Walking into Heinz Field today, the sun is shining and Pitt band was playing the alma mater — nice game-day atmosphere.
Sideline filled with recruits, which makes today’s game vitally important to coach Paul Chryst, and not just because Pitt is trying to avoid only its third 0-3 start in 40 years.
Chryst must show recruits that his team can compete with the best teams in the country, and there is no better place to start than future ACC opponent Virginia Tech.
Back in the day, Pitt knew how to beat this team. Walt Harris was 4-3 against the Hokies, including a three-game winning streak from 2001-2003. I was in the stands as a patron that night when Lousaka Polite scored the winning touchdown for the Panthers of Larry Fitzgerald.
This, of course, is a different Pitt team, a different Pitt program. Chryst is trying to rebuild a program that has been handcuffed by repeated coaching changes and, now, injuries.
The word in the press box is that Ray Graham is experiencing some soreness in his surgically repaired right knee and is no sure bet to play. He is on the field, warming up, as I write this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Chryst decides to opt for the cautious approach and keep a close eye on Graham’s carries (if he plays at all).