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Pitt keeps bowl hopes alive with win over Notre Dame

Notre Dame v Pittsburgh Getty Images

It was a back and forth game from start to finish Saturday night in the steel city. Notre Dame (7-3) and Pittsburgh (5-4, 2-3 ACC) traded blows all night long, touchdown for touchdown, until the Panthers broke the routine and took control in the fourth quarter. In the end, Pittsburgh scored a huge win to boost their postseason hopes, while crushing any slim hope even the most optimistic Notre Dame fans of returning to a BCS bowl game this January. Pittsburgh topped the visiting Irish 28-21.

Tommy Rees had another Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde type performance. The Fighting Irish quarterback completed just 18 of 38 pass attempts but did so for 318 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He was also intercepted twice and struggled against a team that has a top 20 pass defense this season. His second interception of the game, in the fourth quarter, set Pittsburgh up for a short touchdown run by James Connor to break a 21-21 tie. The Panthers defense later came up with a fourth down stop late in the fourth quarter to seal the deal on a 28-21 victory.

Pittsburgh’s Tom Savage had a much better evening, completing 22 of 35 pass attempts for 243 yards and two touchdowns and zero interceptions. Devin Street had both touchdown catches on his four receptions for 76 yards.

Notre Dame’s offense rolled up 451 yards of offense ┬ábut three turnovers doomed the Irish’s chances. In the second half Notre Dame’s possessions resulted in a punt, touchdown, interception, interception, punt and a game-deciding turnover on downs. Notre Dame also missed a field goal in the first half and lost a fumble after moving the football 69 yards on a promising drive. the mistakes proved too much to overcome on the road as the Irish lost for the third time this season.

Notre Dame could have made a run for a potential BCS bowl spot with the win, but now the bowl outcome for the Irish appears to be much less rewarding than where this program was a season ago. Pittsburgh’s bowl picture is still in question as well, with the Panthers now needing just one more win to become bowl eligible and to enter the ACC bowl line-up. Pittsburgh has three games left to pick up one win. Two games will come at home, against North Carolina and a fading Miami team. A road trip to Syracuse comes in between the home dates.

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9 Responses to “Pitt keeps bowl hopes alive with win over Notre Dame”
  1. pens5829 says: Nov 10, 2013 12:04 AM

    Hail to Pitt! ND sucks!!!

  2. 700levelvet says: Nov 10, 2013 1:16 AM

    NIU is going to crush ND when they play in a BCS bowl game… Oh wait I mean the godaddy.com bowl…..ha ha ha. Where’s Rudy?

  3. moosealiny says: Nov 10, 2013 6:01 AM

    HAIL TO PITT. This is obviously a nice win for Pitt and coaching staff. This is the closest thing to a signature win for coach chryst thus far. Of course beating N.D. last year like they should have and knocking then outta the ABC’s championship they never belonged in would have been better….but we’ll take it. I like coach. He proved he’s dedicated to return the panthers to glory by not taking the “homer job in Wisconsin when it opened up. And finally some stability too after the fiasco when wansdttadt (sp?lol) “stepped” down. Hopefully they keep coach chryst(sp?!?) Around I think he’ll do well for Pitt.

    Hail Pitt

  4. metalhead65 says: Nov 10, 2013 8:26 AM

    can we say this officially knocks dame out of the national title game? I would say it takes them out of a BCS bowl to but since they are dame and play by a different set of rules than everybody else I won’t be so sure until they lose to Stanford giving them 4 losses on the season. so how does a bowl game in beautiful downtown detroit in the dead of winter sound dame fans? or will it be beneath you and decline it it again since you prefer to go to bigger bowls you do not belong in? the only thing wrong with that is you would be taking the place of a more deserving team otherwise I have no problem watching you get blown out again.

  5. thegamecocker says: Nov 10, 2013 10:13 AM

    ND 7-3 and with Stanford looming looking at an 8-4 season. ND could not beat a mediocre Pitt squad. They had trouble with the Air Force and Navy and unlike last year when they were INCREDIBLY LUCKY with Manti T’eo and his “illusionary dead girlfriend” receiving the “sympathy vote” for Heisman honors, they are what their record says they are AND against mediocre competition! They have beaten “POWERHOUSE PURDUE”, one of the worst programs this season; a mediocre Michigan team and now the loss to Pitt. They had a QB who admittedly cheated and a linebacker (Prince shembo) alleged to have lead to the suicide of Lizzie Seeburg, a ND student. Brian Kelly is doing a “GREAT JOB” attracting high quality student/atheletes…..NOT! And the AD is an “EMPTY SUIT” as well for not accepting the Big Ten offer where ND should be playing. Instead, they’ll Wake Forest, Duke, Ga, Tech, BC, Syracuse, and of course Pitt. This school disgusts me….and they are afraid to continue playing Michigan. Pathetic

  6. pauljmkenny says: Nov 10, 2013 12:14 PM

    Gamecocker!
    You disgust me. You left out wins over mich st, asu, in your analysis of their big wins. Coward. Conveniently left out your team. I’m guessing big ten, so I will address. Big ten or acc, are you kidding me. Acc is way better. Way better. Indiana, I’ll, nw, purdue, minn, Iowa? Teams you names (ga tech, duke, wf, etc) better schedule than big ten. Nd got better schedule playing acc than big ten . Michigan kicker raped girl, and Taylor Lewen threatened to rape he again if she told press. Yeah Michigan is great school.

  7. pauljmkenny says: Nov 10, 2013 12:18 PM

    You are not an ND fan ,yet you must leave an opinion. Joke. Who does that. Who goes on a comment board of 2 teams he is not fans of and leaves dumb message. Seriously? Get a life. Weak. And then conveniently doesn’t let anyone know who his team is, so no one can analyze his favorite program. You are the richie incognito of the fan board. Nice job a hole. You are an absolute loser!

  8. melikefootball says: Nov 10, 2013 12:31 PM

    Pitt showed the National audience that ND deserve last week to be dropped out of top 25 when they only beat Navy by 4. To much hype for a team ran by big pocket alumni. Heck the announcers last night were so one sided Herby was trying to question a spotting of a ball at end of game. ND is what we thought they were.

  9. imaduffer says: Nov 10, 2013 12:47 PM

    @pauljimkenny,

    I didn’t know there was a school in the B1G called I’ll (I will). But you are the expert not me.

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