After a tough start to the season, Pitt football’s schedule finally eases up a bit.
In the first four weeks of the season, the Panthers have faced three teams that are now in the Top 25 rankings in Penn State, UCF, and Virginia. Pitt, of course, upset UCF this weekend while nearly topping Penn State a couple of weeks ago.
Now, though, things slow down a bit. First up is a game with Delaware this weekend.
Delaware, of course, shouldn’t be overlooked. And if Pitt falls into that trap, they could quickly find themselves in real trouble. But if the Panthers remain focused, there is no doubt this is a game they should win.
Delaware is 3-1 this season but has not been wildly impressive. They were beaten soundly by North Dakota State, the best team on their schedule to date. 47-22. And while they won this past weekend against Penn, they needed to rally from a 21-7 deficit to do so, narrowly winning 28-27.
Thus far, the Blue Hens’ problem hasn’t been scoring points. Through their first four games, they’ve averaged just over 31 points per game. Rather, Delaware’s defense is what needs work. After allowing only 13 points to Delaware State in their opener, they gave up 110 points in their next three games. They’ve been able to put together a 3-1 record simply by outscoring teams but they should have a bit more trouble against a Pitt defense that has been mostly pretty good.
What I really want to see from Pitt is an impressive showing from the defense and some continued improvement in the run game. The Panthers have shown they can throw the ball but if they can establish the run this week and get the backs a little more confidence, it will be a welcome sight. Defensively, I’m really hoping that Pitt doesn’t allow things to get interesting. Pitt’s offense probably could win a shootout but I’m hoping it doesn’t come to that. This should really just be a good week to work on some things, get some guys a bit of confidence, and come out healthy.
Frankly, if Pitt is in a tight battle Saturday, things have just gone horribly wrong. The Panthers are starting to look legitimately good this season and with an improving offense, I don’t see much of a threat here.
The biggest question for Pitt coming into this one is mostly about the injuries. Pitt was pretty banged up against Central Florida this weekend and could have any number of question marks. Hopefully, if guys need to rest up, they can do so as the team gets ready to head into ACC play the following week.