Game One: Pitt (0-0) vs. Virginia (0-0), Saturday, August 31 at 7:30 p.m.
Series Record: Pitt 8-3
Last Game: Pitt won 23-13 (2018)
Pitt football begins their 130th season of play against ACC foe Virginia this Saturday night at Heinz Field. It also serves as the beginning of the defense of their Coastal Division title and could make or break their hopes of repeating right off the bat, as the Cavaliers are considered a contender to win it this year. Last year’s matchup between the two teams in Charlottesville proved to be something of a watershed moment for both teams. Going into the game Virginia was 6-2 and controlled their destiny to win the division title. Instead Pitt pulled away in the 2nd half of a low-scoring game and went on to win it themselves. The Hoos will be out for revenge this year and with legitimate aspirations to take the Panthers place in Charlotte the first Saturday of December, it will be a real battle to start off the season on a winning note.
To put it simply, the Virginia offense revolves around Quarterback Bryce Perkins. The Senior transferred into the program last year and made quite the impression, earning 3rd Team All-ACC honors. A true dual threat, Perkins is a mobile Quarterback that is a deadly effective passer. He put up 2,680 yards through the air last year and completed 64.5% of his passes. He also had an impressive 25 Touchdowns to only 9 Interceptions. Despite this, the key to stopping the Virginia offense though is to keep him contained in the pocket, as it is the threat of him taking off that allows him to be such an effective passer. Last season, he was the team’s second leading rusher with 923 yards. The good news though is that Pitt was by far the most effective team at keeping him contained that he faced, as he actually rushed for -7 yards and was sacked 5 times.
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