Many of us were at least slightly worried before the game yesterday. Youngstown State, Furman, Toledo, Old Dominion and the list goes on with teams Pitt should have handled easily and did not. You can look at almost every year over the last decade and it just always seems to happen.
Pitt plays an inferior opponent that should be defeated with ease and the Panthers either turn it into a nail-biter or do the unthinkable and become the laughingstock of college football like the loss to open the Paul Chryst era a couple of years ago. Before the game against Delaware, there were questions about Pitt's defense and by all accounts, the Blue Hens returned a solid offense - even though they were in the FCS.
The Panthers made all of us take a few steps off the ledge by racing to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter. Tyler Boyd was returning punts and returning them well. With the three-touchdown lead, Chryst wanted to get Kevin Weatherspoon some time returning kicks and so he was back to receive the early second quarter punt.
Unfortunately, Weatherspoon gave up the football and Delaware had life. You could almost feel it. Pitt had opened the door to take this game from an easy-going opening season win to making us edge closer to the ledge. With that stage set, Todd Thomas made sure the Panther Pitt and the rest of the fan base could relax a little bit.
On the very next play after the fumble, with the Blue Hens at the Panther 28, quarterback Trent Hurley lofted a pass towards the goal line in hopes of a momentum swinging touchdown. Thomas would have none of it, as he lept into the air and timed the throw perfectly to haul in the Pitt interception and set the stage for a 99-yard Panther drive to make it 28-0 and keep Pitt (excuse this one, but I have to do it) "with the foot on the gas and in the left lane."
For that, Todd Thomas has made our Turning Point of the Game.