Pat Narduzzi Signs New Seven-Year Contract at Pitt

PITTSBURGH—University of Pittsburgh Director of Athletics Heather Lyke announced today a new seven-year contract for head football coach Pat Narduzzi that ensures his leadership of the Panthers through at least the 2024 season.

 

Narduzzi is establishing Pitt as a rising contender in the highly competitive Atlantic Coast Conference. The Panthers have won 21 games under his direction, the most victories by a Pitt head football coach in his initial three years since Jackie Sherrill (28 wins from 1977-79). Narduzzi is 2-0 against teams ranked among the nation’s top two.

 

“We’re thrilled Pat Narduzzi is our head football coach,” Lyke said. “We are deeply committed to helping him, his staff and his student-athletes achieve at the highest levels in the ACC and nationally. Coach Narduzzi is a tireless worker, dynamic leader and passionate about building outstanding relationships with our student-athletes and everyone connected to our Pitt family. He and his staff are fully dedicated to building a national-caliber program the right way, on and off the field.”

 

“I am tremendously blessed to work with such great leadership at the University of Pittsburgh in Athletic Director Heather Lyke and Chancellor Patrick Gallagher,” Narduzzi said. “When I initially accepted the head coaching position at Pitt three years ago this month, I said we could achieve great things if we were all moving in the same direction. Thanks to Chancellor Gallagher and Heather, we are all definitely moving in the same direction with a shared vision for excellence on the field, in the classroom and in the community.

 

“It is a tremendous honor to be the head football coach at Pitt. My family and I are extremely appreciative of the opportunity to be part of this great university and city.”

 

 Pitt Holds Off Mt. St. Mary’s 82-78

In the days of Dejuan Blair, LeVance Fields and Sam Young, a game against Mt. St. Mary’s would’ve been a glorified scrimmage, to the point that we may have seen more a Gary McGhee and Brad Wannamaker before it was over. That 2008-09 Pitt Panthers team would’ve destroyed that Mountaineers team probably by a score of 90-60.

But that was that Panthers team, and we’re focused on the 2017-18 Panthers team which is a far cry from that great team of almost 10 years ago. They welcomed the Mountaineers into Petersen Events Center and it took overtime to win 82-78 to improve to 5-4 on this young season.

“I guess I’m disappointed in our performance but I’m more disappointed in my coaching.”-Said Pitt Head Coach Kevin Stallings, who also drew a technical foul. On that foul, he said, “I was acting like an idiot.”

This was a winnable game for Pitt and they almost turned it into an awful loss. As a team, the Panthers weren’t at their best as they coughed up 17 turnovers, which included 5 by freshman G Marcus Carr.

The Panthers had led by 10 points most of the second half, before those turnovers and a strong run by the Mountaineers resulted in tying the game at 69. In fact, the Panthers were down 71-69 with seconds left before they tied the game and forced overtime.

Despite Carr’s turnovers, he was truly the star of the game for Pitt as he led scored a career-high 23 points in the win. He still needs work with his handling of the ball, but he has no problems getting to the basket which continues to show sparks of former Pitt players Brandin Knight, Carl Krauser and Fields.

But Carr Couldn’t do it alone. 3 other Panthers scored in double-figures as well: G Jared Wilson-Frame (15), F Shamiel Stevenson (14) and Khameron Davis who showed what he could do as he scored 13 points in his first real action. On defense, they weren’t too shabby as they out-rebounded the Mountaineers 43-27 which included a game-high 16 from senior F Ryan Luther with Stevenson right behind him with 9.

But we knew coming into this game that the Mountaineers were truly a team that knew how to shoot the ball, and they didn’t disappoint as they shot 45.2% from the floor and were 13-27 from 3-point range. 5 of those three-pointers came from G Greg Alexander, who finished with 17 points and 4 came from G Antonio Joseph who finished with 14. But the top scorer of the team is 5-5 guard Junior Robinson who led all scorers with 24 points after only having 6 at halftime, in which the Panthers lad 31-24.

Despite Pitt struggles in this game, they were able to pull it out. They weren’t as sharp as they were in the City Game, but they’re currently on a 4-game winning streak with hopes of extending it to 5 vs. another Mountaineers team that they know quite well. On Saturday, Pitt will host the West Virginia Mountaineers as they renew the Backyard Brawl, the legendary rivalry that ended 2012.

For Pitt to be ready for those Mountaineers, they need to play better than they did against Tuesday’s Mountaineers.

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbnamediaRay on twitter

Pitt Basketball Programs to Participate in Food Drive to Support Oakland Pantries

PITTSBURGH – The University of Pittsburgh men’s and women’s basketball programs will take part in the Pitt Food Drive Challenge benefiting Oakland Pantries this weekend. All fans who donate an unopened non-perishable food item at either the men’s or women’s basketball games Saturday, Dec. 9 will receive two tickets to the women’s basketball game Sunday, Dec. 17 against Penn State.

The Pitt women’s team hosts UNC Wilmington Saturday at 1 p.m., while the men’s team hosts West Virginia at 8 p.m. in the Backyard Brawl presented by EQT Corporation.

The Pitt Food Drive Challenge, spearheaded by the Student Government Board, Resident Student Association, Blue and Gold Society and Pitt Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, is running on-campus Nov. 27-Dec. 7. Saturday’s collections at the men’s and women’s game will serve as the final push for the food drive. The challenge pits residence halls against each other in competition to see who can amass the most food collected by weight.

All items collected at the men’s and women’s games Saturday will be donated to the Oakland Pantries along with items collected through the Pitt Food Drive Challenge.

Gameday collections will take place in the Lobby and Concourse A of the Petersen Events Center prior to the men’s and women’s games. The most needed items include: peanut butter and jelly, cereal boxes/oatmeal, condiments/cooking oil, snacks and rice. Other non-food items being collected including shampoo and conditioner, gallon-size zip-top bags and can openers.

All items must be unopened non-perishable items with an expiration date on the package. The Oakland Pantries serve the Pitt community as well as the residents of Oakland.

 

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