Even though Pitt showed frustrating growing-pains in their first four games of the 2011 season under new head coach Todd Graham, I was more than convinced that the program was heading in the right direction after their very convincing 44-17 demolition of the then 16th ranked South Florida Bulldogs on national television just two Thursdays ago. I even dared myself to dream about a Big East title and BCS bowl game after such an awesome debut in conference play.
Well, I no longer am convinced that the program is heading in the right direction. I mean, it could be, but even if it is, the journey is going to be a long one.
Last week, the Panthers went to Rutgers to play a team I thought they were superior to and got absolutely crushed, 34-10.
Today, I thought they could have a week to work on and refine every aspect of their high octane approach in a non-conference match-up against Utah, especially with the Utes coming to Heinz Field with an inexperienced quarterback.
But, Pitt has its own set of inexperienced quarterbacks in Tino Sunseri and Trey Anderson, and the two combined to throw for 50 yards the entire game. That is not a typo, that is a fact.
Ray Graham, one of the most exciting and dynamic running backs in the country, only had 12 carries for 46 yards.
Pitt jumped out to an early 14-3 thanks to two special teams touchdowns but couldn't overcome that horrible offense and fell to the Utes, 26-14. The Panthers offense looked so bad, an ESPN anchorwoman supposedly apologized to the television audience for what they had just witnessed.
Graham did simplify things on both offense and defense leading-up to the South Florida game.
Could it be that he's gone back to making things a little more complicated for his charges?
I don't know what to make of anything right now. All I know is Pitt has lost two-straight games by a combined score of 60-24 and now sits at 3-4.
A second-straight trip to the BBVA Compass Bowl never seemed so inviting.