PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – It was a game to forget and that is exactly what Pitt is trying to do in getting ready to host No. 24 Duke Saturday at noon.
The Panthers fumbled six times in a loss to Georgia Tech, dropping Pitt to 4-4.READ MORE: Police Investigating Deadly Shooting In Homewood
“There’s not one guy, I’m really confident, that thinks, ‘This would be a good time to put the ball on the ground,’” Paul Chryst said. “We trust the guys. Bad things have happened. We’ve got to make sure we’re coaching it the right way and they’re getting it the right way. Then you’ve got to move forward.”
Maybe the toughest fumble to take was by sophomore tailback James Conner, who after running 74 yards, eased up a bit, was caught and fumbled at the goal line for a turnover which ended up being a 14-point swing.
“We can do drills for that,” Conner said of fixing the fumbles. “Something we can work on. Some of them were accidents, some of them weren’t fumbles, like when Tyler’s elbow hit the ground, but I guess we can drill it and not let it happen again.”
Chryst says he loves being around this group and is anxious to get to work for the Blue Devils as the Panthers are now 2-2 in the ACC.READ MORE: Allison Park Church Holds Food Distribution Event At Beaver Valley Mall
“I think one of the reasons why I like this group is that we’re not more disappointed as coaches than the players are,” Chryst said. “That doesn’t mean anything; it doesn’t make anyone feel better. But I think everyone’s owning it.”
Last year against Duke was a shootout, as Tom Savage threw six touchdown passes in a 58-55 Panthers win. Don’t expect it to be like that on Saturday at Heinz Field.
“I think they’re maybe second in the league in points given up,” Chryst said. “I think they’ve got a really good offense. I think their defense is playing well. That’s the bottom line, not giving up points. You never quite know how the game is going to play out. You’ve just got to be prepared to be able to play whatever type of game it is.”
Conner passed 1,000 yards for the season on Saturday, saying it’s an accomplishment to be proud of, but he would rather have a win.
“There’s no point to hanging your head because as the coaches tell us, you can’t let one team beat you twice,” Conner said. “It’s behind us.”MORE NEWS: New Ordinance Allows Food Truck Operation In Monessen