ShareThis Page

Pitt, PSU football add 2 years to upcoming rivalry revival

Jerry DiPaola
| Friday, Dec. 7, 2012, 11:37 a.m.

Pitt and Penn State are trying to do their part to keep tradition alive amidst college football's changing landscape.

The schools, who haven't met in football since 2000, said Friday they will expand their rivalry by two games, adding dates in 2018 and 2019 to those already scheduled for '16 and '17.

“Rivalries are getting to be fewer and fewer, and this is one of the great rivalries in college football,” Pitt athletic director Steve Pederson said. “If you're a college football fan anywhere, this is a game you would like to see.”Penn State acting athletic director Dave Joyner said the game will serve a multitude of his school's fans.

“There are more than 50,000 Penn State alumni and fans in Western Pennsylvania, and we look forward to playing in their backyard,” Joyner said.

The series that began in 1893 will resume on Sept. 10, 2016, at Heinz Field and switch to Beaver Stadium in University Park on Sept. 16, 2017. The later games will be played Sept. 8, 2018, at Heinz and return to Beaver Stadium for the 100th game in the rivalry Sept. 14, 2019.

Penn State owns a 50-42-4 edge in the series that was played annually from 1900-1931 and 1935-1992. It was suspended after Pitt's 12-0 victory in 2000 as a result of Penn State's move to the Big Ten and Pitt joining the Big East.

Pitt will become a member of the ACC next year and play eight conference games. With four open spots for nonconference opponents, Pederson pushed for more games with Penn State, and he said Joyner was in agreement.

“When other people are trying to get to the same result, it's pretty easy,” Pederson said. “It's great for our state, certainly great for the city of Pittsburgh, and I think it's great for college football.”

Pederson said Notre Dame will remain a part of Pitt's football schedule, with home-and-home games through 2016. Then, the Irish will start playing ACC schools as part of its agreement to join the conference in all sports except football and ice hockey. Pitt will play Notre Dame and Penn State in 2016.

Pederson also said he will continue to talk with West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck about resuming the Backyard Brawl. The teams didn't play this year for the first time since 1942 after West Virginia left the Big East for the Big 12.

“Oliver and I talked a little bit at bowl time (when there was speculation the teams would meet in the Pinstripe Bowl),” Pederson said. “Both of us would have been happy to play that as well. We will continue to maintain contact.”

Fitting West Virginia into Pitt's nonconference schedule might be a challenge, especially in years when the Panthers are playing Penn State and/or Notre Dame.

Pederson said he is uncertain if Pitt would play West Virginia and Penn State in the same season.

Jerry DiPaola is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can reached at or 412-320-7997.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.