1. Pitt vs. Georgia Tech-Here’s hoping that Pitt Panthers have recovered from that awful loss to Oklahoma State as they take on the Georgia Tech Yellowjackets (1-1) Saturday @12:20pm. The 1-2 Panthers desperately need a spark and can get one against a team that they’ve beaten 2 straight years, off a game-winning FG. And it’s also Pitt’s Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) opener.
  2. History-This is the 12th meeting between Pitt and Georgia Tech in a series that began in 1918…Pitt leads the overall series, 7-4, and owns a two-game winning streak against the Yellow Jackets…the Panthers are 4-1 in games played in Pittsburgh and 3-1 in Atlanta.
  3. Georgia Tech’s running game-Pitt now must face this running attack, which leads the nation in rushing. The Yellow Jackets are averaging 372.5 yards rushing, while the Panthers are giving up 119.7 yards on the ground. And it is also part of that triple-option offense that Georgia Tech uses, which drives opposing teams nuts.
  4. Can Pitt beat Georgia Tech? Good question. It’s easy to say yes, but this isn’t the Pitt team from last year. Their mental toughness concerns me. The last 2 wins vs. the Yellowjackets required Pitt having that mental toughness and I’m not sure if this year’s team has it. But if they can stop GT’s running game, they might have a shot.
  5. Who’s at QB? Ah yes. The ‘Elephant in the Room.’ I don’t think it really takes Einstein to figure this out. For 3 games, Max Browne has one TD and a bunch of mental mistakes. For parts of 2 games, Ben DiNucci also has a TD plus a rushing TD. He can scramble and he’s been in the offensive system longer. Browne had his shot and blew it. It’s DiNucci’s team now.
  6. Narduzzi’s thoughts on who will start at QB? Of course, Pitt Head Coach Pat Narduzzi was going to give the politically correct answer and here it is: “It’s a coaching feel. The quarterback situation is — we’re going to continue to evaluate. They both do some really good things on tape.” See? I told you so.
  7. When asked is Narduzzi would wait until game time to announced his QB-Here’s what he said: “Yeah.” So basically, we will have to wait until 7:30 pm (changed from 12:25) to know who goes under center for the Panthers. Way too much drama for me.
  8. The return of Jordan Whitehead-He’s served his 3-game suspension and now the Panthers star safety will finally get to play starting this Saturday. Whitehead is a superb athlete, on both sides of the ball, but he must stop letting what he does off the field limit what he does on Because the Panthers desperately need him.
  9. Fullback George Aston may return-I hope he does because that would truly give Pitt a shot in the arm. Aston was truly a Red-Zone terror last season with 10 (5 rushing, 5 receiving) TD’s in 2016, all in the Red Zone. Of course, it also depends if Aston is truly healed from the ‘secret’ injury that he suffered in training camp.
  10. Nebraska fires their AD-This was truly the surprise of the day as the Cornhuskers dismissed Athletic Director Shawn Eichorst after (what the school describes) as struggles in football and basketball (do they have a basketball team?) their new search will begin immediately Makes you wonder if former Pitt AD Steve Pederson is on their wish since he was their AD from 2002-07. Should be interesting.
  11. AP Top 5-Alabama remains #1, Clemson at #2 followed by Oklahoma (#3), Penn State (#4) and USC (#5). If the College Football Playoff began today, I think the top 4 teams are deserving of playing for the National Title. And local folks need to admit that it would be cool to see Penn State in there too.
  12. Steelers vs. Bears-After starting the season 2-0, the Pittsburgh Steelers will face the 0-2 Chicago Bears at Soldier Field Sunday afternoon. It’s the first time the Steelers will play the bears since 2009 when they arrogantly went into Chicago and got upset by the struggling Bears 17-14. Apparently, the Steelers left their common sense in Pittsburgh that day.
  13. Should the Steelers be concerned? Only if they underestimate a team that they’re only 1-11 against in Chicago. Really Steelers, you should be tired of losing to teams that you’re better than on paper. I don’t believe they play down to the level of their competition, I just think the Steelers need to show respect to every opponent, regardless of record and then beat them. If they play well on offense, defense, and special teams, the Steelers should leave Chicago 3-0.
  14. Speaking of the Steelers offense-Of course folks are worried that this unit hasn’t scored 30 points in their first 2 games. Really folks? Who cares? I don’t care if the final score is 7-6, 10-6 or 6-0, if the Steelers get the W, that’s all that matters. They can easily score 30 and give up 31…that should add some perspective.
  15. Where’s James Harrison? Yeah, I’m wondering that too after he didn’t play at all in the win vs. Minnesota Sunday. Here’s what Head Coach Mike Tomlin said “Bud [Dupree] missed some time in Week 1, Anthony Chickillo was able to start. Chickillo produced two sacks. Respect those contributions. TJ Watt got hurt in Week 2; wanted to leave the hot hands in there. Chickillo being that hot hand. We appreciate James. We know what James is capable of. James will ready himself. There will be a time in the season where we’ll call on his services.”
  16. Steelers Injury Report-Dupree (Shoulder) DE Stephon Tuitt (biceps) and S JJ Wilcox(concussion) were full participation Thursday, while TE Jesse James (Ankle) was limited and T Marcus Gilbert (Hamstring, illness) and Watt (groin) didn’t participate at all. I’m thinking Harrison should get some time if Watt can’t play Sunday.
  17. Stages of CTE found in Hernandez’s brain-It’s bad enough that the former New England Patriots TE committed murder and then ended his life in prison, but now his dr’s report that he had advanced stages of CTE, which has been found in the brains of many former NFL players. Just a sad situation.
  18. NBA looks to fix Draft Lottery-Why? Because fans don’t like tanking and even though teams (other than the 1984-85 NY Knicks) didn’t admit to doing so, we know they did it. So, the NBA’s trying to fix that. How? By no longer target finishing positions at the bottom, with a marginal difference in each seed from there on. In other words, say teams can no longer lose on purpose to angle for higher lottery positions. Shrewd.
  19. The Pirates-What else is there to say? They clinched their 2nd straight losing season and they’ve basically given up. Whatever ounce of pride that they have left, they need to show it in their remaining games as the season ends October 1st.
  20. Home Run Leaders-In the NL, it’s Miami’s Giancarlo Stanton with 56, and in the AL, it’s the NY Yankees Aaron Judge with 45. What awesome years by these youngsters. I hope Stanton gets at least 60 and Judge gets at least 50. That will be awesome. By the way, I think they both will win MVP.

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbanmediaRay on twitter


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