First Call: Rutgers may be interested in Pitt’s Pat Narduzzi as new coach |
Breakfast With Benz

First Call: Rutgers may be interested in Pitt’s Pat Narduzzi as new coach

Tim Benz
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi in the second half of the UCF game Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 at Heinz Field.

Monday’s “First Call” features a potential new job for Pat Narduzzi. Feuding Ravens. And maybe the MLB play of the year.

Narduzzi in New Jersey?

Here’s an interesting one.

Pitt Panthers coach Pat Narduzzi’s name has come up as a candidate for the Rutgers coaching job.

The Scarlet Knights fired Chris Ash after his team got plunked 52-0 by Michigan. Tight ends coach Nunzio Campanile is going to be the interim coach.

But for next year, Narduzzi’s name was mentioned by as a candidate along with former Rutgers coach Gregg Schiano, who is believed to be the front runner.

Former Penn State assistant—Mississippi State coach Joe Moorhead—made the list. So did Buffalo coach Lance Leipold and Princeton coach Bob Surace.

Yes, Rutgers is a Big Ten program. Narduzzi may like that. But to leave Pitt for a no-win situation like Rutgers? Yeesh.

Seems like a slap in the face to me.

Then again, how many playoff games is Narduzzi making at Pitt?

Makes you wonder how Narduzzi’s name could come up in a rumor like this, doesn’t it?

Doesn’t it?

I mean, it’s not like an agent would ever pump that rumor out there for the sake of getting his client yet another new deal or money and security in the wake of another mediocre season.

No! That never happens.

Wow, Walker

Former Pitt running backs coach David Walker posted this one on social media.

Why not? He’s a proud pop. This is his son Jalen Walker making a great catch on ESPN.

That touchdown was part of a 34-20 win by the Miami (OH) RedHawks over the Buffalo Bulls.

Trouble in paradise?

Two weeks ago, the Baltimore Ravens were the toast of the AFC North.

They were 2-0, having blown out the Miami Dolphins and beaten the Arizona Cardinals.

Then they lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 3 and fell to the Cleveland Browns Sunday. Now they are reportedly fighting among themselves.

Check out this report from

“Safety Earl Thomas and defensive tackle Brandon Williams had a heated discussion in the training room in which Thomas expressed his frustrations that Williams was inactive for Sunday’s 40-25 loss, sources with knowledge of the argument said.”

Williams was added to the Ravens injury report with a knee problem.

Thomas was reportedly frustrated after the Ravens defense yielded 535 yards — fourth most in team history — en route to a 40-25 loss.

Lovin’ Lo’

It took about 160 games. But we may have found our Major League Baseball play of the year.

I give you Lorenzo Cain of the Milwaukee Brewers Saturday night in Denver.

Note the score. That homer would’ve tied the game in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Here’s the problem. The Brewers blew that game and lost 3-2 in 10 innings. They lost Sunday in 13 innings, too. So Milwaukee has to play in Washington as the visitor in the National League Wild Card Game after suffering a sweep at the hands of the Colorado Rockies.

That’s a bit much

Far be it from me to ever stick up for Evander Kane.

But c’mon.

Kane was ejected from his San Jose Sharks game against the Vegas Golden Knights Sunday. He was trying to start a scrap with former Pittsburgh Penguins enforcer Deryk Engelland.

The linesman got a little too involved and ended up guiding Kane to the ice. Kane got mad and shoved the official away.

So he got ejected.

I’m all for the sanctity of protecting officials. But that was pretty minimal stuff there.

Also that seemed to be an extreme measure to protect two fighters from fighting. If those two are going to swing, let it happen.

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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