Pitt scored on its opening drive and used a suffocating defense to hold a 7-0 lead over Bowling Green this afternoon in the season opener at Heinz Field.
The No. 25 Panthers marched 71 yards in eight plays sparked by third-down conversions on a 4-yard run by LeSean McCoy and a 13-yard pass from Bill Stull to tight end Nate Byham.
LaRod Stephens-Howling’s 27-yard run to the Bowling Green 11 set up McCoy’s touchdown on the next play. Conor Lee converted the point-after kick for a 7-0 lead with 11:12 remaining in the first quarter.
Fifth-year senior Austin Ransom made his first career start at weak-side linebacker in place of the injured Shane Murray (knee) and added his first career interception at the Falcons’ 37 at the 9:45 mark.
Pitt compiled 137 total yards and eight first downs while holding Bowling Green to one first down and 16 yards total offense in the first quarter.