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Mistakes Costly as Pitt Falls to NC State, 30-29

Mistakes Costly as Pitt Falls to NC State, 30-29

PITTSBURGH — Pitt’s mistakes finally caught up with them.

The Panthers entered Saturday’s game against NC State with a three-game winning streak, despite a number of penalties, drops and other unforced errors, but exited with a 30-29 loss thanks to those same mistakes.

In the final minutes against the Wolfpack, Pitt wide receiver Taysir Mack dropped a sure two-point conversion and the Panthers defensive committing holding, giving the Wolfpack a crucial first down near the goal line.

NC State quarterback Devin Leary hit wide receiver Emeka Emezie in the corner of the end zone for his second score of the day with 23 seconds left, finally capitalizing on Pitt’s mistakes. Pitt was penalized 13 times for 125 yards in the contest.

The Panthers fell into a two-score hole early, before Kenny Pickett led them back with a pair of second-half quarterback sneak touchdowns.

Pickett did it all for the Pitt offense, throwing for 411 yards on 22 of 39 passing and a touchdown — a 75-yard strike to a wide-open Jordan Addison on the game’s second play.

With Pitt’s running game smothered by the NC State defense, Pickett also led all Pitt ballcarriers, with 40 yards on 15 carries and two scores.

His first came after his completion to DJ Turner set Pitt up with its second first-and-goal situation of the quarter. The first time, Pitt foundered, failing to gain any yardage on four tries at a score.

The second time, Pickett picked up the final yard. In the fourth quarter, he did the same on a 4th and 1 to keep Pitt’s drive going and then once more at the goal line, thanks to a huge push from behind by fullback Jake Zilinskas.

Turner was Pickett’s most favored target in the passing game, hauling in eight catches for 186 yards, both career highs for the graduate transfer from Maryland.

The Wolfpack scored on three straight possessions to start the game, building a 17-7 lead, with Cary Angeline and Emezie hauling in passes from Leary.

Angeline scored again in the fourth quarter to put NC State ahead before Pickett’s second score.

Leary finished with 336 yards and four touchdowns on 28 of 44 passing.

Pitt’s pass rush was stymied for most of the day. The Panthers entered the game with 17 sacks, but were able to put Leary on the ground just twice.

The No. 24 Panthers will now go on the road for the first time this season, with a trip to Boston College on Saturday. That game will kick off at 4 p.m.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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local_troll
local_troll
25 days ago

Typical Pitt. Maybe the defense should worry less about failing in the rankings and more pressuring the quarterback.

“best defensive” line in the country had the lead with 1:44 and lost the game.

And who let Vincent Davis eat 10 seconds of the clock on that last kick off.

This is good we lost now to bring the fan base down to earth .

local_troll
local_troll
25 days ago
Reply to  local_troll

I bet you Alan didn’t even write an article about Pitt winning cuz he knew just like me that we would blow this game.

Sean
Sean
25 days ago

So much for Pitt’s terrifying defense. NC St didn’t even know who their starting QB was going to be for most of the week & Leary throws for 336. Same old Pitt, get our hopes up & then pop the balloon.

local_troll
local_troll
25 days ago
Reply to  Sean

Just be glad we are who we thought we were at week 4

Curtis Colbert
Curtis Colbert
25 days ago

I doubt N.C. State is better than Miami, Notre Dame, Clemson. so there is 4 losses right there. Hard to find the schedule on this site , so is everyone going to be happy with a 7=4 or 7-5 season.???

local_troll
local_troll
25 days ago
Reply to  Curtis Colbert

You forgot about the VT loss

Kevin
Kevin
25 days ago

Why didn’t we try to run the ball outside, even once??? NC State had 8 players in the middle of the field at all times. No sweeps, in motion handoffs, or any runs to the outside!
This Pitt team is just like other Narduzzi teams, very un-disciplined.
H2P!!!

D.J.
D.J.
25 days ago

All of a sudden narduzzi got a coach in this is what we get… Every coach in America knows early in the third quarter you put the points on the board you don’t go for it on 4th Down

D.J.
D.J.
25 days ago
Reply to  D.J.

Does Michigan State still have a vacancy??? I’m sure I can round up enough money to pay for relocation expenses.

Curtis Colbert
Curtis Colbert
25 days ago

13 penalties for 125 yards??? After last weeks game. To quote the great Vince Lombardi, ” What the hell is going on out there? “”

Mg3
Mg3
25 days ago
Reply to  Curtis Colbert

Well… A bunch of undisciplined play plus several BS calls at key junctures, really. I liked the commentary to the effect that Pitt was penalized for hitting too hard on the BS roughing call that led to States’s second-to-last touchdown. Of course maybe if Pitt’s ballhandlers didn’t drop so many balls, including when being wide-open on conversion attempts, the end result would be different.

Frank James
Frank James
25 days ago

Narduzzi is an awful coach yet never any heat on his job? Penalties galore, no fair catch, etc. can’t wait for his press conference with catchphrase after soundbite. 6 losses coming.

D.J.
D.J.
25 days ago
Reply to  Frank James

How can our AD put pressure on him when he was on the search committee that recommended her hiring?

local_troll
local_troll
25 days ago
Reply to  Frank James

Who would you replace Narduzzi with? The program was dead in the water 5 years ago. I am not saying he does not get blamed for the 125 penalty yards but I don’t think he is even close to being fired.

Pitt needed continuity and we finally have solid recruiting classes.

The bright side is if you clean up the penalties you prob win their game.

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