Friday, November 26, 2010
Mountaineers strike first
By Brian Bennett
PITTSBURGH -- Pitt came out trying to be aggressive in the Backyard Brawl, throwing the ball on its first five plays from scrimmage.
It was that fifth play that proved problematic.
Brandon Hogan picked off Tino Sunseri and ran it back 53 yards to the Pitt 2, where Ryan Clarke banged it in for the touchdown on the next play. Just like that, West Virginia has jumped ahead and put the burden on Pitt to play from behind against this great defense.
Throwing it is the right plan for Pitt, and the Panthers used a lot of play-action early. That's the only way to loosen this defense up. But let's see if the turnover makes Dave Wannstedt get conservative, and whether Sunseri can avoid further costly mistakes.