Pitt is going to win the ACC Coastal unless the Panthers lose their last two games (at Wake Forest and at Miami) and Virginia wins its last two (at Georgia Tech and at Virginia Tech). Their 52-22 rout of Virginia Tech on Saturday in Pittsburgh confirmed as much. Thanks to tiebreakers, the one-league loss Panthers could only fall behind UVA that way.
That means the Panthers, who have been in the league since 2013, are slated to have as many divisional titles in the conference as Miami, which has been in the league since before it went to its divisional format in 2005 (and also has ties for first place in years it hasn’t won). It really is so jarring that Miami’s still only won the Coastal once. And the program is not inspiring any confidence it’ll do better soon.
Getting beyond that funny fact, Pitt deserves credit for standing out in a division where nobody else has stood out in a good way.
North Carolina (now 1-8 on the season, weirdly with its only win coming against Pitt) has stood out for being bad. But otherwise, the league’s been a mess:
- Virginia’s been good for Virginia, but lost to Pitt at home in Week 10 and likely lost its chance to have a truly special season.
- Virginia Tech’s defense is anything other than a Virginia Tech defense.
- Miami’s struggling epically.
- Duke’s Duke.
- Georgia Tech’s had some great games that have gotten a lot of attention, but the Yellow Jackets have lost plenty and not been in contention.
And then there’s Pitt. The Panthers’ three non-UNC losses have come against Penn State, UCF, and Notre Dame. They almost beat the Irish in South Bend. Lately, they’ve looked really good, with the obvious disclaimer that they’ve faced teams that have not.
The running game’s been tremendous. Pitt was 12th in yards per carry (5.8 yards) entering the day, and then it ran all over the Hokies. They ran 34 times for 492 yards, not counting late kneel downs. That’s more than a 14-yard average!
On so many carries, it looked like Pitt’s running backs were carrying against air. LOOK AT WHAT THE TOP TWO RUNNING BACKS ON THE ROSTER DID:
Quarterback Kenny Pickett only had to throw 11 times, and he completed seven of them for 162 yards and a rating of 217.
The Wake and Miami games could both be hard, but this looks like it might be Pat Narduzzi’s best team yet. Soon, we’ll get a better sense of that.
The 2016 Panthers were the only team to beat eventual national champion Clemson. That shouldn’t happen again, but massive upset bids are very much a Pitt thing. Thanks to Pitt being the best team in a bad division, the 2018 Panthers should get the same crack.
Source : https://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2018/11/10/18078644/pitt-acc-coastal-scenarios-standings