This is the year they should win the ACC. Great Coach, Great QB. Should win 7+ games just not that one.

    Baseball – I’m not sure how you can keep Bell when she fires all the other underperforming coaches. Extending him was possibly Heather’s worst move up there with extending “All in the Family Capel.”


  68. Pitt & Mike Bell lost to NCST 8-2 possibly ending their season. Could it also be the end of a poor coaching career?

    He was a pitching coach prior to getting his first HCing job from Heather Lyke at Pitt. His pitchers were arguable a weakness on his teams. This year he had two starters in the batting order with less than .170 batting average.

    Not a recipe for success, no matter what school.


    1. Pitt baseball made it into the ACC tourney because Louisville lost today.

      OT, Pitt’s 2 incoming freshmen volleyball hitters were named Club U-18 First Team All-Americans. High praise indeed. For anyone still not on the volleyball bandwagon, what are you waiting for????

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Bell’s first game pitcher needs to be Logan Evans. He is by far the best starter on the staff.

        Win the first game and anything is possible.


  69. While Tod Hill is a great feel good story, it does raise concerns that Narduzzi and Capel have not leveraged their recent success into portal success. Both have missed the opportunity to fill gaps with high profile guys. Narduzzi had success early at the QB position and with McMillan and Davis. Certainly better than Capel who has so far missed on any high profile guys while many ACC teams have done much better in improving their lot.

    While I can’t watch the event, the PGA final should be real good. Rooting for Koepka unless Scottie goes low.

    Posted from Lyon, France, where I watched Toulon beat Glasgow in Rugbie,some real tough athletes.


    1. Capel signed two players who will help. If Pitt wants to get high-end portal talent the fans need to donate to the NIL. That is what these kids want or else they’d be heading to St. John’s to play for Pitino.


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