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Volume 26 No. 227
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Pitt Unhappy With Scheduling Conflict Involving Steelers On "TNF"

Pitt football coach Pat Narduzzi is "disappointed more consideration wasn't given to his football program and the ACC when the NFL forced Pitt to share the national stage" with the Steelers this Thursday night, according to Jerry DiPaola of TRIBLIVE.com. The Steelers' only "TNF" game this season will kick off in Cleveland against the Browns "only 20 minutes after the start" of Pitt's game against North Carolina at Heinz Field, airing on ESPN. Narduzzi said, "They have to start to look and say, 'What makes sense for the city of Pittsburgh?' And that obviously wasn't done." He added, "What are we doing here? You look at it and say it's not good for the ACC playing on the same night as an NFL franchise in your same city." DiPaola notes it is "ultimately a situation Narduzzi and Pitt can't control, so they can only hope attendance won't be affected." There "hasn't been a conflict with a regular-season Steelers game" since Thanksgiving '91. But Pitt's game with Penn State that day started at 11:00am ET, and the Steelers played the Cowboys in Dallas at night (TRIBLIVE.com, 11/11). In Pittsburgh, John McGonigal notes when the ACC released its schedule in January, Pitt "appeared primed for some uninterrupted publicity." But three months later, when the NFL slate came out, that "mood was dampened" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 11/12).