Penn State–Pittsburgh football rivalry

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Penn State–Pittsburgh football rivalry
Penn State Nittany Lions.svg PittPanthers.png
Penn State Nittany Lions Pittsburgh Panthers

Total meetings 96
Series record Penn State leads, 50–42–4
First meeting November 6, 1893
Penn State 32, Pittsburgh 0
Last meeting September 16, 2000
Pittsburgh 12, Penn State 0
Next meeting September 10, 2016
Current win streak Pittsburgh, 1

The Penn State–Pittsburgh football rivalry is an American college football rivalry between the Penn State Nittany Lions and Pittsburgh Panthers. It has been dormant since 2000, but will be renewed with an alternating home-and-home series from 2016 to 2019.

Series history[edit]

Pitt versus Penn State at Pitt Stadium on November 27, 1958

Once considered one of the most important college football rivalries north of the Mason–Dixon line, this intrastate rivalry was deemed the biggest annual game for both schools for a large part of their histories.[1] The game often had regional and national implications with the winner often claiming Eastern college football supremacy and its respective Lambert-Meadowlands Trophy.[2] The rivalry began a slow death in the 1990s when the schools left the ranks of college football independents and chose to join different conferences. Penn State accepted an invitation to join the Big Ten Conference while Pitt's football program joined the Big East Conference where the majority of the school's athletic programs already participated. The conference affiliations of the two previously independent football programs resulted in fewer scheduling opportunities.

The last scheduled game in the series was played at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA, on September 16, 2000 when Pitt shut out Penn State 12–0. The desire of the Penn State athletic department to host an unbalanced number of home games (proposing 2–1 and 3–2 series) at Beaver Stadium was a significant factor in not agreeing to renew the series.[3]

The rivalry can be viewed as the tale of two eras in college football. Prior to 1950, Pitt dominated the series (29–18–2), in one span defeating Penn State in fourteen straight meetings. Pitt coach Jock Sutherland never lost to Penn State (1924–38). From 1950 on, Penn State dominated the series, going 32–13–2. Former Penn State coach Joe Paterno holds the best record against Pitt at 23–7–1 (1966–2000).

Several games are of historic note:

The first game between these instate rivals was played on November 6, 1893, in State College, PA, with Penn State prevailing 32–0. Penn State won the first six meetings.

Pitt's first victory in the series occurred on November 24, 1904 in Pittsburgh, 22–5.

The 1963 game was originally scheduled for Saturday, November 23, but was postponed to December 7 following the assassination of John F. Kennedy on Friday, November 22. The once-beaten Panthers were being touted as a possible Cotton Bowl participant, but the bowl representatives expressed desire to invite Pitt only if they had one loss. With the game postponed until December 7, the Cotton Bowl could not wait. Pitt went on to defeat Penn State 22–21, finishing the season at 9–1, with no bowl.

The 1976 game pitted undefeated Pitt, ranked number one in the nation, against Penn State at Three Rivers Stadium on the night after Thanksgiving, November 26. The score was tied 7–7 at the half. Pitt's coach Johnny Majors moved Tony Dorsett to fullback for the second half, and the Panthers went on to defeat Penn State, 24–7, finishing the regular season 11–0, on their way to a Sugar Bowl victory over Georgia and their first National Championship in 39 years.

1998 game at Pitt Stadium

The 1981 game was one for the ages. Pitt was once again undefeated at 10–0 and number one in the nation, ready to claim the title, "Beast of the East." The Nittany Lions had other ideas when they came to Pitt Stadium on November 28. The game featured two junior quarterbacks, Dan Marino for Pitt and Todd Blackledge for Penn State. Pitt went up 14–0 in the first quarter; Penn State tied it at 14 at the half. The second half belonged to Penn State, scoring 34 second-half points while holding the Panthers scoreless. The 48–14 final cost Pitt a chance for its second national championship in five years.

The 1982 game again featured two of the nation's best teams. Pitt had been ranked preseason number one, but had lost to Notre Dame to enter the game at 9–1. Penn State also entered the game at 9–1, having lost only to Alabama. Again, it would be Marino vs. Blackledge in their last regular season game at a windswept Beaver Stadium. Penn State prevailed 19–10 on the strength of one Blackledge touchdown pass to Kenny Jackson, four field goals and a tenacious defense, and was on its way to a Sugar Bowl upset of Georgia, earning its first National Championship.

The rivalry, which has been on hiatus since 2000, will resume with a four-game series from 2016–19. The teams will play at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh in 2016 and 2018, while battling at Beaver Stadium in State College in 2017 and 2019.[4]

Game results[edit]

Penn State victories are shaded ██ blue. Pittsburgh victories are shaded ██ gold. Ties are white.

# Date Site Winner Loser Series
1 November 6, 1893 State College, PA Penn State 32 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 1–0
2 October 3, 1896 State College, PA Penn State 10 Pittsburgh 4 Penn State 2–0
3 September 30, 1900 Bellefonte, PA Penn State 12 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 3–0
4 September 29, 1901 Bellefonte, PA Penn State 27 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 4–0
5 September 27, 1902 State College, PA Penn State 27 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 5–0
6 October 24, 1903 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 59 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 6–0
7 November 24, 1904 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 22 Penn State 5 Penn State 6–1
8 November 30, 1905 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 6 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 7–1
9 November 29, 1906 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 6 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 8–1
10 November 28, 1907 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 6 Penn State 0 Penn State 8–2
11 November 26, 1908 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 12 Pittsburgh 6 Penn State 9–2
12 November 25, 1909 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 5 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 10–2
13 November 24, 1910 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 11 Penn State 0 Penn State 10–3
14 November 30, 1911 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 3 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 11–3
15 November 28, 1912 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 38 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 12–3
16 November 27, 1913 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 7 Penn State 6 Penn State 12–4
17 November 26, 1914 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 3 Penn State 12–5
18 November 25, 1915 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 0 Penn State 12–6
19 November 30, 1916 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 31 Penn State 0 Penn State 12–7
20 November 29, 1917 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 28 Penn State 6 Penn State 12–8
21 November 28, 1918 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 28 Penn State 6 Penn State 12–9
22 November 27, 1919 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 20 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 13–9
23 November 25, 1920 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 0 Penn State 13–9–1
24 November 24, 1921 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 0 Penn State 13–9–2
25 November 30, 1922 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 0 Penn State 13–10–2
26 November 29, 1923 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 3 Penn State 13–11–2
27 November 27, 1924 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 24 Penn State 3 Penn State 13–12–2
28 November 26, 1925 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 23 Penn State 7 Tie 13–13–2
29 November 25, 1926 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 24 Penn State 6 Pittsburgh 14–13–2
30 November 24, 1927 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 30 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 15–13–2
31 November 29, 1928 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 26 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 16–13–2
32 November 28, 1929 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 17–13–2
33 November 26, 1930 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 19 Penn State 12 Pittsburgh 18–13–2
34 October 31, 1931 State College, PA Pittsburgh 41 Penn State 6 Pittsburgh 19–13–2
35 October 26, 1935 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 9 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 20–13–2
36 November 7, 1936 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 34 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 21–13–2
37 November 20, 1937 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 28 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 22–13–2
38 November 19, 1938 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 26 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 23–13–2
39 November 25, 1939 State College, PA Penn State 10 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 23–14–2
40 November 23, 1940 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 24–14–2
41 November 22, 1941 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 31 Pittsburgh 7 Pittsburgh 24–15–2
42 November 21, 1942 State College, PA Penn State 14 Pittsburgh 6 Pittsburgh 24–16–2
43 November 20, 1943 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 14 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 24–17–2
44 November 25, 1944 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 25–17–2
45 November 24, 1945 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 7 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 26–17–2
46 November 23, 1946 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 27–17–2
47 November 22, 1947 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 29 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 27–18–2
48 November 20, 1948 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 7 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 28–18–2
49 November 19, 1949 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 19 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 29–18–2
50 December 3, 1950 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 21 Pittsburgh 20 Pittsburgh 29–19–2
51 November 14, 1951 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 30–19–2
52 November 22, 1952 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 17 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 30–20–2
53 November 21, 1953 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 17 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 30–21–2
54 November 20, 1954 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 13 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 30–22–2
55 November 19, 1955 State College, PA Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 0 Pittsburgh 31–22–2
56 November 24, 1956 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 7 Pittsburgh 31–22–3
57 November 23, 1957 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 14 Pittsburgh 32–22–3
58 November 27, 1958 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 25 Pittsburgh 21 Pittsburgh 32–23–3
59 November 21, 1959 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 22 Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 33–23–3
60 November 19, 1960 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 14 Pittsburgh 3 Pittsburgh 33–24–3
61 November 25, 1961 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 47 Pittsburgh 26 Pittsburgh 33–25–3
62 November 24, 1962 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 16 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 33–26–3
63 December 7, 1963 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 22 Penn State 21 Pittsburgh 34–26–3
64 November 21, 1964 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 28 Pittsburgh 0 Pittsburgh 34–27–3
65 November 20, 1965 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 30 Penn State 27 Pittsburgh 35–27–3
66 November 19, 1966 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 48 Pittsburgh 24 Pittsburgh 35–28–3
67 November 25, 1967 State College, PA Penn State 42 Pittsburgh 6 Pittsburgh 35–29–3
68 November 23, 1968 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 65 Pittsburgh 9 Pittsburgh 35–30–3
69 November 22, 1969 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 27 Pittsburgh 7 Pittsburgh 35–31–3
70 November 21, 1970 State College, PA Penn State 35 Pittsburgh 15 Pittsburgh 35–32–3
71 November 20, 1971 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 55 Pittsburgh 18 Pittsburgh 35–33–3
72 November 25, 1972 State College, PA Penn State 49 Pittsburgh 27 Pittsburgh 35–34–3
73 November 24, 1973 State College, PA Penn State 35 Pittsburgh 13 Tie 35–35–3
74 November 28, 1974 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 31 Pittsburgh 10 Penn State 36–35–3
75 November 22, 1975 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 7 Pittsburgh 6 Penn State 37–35–3
76 November 26, 1976 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 24 Penn State 7 Penn State 37–36–3
77 November 26, 1977 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 15 Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 38–36–3
78 November 24, 1978 State College, PA Penn State 17 Pittsburgh 10 Penn State 39–36–3
79 December 1, 1979 State College, PA Pittsburgh 29 Penn State 14 Penn State 39–37–3
80 November 28, 1980 State College, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 9 Penn State 39–38–3
81 November 28, 1981 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 48 Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 40–38–3
82 November 26, 1982 State College, PA Penn State 19 Pittsburgh 10 Penn State 41–38–3
83 November 19, 1983 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 24 Pittsburgh 24 Penn State 41–38–4
84 November 24, 1984 State College, PA Pittsburgh 31 Penn State 11 Penn State 41–39–4
85 November 23, 1985 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 31 Pittsburgh 0 Penn State 42–39–4
86 November 22, 1986 State College, PA Penn State 34 Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 43–39–4
87 November 14, 1987 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 10 Penn State 0 Penn State 43–40–4
88 November 12, 1988 State College, PA Pittsburgh 14 Penn State 7 Penn State 43–41–4
89 November 25, 1989 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 16 Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 44–41–4
90 November 24, 1990 State College, PA Penn State 22 Pittsburgh 17 Penn State 45–41–4
91 November 28, 1991 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 32 Pittsburgh 20 Penn State 46–41–4
92 November 21, 1992 State College, PA Penn State 57 Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 47–41–4
93 September 6, 1997 State College, PA Penn State 34 Pittsburgh 17 Penn State 48–41–4
94 September 19, 1998 Pittsburgh, PA Penn State 20 Pittsburgh 13 Penn State 49–41–4
95 September 11, 1999 State College, PA Penn State 20 Pittsburgh 17 Penn State 50–41–4
96 September 16, 2000 Pittsburgh, PA Pittsburgh 12 Penn State 0 Penn State 50–42–4
97 September 10, 2016 Pittsburgh, PA
98 September 16, 2017 State College, PA
99 September 18, 2018 Pittsburgh, PA
100 September 14, 2019 State College, PA

[5]

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Panaccio, Tim (1982). Beast of the East: Penn State vs Pitt: a game-by-game history of America's greatest football rivalry. West Point, NY: Leisure Press. ISBN 0-88011-068-6. 
  2. ^ Fittipaldo, Ray (2011-06-14). "Pitt, Penn State to renew football rivalry in 2016". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA). Retrieved 2011-06-14. 
  3. ^ Cook, Ron (August 30, 2004). "Pitt-Penn State series is bigger than Paterno". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2009-01-29. 
  4. ^ "Penn State and Pitt to Renew Football Rivalry From 2016-19". Penn State Official Athletic Site. December 7, 2012. Retrieved 2012-12-07. 
  5. ^ http://www.cfbdatawarehouse.com/data/div_ia/bigeast/pittsburgh/opponents_records.php?teamid=2514