Irish defense forced a would be three and out to start the half, but a personal foul on Harrison Smith gives Pitt a first down at mid field. Not a good way to start the half after Kyle McCarthy made two very good open field tackles to end Pitt’s drive.
Smith’s bonehead penalty ends up being extremely costly with Pitt converting it into a touchdown over Terrail Lambert missed a very easy tackle on a 38 yard pickup on 4th and less than a yard to set up Pitt inside the 5.
Note to pat Hayden – try and at least not be so happy when a Notre Dame opponent scores. After Pitt’s touchdown Hayden mentioned the Smith penalty (which mind you is the ONLY reason Pitt even had a chance to score) as an afterthought while gushing about what a “great” drive Pitt just put together.
McNeil is in the right place at the right place again with another interception of Bostick. Bostick was too high for the 6’5” freshman Jonathan Baldwin again and McNeild caught the ball off of Baldwin’s hands.
Like the play call on the 3rd and 15 after the McNeil pick. The draw sets up a manageable 4th down attempt since we weren’t in field goal range to begin with. Even if we don’t convert the fourth down, the play call on 3rd down was sound.
Now about that 4th down call. Don’t like it at all. I never like any pass that goes 1 yard and relies on blocking and a run after the catch to convert. With Floyd, Tate, Kamara, Grimes, and Rudolph, why not spread the field and throw the ball passed the first down marker?
Another ineffective drive by the offense here in the 3rd quarter. The offense really got going at the end of the first half, but has been stalled for the entire 3rd quarter so far.
Irish close out a rather forgettable 3rd quarter with a 7 point lead and Pitt driving inside Notre Dame territory.
The offense is going to have to get going in the 4th quarter because Pitt is one big play away from tying this game up.
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