In today's Post-Gazette Pitt football Q&A with beat writer Paul Zeise nearly every questions pertained to Bill Stull and whether or not he should still be quarterbacking this team (most were negative). My question to the Pitt fans out there is this: Who the hell do we think we are? Do you think a Sam Bradford or Colt McCoy is sitting somewhere on the bench buried in the depth chart below the likes of Pat Bostick and Kevin Smith. Did you watch the Notre Dame game? Smith was a deer in headlights and Bostick (yes I know we won the game) was horrible. He is incredibly unathletic and slow and makes far worse decisions than even Stull has. Gimme a break! Its getting ridiculous.
Disgruntled Panther fans, please wake up, you need a reality check. I was at the Brawl this past weekend. It was a great game to be at, but I was absolutely sick to my stomach as Panther fans actually had the nerve to boo Stull and the Panthers as they came of the field before half time. Yes, the last offensive play of the half was horrendous. It was an awful call by Cavanaugh and a terrible throw by Stull. But booing the team (a team that went into halftime with a lead mind you) that had completely manhandled the Mountaineers for 30 minutes of play was shameful. And I know the scoreboard didn't indicate it, but Pitt had just played a tremendous half of football aside from 2 key mistakes (the missed Lee field goal and the Stull interception). And yes, both of them were costly, but these kids certainly did not deserve to be booed coming off the field. It made me sick to my stomach. Think of what the players thought or prospective recruits for that matter. Who wants to go to a school where the fans boo the home team when they are up going into half time. What a joke.
Pitt fans need to step back and re-evaluate. This is not the 1976 team. Nobody expected them to be. This IS, however, a good football team. A team that has come from behind to win no less than five times this season. This season is a stepping stone. We have a young team that is going to make mistakes, but you cannot argue that this team isn't talented and doesn't have heart. They have accomplished a great deal this season. Their record stands at 8-3 and they have a chance to lock up a 10-win season with a win over Connecticut and a subsquent bowl victory.
As for Stull (I know I got a little sidetracked)he is hands down the best we have right now. He isn't the best QB in the conference, but he is more than serviceable. He is not all that experienced, but he has done a decent job when he has time to sit back and throw the ball and is put in a position to succeed. By position to succeed I mean in manageable down and distances (not asking him to throw a fade ball to score a TD before the half from the 1yd line). He hasn't played well the last two games, but at Cincinnati protection was mediocre at best and there were several drops by our receiving corps. In the brawl he made some ill-timed bad decisions. I'm sure he knows it though, and will improve. It was infuriating to me to hear the guys sitting behind me calling for Stull's head and referring to him as a "piece of shit". That kind of commentary is despicable, especially when Stull is the best option we have. The bottom line is that he is a relatively inexperienced quarterback. He has played well at times and made mistakes at others. He WILL continue to improve as he gains more confidence in his reads and gets more help from his line and wide receivers. But he is our best quarterback and those questioning his position in the starting lineup need to take a seat.