1979 Pittsburgh Panthers football team

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1979 Pittsburgh Panthers football
Pitt Panthers wordmark.svg
Fiesta Bowl champion
Eastern champion
Fiesta Bowl, W 16–10 vs. Arizona
Conference Independent
Ranking
Coaches No. 6
AP No. 7
1979 record 11–1
Head coach Jackie Sherrill (3rd season)
Offensive coordinator Wally English (1st season)
Offensive scheme Multiple pro-style
Defensive coordinator Foge Fazio (1st season)
Base defense Multiple front
Home stadium Pitt Stadium
(Capacity: 56,500)
Seasons
← 1978
1980 →
1979 Division I-A independents football records
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
No. 6 Florida State           11 1 0
No. 7 Pittsburgh           11 1 0
UNLV           9 1 2
No. 17 Temple           10 2 0
Tulane           9 3 0
Rutgers           8 3 0
East Carolina           7 3 1
No. 20 Penn State           8 4 0
South Carolina           8 4 0
Navy           7 4 0
Notre Dame           7 4 0
Southern Miss           6 4 1
Syracuse           7 5 0
Colgate           5 4 1
Boston College           5 6 0
Holy Cross           5 6 0
Memphis           5 6 0
Miami           5 6 0
North Texas State           5 6 0
Villanova           5 6 0
Virginia Tech           5 6 0
West Virginia           5 6 0
Georgia Tech           4 6 1
Louisville           4 6 1
Connecticut           3 6 2
William & Mary           4 7 0
Illinois State           3 8 0
Northeast Louisiana           3 8 0
Army           2 8 1
Air Force           2 9 0
Cincinnati           2 9 0
Richmond           0 11 0
Rankings from AP Poll

The 1979 Pittsburgh Panthers football team represented the University of Pittsburgh in the 1979 NCAA Division I-A football season. The Panthers competed in the 1980 Fiesta Bowl. Pitt was awarded the Lambert-Meadowlands Trophy as the champion of the East.

Roster[edit]

1979 Pittsburgh Panthers football team roster
Players Coaches
Offense
Pos. # Name Class
Defense
Pos. # Name Class
Special teams
Pos. # Name Class
Head coach
Coordinators/assistant coaches

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (S) Suspended
  • (I) Ineligible
  • Injured Injured
  • Redshirt Redshirt

Schedule[edit]

In the Backyard Brawl, Pittsburgh was led by freshman quarterback Dan Marino. He directed Pitt to a 24–17 victory in the last college football game played at old Mountaineer Field.[1]

Date Time Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
Sat. Sep. 15 1:30 p.m. Kansas No. 16 Pitt StadiumPittsburgh, PA W 24–0   41,545
Sat. Sep. 22 1:00 p.m. at North Carolina No. 13 Kenan Memorial StadiumChapel Hill, NC L 7–17   50,500
Sat. Sep. 29 7:30 p.m. at Temple Veterans StadiumPhiladelphia, PA W 10–9   34,039
Sat. Oct. 6 1:30 p.m. Boston College Pitt Stadium • Pittsburgh, PA W 28–7   37,146
Sat. Oct. 13 10:00 a.m. Cincinnatidagger Pitt Stadium • Pittsburgh, PA (River City Rivalry) W 35–0   31,620
Sat. Oct. 20 4:30 p.m. at No. 12 Washington No. 17 Husky StadiumSeattle, WA W 26–14   52,485
Sat. Oct. 27 1:30 p.m. No. 17 Navy No. 12 Pitt Stadium • Pittsburgh, PA W 24–7   51,332
Sat. Nov. 3 12:30 p.m. Syracuse No. 12 Pitt Stadium • Pittsburgh, PA (Rivalry) ABC W 28–21   43,500
Sat. Nov. 10 1:30 p.m. at West Virginia No. 12 Mountaineer FieldMorgantown, WV (Backyard Brawl) W 24–17   38,681
Sat. Nov. 17 1:30 p.m. at Army No. 11 Michie StadiumWest Point, NY W 40–0   31,689
Sat. Dec. 1 12:30 p.m. at No. 20 Penn State No. 11 Beaver StadiumUniversity Park, PA (Rivalry) ABC W 29–14   76,958
Tue. Dec. 25 3:30 p.m. vs. Arizona No. 10 Sun Devil StadiumTempe, AZ (Fiesta Bowl) NBC W 16–10   55,347
*Non-conference game. daggerHomecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll released prior to game. All times are in Eastern Time.

Coaching staff[edit]

1979 Pittsburgh Panthers football staff
Coaching Staff   Support Staff
  • Alex Kramer – Executive Assistant
  • Kevin Dickey – Recruiting Coordinator
  • Nick Gasparato – Graduate Assistant
  • Jerry Leith – Graduate Assistant
  • Nick Rapone – Graduate Assistant
  Strength and Conditioning Staff
  • Paul Stark – Weight, Strength Coach

[2]

Team players drafted into the NFL[edit]

Player Position Round Pick NFL Club
Jo Jo Heath Defensive Back 6 141 Cincinnati Bengals
Bob Gruber Tackle 10 276 Los Angeles Rams

[3]

References[edit]

Dan Marino quarterbacks Pitt in 35-0 rout of Cincinnati on October 13, 1979
  1. ^ http://deathby1000papercuts.com/2007/12/the-backyard-brawl-100-years-of-wvu-and-pitt-football/
  2. ^ "Coaches Biographies". 1979 Pitt Football. University of Pittsburgh Department of Athletics. 1979. pp. 19–24. Retrieved December 26, 2012. 
  3. ^ http://www.pro-football-reference.com/draft/1980.htm