Pitt and Tennessee are set to square off in the Johnny Majors Classic at Neyland Stadium on Saturday in the first matchup between the two teams since 1983. In that game 38 years ago, Majors coached the Volunteers to a 13-3 loss at the same venue, and the Panthers are once again expected to escape Knoxville with a win.
The Panthers opened as one-point favorites earlier in the week but have seen their odds improve. Now, just an hour removed from kickoff, Vegas has Pitt listed as a 3.5-point favorite on the road, with the defense expected to stifle the Tennessee rushing attack and rattle Vols quarterback Joe Milton following his shaky season opener against Bowling Green.
In addition to the game pitting two fairly evenly matched teams against each other, it will also serve as a rematch between coaches Pat Narduzzi and Josh Heupel, who last faced off against each other at Heinz Field on Sept. 21, 2019. In that game, Narduzzi led Pitt to a 35-34 victory over Heupel’s UCF team and broke out the Pitt Special to notch the win.
Given the outcome of the last matchup between Narduzzi and Heupel and the close line, Saturday’s game could be a tight one, despite an unusual amount of confidence in the Panthers ahead of a big game.
The Johnny Majors Classic will kick off at 12 p.m. ET and air on ESPN. Join the Cardiac Hill community here to comment during the game.