November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving and Relaxing

Filed under: Admin — Chas @ 3:12 pm

A few weeks ago, there was an article talking about holidays in terms of handling them as a parent. It was superficially amusing, especially in terms of the male/female dynamic in coping. But Thanksgiving stuck with me, because it is the most food-centric. And by food-centric, I mean preparing dishes. Kitchen and prep time. Most of the others can be faked, and/or unless you live in a warm weather climate can be done on a grill — which sets up a better division of labor for the adults.

Which again sets up that male/female dynamic of cooking vs. grilling. Unless, you are like me, who handles both because my wife can’t cook to save a dying man’s life. She pretty much gave up after serving me a hockey puck (it was supposed to be a boneless chicken breast that she tried to roast in the oven(?)) as part of my birthday dinner during our first year of dating. She can handle baking, because it involves very specific instructions and no room for improvisation, but not  anything that involves margins. But I digress.

The point is,  for me, Thanksgiving is a hell of a lot of stress. Mainly leading up to it. Planning the menu. Figuring out what I need. Going out to get it (total Bill Parcells on this aspect). Thanksgiving is fine. I’ll happily work in the kitchen all day preparing the meal, drinking wine and whiskey. Letting people float in and out to talk, asking insincerely if they can help (I make the kids serve as prep cooks with peeling and cutting, so they don’t get out of earning the meal).

But everything leading up to it while squeezing in the crunch of work with a short week. FTS. I really should take the week off and make it easy on myself.

Yeah, it’s been a rough week for Pitt football and basketball.

Between having to control the emotions on that front with a very limited amount of time (or, realistically none). Just no chance to converse over the past week. Haven’t even been on Twitter since a brief foray on Monday.

I can’t help but think that some of that is a good thing. There would have been some half-cocked rants,otherwise. To most they would have been understandable. As much as I sometimes position myself as semi-neutral on things. At the end of the day, I still consider myself a Pitt man first and foremost. With all the requisite emotional pain, stress and anger.

The problem is we don’t seem to be allowed to admit when emotion overwhelms common sense as much these days. We go off on a rant. Rather then concede inaccuracies. Rather then admit emotion was stronger then the long view. Too often, in too many parts of things. We double down on the stupidity.

Because we’d rather look like an ignorant ass then back down. Then maybe admit we were a little too emotional. Afraid to have our words thrown back at us later as some example of hypocrisy. So we stay on our position no matter what.

Fuck that.

We screw up. We overreact. We make a mistake. Admit and move on with things. Do penance if it calls for it. Apologize. Why is that so fucking hard to do?

Okay, that went on a different direction then I intended. So much for that, “Thanks everyone for reading and I’m grateful you people still want to read my blather” post. I’ll get to that one at some point, but apparently I had to get something else out of my system first.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.


Happy Thanksgiving Chad… still haven’t got the turkey taste outta my mouth from last weeks loss to the VTech Turkeys

Comment by BigB 11.23.17 @ 3:35 pm

Happy thanksgiving Chas and all the faithful!


Comment by WLAT 910 radio and the big beat! 11.23.17 @ 6:10 pm

Happy Thanksgiving Chas.

Hoping for a 13-9 Lyke performance tomorrow.

I’ll be thankful if our young team keeps the game competitive with a chance to win at the end.


Comment by Erie Express 11.23.17 @ 6:15 pm

Happy Turkey Day.
It’s a good time to be a Pitt fan, as the only direction we can go is up.
Or so I tell myself.

Comment by Gasman 11.23.17 @ 6:25 pm


I understand. I look at Pitt Blather as a place to vent those emotions. It is therapeutic. And sports is a stressor that we are supposed to enjoy and a way to temporarily forget the REAL challenges, problems and stress in life.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.

And now onto the stresses of the Christmas (and basketball) season….

Comment by xfmrman 11.23.17 @ 8:52 pm

Right, wrong, or indifferent, at this point I feel the same way about tomorrow’s game against Miami as I will about every basketball game this season: Just don’t get blown out and I will call it progress!

Comment by HbgFrank 11.23.17 @ 11:08 pm

Happy Thanksgiving!

Comment by panther94 11.23.17 @ 11:16 pm

Today is DiNucci’s birthday. How does he not get the nod to start?

Blow out the hurricanes!

Comment by Erie Express 11.24.17 @ 8:42 am

Pickett comes in to relieve the birthday boy and leads Pitt to an upset victory.


Comment by Erie Express 11.24.17 @ 8:43 am

Happy Thanksgiving, Chas … For what it’s worth, I appreciate your efforts to remain neutral but I’m glad that’s not the focal point of your blog.

No matter how rough a patch Pitt is going through, you are always pro-Pitt. Maybe not pro-coach or pro-player or pro-administration but you stay true to being a Pitt fan. You never waiver on that front.

I’m thankful that you put being a Pitt fan first … and everything else second.

In my opinion, this is where some of the other blogs lose their way. In an effort to remain neutral, when things turn sour, the natural tendency is turn overtly negative. It becomes too emotional .. and the misery just flows out … consuming everything else in it’s way.

Maybe it’s the Gen-X in me, but I enjoy the witty sarcasm with dashes of optimism you present in your arguments. You keep it real without letting the negativity consume you. At the same time, you know how to keep optimism at arms length. It’s within reach but, being a Pitt fan, you know it’s dangerous to let it too close. It’s always lingering out there on the event horizon. Someday, maybe, we’ll get there but until we do …

Your greatest attribute, in my opinion, is the rationality you present. This is what makes the Blather stand out from the crowd.

Thanks for being the true voice of reason for Pitt football and basketball.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.24.17 @ 10:45 am

If Nucci starts, I will turn off the set and consider Pitt Football done for the year. Not even Narduzzi could be moron enough to start Ben.

Comment by Dan 72 11.24.17 @ 11:24 am

Looks like the short Nooch era is over….

Zeise is playing well. Good pass rush too. Maddox with the only bad play on defense getting turned the wrong way.

Comment by Jackagain 11.24.17 @ 1:45 pm

Well, Pitt might not be the number 1 team in the nation. Just number 2.

Comment by 66Goat 11.24.17 @ 3:35 pm

Great win!

Comment by panther94 11.24.17 @ 3:41 pm

This is enough to get excited about 2018. One yard short of a bowl game though.

Comment by Jackagain 11.24.17 @ 3:57 pm

That win will make the basketball season more palatable.

Comment by alcofan 11.24.17 @ 4:02 pm

Just got back from the game – great fun and electric atmosphere at Heinz today.

Miami came to Pittsburgh and got punched in the mouth by a bunch of young, hungry FB players.


Comment by Erie Express 11.24.17 @ 6:17 pm

A few games back I commented that it might not be a good idea to start Pickett in the last 2 games and throw him to the lions.

Turns out he IS the lion.

Comment by Jackagain 11.24.17 @ 9:51 pm

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Hail to Pitt!

Comment by AnotherClancyRebound 11.24.17 @ 11:48 pm

This morning the win over miami still feels good. Nice seeing the young guys play Lyke Wheeler, Watts, Pine, Campbell and of course Kenny.

QO was my favorite as without his desire and determination on those late game runs, I’m not sure Pitt keeps the MO.


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 7:50 am

Erie, how about Brian Popp, 4th leading tacklers yesterday.

Comment by alcofan 11.25.17 @ 11:15 am

Isn’t Popp a SR? I Lyke his name for a LBer.

The Ironhead tribute was pretty cool. I missed the break when Heather presented the Turnover Chain to Stallings. I must have been in the restroom.

The best fan sign of the day was with about 3 minutes remaining in the game and a fan near the student section flashed this – “Bring on ‘Bama”


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 11:42 am

Popp is a redshirt junior walk on from Ohio. You don’t need all 5 stars to beat the Miami’s of this world. Maybe the Alabamas.

Comment by alcofan 11.25.17 @ 12:53 pm

Alcofan – I think Popp was introduced with the SR’s and parents prior to the game. Last year, two OL RS JR’s were also introduced on SR day and did not return this season.

Did anyone else see what I thought I saw pre-game yesterday?

Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 1:33 pm

Here’s hoping psu is overrated in the top 3 to start 2018 FB season –

link to


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 1:56 pm

The link from ESPN did not come through well –

“Unranked Pittsburgh has now won four straight games against AP top-three teams.”

2002 #3 VT
2007 #2 wvcc
2016 #2 clemscum
2017 #2 miami


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 1:59 pm

Pitt up by 3, 24-21 against Lehigh.

Comment by Jackagain 11.25.17 @ 2:35 pm

Pitt wins in men’s B.B. today with an 80-68 victory over Lehigh.


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 3:53 pm

Mike Riley terminated at Nebraska. Two other B1G Ten openings could happen soon.

Illinois after they lose to NW today.
Purdue as their 1st year HC becomes a hot prospect to fill one of the many openings around CFB P5 schools.

Note to Heather: be sure to have a few HC candidates in your back pocket (or purse). Must have HC-ing experience and some measure of success. Coordinators need not apply.


Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 4:09 pm

Boykins didn’t even get in.

Comment by alcofan 11.25.17 @ 5:16 pm

The last time Boykin played vs Lehigh he score 12 points for Lafayette.

I thought for sure he’d at least see the floor.

Attendance up slightly to 3,317

The women’s attendance for one game is higher than the 3 men’s games combined. Sad…

Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 5:25 pm

The wvcc FB Team is getting clowned by Oklahoma. Gibson’s D is being shredded.

Enjoyable to watch…

Comment by Erie Express 11.25.17 @ 5:34 pm

Yep the hoopies are getting waxed, FG by OU prior to halftime.

They are going to run up the score, a lot of cheap shots being thrown around today.

Comment by WLAT 910 radio and the big beat! 11.25.17 @ 5:39 pm

The Miami victory couldn’t have a come at better time – huge advantage / edge for recruiting ! Narduzzi’s job is simple : 1) emphasize to recruits the best day’s are yet come , 2) convey the rich tradition of Pitt football , i.e Dorsett, Marino , Green, Jackson , Fralic , Doleman, Martin , Fitzgerald, etc. – Totally display how the school & city are on the leading edge of up & coming hip , cultural and technologially innovative places in America !!! This should be Narduzzi’s greatest recruiting class to date ; I’m talking about at least 1-2 High school All Americans which was commonplace for Pitt in the 80’s !!!

Comment by Daddylonglegs 11.25.17 @ 8:08 pm

Popp was honored for Senior Day.

Comment by Nick 11.25.17 @ 8:35 pm

Thanks Nick.

Comment by alcofan 11.25.17 @ 9:40 pm

After LSU beat TX A&M last night: Ed Orgeron stated he expects offensive coordinator Matt Canada to pursue head coaching opportunities this offseason. Per Ross Dellenger’s tweet, Orgeron added that he hopes Canada lands one.

Interesting news – coaching changes will be maddening this offseason. Will there be any changes made to Pitt’s staff? My guess is NO, with the exception of adding a position coach, maybe for special teams or QB. Would I Lyke to see some coaches moved on from Pitt’s staff? Absolutely!

Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 6:40 am

I respectfully disagree. There will be coaching changes, as the program has digressed. Do not let the glare from the Miami win fool you: we lost to bad teams and our recruiting has fallen off. If HCPN tolerates that, then he accepts mediocrity.

Comment by Gasman 11.26.17 @ 9:30 am

Gasman – if you read my last line, I want coaching changes too. Problem is, I’ve been a Pitt fan since the late 70’s and Pitt never seems to do the correct thing.

So, my opinion is no changes will be made in keeping with SOP.

Recruiting for this year is not over – still time to flip a few higher rated players and convince the uncommitted that Pitt is it!


Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 9:42 am

The program hasn’t digressed. Lol. It was a transition year with a lot of new faces including QB and OC. There very well may be coaches leaving because it’s a transient position and this off season will have more HC coaching changes than normal …but, it’s already been reported (by Vuk) that Duzz does not want to make any changes on the staff.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.26.17 @ 10:01 am

Turd Graham was fired by ASU, ?

Comment by WLAT 910 radio and the big beat! 11.26.17 @ 11:52 am

Fraud gets $11 M buyout.
Who says there is no joy in Mudville?

And Tossing,
Transition year is window dressing jargon by the marketing folks wanting to score Ching-Ching after a shitty year

Comment by Gasman 11.26.17 @ 12:23 pm

Gasman – The transition year was bought up well before the season started … not afterwards or even during. The turnover on offense was going to be hard to replace plus adding a new OC coupled with a new QB.

I’m not sure what sport you watch but, in college football, the transition year is absolutely a real thing.

Go look at successful head coaches 3rd/4th years … the traditional years when you lose the previous coaches starter laden lineup. In Pitt’s case it happened to, in fact, be year 3.

Below points out a few.

link to

When you have a lot of roster turnover … a dip is almost unavoidable. That’s just the reality of 100% roster turnover every 4 to 5 year. Add in coaching changes and lost recruiting years and this is what happens. Duzz has only had two real recruiting classes and they’re either true or redshirt freshman. His first class was put together on the fly in 30 days.

That’s the reality of where Pitt football is right now. Next season should be better and if it’s not, the seat will start to warm.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.26.17 @ 12:45 pm

Schiano to Tennesse

Comment by alcofan 11.26.17 @ 3:31 pm

Narduzzi just bought himself a YEAR FIVE by laying claim to the “UPSET” Chain.

Ending the Season with a THUD would have surely meant DO or DIE in the Fall.

No longer having the lack of a Quarterback to BLAME, let’s hope Narduzzi and Staff are capable of coming out of the blocks with less than EMBARASSING results.

Comment by PittofDreams 11.26.17 @ 3:45 pm

Schiano to Tennessee:
Tough disciplinarian, not liked by former players in both the college and NFL. Good luck in Tennessee. lol.
Pitt needs to jump on the recruits from all the schools that have fired their head coaches, they our out there for the pickings. I don’t believe we have ever seen more coaching firings.

Comment by Pitt Dreamer 11.26.17 @ 4:39 pm

The early signing day is Dec. 20th and will tell a lot about the buzz for Pitt recruiting. Presently have 13 commits, if they all sign we are in good shape, if we have a lot of doubters then we are not. Its plain and simple. In a week or two the Miami aura will wear off and reality sets in. The coaching staff will be very busy in the next 3 weeks, hopefully they will be successful.

Comment by Pitt Dreamer 11.26.17 @ 4:43 pm

Pulled this from an ESPN article today –

Texas A&M owes Sumlin a $10.4 million buyout under the terms of his contract, which is to be paid in the next 60 days and isn’t reduced if he takes another coaching job.

Sumlin compiled the second-best winning percentage (.662) for a Texas A&M coach in the modern era of the program. Since 1950, only R.C. Slocum (123-47-2, .721) has a better winning percentage with A&M.

Deep pockets is an understatement…

Their AD clearly defined expectations after thanking Sumlin for his service and high character while at A&M. Expectations are competing annually for the SEC title and occasionally the National Championship.

Note to Heather: do not call A&M to fill the open date in 2019.

Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 5:41 pm

Found this CBS radio interview with PN from yesterday –

link to


Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 6:16 pm

Duzz has already said the current commits have to sign on 12/20 or Pitt will move on.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.26.17 @ 6:28 pm

Some Tennessee fans not happy with the hiring of Greg Schiano (pulled from from –

link to

Schiano Knew?

The psu scandal keeps on keeping on…

Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 6:41 pm

A talented 4 * WR recruit from the state of Georgia to visit Pitt in 2 weeks –

Jatavious Harris 6’2” 180

Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 7:05 pm

From the Football Scoop –

Tennessee: Jimmy Hyams, a sports talk host of WNML, described as “a flagship station of the Tennessee Vols”, tweets tonight that a press conference to announce Greg Schiano was cancelled due to protests, adding, “Unsure if it will be rescheduled tomorrow or if the deal has fallen through. One prominent booster wasn’t happy with Schiano hire.”

Comment by Erie Express 11.26.17 @ 7:39 pm

dirty, dirty, dirty.

Comment by alcofan 11.26.17 @ 10:11 pm

Do you work for the government, where results dont matter but excuses do?
Call it a transition year if you must, but i call it inadequate.
We lost to 4-8 Syracuse (but they beat Clemson), and a horrible UNC team, almost lost to a MAC team, got creamed by OSU, and couldn’t move the ball 1.5 yards in four downs against VT. So, sure, a transition year.
I suppose it was a transition start of the year when we lost to Northwestern and Navy the year before.
Aim for the stars, and you might hit a stump.
Aim for a stump, and you’ll hit the dirt.

Comment by Gasman 11.26.17 @ 10:42 pm

I just look at the roster and compare it to what left the previous season. Coaches never blamed a transition year so no excuse was given. I don’t play for the team so I’m only giving you a logical reason why. Not an excuse. Sometimes there are valid reasons. Not the greatest season from a coaching perspective. Plenty of mistakes were made. But let’s not pretend this team was ready from a talent or experience level for a coastal championship. Building a program takes time. Pitt isn’t being built for flash in the pan seasons. The goal is for sustained success. Sometimes there are hiccups. They should bounce back next season. Low turnover and a much more experienced team. The next few seasons should be pretty fun. If not, Duzz will be gone.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.27.17 @ 12:16 am

TT….Amen, brother.

Comment by ck 11.27.17 @ 1:40 am

I think the biggest improvement this year was the growth of the Defense. If PN can sustain this growth we will be respectable. The emergence of Pickett is truly exciting. The kid has a set and he can throw the ball. I’m optimistic but not blindly so. We need to field an offensive line that can move people off the line. I thought the O-Line did a great job against the U. HTP.

Comment by The Hagen 11.27.17 @ 1:26 pm

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