Know Your Enemy: North Carolina

(First off here are the Pitt Media Dept.’s Pitt-NC Game Notes for reference.)

Pitt is sitting pretty at a 2-1 mark three games into the season.  One of those wins was GGGGGreat! One was a good start to the year and the loss, last week to Oklahoma State in their hometown, raised a lot of questions.  It wasn’t so much that we lost the game – it was how we lost the game.  After all most Pitt fans figured we’d lose that away game to a good, strong offense

We fans have each season’s games ‘circled’ for various reasons be it for payback, rivalry or championship competition.  Penn State was probably the most circled game by Pitt fans for obvious reasons.  That was the GGGGGreat! win.

I wrote earlier during fall camp what I felt about the importance of that game and while it is fantastic we won I have had this upcoming North Carolina Tarheels game circled as I believe a win this Saturday will set the stage for a run to the ACC Coastal Division winner’s spot and then to a full ACC Championship.

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Why Can’t We Have the Good QBs

We feel it, hear it and say it all the time; “Why can’t Pitt get good QBs?”  It is a damn fine question and one that strikes to the heart of the matter when looking at our mediocrity as a football program over the last 16 years.  And yes folks, we have been of “moderate ability or value” on the whole over that time period. Some good years but overall…

We can point to the coaching changes we have gone through in that time period – as I count on my fingers I list Harris, Wannstedt, Haywood, Graham, Chryst and Narduzzi… and that isn’t counting the interim HCs we had in that period either.

We can point to the administrations we have had also – Nordenberg and now Gallagher or  the Pederson-Long-Pederson hires, that surely didn’t help.  But in my mind the root cause of our tepid play on the field, and the associated overall  record of 115-99 (53%), is the lack of being able to recruit, retain and get quality play out of good quarterbacks.

Sure the other positions are important, but I don’t think we’ll find a college football fan who will disagree that it starts and ends with a strong QB at the helm.  It is from there every offensive play begins and where strong leadership and sharp execution is expected.

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Why We Write About Pitt Football

The thing about writing on timely subjects for public consumption is that you are never working in a vacuum.  Every interesting, and again, timely subject that floats to the front of your mind is also out there for others to contemplate and write about also.

I have seen that happen many times over the past five years.  I have pulled something quite out of thin air and written an article (or an essay as was the last Pitt/PSU rivalry article) only to find that 1) someone had written on the same subject in recent history and I hadn’t seen it or 2) Someone wrote about the same subject immediately after I posted mine.

As a writer and part of the media covering Pitt football I can tell you that if your public wants an article a day to read and discuss you have to really work hard to try to get them unique information and viewpoints to be able to do that.

How do I do that on a regular basis?  Well, to put it in bald terms sometimes I borrow subjects from other media outlets and use those as a nucleus of my articles – I expound on them as it were and take what others say or write, and then I inject my own views, opinions and some supporting or contesting facts, then bundle them up in an article and throw it out to Etherland for you all to read.

But I always take great pains to both reference the author and the media the articles are found on and then I link to the original source so that you all can read the source material as it was originally written.

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Pitt POV Sunday Podcast; July 31

Sunday’s Pitt POV Podcast:

 

Sorry about the abrupt ending there – must have hit the wrong button.  Here is the remainder of the Podcast:

Two Pitt Players Named to All-ACC Team
Pitt offensive lineman Dorian Johnson and defensive end Ejuan Price were voted to the preseason all-ACC team, the conference announced Wednesday.

Johnson, a Belle Vernon graduate, has started 27 consecutive games and enters his senior season as a pillar on an offensive line that is expected to be among the conference’s best. Price, a Woodland Hills graduate, rejuvenated an injury-riddled career last season with 48 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss and 11.5 sacks on his way to earning first-team all-ACC honors.

OUR NEW PUNTER:

Upon visiting the United States this month, his good fortune continued when Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi offered him a scholarship to be the team’s next punter. He quickly accepted.

“If they ask me to jump,” Christodoulou said, “I’ll say, ‘How high?’ ”

Christodoulou, who graduated from Balwyn High School in Melbourne last year with a 3.62 GPA, hopes to enroll at Pitt in January when he will become the school’s first Australian-born football player in anyone’s memory. He is part of a huge wave of Australian athletes who grew up playing Australian Rules Football and now find themselves on U.S. college campuses or NFL teams, becoming part of a game they usually only watch back home on pay TV.

Australians have won the past three Ray Guy Awards, given annually to the best punter in college football. Utah’s Tom Hackett won it in 2014 and ’15 and is with the New York Jets. Memphis’ Tom Hornsey was the 2013 winner.

PITT 3rd in preseason PollWhatever…

Pitt Self-Reported NCAA Violations Long Ago

PITTSBURGH — The NCAA accused the University of Pittsburgh of 15 recruiting violations in football and one in basketball, and the Big East school said Friday it planned to cooperate with investigators.

Mark Jones, a director of enforcement for the NCAA, confirmed a letter of inquiry had been sent to Pitt but declined to comment on specifics.

Athletic Director Oval Jaynes said the 15 violations against the football program were self-reported by Pitt last May, some as violations and others as possible violations.

The school said then that staff members under former coach Mike Gottfried and former AD Edward Bozik broke NCAA rules by giving football players money, meals and clothing and giving recruits limousine rides and deluxe hotel rooms.

Peak’s Podcast