BLACKSBURG (VA) -- On Saturday, Kenny Pickett threw two touchdown passes while rushing for a score in Pittsburgh's 28-7 win over Virginia Tech.
Pickett completed three touchdown passes -- one to Gavin Bartholomew, one to Jared Wayne -- and won the game with a 3-yard run. The Panthers (5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference, 2-0) won their third consecutive game. Pittsburgh won in Blacksburg, their first win since 2015. This gave them sole possession of the ACC's Coastal Division.
Pat Narduzzi, Pittsburgh coach, stated that every game was a statement. "We don't care about the crowd or any other thing. You just need to get out there and perform and play Pitt football. Play Pitt football. That's why we came here. We didn't care about who was there. We didn't care about the scoreboard. Just play Pitt football."
Pickett is the ACC Player of Year leader at the halfway point. He has thrown 21 touchdown passes, and only one interception. Pickett completed 22 of 37 passes for 203 yards.
Israel Abanikanda ran for a record-breaking 140 yards for the Panthers. They finished with 411 yards of offense.
Virginia Tech finished the season with a season-low of 225 yards (3-3, 1-1). In the third quarter, the Hokies scored one touchdown on a 2-yard pass by Braxton Burmeister and Tayvion Roberts.
Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech coach, stated that it was his job to make sure we play at the highest level possible. "At times this season, it's been that high. We didn't reach that level today. This is not play-calling. That's defensive strategy. It's not special teams. It's not players. The head coach has that responsibility. They let me down and I am disappointed and mad at my self.
Pittsburgh: While the Panthers' offense is all the focus, Pittsburgh's defense deserves praises. In the three previous games, the Panthers have only allowed 35 points and have not allowed more than 100 yards of rushing. This is a solid team that is well-positioned heading into the second half.