Boston College visits Heinz Field for Homecoming

The Panthers look to remain perfect in conference play when they host the Eagles Saturday.

Pitt (5-2, 2-0) takes on Boston College (4-2, 0-2) Saturday for a Noon kickoff. Pitt is coming off of a bye week and the Eagles are coming off of a 46-21 win over Navy. The Panthers suffered a 45-7 blowout loss to BC last season. Pitt basically hit rock bottom with that game last season and coach Walt Harris has pointed to that game as what led to turning the season around.

The Eagles were led on defense by senior defensive end Antonio Garay who had five sacks and seven tackles for a loss this season. He suffered a season ending injury against VT two weeks ago. Standout defensive lineman Doug Goodwin was also lost for the season against VT. Senior LB Vinny Ciurciu and junior LB Josh Ott are two other standout performers on the Eagles' defense.

Boston College is led on offense by 6-4, 217 lb senior QB Brian St. Pierre. He has completed 113 of 183 passes for 1,457 yards and 10 TDs. He is one of the best QB's in the conference. The Eagles rushing attack is led by 5-9, 205 lb junior Derrick Knight. He has rushed for 600 yards on 108 carries for a 5.6 yards per carry average. He is also a big threat catching the ball. He has 16 catches for 161 yards this season. The Eagles' top receivers include senior Jamal Burke, senior Keith Hemmings and sophomore Grant Adams. All three have at least 16 pass receptions. The Eagles also have a very dangerous kickoff return game. BC gave up 380 net yards rushing to Navy, but most of that was in the 2nd half with the game out of reach.

The Panthers look to bounce back from their heartbreaking 14-6 loss to Notre Dame two weeks ago. Pitt is led on offense by junior QB Rod Rutherford. Rutherford is 101 of 189 for 1,164 yards and 11 TDs this season. Two standouts on the receiving unit are senior Lamar Slade and freshman Larry Fitzgerald. Slade has 32 catches for 465 yards and 4 TDs. Fitzgerald has 30 catches for 457 yards and 3 TDs. All-American candidate Gerald Hayes leads Pitt on defense. He has 9 tackles for a loss, and has forced 2 fumbles so far this season.

Pitt will have many recruits in for this game and several have Pitt and BC on their final list of choices. A Panther win could go a long way in helping to land these prospects.

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