Teams: Syracuse Orange (3-3, 0-2) vs. Pittsburgh Panthers (4-2, 1-1)
Day & Time: Friday, October 18, 7 p.m. ET
Location: The Carrier Dome, AKA The Dome, AKA Loud House, AKA Our House, AKA Dino Dome, Syracuse, NY.
Weather Forecast: High of 52, Low 38, mainly clear
Line: Opened -3 Pitt; has moved -3.5 Pitt
TV/Streaming: ESPN/Watch ESPN
Radio: Cuse.com, TK 99/105, WAER 88.3, SiriusXM: Away - XM 193 (Streaming 955), Home - XM 84 (Streaming 84)
Pittsburgh blog: Cardiac Hill
Rivalry: 39-31, Pitt
Current Streak: 1, Pitt
First Meeting: In 1916, Pitt, led by some guy named “Pop” Warner, defeated the Orange 30-0. This set the tone for this “rivalry” as no game, blow out or close, would garner much attention.
Last Meeting: The Panthers defeated the Orange at Heinz Field 44-37 in overtime. The game was very Pitt-’Cuse, as the Orange squandered a second half lead, and in OT, Eric Dungey was pummeled on the last throw, a 50/50 endzone ball Pitt ended up winning, sealing the game. Syracuse, in the weirdest thing of 2018, would not lose another game.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Dino Babers (4th year; 21-22) | Pitt - Pat Narduzzi (5th year; 32-26)
Coach Bio: After a playing career at Youngstown State and Rhode Island, Narduzzi went to Miami as a grad assistant. He ended up back at Rhode Island as a position coach, until he was promoted to their defensive coordinator. Some time at Northern Illinois, led to Defensive Coordinator positions at Cincinnati and Michigan State. In 2013, he was promoted to assistant coach as well as DC, and two seasons in that role led to his current gig at Pitt. Narduzzi won eight games in each of his first two seasons, and earned a seven-ear extension after a five-win third season that saw Pitt knock off No. 2 Miami.
Last Year: While ‘Cuse won nine regular season games, Pitt won one non-conference game, then ripped 6 conference wins en route to a Costal Division Championship. A loss to Clemson sent them to the Sun Bowl, where Narduzzi and Co. lost to Stanford, leaving the coach still looking for his first Pitt bowl win.
Last Game: Pitt handled their contest with the Fightin’ Yinzer Byes, but before that, the Panthers held off a Duke rally, winning on the road 33-30.
”Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Sophmore Jaylen Twyman leads the team in sacks with six, and has seven tackles for loss. He typically lines up right over the center, so that will be just terrific for a Syracuse offensive line still without their starting center.
If Syracuse Wins: Crisis averted, as six wins is still very much in play for the Orange.
If Syracuse Loses: Panic button, meet Syracuse fans.
Fun Fact: After attempting to kill our last head coach, Narduzzi now claims the current head coach and staff have stolen his blitz. So... yeah.
Fun Fact #2: Five of the seven last contests between these two teams have been one possession games, which follows a run of six of eight games being decided by 2 or more possessions, because this “rivalry” is the weirdest.