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Canceled Villanova game clears way for Pitt-FSU on Labor Day

| Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, 2:24 p.m.

Pitt was cleared to play its first ACC football game Labor Day night Sept. 2 against Florida State at Heinz Field, and the conference will make an official announcement Monday, a high-ranking college football source said Saturday.

The game will be televised by ESPN.

Pitt was scheduled to play Villanova on Aug. 31 in the 2013 season opener, but that game was canceled.

Villanova has scheduled another game against an FBS opponent to replace Pitt this season. Florida State and Pitt officials declined comment, and an ACC official did not respond to phone calls and an email for comment.

An ACC spokesman said earlier this month that Pitt's game against defending ACC champion Florida State was one of the options being considered for an opening-night, nationally televised date, but both schools needed to move games scheduled for Aug. 31. Florida State would have played Wofford.

Pitt is leaving the Big East in all sports after the 2012-13 academic year, ending a football alliance that began in 1993.

The Panthers will compete in the Coastal Division of the ACC, with North Carolina, Duke, Miami, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech.

The ACC is expected to announce its entire football schedule this week, but it had previously revealed Pitt will play FSU, Miami, North Carolina and Virginia at Heinz Field and Duke, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech and Syracuse on the road.

Jerry DiPaola is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at jdipaola@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.

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