MORGANTOWN — It’s been a whirlwind start to BJ Williams’ freshman campaign at Pitt, and it continues this week.
Williams — a 6-foot-3, 315-pound guard from Fairburn, Georgia — did not travel with Pitt to the Backyard Brawl against West Virginia tonight.
He made his collegiate debut two weekends against Wofford, taking 25 snaps at right guard in the fourth quarter, and he made his first career start against Cincinnati last week at right guard, and it wasn’t exactly a smooth transition. He played every snap, but he allowed a team-high five pressures and five hurries — giving up a sack.
Williams filled in for Jason Collier Jr. last week, and Collier is on the travel roster. Ryan Baer, who is still up in the air for playing guard this season, is also on the travel roster.
The four usual starters, Matt Goncalves, Blake Zubovic, Jake Kradel and Branson Taylor, are also on the travel roster.
The offensive line as a whole put together a rough performance last week against Cincinnati, often getting bullied by a strong Cincy defensive line, and it remains to be seen what the starting lineup will look like tonight.
“We didn’t do a good job pass protecting up front at all, and I think out of 44 plays, coach Cignetti had written down we had 25 pass protection issues,” Pat Narduzzi said Monday. “But again, you’re trying to play hard, you’re trying to be aggressive, you want to punch that guy, and you move too hard this way and all of a sudden someone loops and you can’t react. So you’ve got to be under control.”
Follow along with Pittsburgh Sports Now as Pitt takes Mountaineer Field for warmups soon.