Are We Getting Spoiled As Pitt Football Fans Already?

Photo by John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Remember to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for continued Pittsburgh Sports coverage: 

Hold up.  The Pitt Panthers are 3-1, with our single loss was in overtime against a Top-10 ranked SEC team while we were using a hobbled backup quarterback.  We also have a win against our heated rival and two other wins by three touchdowns.  Pitt also enters the ACC schedule most likely favored in every remaining game on the schedule aside from Miami at their place to end the season.  This all after losing a Heisman finalist quarterback and the Biletnikoff Award winning wide receiver in the same offseason.  That sounds like a great start to me.

However, I've seen Pitt fans complaining about how Pitt has played, including in the Rhode Island win last weekend.  As if Pitt should have won the game 100-7.  

Panther fans - remember an eventual Big East champion Pitt team taking Furman to overtime in 2004?  How about the next season when we lost to Ohio University in overtime?  Or what about the Bowling Green loss to open the 2008 season?  Don't forget the 6-point victory over Maine in 2011.  Did I mention the loss to open the 2012 season against Youngstown State?  How about the double-digit loss to Akron in 2014?

Sure, those were all before Pat Narduzzi.  So let's get more recent.  What about the 2017 Pitt Panthers that took Youngstown State to overtime to open the season, and then dropped 5 of their next 6 to start the season 2-5?  Or what about as recent as last season when Western Michigan came into our house and beat the future ACC Champions with Kenny Pickett and Jordan Addison both still on the roster?

The point here being, there are no guaranteed victories.  We have one great season, albeit the best season of my lifetime and we're complaining about victories by a 3-touchdown margin?  While Rhode Island and Western Michigan should be wins, where do we get off as Pitt fans thinking we have to dominate them by 50 points to be satisfied?

Pitt was very clearly playing a calculated game against Rhode Island.  They were providing game film to future opponents that really doesn't show what this Panther offense can truly do when starter Kedon Slovis is fully healthy and the wide receiver corps is firing on all cylinders.  You really think the 1st down runs over and over again won't lead to some timely play-action passes when the ACC opponents start coming?  

Pitt also displayed dominance running the ball the last two games.  Izzy Abanikanda looks like he could be in the Heisman conversation if he keeps up the work he's been putting in.  He has back-to-back 130+ yard games with five touchdowns.  He is the best player on the offensive side of the ball for Pitt and oftentimes he looks like the most talented player on the entire football field.  

Meanwhile, if Slovis remains in the game, Pitt beats Tennessee by 10 points or more.  The Panther defense shut down the Volunteers in the 2nd half, who are easily one of the best offensive units in all of college football.  They could very easily be a 4-0 football team.  

So why then are we upset when the defense clearly sells out to stop the run in a game they had Rhode Island handled from the opening whistle?  Sure, they gave up some splash plays.  Who cares?  When the score is a two-score margin for most of it, you can afford to give up some splash plays.

I don't understand how the same fans that are upset about Pitt not moving up in the rankings are also upset with how Pitt has played thus far.  The arguments of "we've only lost to a Top-10 ranked SEC team with an injured backup quarterback" should also be used to show how great Pitt has played so far.  You can't have it both ways.  You can't argue Pitt should be higher in the rankings while complaining about how they've played.  

Also, let's not be spoiled here.  We suffered through lousy football for a long time as Pitt fans.  We remain the reigning ACC Champions and it looks like we have few obstacles in our way to win the Coastal Division again and appear in our second straight ACC Championship game.  Let's enjoy it while we can and quit complaining so much.  

Comments