Notable Additions: WR Jason Gaffney 6-2 185 JC transfer, K Joshua Cummings 5-11, 185 JC Transfer
Notable Subtractions: QB Rod Rutherford, WR Larry Fitzgerald, RB Brandon Miree, FB Lousaka Polite, TE Kris Wilson, DE Claude Harriott, CB Shawntae Spencer, P Andy Lee, and LB Lewis Moore were all drafted or signed as free agents by NFL teams
Notable Returnees: RB Raymond Kirkley 5-10 225 junior, RB Jawan Walker 5-10, 215 junior, WR Greg Lee 6-2 180 soph., OG John Simonitis 6-3 300 soph., LB Brian Bennett 6-0, 235 soph., DE Thomas Smith 6-4 275 junior, DT Vince Crochunis 6-4 290 senior, DT Dan Stephens 6-2 295 senior, S Tez Morris 5-10 190 junior, S Tyrone Gilliard 5-11 195 senior
|2004 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE|
Defensive Overview: The defense could be the strength of this year's Pittsburgh team. The Panthers return a ton of depth at linebacker and in the secondary, albeit unproven depth. The biggest loss on defense may be at corner where Shawntae Spencer was rock solid. Bottom line is that the Panthers must find a way to consistently shut down the running game.
Special Teams Overview: Sophomore P Adam Graessle had two seasons to learn from Andy Lee, though Graessle may have a stronger leg than Lee. K David Abdul junior was involved in a serious automobile accident early in the year. His rehab is going well and he may be able to join the team this fall. If Abdul is unable to kick, JC transfer Joshua Cummings will battle incumbent walk-on J.B. Gibboney soph. and walk-on fresh K Connor Lee.
The Panthers can win eight games this season if... the offensive line comes together and the defensive line improves on their sack total last season of six. On offense, whoever the brand new quarterback may be will be asked to not lose games. The defense will be more aggressive under Paul Rhoads, but will need to show that they are not so undersized that teams can smash-mouth them to death.
|TheInsiders.com 2004 College Football Preview|
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