Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia – Offensive Comparisons

 College Football, Football  Comments Off on Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia – Offensive Comparisons
Nov 042014
Pitt-PSU-WVU logos

Well, I think it’s safe to say that my ‘middle-ground’ CFB predictions for the local college football teams shall not come to pass. Pitt sits at 4-5 and so they could still make it to 7-5, which was my pessimistic prediction and even that would be optimistic at the moment. This is a typically mediocre yet schizoid Pitt team. All bets are off at this point. WVU sits at 6-3 and should get to 8-4 at the least with the way they’re playing. Free drinks for Holgorsen at any bar in the Granite State! Penn State, at 4-4, has been just as awful as Pitt since opening up at 4-0, maybe more so. Losing to Ohio State and even to Michigan is one thing. Losing to Northwestern and Maryland though. No Penn State team should ever have that happen. That’s Pitt’s job to succumb to tragically mediocre competition, damnit.

Looking at the offensive statistics for the three teams confirms our picture of the team’s overall records. (I’ll do defense in another article). Pitt runs the ball well. WVU is explosive through the air. Penn State neither passes nor runs particularly well.



WVU – Clint Trickett 233 345 2925 67.5 8.48 18 7 20 151.9
PITT – Chad Voytik 125 204 1470 61.3 7.21 11 6 17 133.7
PSU – Christian Hackenberg 183 318 2038 57.5 6.41 7 10 30 112.4
WVU – Clint Trickett 34 -84 -2.5 1
PITT – Chad Voytik 83 355 4.3 2
PSU – Christian Hackenberg 64 -49 -0.8 0


WVU’s Clint Trickett was bound to succeed in Morgantown eventually, if for no other reason than a guy named Clint Trickett just belongs at a school like West Virginia. Well, that and Holgorsen. I hope Penn State’s Christian Hackenberg is paying attention in class and taking his education seriously because his numbers this year are not up to par for an elite QB. Pitt’s Chad Voytik is the only first year signal caller out of the three and it’s showed for most of the season; overall a mixed bag but I’m still optimistic about him.


Next, Receiving: Continue reading »

Why Your CFB Team Sucks – Pitt Panthers

 College Football, Football  Comments Off on Why Your CFB Team Sucks – Pitt Panthers
Sep 132014
Pitt Logo - block lettering

Inspired by Drew Magary’s NFL preview series, Why Your Team Sucks on Deadspin, I decided to do a little of the same on the college side. This is the second in the series. Click here to learn why WVU sucks.

Some people are fans of the Pitt Panthers. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the Pitt Panthers or don’t really give a shit about them. This preview is for those in the latter group.

Your Team: University of Pittsburgh Panthers

Your 2013-2014 record: 7-6 with a bowl win over Bowling Green. The Pitt-est of Pitt records.

Paul Chryst's Pitt showed some growth this season

Pitt’s Paul Chryst

Your Coach: Paul “Neat” Chryst, an affable young gentleman who was initially passed over for Todd Graham and then Mike Haywood, the Ray Rice of college coaches. At least Pitt had the sense to can Haywood the minute he gave them an opportunity. Talk about a case of buyer’s remorse.

Chryst is a “neat” guy, as in he says “neat” a lot. A grown man who says, “neat”. Can’t you just hear the awww’s coming. This is a guy who’s so nice and affable that you’re alternately rooting for him to win because you believe he’d do it the ‘right way’ and fearing some news story will drop showing him kicking a 5-year old birthday boy’s new puppy while drinking too much Scotch “neat”.

Your Quarterback: Redshirt sophomore Chad Voytik, who provides the greatest proof ever of both the vulnerability and stupidity of 17 year old boys, as well as their immediate ability to redeem themselves. Voytik was a Todd Graham recruit. He bought that fucking used-car sleazebag salesman’s pitch. He committed 4-5 years of his life to studying under the tutelage of a man who makes Lane Kiffin look like a priest. BUT! He stuck with Pitt after Graham absconded. Three years later, he’s ready to man the helm at Pitt. Teenagers, sheesh.

What’s New that Sucks: Pitt returns a defensive line minus Aaron Donald who only managed to be named ACC Defensive Player of the Year, a unanimous All-American and win Lombardi Award, Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Chuck Bednarik Award and the Outland Trophy. Donald even blocked a kick! Minus Aaron Donald, Pitt’s defensive line had 4.5 sacks and no forced fumbles. All season.

Continue reading »

Sep 162013

Loose-leaf observations from a tight-bound (Evernote)book.

Youth Movement

Pitt blooded 11 freshmen against Florida State two weeks ago. Against New Mexico, freshmen accounted for 37 of Pitt’s 49 points. The other 12 were accounted for by first-year starter Isaac Bennett, who as a junior will be around next year as well.

Pos Player Year Points
RB James Conner Freshman 12
RB Isaac Bennett Junior 12
WR Tyler Boyd Freshman 12
TE Scott Orndorff Freshman 6
PK Chris Blewit Freshman 7

On James Conner, Isaac Bennett and the Running Game

I really like James Conner. Kid is 6’2″, 230 lbs and runs downhill, as the saying goes. As much as the spotlight has fallen on Tyler Boyd (as well it should), I’m almost more excited about Conner. His stats from the FSU game weren’t great but I felt his had a couple good runs anyway. He’s a hard runner and seems to show a nice burst once he gets through initial contact.

Conner rang up 112 yards on 12 carries with two touchdowns. His 38-yard touchdown run was pretty impressive. I’m not necessarily advocating for him to start over Isaac Bennett, who also had a strong game against New Mexico with  101 yards on 14 carries and 2 touchdowns. We all know Chryst’s penchant for creating strong running offenses so there are plenty of carries to go around.

On Tyler Alexander Boyd

Regardless of the level of competition, Tyler Boyd finishing with 195 all-purpose yards (22 return yards, 39 rushing yards, and 134 receiving yards) and two touchdowns is pretty frickin’ good. His touchdown catch at the end of the first half was positively Larry-like.

Talent can only take a kid so far. Boyd has it in abundance. Michael Jordan used to say that performance is based on 10% talent, 90% hard work. With the exception of perhaps Randy Moss, most of the great players work their tails off. Boyd has an immense amount of confidence, which is warranted given his production. But one huge positive I often read is that Boyd works very hard. That’s good to hear. Larry would be proud.

Which is to say, Engram and Chryst told Boyd that if he worked hard, he would play right away. Engram wasn’t worried about Boyd’s work ethic. A superior craftsman of a receiver who finished his NFL career with 650 catches, Engram spotted a kindred spirit in Boyd.

“Over the recruiting process, you get to know these guys pretty well,” Engram said. “I just sensed something special about him. Obviously, he’s a talented player. But the type of young man … he’s grounded, he’s humble, he’s hard-working. When he’s with his boys in the crowd, you can’t tell who he is because he isn’t trying to put himself above anybody.”


At the end of Pitt games, it’s a tradition that the team will walk over to the student section and join the band and students as they sing the Alma Mater. As Boyd was walking over to the students section, a couple little kids yelled over at him and held their hands out. Boyd diverted from the team, walked over to the kids and shook their hands. It’s a small gesture but I admit I was struck by it. You can tell little kids that sports stars shouldn’t be worshiped but good luck making that one stick. I’m sure Boyd made their day.

Adam Bisnowaty also walked over to the kids after singing the alma mater and gave away his game gloves. And a couple other players high-fived fans as they walked off the field. Nice gestures, all.