Pitt Rivalry | Syracusefan.com

Pitt Rivalry


Living Legend
Aug 26, 2011
HCDB has talked this week about how all bets are off when you have a rivalry game. For the most part, I think that’s true. Teams perform differently even though the players may not have been alive long enough to recognize the rivalry. As SU fans, we’ve lost so much in terms of rivalries in the last few decades, it’s difficult to know where those games exist on our schedule.

But Pitt is certainly as much a rival as anyone else we play, if only for the sheer number of contests. While it’s true we always seem to be down when they are up, and they are down when we are up, there still have been many great contests and players over the years.

But I will always associate Pitt with one specific game. It was at a moment in history when the fortunes of these two programs were changing. Pitt was fading from their halcyon days, while SU was beginning to come together.

My father who grew up not too far from Pittsburgh was a PSU fan, (I forgave him.) and that game was always the one circled on the calendar. We had a long-standing bet on the outcome of that game.

But for some reason this one year, we changed our bet to the SU / Pitt game. Perhaps I had grown tired of losing to PSU and felt I had a better shot against Pitt. I don’t remember. For whatever reason that week we confirmed our bet.

A few days before the game, I got a call that my father had collapsed and was taken to the hospital. My siblings and I flew to Georgia, but he was already gone by the time I got there . A couple of days later, I’m sitting in an Atlanta airport bar watching SU play Pittsburgh with my brother - who passed away a couple of years ago. SU won the day 12-0, and I said to my brother, “That guy would go to any length to keep from paying off this bet.”

That’s my Pitt memory every year. Tonight I’ll be in the Dome again hoping SU can win a low-scoring rock fight with the panthers. Somehow I think my father would be pulling for SU this time.

Go Orange!


Consider adopting a dome dog
Aug 31, 2011
Great story. I hold a special place in my Grinch sized heart to hate on Pitt. Not even sure why. Probably familiarity breeding contempt. I feel like we should have beaten them a dozen times more than we have … tonight would be an improbable win for us and I feel like that puts us in the favor of the gods. SWC75 you can put that in Why Syracuse Will Win

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