Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs
Heinz Field (65,050/Natural Grass)
Saturday, September 22 • 3:30 p.m. • ESPN3
Television - WATCH LIVE
ESPN3 —Shawn Kenney, John Gregory and Rontina McCann
KDKA-FM 93.7 (flagship)
Saturday’s game will be the first meeting on the gridiron between Pittsburgh and Gardner-Webb … BIG EAST teams are 1-0 against opponents from the Big South Conference after Syracuse’s 28-17 win against Stony Brook last Saturday … The BIG EAST is 6-0 all-time against current members of the Big South.
PITTSBURGH (1-2, 0-1 BIG EAST)
Paul Chryst (Wisconsin ’88)
1-2, first season
Pittsburgh delivered Paul Chryst’s first career head coaching victory in impressive fashion as the Panthers were wire-to-wire winners against No. 13 Virginia Tech, 35-17 … The result erased the sting of early losses to Youngstown State (31-17) and Cincinnati (34-10) … Pittsburgh had a season-high 537 yards of offense against Virginia Tech, while holding the Hokies to 324 yards — the fewest by a Panther opponent thus far … QB Tino Sunseri will make his 30th consecutive start Saturday … Sunseri has thrown for 800 yards and five touchdowns against just two interceptions in 95 attempts this season … RB Ray Graham is averaging 89.3 yards per game (268 yards on 57 attempts), while freshman RB Rushel Shell ran for 157 yards in the win against Virginia Tech … WR Mike Shanahan leads the squad with 16 catches for 224 yards and a touchdown, while WR Devin Street has 13 receptions for 178 yards and a TD … The defense is led by LB Shane Gordon, who has a team-leading 23 tackles, 1.5 sacks and 3.0 tackles for loss, while S Jarred Holley has 22 stops with one interception … S Jason Hendricks had two interceptions against Virginia Tech to hold the team lead … P Matt Yoklic is averaging 44.9 yards on 14 punts this year.
Ron Dickerson, Jr. (Arkansas ’96)
4-10, second season
Gardner-Webb looks for its first win of the season after the Runnin’ Bulldogs fell 44-23 to Samford … That result came on the heels of setbacks to Wofford (34-7) and Richmond (41-8) … The Runnin’ Bulldogs are 0-3 for the first time since 1996 … Gardner-Webb looks to snap a five-game losing streak, dating to last season … The Bulldogs have dropped 10 of their last 12 road games … Head coach Ron Dickerson, Jr., is the son of receivers coach Ron Dickerson — who was Temple’s head coach from 1992-97 … The senior Dickerson was an assistant at Pittsburgh from 1978-81 … Dickerson, Jr. was a member of Arkansas’ NCAA champion indoor track & field team in 1990 … Gardner-Webb was picked fifth in the Big South preseason poll after a 4-7 season in 2011 … QB Lucas Beatty has completed 61.9 percent of his passes (65 of 103), but has just one touchdown pass against three interceptions … RB Kenny Little and RB Juanne Blount have split the carries and have averaged a combined 103.7 yards per game … LB Tanner Burch leads the defense with 41 tackles through three games and is the Big South leader with an average of 13.7 tackles per game … DE Preston Pemasa is second in the Big South with 4.0 tackles for loss … The Bulldogs have registered just two sacks.