PITTSBURGH — Qadree Ollison’s rushing outburst put Pitt is in the driver’s seat for the ACC Coastal Division after the Panthers beat Virginia Tech, 52-22 at Heinz Field on Saturday.
Pitt’s offense was the spark, as the Panthers scored on each of its first three possessions to jump out to an early 17-0 lead.
The Panthers started out the game with a more balanced offense with Kenny Pickett throwing for 162 yards in the first half, including a 78-yard strike to Maurice Ffrench. Qadree Ollison scored from 8 yards out and Alex Kessman connected on a 48-yard field goal.
After that, Pitt’s rushing game took over. Ffrench scored for the second time on a 12-yard jet sweep and George Aston rumbled in from a yard out in the second quarter.
In the second half, it was more of the same, as Darrin Hall broke free for a 73-yard score and Ollison added his second score of the game on a 31-yard carry on a fourth down, and then a 97-yard rumble that set a new record for the longest offensive play in Pitt history.
Ollison finished with 235 yards on 16 carries to go with his three touchdowns. The big night but him at 1,054 on the season, and he became the sixth player in Pitt history to record multiple 1,000-yard seasons, joining Tony Dorsett, Curvin Richards, LeSean McCoy, Dion Lewis and James Conner.
He has rushed for a total of 2,700 yards in his #Pitt career, passing Curtis Martin for 10th place all-time amongst Pitt rushers.
Pitt finished with 654 yards of offense, setting a program record, eclipsing the previous mark of 648 yards against Eastern Michigan in 1995.
Pitt sits at 5-1 in the Coastal Division, one game ahead of Virginia and two games ahead of Duke, Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech, all of which have lost to Pitt. The Panthers can clinch the division by winning one of its final two games or if Virginia loses one of its final two games.