It’s still early in college football, we’re not even out of September yet, but the Pittsburgh Panthers need to get something going. The fanbase is dying, while the team has been regressing since they beat Syracuse 76-61 a year ago. The defense is still bad, and the offense has gotten bad as well. Last season the Panthers had an offense to lean on with Nathan Peterman. In 2017, they are searching for a quarterback to replace Peterman. The offense has gotten worse and the defense hasn’t got much better. The ensuing result is a team that isn’t very good.
Pitt got blown off the field at Heinz Field this past Saturday, as Oklahoma State delivered an uppercut to the Panthers. The game was so ugly, the school decided to put on a free beverage promotion halfway through. Anybody that stayed to the end of the game would get a free drink. When you’re running promotions like that, it’s never a good sign. Par Narduzzi does not have the same appeal that a Dave Wannstedt did. Pitt has gone through three different head coaches since Wannstedt left in 2010.
With a 59-21 loss behind them, Pittsburgh turns their attention to the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech should be fresh for this game, after having to wait two weeks to play. The hurricane dislodged plans for several teams, Georgia Tech included. So, they haven’t played since Jacksonville State on the 9th, a 37-10 win. Tech was coming off a tough loss against Tennessee in Week 1. They lost a wild one in overtime by a score of 42-41. That isn’t necessarily a bad loss, the Yellow Jackets can still reach a New Year’s bowl. Let’s get straight to our pick, head below for the free selection.
Pittsburgh Panthers vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Betting Odds:
vs. Georgia Tech -8.5(-110)
Betting odds provided by Bovada.lv
Pittsburgh vs. Georgia Tech Pick:
After trying to run down Oklahoma State, they have to switch gears and run down a different kind of offense. Georgia Tech will employ the triple-option, a totally different offense that Pitt saw last week. Both good, yet totally different offenses to prepare for. There are well oiled machines that run the triple-option, and others that can’t get the ball more than 5 yards downfield. Georgia Tech is one of the teams who know how to run this offensive scheme. They also have a quarterback that can sling it around if need be. TaQuon Marshall threw for 3 touchdowns against Jacksonville State.
Marshall has a completion percentage of 62.5 with 232 yards, which is good for an option quarterback. He’s also rushed for 6 touchdowns and 274 yards. Marshall used the Jacksonville State game to work on his passing game, and it worked. Georgia Tech has a stable of backs that will chew up yardage as well. The Ramblin Wreck are 1st in college football, averaging 372.5 yards per game. Pitt is better at defending the run than the pass, as they are 39th against the run.
However, Marshall will pull it back and look to catch the secondary off guard through the air. The Panthers are 127th defending the pass. If the secondary creeps up too far, which I think they will, they’re going to get caught. I don’t think the backend is talented enough on Pitt to be on the look out for all facets of the Georgia Tech offense.
The Yellow Jackets know this, and they will try to lull the corners and safeties to sleep before hitting them deep. Georgia Tech is 18th against the pass, with only 147 yards allowed per game. It looks like a lot of points against Tennessee, but the majority of those points came in overtime. The game looked like it was going to cruise to a win on the UNDER before it got crazy late, and then into overtime. Tennessee had just 14 points going into the 4th quarter. Pitt doesn’t even know who will be starting for them at quarterback on Saturday afternoon.
Georgia Tech has had time to prepare for Pittsburgh, while the Panthers are still licking their wounds from last Saturday. I expect plenty of confusing on the defensive side for Pitt. I have this handicapped at -10.5, so I will gladly take the 8 on Georgia Tech for our pick.
PICK: GEORGIA TECH -8.5 (-110)