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September 6, 2017

Mandatory Silence

Filed under: Football,Media — Chas @ 7:38 am

Media blackout week for Pitt-Penn St. No assistants talking. No players. No meaningless window before the real practicing starts. Yay, stupid side-issue.

Head Coach Pat Narduzzi did it last year for this game. I thought it was pointless and silly last year as well.

Fans overall don’t care. There’s enough hate for PSU to carry through the week.

In fact, fans get pissed at the media talking about it. That they should just do their job and write/talk/video about all the other aspects of the game. Like they really need some quotes from players or coaches for that. That it is all just whining.

Some fans view it as a chance to “punish” the local media because they don’t provide enough coverage of Pitt for the other 51 weeks of the year. Oh, now you want to pay attention.

For other fans, it is that any criticism of Narduzzi or the policy is seen as a criticism of Pitt; and that cannot be permitted. That Narduzzi is really doing this for the players. To take the pressure off of them. Let them focus on the game. Not be distracted. Putting it all on himself to protect everyone else. Yada-yada-yada.

And of course, there is the general disdain for the media and a chance to bash.

It’s not that the local media makes it easy. Especially the radio-oriented, hot-take, JV-Bayless-wannabees. They bait the fans with useless threats of tit-for-tat. Or pointing out how eager Pitt is for coverage any other time. Anything to provoke a reaction. Boy, do they get it and love it.

Then there is the fact that the one thing everybody loves to do is talk about themselves or their jobs, and Narduzzi went and handed the people who make a living talking and writing a chance to do so. It’s really all I see people talking about for this game.

As Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News (and a Pittsburgh native) put it:

“Pitt is a great university with a fine athletic department. But fights for attention in a pro city and anything that runs counter is mistake.”

Instead, all of that attention is on Narduzzi and cutting off the media. Not the game. Not Pitt. Not the players.

Here’s one additional part of why I don’t like the blackout. It isn’t just the local media kept out. It means all the media. One of the non-conference games that was circled nationally. A chance for more coverage. Maybe a little more attention on pre-season All-American Quadree Henderson. Heck, even a little puff-piece on the latest upgrades to the facilities. Another opportunity for the football program to get positive attention outside of Pittsburgh.

Nope. Wasting time on a self-created side-issue.




Heaven forbid Pitt should get any national publicity for its program. I do get that he is trying to get his players to focus on the game and not get caught up in the hype, but missing a big opportunity in the process.

Also missing the opportunity to fire up the local fans.

The PR department can’t be happy when the top guy doesn’t help sell the program.

Comment by gc 09.06.17 @ 8:40 am

Nard is the head coach and focused on winning the game as he sees fit. Can’t fault him for that. What’s stopping the AD and the media department from putting out some positive hype for the university at a time when the game draws national attention?

Comment by Grizzly1 09.06.17 @ 9:22 am

So long as he wins!

Comment by PittofDreams 09.06.17 @ 9:30 am

Pitt’s media efforts have been and are sad compared to other schools.Issues. They do not go outside the Pittsburgh media enough. Franklins’ conference yesterday had phone in questions from papers all over the state in addition to the ones
from those that attended the presser in person. That gives them something to boost their relationship and attitude that direction. Radio coverage of the games is terrible outside of KDKAs’ reception area. Coordinating support from the regional campuses is inadequate. Pitt Johnstown has their local campus homecoming the same Saturday as a big home football game and does little to promote fooball support and interest other than selling tickets and limited transportation. There seems to be no central effort of note to boost regional campus support by the local admins at each, not so PSU. Game re-broadcast on Root sports is never a known time and place sometimes at 3am while WV is always on the same time.WV, Notre Dame, Penn State all upstaged Pitt with pre season football shows like you see on the recruiting sections of the websites. We have bigger problems here than Narduzzies blackouts. Glad to see new efforts promoting game events. Maybe our new AD can look at some of these other targets of opportunity also.

Comment by Pitt60 09.06.17 @ 9:51 am

Well said Pitt60. I live in the south central part of the state and all media is about Pedo state. We did make the news here when the suspensions were announced. Very frustrating!

Comment by Trapper 09.06.17 @ 10:02 am

Just win and Pitt will get all the publicity they need. Nobody outside of PA is going to care about what some Pitt players say in a Wednesday afternoon interview. As someone else said, if this is really a sticking point for some people just have the AD throw some positive press out there. Such a dumb issue. H2P

Comment by Coach Ditka 09.06.17 @ 10:21 am

Doesn’t matter. they won last year, so why not do it again this year?

Comment by DocJLK 09.06.17 @ 10:29 am

personally, I kinda prefer player silence for all teams for all sports .. college and pro.

Comment by wbb 09.06.17 @ 1:53 pm

I do like interviews in pre- and post- season when it’s about their backgrounds and aspirations, etc …. but frankly, I don’t pay much attention what they say abut games any other week

Comment by wbb 09.06.17 @ 1:56 pm

I don’t care whether Pitt players and coaches speak during game weeks. Their comments are infinitely more interesting immediately after a game. Tempest in a teapot created by media types who havent taken the time to prepare a player profile or some other interesting story weeks before.

Comment by JoeL 09.06.17 @ 2:34 pm

It’s all part of THE PLAN. Pitt has been secretly installing a very complex offense and a defense no one has seen before.
It will be unveiled Saturday.

For the YSU game a simple offense with a tight line and 10 plays was put in to begin the deception. Also, the defense was a. simple 2 week install which was why so many assignments were missed!

Anyhow, that’s what I believe. Anything is better than the truth!

Comment by Dan 72 09.06.17 @ 4:58 pm

Going to play only LBs and DBs on defense and blitz on every down. Running the Navy/GA Tech triple option offense. Going to be a huge surprise.

Comment by pitt1972 09.07.17 @ 4:14 pm

Penn States offense is soft. Some tough hits will do the trick.

Their D isnt that tough or aggressive. Nor that fast but they do have sound fundamentals.

This game will be close.

Key is Pitt’s D hurting the Nitters. State is the big bully. A punch will expose them for what they truly are.

Comment by TX Panther 09.07.17 @ 5:53 pm

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