POV Roundtable Video; 10-11-17

POV Roundtable Video; 10-11-17

Here is the truncated Roundtable Video from last night – we had some audio problems in the beginning so we started the recording over.  In this session we, myself, Altoona Josh, PittintheVille Matt and Eric Missing Wlat,  discussed the past Syracuse game, the upcoming North Carolina state game and some player personnel issues such as the QBs (!) and running backs.

Hope you enjoy it…

Here is something I just figured out I can do – insert cut and pasted images with voiceovers… I really like this because 1) it saves me trying to write out all my thoughts and 2) I can speak about details more readily without the hassle for the readers trying to decipher them. I’ll use this more often in the future.

Some other info when looking at our QB play so far this season.

If you look at that 113.2 rating Browne has in the five of six games played (minus Rice) you’ll see a 113.2 QB rating.  Now I do understand that I’m cherry picking here but just to contrast this rating with historical ones – the only past Pitt QBs with worse ratings, who were actual starting QBs, are Pat Bostick, Darnell Dickerson and Rick Trocano.

Browne was our starting QB for both of our wins so far so let’s give him that positive, but I think I speak for Pitt fans when I say with the way the season is going so far – not what we expected or wanted – we’d like to see the future of our QB position playing vice a rsSR transfer who isn’t part of that future.

Continue reading “POV Roundtable Video; 10-11-17”

Wednesday Night Roundtable and Call-In; 10-11-17

Wednesday Night Roundtable and Call-In; 10-11-17

The time has come around again for the Roundtable Call-In – seems like it is shorter after a loss, doesn’t it?  here are the details and I’ll be on around 8:55 or so…

Meeting ID
303 520 973
Moderator Passcode
2615
Want to dial in from a phone?
Dial one of the following numbers:
  • +1.408.740.7256
    (United States)
  • +1.408.317.9253
    (Alternate number)
Enter the meeting ID and passcode followed by # (Like this below)

408-740-7256-303-520-973-2615#
From the “Too Funny to Not Be True Dept”:  This is exactly the state of our recruiting right now… and it may get worse before it gets better.
Wiltfon.png
Guys – Stanford didn’t even target and reach out to Symonds… he went looking for another school all on his own once we started losing games… and this is the guy Pitt fans were talking about replacing Aston in 2019.

 

POV Tuesday Bits & Pieces; 10-10-17

POV Tuesday Bits & Pieces; 10-10-17

I was sent this list from a reader who found it on the Pitt Panther Phanatics Group on Facebook.  It is a big picture look by one fan addressing the teams (and program’s) ills to date. I have made my rebuttals in italics.

A short list of everything that went wrong for us in 2017 in no particular order”

1)  Matt Canada leaves the program after one year to take a job at LSU. This comes a year after our previous OC, Jim Chaney left us after one year to take a job a Georgia. No continuity in the most important coaching position outside of the HC.

Plus this is what a program gets when the HC hires old buddies instead of doing the hard work of trying to find the best OC for the salary… or even, heaven forbid, lobby for a (legitimate) pay raise at that position so he wouldn’t have to hire a retread.

“This wasn’t the first time Pat Narduzzi or the program he was with took a shot at hiring Shawn Watson.

When Narduzzi was there, Michigan State tried to land Watson, but he was too busy with a winning situation at Louisville. And when Narduzzi became a head coach for the first time at Pitt, he tried to pry away Watson from Texas, but no luck.

Now, the two old friends are reunited with a little more on their plates than coaching wide receivers at Miami (Ohio), where they met. On Thursday, Narduzzi made Watson the Panthers’ offensive coordinator, and Friday morning he talked at length about that decision.

“It’s about the people first, then let’s find a coach after that,” Narduzzi said of his process. “I knew Shawn was a great person, so I didn’t have to investigate that.”

Well, Pat maybe that should have been your JOB ONE priority and WTF does this mean anyway: “It’s about the people first, then let’s find a coach after that” ?  Good God man! You are spending the University’s money to hire a highly qualified coach – not someone you can drink a Schmidt’s beer with and reminisce about the good old days at Miami of Ohio (where you may just end up again).

2)  When Paul Chryst left us to take the Wisconsin job he was followed by our QB of the future Alex Hornibrook. Had Alex stayed we wouldn’t have had to take a flyer on Max Browne.

Maybe that would have worked – if Hornibrook would have been willing to sit behind Peterman for two years which I doubt.  I wouldn’t have traded Nate Peterman’s transfer in and his good 2015 season followed by his great 2016 season for Hornibrook. 

Narduzzi’s QB recruiting back in 2014 and 2015 was bad and left us with DiNucci, who I believe doesn’t have D1 skills, and MacVitte who I feel the same way about.

If we are pointing fingers about the current poor QB situation let’s remember that Narduzzi basically ran off QB Adam Bertke early last year in favor of future trivia-question answer Bo Schneider.  Bertke would have been the QB2 behind Browne this season if we had a HC who didn’t play favorites among his players.

Bertke was, in my opinion, a better QB prospect than both DiNucci and MacVitte and had a better arm than all three of the QBs we have seen so far in 2017… but wasn’t a Narduzzi ‘get’ so had to go.

3)  A young team like ours needs all the seniors it can get. Before the season started HCPN dismissed senior D lineman Jeremiah Taleni and Rori Blair for unmentionable transgressions.

True and a very valid point- but the trade-off is not having Narduzzi apply discipline when needed which is a large and important part of what a Pitt headcoach is hired for.

4)  Our most experienced LB senior Quinton Wirginis is suspended for the first three games and before he can return has a non-football season ending injury.

He would have started this season and would have provided that experience the current young guys around the MLB position need. Personally I think he may be moved on as a 5th year SR after this season.  I think his dad jacked up the prices on the Gateway Clipper boats after his son was suspended – I believe his ship Captains were told not to allow any passengers wearing Pitt gear onboard.

5)  Perhaps our best player, junior Jordan Whitehead, is suspended for the first three games.

This kid has some problems off the field – this last suspension wasn’t the first bit of corrective discipline handed to him by the staff.  On the field he’s not regained his FR form and it shows.  But since his return our pass defense has lifted from 126th (349.0 ypg) to 115th (280 ypg) and that is something to hang a helmet on.

6) Senior O lineman Alex Bookser is suspended for the first game of the season.

And when he returned has played like crap – but that’s OK because the rest of the starting OL has done the same.

7)  Our No. 1 recruit from 2016, CB Damar Hamlin battles a sports hernia injury and starts to see regular game action this year in only the 4th game against Georgia Tech.

Fan expectations for this kid were off the charts and now that he’s playing like a regular rsSO it seems disappointing.  But, that’s OK because as with Bookser’s case above all the other DBs look like hell out there also.

8)  Our No. 1 recruit in 2017 Paris Ford, a projected freshman starter, has to overcome some NCAA Clearinghouse issues which effectively has ensured he will redshirt this year.

I wrote earlier that it may not be just being behind with grasping the defensive playbook as originally stated by King Narduzzi and Prince Conklin– because after all there isn’t one. 

I think he’s been given time by the coaching staff to fully acclimate as a freshman student so that his academics are up to par and stay that way.  I’m not 100% certain this is the case but I do know that with less heralded players sometimes they don’t see the field for just that reason.  Either way the main thing is to get Ford on firm ground as a student/athlete.

9)  One of our few experienced receivers Tre Tipton sustains a season ending injury in training camp.

Avoiding a car”… and if you believe that I have some oceanfront land in Nevada to sell you (word is that it was a pick-up BB game). This is a big loss though because I think he would have done much better in the #2 WR spot than Henderson has done so far.  I advocate dropping Henderson from the receiving corps totally as he’s been less productive there than other ‘real’ WRs who have had less playing time than him.

I advocate playing these two guys below because, well – the season’s most probably in the crapper anyway and it would be fun to watch.  The top guy looks like the first person you want to slap at a fraternity party and the second one looks like he’d eat a live toad if you dared him to:

whire WRs

10)  Our offensive returning player with the most TDs – fullback stud George Aston incurs an ankle injury in training camp. Although there is word that he won’t return for the season he plays in the Georgia Tech game and hurts it again.

…And Narduzzi and Watson immediately proclaim the TE Matt Flanagan will fill Aston’s role as a H-Back hybrid to provide additional pass blocking in the backfield and lead blocking on some run plays – which was an experiment we saw very little of.  That was mainly due to the other TE, Chris Clark, failing to perform in any of the aspects of TE duties so Flanagan had to be dedicated back onto the LOS.

11)  Perhaps our No. 2 recruit from 2016, athlete George Hill, is diagnosed with a career ending heart condition while getting his pre-camp physical. Junior D Lineman Justin Moody diagnosed similarly which also ends his career prematurely. Another fairly highly touted recruit Pitt legacy Zack Gilbert is diagnosed similarly, but given a year to possibly recover. After a year it is apparent he too will never suit up as a football player again.

Luck of the draw and in Hill’s case his good luck he had UPMC doing the physical as his condition was caught on a test that almost no other schools administer to their incoming recruits.

12)  Our most effective RB in the season thus far, Chawntez Moss, is suspended indefinitely just before the Syracuse game.

This is no great loss to my mind – with our crap OL and Watson’s very questionable play calling every one of our regular running backs are under producing this season. Moss has been in the dog house before and I’m wondering if he can stay a full four years here.

What I don’t understand, and this is another weird move by Narduzzi, is why he burnt true FR A. J. Davis’ redshirt for minimal appearances in only three games.  Davis played against the weakest teams on our schedule so far and still didn’t do a damn thing…

aj davis

Yet the fans are clamoring for him every game.  I suppose there  nothing to lose since he’s used this year of eligibility so we might as well give him the ball on a regular basis.

You just can’t make this stuff up. We’re not Alabama or Ohio State. We don’t have the depth to recover from this many bad things. I admire HCPN for staying positive when so many Pitt supporters want to take a flying leap off the Fort Pitt Bridge.

Staying positive?  OK, if you say so – but you are watching and reading different media items about Narduzzi’s reactions to these losses than I am.

NOTE: I received about 20 emails in support of the comments’ closure yesterday – and most asked me to ban the commenters who repeatedly hijack the comments string with their personal attacks.  I have never done that before but now I will – but only after emails and/or phone calls have been made to the offenders.

About half of those emails I received were from readers who used to comment but stopped because of what has been happening on the blog lately.  Let’s not assume that any one or two commenters are more important to me than those who read but feel they can’t comment for fear of being personally attacked – you are not.

Please don’t make running this blog a chore for me. It is a non-profit (big time) hobby I do for all of us to enjoy and to be brutally honest sometimes is just a pain in the ass.

POV Monday Morning QB

As of today I’ve closed the  comment sections because even after warnings insults and sniping still happened between the posters. I have no hesitation whatsoever to do it, so please clean up your acts, all of you and myself included, or the POV will be just something for you to read and not be able to comment on.

Monday-Morning-QB

There is no MMQB article today.

It isn’t that there weren’t Good, Bad and Ugly aspects to discuss about the Syracuse game – there are many,  but I’m too pissed off that we can’t act like real-life adults on here.  I’m not going to keep spend hours every morning researching and writing articles just to have commenters act as selfishly as possible in insulting others and writing crap that has nothing to do with Pitt football.

I just closed down incoming comments on Sundays article and will stay off this Blog until I simmer down. I don’t want to ban commenters or delete comments (except for swearing which I am doing more often now) but may have to – and then it will be a job for me and not fun… which I won’t accept.

If this isn’t to your liking or you feel it too draconian there are a list of other blogs and sites on the POV front page you can switch to. I’m sure they will be glad to have you as dedicated readers and commenters.

Reed

Pitt-Duke to kick off at 12:20 p.m.

The Oct. 21 game will be televised locally on WTAE-TV.

 PITTSBURGH—Pitt’s October 21 game at Duke will kick off at 12:20 p.m., and be televised locally by WTAE-TV, the Atlantic Coast Conference announced today.

The Panthers’ remaining 2017 schedule with announced television coverage and kickoff times:

Oct. 14: NC State*, (RSN/AT&T SportsNet in Pittsburgh), Noon

Oct. 21: at Duke*, (ACC Network/WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh), 12:20 p.m.

Oct. 28: Virginia*, TBA

Nov. 9 (Thurs.): North Carolina* (ESPN), 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 18: at Virginia Tech*, TBA

Nov. 24 (Fri.): Miami*, TBA

*ACC game                                                                                                                                                    

 

 

 

POV: Sunday Podcast – Syracuse Game

POV: Sunday Podcast – Syracuse Game

Here are some pertinent statistics I drew on for the podcast – note the last charts and the items in red.  Those are categories where we are behind our opponents.

SYR Post 1

Here are our latest National Ranking standings after this last game.  The only two where we are in the top third of the 128 teams are Turnover Margin and the rather minor 4th down Conversion Percentage.  Other than that we pretty much are in the bottom third in all the other rankings.

SYR Post Rankings.png

Continue reading “POV: Sunday Podcast – Syracuse Game”

POV Game Day Thread – Syracuse

As the 6th game of the season this game will mean a lot toward our fan’s feelings about how the second half of the schedule will go.

Win and we jump up in the ACC Coastal Division rankings with a 1-1 conference record and sit at 3-3 even steven… Lose and we probably drop to the bottom of the division and have a 2-4 mark overall.  Syracuse has a mirror 0-1 conference record and a same 2-3 overall.

So, the game’s on at 12:30 today up in the Dome, we set our predictions out yesterday and we’ll see how things shake out.  I will say this though – if our line play doesn’t improve dramatically we are in for a long day, especially if our DEs can’t contain their excellent passing and running QB.

Here is an Orange look at five reasons either team can win and remember this is their homecoming game. This one scares me:

 

 

POV: Know the Enemy; Syracuse & Game Prediction Thread

POV: Know the Enemy; Syracuse & Game Prediction Thread

Byline: Chris Logue

Welcome back to yet another preview!  This time is quite a bit more cheerful than most, but is the glee warranted after achieving a low-lying win against some moist Asian cuisine?  Eh, I am not quite sure.

Syracuse at a Glance

Record: (2-3, 6th in Atlantic)

PPG F/A: 32.6/24.4

Leading Passer: Eric Dungey (63.7% 1437 yards, 7 touchdowns, 4 interceptions)

Leading Rusher: Eric Dungey (68 carries, 277 yards, 7 touchdowns)

Leading Receiver: Steve Ishmael (51 receptions, 632 yards, 2 touchdowns)

Quickly recapping last week against Rice.  The offense looked just okay, the defense was serviceable and exciting to watch, albeit in cruise control due to one of the worst opposing quarterbacks I have ever seen.  Max Browne still looks incredibly uncomfortable, and it’s almost in everything he does.  Walking off the side line to the huddle, breaking the huddle and walking into the locker room at half; he just doesn’t look comfortable.

Listen, his performance was nice and he showed some flashes with some mustard in his throws, but this week he could be the meat mashed between a hot dog bun if he doesn’t keep his head on a swivel against the Dino BabersSyracuse defense.  It’s not that Syracuse does much of anything special, they’re just considerably more athletic on the defensive side of the ball than last week’s opponent.

It begins and ends with senior linebacker Zaire Franklin who is a mauler at his position.  He brings to the table zero sacks to this point in the season, but is unabashed when it comes to sticking his nose in every tackle opportunity.  If the ball is within 1.8 miles, you can bet he will be around.  The rest of the defense is the same way, they flock.  There is nothing to suggest this game will be any different.  Babers has been outspoken this week in clarifying how ‘needed’ this game is for the Orange.  Coming off two straight losses to solid teams (jury is still out on LSU), it’s clear they have their eyes set on some Panthers.

The Orange defense is far from being a stud unit, but it’s a group that doesn’t back down to their opponents and are always able to keep their team, and especially the offense, in the game.  Two weeks ago, against LSU, the offense started sluggish and really did not find its groove until the second half.  Last week against NC State, late in the second quarter and into the second half.  What that tells me is that Dino and staff are effective at dissecting what the other team is offering in the moment and adjusts, but more importantly, the proper adjustments.  That could spell trouble for Pitt, on the defensive side of the ball.

I feel it’s forgotten that the Syracuse offense, the one that scored 61 points in Pittsburgh last season was directed by Zack Mahoney, the fifth string (quite possibly the sixth) quarterback on the Syracuse roster heading into the season.  It’s a different offense, a much more potent offense with Eric Dungey running the show.  Much, much more potent.

The corners for Pitt are going to best tested, quite a damn bit.  How good are they, well get ready to find out.  As described at the beginning, Dungey is the leading rusher as well as passer for the Orange, and that’s been heavily proven to be an issue for the Pitt defense in the past, but more recently, two weeks ago.  No, Dungey is not TaQuon Marshall, but he is sure better than Greg Paulus and his point guard instincts.

Anyways, back to the corners, it’s going to be tough when they are continually trotted out on their own island.  Whitehead will find himself in the mix in the box for a grand portion of the day with the escaping nature of Dungey.

Receiving is the only category in which Dungey doesn’t lead.  That crown goes to the 310-year senior, Steve Ishmael.  If that name isn’t familiar, how about his nickname: The Guy Who Likes to Play Pitt.  In 2014, Ishmael yielded six catches for 97 yards.  2015, seven receptions for 114 yards and a score. In 2016 he slacked, only due to the emergence of Amba Etta-Tawo who enjoyed 13 receptions and 178 yards to join his five touchdowns.

Ishmael remains as dynamic of a receiver as you’ll find in the nation.  It’s rarity for Syracuse, but is something they have enjoyed for two straight seasons.  If I had to compare his impact for Syracuse to a former Panther with the same impact for Pitt, it would be Dorin Dickerson.  Few can defend him and few can keep up, a deadly combination.

SYR2deep

Continue reading “POV: Know the Enemy; Syracuse & Game Prediction Thread”