Pittsburgh vs Utah Preview and Free Pick – September 2nd, 2010 ]]> include($base_url . “/includes/header.htm”); ?>
Pittsburgh Panthers (0-0) at Utah Utes (0-0)
Pittsburgh and Utah kick off the 2010 season with the first top 25 matchup in the country. The Panthers looked as if they were going to a BCS Bowl last year, but came up short at West Virginia late in the season, but ended up winning the Meinike Car Care Bowl over North Carolina to finish 10-3. They have 11 returning starters including leading rusher Dion Lewis, who finished with 1,799 yards and 17 touchdowns. Leading receiver Jon Baldwin is also back, but QB Bill Stull isn’t. He will be replaced by Sophomore Tino Sunseri. He completed only 10 passes in 17 attempts last year.
The Utes lost 6 players to the NFL Draft this year, but do return 8 starters on offense including all their running backs and quarterbacks. They went 10-3 last year including a 37-27 win over California in the Poinsettia Bowl. Sophomore QB Jordan Wynn should be the starter after playing the last 5 games for the Utes las year, but Senior Terrance Cain had a higher completion percentage last year and will be in the mix. Running back Matt Asiata is back for his 6th year of eligiblilty after being lost for the season after week 4 last year. He and Eddie Wide will make up the best RB combo in the Mountain West Conference.
Utah has the edge on offense, but the bigger edge comes with Pitt on defense. The Utes have a good defensive line but not much help behind them in the linebackers and secondary. Pitt will try to establish the run early with Dion Lewis and I believe they will have success. Pitt wins a tight game here.
Pick: Pittsburgh +3 -125 (buy the half point)
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