Youngsters Shine In Blue-Gold Game

Paul Chryst said it was by design that Chad Voytik took the bulk of the snaps at quarterback. Friday night, Voytik completed 27-of-33 passes for 358 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Pitt concluded its spring drills with its annual Blue-Gold Scrimmage on Friday night.

Though no score was kept, a total of six touchdowns we scored--three passing, three rushing.

"I thought early, we didn't finish in the red zone," head coach Paul Chryst said, overall on the scrimmage. "It's spring, though. You appreciate the work. We have a long ways to go."

Tom Savage started off the scrimmage, working with the first team. He completed 6-11 passes for 80 yards, then was done early. Chryst said Savage's reps were by design.

"We wanted to get Tom maybe three or four series," Chryst added. "We wanted to get Chad (Voytik) as much work as we could."

Senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald was held from the scrimmage, allowing Tyrone Ezell and Darryl Render to get the bulk of the work at defensive tackle. Devin Cook came on to finish with a pair of sacks.

Voytik seized the opportunity, completed 27 of 33 passes for 358 yards and three touchdown passes. Included was a 34-yarder to early enrollee Scott Orndoff, a 68-yard bomb to Kevin Weatherspoon and a 9-yarder to Orndoff.

If anything, Voytik's performance set the stage for his own offseason, as he will compete for the starting job with Savage once training camp rolls around in August.

"I've never really thought (the competition) was over," Voytik said. "I'm doing everything that I can, and we're all working together."

Weatherspoon was a favorite target of Voytik's all night, and the two have been developing a strong rapport all spring. Weatherspoon led the team with 11 catches for 175 yards and the touchdown. Newcomer Manasseh Garner wasn't far behind, catching 10 passes for 100 yards.

"He's a great guy off the field," Voytik said of Weatherspoon. "You enjoy him off the field, but you enjoy him on the field, even more, too."

Orndoff, who graduated high school in December, was one of four early enrollees this spring, along with TraVon Chapman, Shakir Soto and Tyrique Jarrett. Orndoff caught two passes for 41 yards, both going for touchdowns. Jarrett and Soto saw extensive work on the defensive line. Chapman even got some snaps at quarterback, attempting four passes.

Not to be outdone by the passing game, Isaac Bennett finished with 114 yards rushing, including a 48-yard touchdown where Bennett broke through up the middle, against the first-team defense.

"I tried to stay tight, but I had to shoot through there," Bennett said. "When the receivers made the block, I just went right through there. The line did a nice job."

Prior to the scrimmage, offensive tackle T.J. Clemmings and defensive tackle Tyrone Ezell we named winners of the Ed Conway Award, traditionally given to the most improved player on each side of the ball.

Clemmings started last season at defensive end, before moving over to offensive tackle in bowl preparations.

"It was a nice award to get, and nice to get noticed by the coaches," Clemmings said.

Ezell also earned the award two years ago. He now feels himself taking on a leadership role, entering his senior season.

"Just working hard, just doing what I have to do, whatever I have to do for my team and for myself," Ezell said. "It definitely was a shocker to win the award again, but it was nice."

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