QB Corner – Previewing BC’s Dennis Grosel

QB Corner – Previewing BC’s Dennis Grosel

First, some good news.  Pitt wresting is ranked #10 in the country.  This is the first time they’ve cracked the top 10 since 2015.

Pitt moved into the top ten be defeating previous #7 Lehigh this past week:

And yet somehow, two ACC schools are in front of us.  One of them is the hated Virginia Tech.

Also, just as a reminder, Pitt Women’s volleyball won their third ACC championship this season.

Annie!

So there is your feel good Pitt sports post of the week.  Wresting and Volleyball baby.  Hail to Pitt.

And now on to the quarterbacks.  Continue reading “QB Corner – Previewing BC’s Dennis Grosel”

QB Corner – Profiling Hendon Hooker

QB Corner – Profiling Hendon Hooker

First, some housekeeping.  It has been quite a last-few-days for Pitt sports.

  • Pitt’s women’s volleyball team locked up their their third ACC championship.  They play Florida State this weekend at the Pete.

  • Even though the wrestling team lost to Ohio State, they’ve moved up to #12 nationally.

  • Pitt Men’s soccer made the NCAA tournament for the first time in 25 years.  They’ll meet Lehigh in Pittsburgh on Thursday.

  • Jaylen Twyman was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week

  • Shocky Jaques Louis made the Pro Football Focus ACC team of the week (offense)

  • Deslin Alexandre and Damarri Mathis made the PFF ACC team of the week (defense)

…and to close it out, Kenny Pickett was named ACC Quarterback of the week

in part by making great throws like this one on third and 14:

I also want to take a second to congratulate Kenny.  He’s taken a fair amount of heat this season, both from me and from the Pitt fan base, and he’s fought through it.  He’s clearly shown the ability to take coaching and grow, and that is a credit to how he approaches the game.  As fans, we are depending on him to continue to grow, and we wish him nothing but continued success.  After all, we have a vested interest in how well he plays. Continue reading “QB Corner – Profiling Hendon Hooker”

QB Corner – Profiling UNC’s Sam Howell

QB Corner – Profiling UNC’s Sam Howell

UNC rolls into Pittsburgh this Thursday and true Freshman QB Sam Howell will be driving.  Howell has put together quite a season.  He’s thrown for 26 touchdowns against 5 INT’s and is ranked 26th in the NCAA with a 153.0 passer rating.  He’s also sporting a gaudy 14.2 Yards Per Completion.

We Pitt fans can only dream.

Sam Howell
Stats credit to Richard Hefner

Continue reading “QB Corner – Profiling UNC’s Sam Howell”

The QB Corner – Week 9

The QB Corner – Week 9

Stats compiled by Richard Hefner – aka Pitt-Cocks Fan

Article by Michaelangelo Monteleone

I’ll start this one with a disclaimer.  Kenny, if you a reading this, stop now.  You’re the best we’ve got and we are going to need you to carry us to eight wins this season. You’re resilient as hell and as tough as they come.  We may be critical of you at times, but we’re grateful for the wins you’ve provided and the wins you’ll provide, and we want to say thanks for grinding every day and leaving it all out there on the field.  We know you had a bad game last week, and we fully expect that you’ll bounce back against the Yellow Jackets. Hail to Pitt.

Now, for the fans and POV’erts out there, lets get down to an honest-to-goodness quarterback discussion.

As we’ve established in the post-Miami discourse, Kenny did not play very well on Saturday.  In fact, he had his worst game of the season.

Kenny Pickett 2019 Through Week 9
R. Hefner

Continue reading “The QB Corner – Week 9”

The QB Corner – Week 8

The QB Corner – Week 8

Stats brought to you by Richard Hefner – aka Pitt-Cocks Fan

Yesterday, we asked what would happen if Kenny Pickett was forced out of the Miami game, because the Syracuse.com power ranking article astutely pointed out that Kenny is “starting to show some wear and tear from Pitt’s one dimensional offense”.  Lets take a look at what Kenny has done so far this season and what might happen if the unthinkable does happen.

First, the basics.  Here are Kenny’s stats YTD, broken down by game.

Kenny Pickett Passing Stats 2019_wk 8.jpg

A couple of takeaways here.  Fist of all, Kenny statistically is still ranked towards the bottom of the NCAA.  However, he’s shown improvement over his last three games.  YPA is up in each game.  YPC is up in each game.  Passer rating has gone from 100.2 to 133.6.  That’s a 33% improvement.  His overall passer rating rank has improved from 109th to 90th.  That’s a at 17% improvement.  The data would suggest that needle is pointing up for Kenny.

Also it’s worth noting that Pickett threw a season-low 33 attempts against Syracuse.  He handed the ball off 38 times, and the running backs gained 151 yards.  Other teams have had varying amounts of success throwing the ball against the Hurricanes.  Here is a breakdown of what ACC quarterbacks have done.

ACC QB's against Miami - Week8 2019.gif

UNC’s Howell and VT’s Hooker clearly had success with the long ball.  Just look at those YPC.  (17.1 for Howell, adn 18.4 for Hooker.)  Whipple could decide to attack Miami in the same way, but in order to do that successfully Kenny needs to continue to work on his touch passing (put some air under the ball!), and the line needs to be able to give him time.  That’s a 50/50 proposition at best.

Perkins played dink and dunk and couldn’t put points on the board.  He was also sacked five times, so again, there is the whole pass protection factor.  Note also that Perkins threw the ball 42 times.  Howell and Herndon threw 24 and 20 times, respectively.

Graham – a true freshman QB – had the support of a very strong running game (45 att / 207 yards).  Can Pitt do this?  Running for 145 against Syracuse is one thing.  Running for 145 against Miami is something completely different.  Running for 200 against anybody is pretty much out of the question.

Still, Pitt is going to have to try to establish the run.  Two ACC teams have beaten Miami with a combination of a solid running game and the long ball.  UNC ran for 97 yards.  Virginia Tech ran for 150.  This in turn set up a deep passing game (off of play action I would assume).  UNC scored 28 and Tech scored 42.

So even if Pitt is able to run on Miami (unlikely…), you’d have to think that Kenny is still going to be asked to throw the ball at least thirty times., if not more.  If Pitt can’t establish the run, Kenny is going throw 40 times or more.  Either way, he’s going to take some hits in the process.  What happens if …?

rFr Nick Patti will be the first off the bench of course, and we’ve got a one-game body of work by which to judge him.

Nick Patti Delaware Stats.jpg

Not too bad…kind of similar to Pickett’s game against the ‘Cuse.

Miami’s defensive line, on the other hand, is in a completely different league than the Delaware Blue Hens.  If Patti has to see extended action against Miami will his stat line look more like KP against Virginia?  (87 QBR, 1 TD, 2 INT).  It very well may.  On the positive side, Patti has a game’s worth of experience in Whip’s system (Kenny did not when he played against UVA).  On the negative side, throwing Patti in against the ‘Canes would be a much sterner test than Delaware.  Still, Patti has some scrambling skills which could come in handy.  And he’s cool under pressure (anybody remember the UCF touchdown?).  On the other hand, Patti has also thrown some bad balls right to opposing defenders, and he’s lucky that he’s only had one of the intercepted.  It’s probably safe to say that Nick could use another year or two of seasoning before anyone feels really good about him playing against ACC competition, but we know he’ll give it all he’s got if he’s tapped to go in.

So yes, my extremely hot take (that’s sarcasm folks) is that Pitt has to find a way to keep Kenny Pickett in one piece on Saturday, and also give him a little bit of time to throw.  It’s the key to the game, and the key to the season.  I don’t know if they do that by keeping a tight end in to block, and a running back, or by calling plays where the back releases out as a safety valve so Kenny can throw before he’s hit, or by working on the screen game (which been pretty ineffective all season), or by doing something else, but Pitt has to do something.  Because if they don’t protect Kenny it’s going to be Pahtti-time on the Northside and I have a feeling that’s not the kind of “pah-ty” Pitt fans are wanting to attend.  Heyooo!

 

 

 

 

QB Corner

QB Corner

This is something that I’ve been late in publishing, and it’s based on the work of Richard Hefner (also knowns as Pitt-Cocks Fan on the POV).  Richard has been diligently tracking QB stats all year, and I’ll be using his research to post a weekly “QB Corner” piece going forward.  Here is a short intro and something to sink your teeth into leading up to the game later today. 

Also for those of you who have had your comments disappear when posting (seems to happen to few of you from time to time), I’ve turned off the requirements to add your name and email, so please remember to type in a username when you post.  I don’t know if this will solve the problem, but I suspect it may help.  Thanks so much.

-Michaelangelo Continue reading “QB Corner”