Playing Not to Lose Results in a Loss

I hold no allegiance towards Pitt or Utah but Dave Wannstedt had one of the most bewildering playcalls I’ve seen to start the new college football season. Down 24-21 on the road to the Utes the Panthers were deep in Utah territory, facing a 3rd and 10 at the 13 with 1 timeout left and :38 on the clock, and Dave Wannstedt decided not to trust his freshman QB Tino Sunseri and ran the ball with Dion Lewis. It only gained 1 yard and after two cases of “icing the kicker” by Utah — including one of those negating a missed attempt — Dan Hutchins tied the game at 24-24 and forced OT.

So Wannstedt didn’t trust his freshman QB to win it in regulation so he had him play overtime. What do you think happened next? Sunseri threw an interception on the first play in OT, Utah scored a field goal on their possession and won.

Why oh why did Wannstedt do that? Who plays for the tie under the circumstances given here tonight? I just can’t stand playing not to lose especially when you’re on the cusp of victory and the odds are in your favor.

All in all, a great game to open the season but an incredibly stupid decision by Pittsburgh’s head coach probably cost them a win.


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