The BBVA Compass bowl isn't the National Championship that's for sure. And the University's of Pittsburgh and Mississippi aren't Alabama and Notre Dame, that too is for sure. Both teams came in to this game treating it as if it were the Big Dance though, and Ole Miss walked away with a 38-17 victory.
The Pittsburgh Panthers are no stranger to the BBVA Compass Bowl. In fact, they've spent the last three years of their bowl seasons in Birmingham. In each of those bowl games they had a different coach.
This year marked the first time in three years that the Panthers had their actual head coach there for the game. They sure didn't play like it though, allowing the Rebels of Mississippi to rack up 387 total yards and 38 points. Of those total yards 224 of them came from their rushing attack. The Panthers defense allowed Ole Miss Freshman running back, I'Tavius Mathers, to rush for 96 yards on 6 carries and a score. Mathers, averaged 16 yards per carry, while another Rebel Freshman running back in Jaylen Walton rushed for 56 yards on 10 carries.
Pittsburgh's defense did force two turnovers off of Mississippi's Sophomore Quarterback, Bo Wallace. However, Wallace finished the day completing 22 of his 32 passes for 151 yards and 3 touchdowns.
This defense just could not get anything going today and had trouble stopping every phase of the ball by Ole Miss. The offense wasn't any better totaling only 266 yards against the Rebels Defense.
Senior Quarterback Tino Sunseri came in to his third BBVA Compass Bowl with rather embarassing stats. In two previous Compass Bowl games against Kentucky (2010), and Southern Methodist University (2011) Sunseri compiled 247 total yards and threw just one score and two interceptions. This game would be considered a career game for Tino, throwing for his highest Bowl Game total of 185 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
Overall, this was a terrible loss for the Pitt Panthers who played their last game as representatives of the Big East Conference. They head to the Atlantic Coastal Conferene next year which is considered to be a huge upgrade from the Big East. This upgrade comes with more talented teams and more challenges for the Panthers. Pittsburgh will have find a way to get it done next season and plug in key peices to make this team a contender in their new ACC conference.
Other Pitt news:
- Pitt received their third 4-star recruit today when Clairton Wide Receiver committed to the University.
- National Signing day is approaching and another 4-star Wide Receiver from the Pittsburgh area, Robert Foster, who had previously committed to Alabama over Pittsburgh has been rumored to possibly be going back on that commitment. We will have to wait and see what happens but this would be Pitt's fifth 4-star recruitment and would put talent in key areas for these Panthers.