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Pitt vs. Virginia: Panthers' struggles in run defense continue

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Pitt fell short against Virginia on Saturday and one issue was the team's struggles in stopping the run.

Heading into last week's game against Akron, the team had done a good job in keeping other teams in check. Iowa had more success running the ball in the second half of their win against the Panthers, but overall, Pitt's front seven had done a good job against the run.

That changed last week with Akron, a team not known for its running game. Conor Hundley went off for 149 yards on only 19 carries. To keep that in perspective, he has only 104 yards in the team's other four games - combined.

Pitt's defense played better pass coverage against the Cavaliers, but again had problems with the team's running backs. Kevin Parks led the way with a whopping 169 yards on 29 carries and added a touchdown. While Pitt did a better job in the second half, holding Parks to (unofficially) 54 yards, the damage was done in the first half, which included a 48-yard run.

I thought coming in that the Panthers were going to be able to do a decent job against the run, but that wasn't the case. While we've harped on the secondary quite a bit, Pitt is really finding it difficult to stop running backs as well.

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