Welcome to the Pitt Panthers at Clemson Preview! This is your one stop shop for everything you need to know about Pitt and their upcoming opponent! Mike Drakulich of Pittsburgh SportsNation brings you inside the huddle for both teams, providing all fans a breakdown of each team, game outlook, score prediction, individual stats, team stats, and even the weather at kickoff–Everything but a ticket into the stadium!
A look at the Pitt Panthers!
Overall Record: 5-4 | ACC Record: 2-3
Head Coach: Pat Narduzzi (2nd Season with Pitt)
Lifetime Record: 13-9
Last Week: Miami 51 Pitt 28
Breakdown of the Panthers: Nate Peterman and the Panther offense hope to rebound from a mistake filled peformance last week in Miami as they face the #2 team in the nation in Clemson. Peterman has 14 touchdown passes and only four interceptions on the year. Dontez Ford is back and provides another solid target in the passing game along with Jester Weah and Quadree Henderson. Tight end Scott Orndoff is tied for 2nd on the team in receptions.
James Conner leads an excellent rushing attack that is averaging over 220 yards a game. Henderson has been a big contributor with his role in the Jet Sweep. Chawntez Moss, Qadree Ollison, and Darrin Hall have seen their carries diminish each week. Pitt needs to get a few, if not all of them more involved again. George Aston remains as the Panther’s tough as nails fullback who is dangerous both on the ground and out of the backfield.
Defensively, Pitt is a dumpster fire in the secondary. If Coach Narduzzi doesn’t change his schemes, Clemson may break passing records in this one.
A look at the Clemson Tigers!
Overall Record: 9-0 | ACC Record: 6-0
Ranked #2 CFB Selection Committee | Ranked #3 AP
Head Coach: Dabo Swinney (8th Season with Clemson)
Lifetime Record: 84-27 | 84-27 with Clemson
Last Week: Clemson 54 Syracuse 0
Breakdown of the Tigers: What’s not to like? Deshaun Watson leads the team at quarterback and can kil you through the air and with his feet. Watson has 24 touchdown passes on the year to go with 370 yards rushing. The Pitt defense will be busy all day trying to keep him contained.
Wayne Gallman is the lead back and has 634 yards rushing with eight TD’s. Tavien Feaster will spell him from time to time.
The wideouts are the strength of this team. Mike Willams is the main guy with 52 receptions for 754 yards and five scores. Artavis Scott, Ray-Ray McCloud, Deon Cain, and Hunter Renfrow are all threats. Cain, who is 4th on the team in receptions, has 22 catches, eight of which have found the endzone. Jordan Leggett is the Tiger’s tight end and has contributed 22 receptions and four scores.
Clemson boast’s one of the best defenses in the country allowing only 15.7 points per game. They will be tested by Pitt’s vaunted rushing attack.
Game Preview: Deshaun Watson will be the key factor in this game.
“He’s special, obviously,” Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi said. “I don’t know if he’s still up for the Heisman or how politics go there, but he’s a great football player. They are undefeated. He leads their offense. This guy is a threat on every down to beat you with his arm and beat with you his feet. That’s going to change some things for you on defense.”
Pitt needs to eliminate the mistakes in this game, or they will become victims of a bloodbath. The Panther offense was carrying the team last week against Miami before a series of dropped touchdown passes, untimely sacks, and turnovers just overwhelmed them.
With so many weapons at Watson’s disposal, Narduzzi is going to have to find a way to help his beleaguered corners from being torched pass after pass. Clemson posted 565 yards in a 54-0 demolition of Syracuse last week. Pitt has been giving up 500 yard games like halloween candy lately.
I think Pitt will feed James Conner the ball more than the ridiculous 12 times they honored him with last week. It’s time for Nate Peterman to live up to his offseason passing videos where he was firing passes into basketball rims from ridiculious distances. There are three games left in the regular season, and Pitt will have to dig deep to regain the momentum they possessed from the early season. A valiant battle against a team that may make the National Championship Game followed by two victories at home to close the regular season would be just the doctor ordered.
Expect another high scoring affair with the Panthers making it closer than the experts think. In the end, Clemson will be too much.
Prediction: Clemson 54 Pitt 45
NCAA Week 11
Pitt Panthers (5-4, 2-3) at #2 Clemson Tigers (9-0, 6-0)
Venue: Memorial Stadium, Clemson, SC.
Game-time: Saturday, November 12th, 3:30 pm
TV: WTAE-TV (ABC) | Announcers: Steve Levy (play-by-play) Brian Griese, (analyst) Todd McShay, ( field analyst)
Local Radio: Pittsburgh- 93.7 The Fan | Announcers: Bill Hillgrove (play-by-play) Bill Osborne (analyst) | Larry Richert (sideline)
National Radio: SiriusXM Satellite Radio | Internet Channel 968 (Pitt broadcast)
Weather at Kickoff: 61 and sunny.
Vegas Line: Clemson -20.5
Pitt vs Clemson Tigers History
- Series History: Began in 1977.
- Pitt is 1-0 against Clemson | Pitt is 0-0 against Clemson in ACC Play.
- Pitt is 0-0 on the road vs Clemson.
- Streak: N/A
- Last Regular Season Meeting: N/A
- Pitt is 1-0 vs Clemson in Bowl Games.
- Bowl Games: Dec. 30, 1977 (Gator Bowl: Pitt 34 Clemson 3)
- Pitt and Clemson meet for the ϐirst time in nearly 40 years when the Panthers visit Death Valley this Saturday. The schools have played only one time, and never during the regular season. The lone meeting occurred in the 1977 Gator Bowl, a 34-3 Pitt win.
- The Panthers’ last win over a ranked opponent was a 28-21 victory over No. 24/25 Notre Dame on Nov. 9, 2013.
- Nearly half of Ejuan Price’s 33 tackles this season have been behind the line of scrimmage. He has 16 TFLs, nine sacks and three forced fumbles.
- Quadree Henderson is the country’s most dangerous return specialist. The sophomore leads the nation in kickoff return touchdowns (three) and kickoff return average (33.8). He is second in combined kick return yards (872).
- Junior running back James Conner has 47 career rushing touchdowns, just two shy of the 38-year-old ACC record held by NC State’s Ted Brown (49 from 1975-78).
QB- Nathan Peterman (1,806 yards passing | 14 TD passes | 4 interceptions | 6 sacks | 191 yards rushing | 1 rushing TD )
RB- James Conner (712 yards rushing | 11 rushing TD’s | 15 receptions | 197 yards receiving | 2 receiving TD’s)
RB- Chawntez Moss (221 yards rushing | 1 rushing TD’s | 2 receptions | 18 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
RB- Qadree Ollison (91 yards rushing | 1 rushing TD’s | 1 receptions | 8 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
RB- Darrin Hall (109 yards rushing | 0 rushing TD’s | 1 receptions | 2 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
FB- George Aston (69 yards rushing | 4 rushing TD’s | 14 receptions | 110 yards receiving | 2 receiving TD’s)
RB/WR- Jordan Whitehead (98 yards rushing | 0 rushing TD’s | 0 receptions | 0 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
WR- Jester Weah (26 receptions | 563 receiving yards | 6 receiving TD’s)
WR- Quadree Henderson (21 receptions | 231 receiving yards | 1 receiving TD’s | 383 yards rushing | 2 rushing TD’s)
WR- Tre Tipton (12 receptions | 142 receiving yards | 1 receiving TD’s)
WR- Dontez Ford (8 receptions | 93 receiving yards | 0 receiving TD’s)
TE- Scott Orndoff (21 receptions | 354 receiving yards | 2 receiving TD’s)
TE- Jaymar Parrish (3 receptions | 34 receiving yards | 0 receiving TD’s)
K- Chris Blewitt (Extra Point: 41-42 | FG: 8-13 | 0-19: 0-0 | 20-29: 2-2 | 30-39: 2-3 | 40-49: 3-6 | 50+: 1-2 | Long: 50
QB- Deshaun Watson (2,497 yards passing | 24 TD passes | 10 interceptions | 9 sacks | 370 yards rushing | 2 rushing TD’s)
RB- Wayne Gallman (634 yards rushing | 8 rushing TD’s | 9 receptions | 75 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
RB- Tavien Feaster (167 yards rushing | 2 rushing TD’s | 0 receptions | 0 yards receiving | 0 receiving TD’s)
WR- Mike Willams (52 receptions | 754 receiving yards | 5 receiving TD’s)
WR- Artavis Scott (38 receptions | 329 receiving yards | 3 receiving TD’s)
WR- Ray-Ray McCloud (34 receptions | 352 receiving yards | 2 receiving TD’s)
WR- Deon Cain (22 receptions | 449 receiving yards | 8 receiving TD’s)
WR- Hunter Renfrow (17 receptions | 194 receiving yards | 3 receiving TD’s)
TE- Jordan Leggett (22 receptions | 385 receiving yards | 4 receiving TD’s)
K- Greg Huegel (Extra Point: 37-39 | FG: 13-15 | 0-19: 0-0 | 20-29: 5-6 | 30-39: 4-4 | 40-49: 4-5 | 50+: 0-0 | Long: 47
Team Stats through Week 10
Total Offense: Pitt gains 422.3 YPG | Clemson gains 488.4 YPG
Rushing: Pitt gains 220.4 YPG | Clemson gains 168.2 YPG
Passing: Pitt gains 201.9 YPG | Clemson gains 320.2 YPG
Scoring: Pitt scores 37 PPG | Clemson scores 38.6 PPG
Total Defense: Pitt allows 428.7 YPG | Clemson allows 312.9 YPG
Rushing: Pitt allows 111.6 YPG | Clemson allows 132.8 YPG
Passing: Pitt allows 317.1 YPG | Clemson allows 180.1 YPG
Scoring: Pitt allows 34.4 PPG | Clemson allows 15.7 PPG
Pitt Panthers 2016 Schedule
Regular Season (Overall: 5-4 | ACC: 2-3)
Sept. 3 Villanova (ACCN Extra) W, 28-7
Sept. 10 Penn State (ESPN) W, 42-39
Sept. 17 at Oklahoma State (ESPN) L, 38-45
Sept. 24 at North Carolina* (ESPNU) L, 36-37
Oct. 1 Marshall (RSN) W, 43-27
Oct. 8 Georgia Tech* (WTAE) (Homecoming) W, 37-34
Oct. 15 at Virginia* (WTAE) 12:30 p.m. W, 45-31
Oct. 27 (Thurs.) Virginia Tech* (ESPN) L, 36-39
Nov. 5 at Miami* (ABC) L, 28-51
Nov. 12 at Clemson* (ABC) 3:30 p.m.
Nov. 19 Duke* 3:30 p.m.
Nov. 26 Syracuse* TBA