Pittsburgh had a nice season in 2015. They won 8 games, and contended for an ACC Coastal Division Title late into the season, but Pat Narduzzi has a long way to go to change the losing culture that surrounds the Pitt program.
Several times this past season, Pitt had opportunities to have a special season. At 6-1 playing at home, Pitt couldn’t stay with UNC and lost 26-19. Pitt again at home against a reeling Miami team sitting at 8-3 had a chance for a 9 win regular season. They dropped the ball and lost 29-24 to Miami.
Pitt had another shot at a 9 win season, and a bowl win over a ranked Navy team. A win that would have built momentum going into the 2016 season. Instead Pittsburgh turned back the clock and had Paul Chryst era performance. That was the disturbing and concerning part if you are a Pittsburgh fan.
The Panthers looked poorly prepared on defense, and were to be honest manhandled upfront by Navy. Navy didn’t beat Pittsburgh with sleight of hand and mis-direction, they pushed Pittsburgh’s defense all over the field. I’m not sure why Pitt couldn’t match Navy’s intensity.
That falls on Narduzzi.
He didn’t have his team ready to play. Pittsburgh has been a mediocre program for several years. It’s a program that’s become used to losing. Pat Narduzzi instilled some life into the Panthers this year, but to turn Pitt around isn’t going to be a quick fix.
The culture change started this year, but to end the year with two straight losses including a blowout bowl loss proves just how much work is ahead of Narduzzi.