The North Carolina State Wolfpack (1-1, 1-1 ACC) travel to Heinz Field to take on the #24 Pittsburgh Panthers (3-0, 2-0 ACC). This meeting marks the fourth-straight home game for PITT as kickoff gets underway at 12 p.m on the ACC network. Pittsburgh is a 14-point favorite in this conference tilt.
What to Know – NC State Wolfpack
The Wolfpack are playing their second of three-straight road games, after traveling to Virginia Tech last week. The Wolfpack were dismantled 45-24 by the Hokies, and were down 31-0 at the half. NC State did open the season with a 45-42 victory at home over Wake Forest.
JR. Bailey Hockman started the first two games at quarterback for the Wolfpack, but was removed from last week’s game after throwing a pair of interceptions. Sophomore Devin Leary came in and completed 12-16 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown. Both are listed as potential starters for Saturday’s game.
Sophomore Zonovan Knight (25 carries, 191 yards, one touchdown) and junior Ricky Person Jr. (27 carries, 163 yards, three touchdowns) handle the bulk of the carries for a Wolfpack offense averaging over 200 yards on the ground per game.
Sophomore Devin Carter is the main target for Wolfpack QBs, securing seven receptions for 109 yards and one touchdown. Senior tight end Cary Angeline is a redzone threat for NC State, with four catches for 62 yards and one score.
NC State’s defense is allowing 440.0 yards of offense, and a league-worst 43.5 points per game. Sophomore linebacker Drake Thomas (19 total tackles, 1.0 sacks) and junior linebacker Isaiah Moore (17 total tackles, 1.0 sacks) lead the defensive unit.
What to Know – Pittsburgh Panthers
Pittsburgh is looking to start 4-0 for the first time in 20 years after a season-opening blowout win over Austin Peay (55-0) followed by a pair of conference victories over Syracuse (21-10) and Louisville (23-20).
SR. Kenny Pickett has completed 62-of-94 passes for 712 yards with five touchdowns and two interceptions through the first few games of the season. Pickett is a three-year starter at quarterback for the Panthers.
Vincent Davis is the Panthers’ primary running back. The sophomore has carried the ball 42 times for 156 yards and two touchdowns. Pickett has added 43 rushing yards and a pair of scores as well.
Freshman wide receiver Jordan Addison has hauled in nearly one-third of all passes, catching 21 balls for 169 yards and two touchdowns. Addison’s 21 receptions is fourth in all of division-1 football.
Pittsburgh’s defense is always stout, and this season is no different. The Panthers have surrendered 30 points over three games while allowing just 177 total yards of offense per game. Junior linebacker Cam Bright (14 total tackles, 1.5 sacks, one forced fumble) and defensive lineman Patrick Jones II (14 total tackles, 3.5 sacks) highlight the dominating defense.
The Pick is In
This will be just the second meeting between the two schools since Pittsburgh joined the ACC. NC State won 35-17 in 2017 in Pittsburgh and if the Wolfpack can shore up some things on defense, this one should be a close battle. Pittsburgh should win, but the game will be within single-digits. Take The Wolfpack plus the two touchdowns.