College football writer Chris Vanini placed the Panthers at No. 67, meaning that they are in the lower half of the FBS, which has 133 teams in 2023. Vanini wrote that the loss for the Panthers against the Bearcats is why they are in the lower part of the No. 51-75 group.
Vanini, who some thought was underrating Pitt earlier in the season, gave the stipulation last week that if they defeated Cincinnati, they would move up in the rankings. Since they lost, Pitt fell from No. 60 to No. 67, while Cincinnati rose from No. 67 to No. 42, a 25 ranking increase.
Out of all 14 ACC teams, Pitt ranks No. 10 in the conference, with No. 3 Florida State, No. 15 North Carolina, No. 16 Duke, No. 21 Clemson, No. 25 Miami, No. 36 Louisville, No. 45 NC State, No. 58 Wake Forest and No. 65 Syracuse all ahead of them. Only No. 79 Georgia Tech, No. 89 Virginia Tech, No. 95 Virginia and No. 105 Boston College rank lower than Pitt.
Pitt also ranks below a number of Group of Five (American, C-USA, MAC, Mountain West, Sun Belt) teams, which includes No. 31 Tulane, No. 41 Wyoming, No. 43 Fresno State, No. 48 Western Kentucky, No. 51 SMU, No. 52 Troy, No. 55 Coastal Carolina, No. 56 Memphis, No. 57 Air Force, No. 59 Rice, No. 61 UTSA, No. 62 James Madison, No. 63 San Diego State and No. 64 Appalachian State.
The Panthers take on the West Virginia Mountaineers this weekend in the Backyard Brawl for the second straight year. The game, set to take place at Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, W.V., will feature, according to The Athletic rankings, the No. 67 Panthers vs. the No. 80 Mountaineers. The odds for the game are also split between the two programs, according to different sportsbooks.
The Mountaineers lost to then ranked No. 7 Penn State, 38-15, on the road to start the season, before defeating FCS opponent Duquesne 56-17 in the home opener.