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Preview 2023: Pittsburgh vs Boston College Football

Phil of the Past

NCAA Football: Pittsburgh at Boston College Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Well, well, well how the turned tables have turned. Phil Jurkovec and Boston College reunite but on opposite sidelines. Thursday night under the lights, and it’s likely to be one fun buildup. Throw in OC Frank Cignetti and you have one heck of a revenge game. But for who?

When: Thursday, November 16th, 7:00PM

Where: Pittsburgh, PA

Last Time Out

The Eagles are riding high on a two game win streak, but still trail in the overall series 15-17. The 2020 behind closed doors match was an instant classic. BC prevailed in OT 31-30 off a missed extra point by the Panthers. The cosmic forces of the universe showing some love finally. Zay went berserk and Jurkovec found him plenty, while on the other end Kenny Pickett was hobbled but still nearly dragged his team to victory.

Last year’s Panthers went 9-4, good for second in the former Coastal. Pat Narduzzi makes it ten years coaching and has built a strong program. Transitioning off an NFL QB in Pickett isn’t easy, but Pitt made it work. Now in comes a second straight transfer quarterback.

Offensive Outlook

There’s nowhere to start but one Phil Jurkovec. Once the prodigal son, Jurkovec has since dealt with injuries and a drop in confidence. He returns home in hope of a fresh start, and recreate some magic with OC Frank Cignetti Jr.

Pitt keeps consistent through solid line play and a strong rushing attack. They have consistency on the line, good to keep Jurkovec upright, and a strong set of backs, including an LSU transfer in Derrick Davis. Despite losing their leading rusher, Rodney Hammond who shined in last season’s Sun Bowl is there to fill his shoes.

Daejon Reynolds comes in from Florida to help replenish the receiving corps. Aside from him, the Panthers offense has a group of steady, reliable receivers. No Jordan Addison-type to worry about. It doesn’t seem like we’ll be seeing the air it out Phil, but this likely works much better for what Pitt is looking for.

Panther Defense

For four straight seasons, the Panthers have tallied over 40 sacks. After finishing number two in the country, they lose a number of front seven players No matter the group though, it should not be taken lightly. These pass rushers stay fresh with an offense that dominates the time of possession.

Emmett Morehead will need to be very careful dealing with the Pitt secondary. Two of the best corners in the conference are sitting out there in MJ Devonshire and Marquis Williams, and they bring in a new safety from Florida. These are veterans that have about a dozen interceptions in their collegiate careers. They’ll take risks, but can be taken for a lot of yards.

Preseason Prediction

Their’s familiarity on both sides, but Jurkovec will be playing with the chip on his shoulders. The short week for BC doesn’t help either. Pitt gets the better 27-17.