Penn State Football

Why Pat Narduzzi Can’t Stop Obsessing Over Penn State Football

Pat Narduzzi just can’t stop talking about Penn State Football.

On Pittsburgh’s 93.7 The Fan, in the wake of opening week of the college football season, Pitt football head coach Pat Narduzzi once again returned to one of his favorite topics; the Nittany Lions.

When asked if Penn State vs. Pitt would return, Narduzzi commented “You’d have to ask James Franklin that. My call is ‘Let’s go.’ We’ve called, we’ve asked.”


Of course Pitt has called and asked to schedule Penn State Football.

Pitt has been begging to re-up the series after the last four game series ended in 2019. The Pitt football program used their two home games in the last four game series to fund the Pitt football program, requiring visiting fans to purchase three game tickets on the way to setting a then program record 69,983 fans at the 2018 contest.

Moreover, Pitt saw a 15 percent increase in overall attendance in 2018 with the addition of Penn State on the schedule, with the Penn State game bringing in over 20,000 more fans than Pitt’s average that season.

After 2016, the other year that Pitt had Penn State on the schedule, Pitt saw almost a 5,000 fan drop in average attendance in 2017 without Penn State on the schedule.

For Pitt’s bottom line, renewing a series with Penn State Football is incredibly important and would be a huge revenue driver for their program.

The recent comments from Narduzzi follow a long trend of Narduzzi and Pitt focusing on Penn State almost as much as the Panther’s program.

Earlier this summer, Narduzzi took a veiled shot at Penn State’s offense when Christian Veilleux transferred to Pitt, calling it a “one-word” offense compared to Pitt’s “real offense”. In January, Narduzzi ranked Penn State lowest among all voters in the Coaches Poll after Penn State’s Rose Bowl win over Utah.

In 2022, before week one of the season, Narduzzi again reiterated Pitt’s strong interest in playing Penn State noting “we’ll play Penn State anytime they want to.”


In 2019, Pitt withheld media availability from all its players leading up to the Penn State game, treating the game like a Super Bowl for the program.

In 2017, Pitt Football head coach Pat Narduzzi tweeted “Hail to Pitt” immediately after No. 2 Penn State lost to No. 6 Ohio State in Columbus.

At the time of this “trolling” Pitt football was 4-5 and begging for relevance and bowl eligibility.

Why Penn State Football vs. Pitt May be a Relic of the Past

The reality for Penn State is that no matter how much Narduzzi and Pitt beg, it does not make sense for Penn State to renew the series with Pitt with a home and home schedule.

Renewing the “rivalry” significantly drives revenue for Pitt but does not bring much of a benefit, if any, for Penn State compared to West Virginia or Auburn.

If Penn State was to give in to Narduzzi’s begging, the Lions would need to secure at least two home games for every away game to make the benefits of the series more even for Penn State.

Would Narduzzi let that happen? Or would he just prefer to keep yammering about Penn State?

 Penn State Football

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About Author

Robert Casturo

Expertise: College Football, Penn State Football Education: Saint Vincent College, Penn State Law School Location: Washington, DC Experience: Robert Casturo has covered Penn State football for NittanyCentral since 2022. Casturo previously covered Penn State football through a social media presence (@PSU_FB_Thoughts on X) since 2019. Casturo earned his bachelor's degree from Saint Vincent College in 2015, where he was a punter for 1 season on the Saint Vincent College football team and worked in the athletic department for 2 years as a student manager. Casturo earned his JD from Penn State Law in 2018 where he was a senior editor of the Penn State Law Review.