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Pitt vs. Navy: Zach Challingsworth to miss Military Bowl Game

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It's the end of the road for the football team as they'll face Navy in the Military Bowl on Monday. But Pitt wide receiver Zach Challingsworth won't be a part of it. The junior wideout will miss the game with a shoulder injury, per the Post-Gazette.

Losing Challingsworth isn't the biggest deal in the world, but Navy has a below-average pass defense while their run defense is significantly better. That could mean the Panthers are looking to throw a little more so the loss of Challingsworth as an option hurts a little. He's is the team's third-leading wide receiver (12 catches for 171 yards and a touchdown) and that means someone else like Elijah Zeise will need to step into that role.

Also of note is that Challingsworth also has had some bigger games lately. Nine of his 12 catches came in the last five games and he was particularly effective against Duke and North Carolina with a combined six grabs for 87 yards and a touchdown. As that Post-Gazette link above also notes, his catches have been big ones recently. In the last three games, Challingsworth had five catches and all were on third downs.

The Panthers, fortunately, have been working in the tight ends quite a bit this season, and to be fair, Challingsworth hasn't had a huge impact this year. This isn't one of those losses that puts the team at a big disadvantage. But losing a player who has made some key catches lately still isn't ideal and that's particularly true in a game where Pitt might look to air it out a little more.

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