Narduzzi-expect ground game in Backyard Brawl

LISTEN-what Narduzzi told the Fan Morning Show
Pat Narduzzi talking to ref
Photo credit Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – This game is no different than the Wofford game is what Pat Narduzzi told the Fan Morning Show on Friday in Morgantown.

There is some context to that quote, he wants his team to treat this game the same as any other in terms of executing and taking care of business. He said his message is to trust your training they had all camp. It’s what he believes they didn’t do in a loss to Cincinnati. He wants his team to get back into a camp mindset and do let it all go to ‘heck’ when things happen in a game.

He has allowed for his team to ‘get amped up’ during the week. John Denver may have played once, twice, tens of times during practice on the South Side in preparation for the Country Road to Milan Puskar Stadium.

Narduzzi allows his offensive coordinators the freedom to call plays during a game. Good bet he was involved in the game plan this week of getting back to Pat Narduzzi-type football. Ground a team down and supplement with the throw.

“We are going to have to run the football,” Narduzzi told Adam Crowley and Dorin Dickerson on 93.7 The Fan. “We can’t get into a passing game.”

But he then quickly turned blame from the offense to the side of the ball he’s passionate about and coached the most, defense.

“We gave up too many points early last week, that was number one most disappointing thing,” Narduzzi said on 93.7 The Fan. “You win championships with defense. You better be able to stop the run. You let someone run on you and score at the same time, and you let them be two-dimensional, you have issues. When you don’t stop the run, bad things can happen. Nobody made our offense be one-dimensional except maybe our defense.”

When they do play offense, whether he’s trying to pump his tires or truly believes it, there is still confidence in transfer Phil Jurkovec. The sixth-year quarterback was 10-32 in the loss to Cincinnati and had to endure booing on his home field.

“I expect Phil to play like we expect him to play,” Narduzzi told the Fan Morning Show. “Everyone is going to point the finger at the quarterback. He gets all the love when you win and all the hate when you lose. There is enough hate to go around.”

“If you put the tape on, even me as a defensive guy. I don’t know offense tape like they do, 11 guys have to do the right thing. If you have guys doing the wrong thing, it’s hard on the quarterback. He’s got the hardest job. They need to execute around him better than they did.”

“I expect the execution out of the other 10 guys to be better than what it was and give Phil the chance to be successful.”

In his 50th season calling Pitt games, Bill Hillgrove will announce kickoff at 7:30p on 93.7 The Fan with Backyard Brawl honorary captain Pat Bostick, long-time Panthers voice Larry Richert and Pitt All-American Dorin Dickerson. Pregame starts at 4:30 with Bob Pompeani, Dickerson and Paul Zeise.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports