Pickett Struggling in Second Year

Pitt head coach says it's part of the process

Jeff Hathhorn
October 01, 2018 - 1:52 pm

Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

SOUTH SIDE (93.7 the Fan) – The expectations were huge coming into the season.  Optimistic Pitt fans thought they had the next Will Greir or Trace McSorley ready for this year, but Kenny Pickett’s sophomore season has been a slump to date.

Pickett is 220th in division one football in passer rating, 91st in yards and the Panthers are just 2-3 to start the season.

“Is he where you thought he’d be coming off that Miami game a year ago?” Narduzzi said.   “He’s still a young guy.  I’m happy where Kenny is, I love that kid.  It’s a process.”

Narduzzi said the New Jersey native needs help-from his line, from his other receivers, from the coaches.

“Right now, the game is moving fast for him,” Narduzzi said Monday.  “Once you start to get multiple games under your belt and feel those pressures, the game will eventually slow down for him.  That’s what you have to wait for, but I don’t know when that is going to help him.”

Panthers have scored only 17 points in the second half this year and Narduzzi admits Pickett may be putting too much on his shoulders.

“I’m sure he does,” Narduzzi said.  “Who doesn’t?  I do too.  He’s that type of guy that’s going to say that’s my fault.  I should have done this and those things pile up at times.  There’s guys around him that should be saying ‘Kenny, that’s my fault.  I should have gone up and got the ball’.”

Narduzzi says Pickett needs to play within the framework of what the defense is giving him.  Of the seven remaining games, three of the opponents are top 50 in the nation in total defense, including games at Notre Dame and Miami

“I think it’s all young quarterbacks,” Narduzzi said.  “I think it’s part of the process you have to go through with a young quarterback, a young safety, a young corner, a young mike linebacker and young, first year left guard.”

With the clocking ticking on the season, youth needs to become experience.  Quickly.