The Pitt Panthers can put a spark into a subpar season and spoil the national title hopes of one of the best teams in the country when they face No. 3 Notre Dame in South Bend Saturday.
Pitt might only be .500, but they've turned things around in 2012 after opening the season with a loss to FCS Youngstown State and a blowout against Cincinnati, winning four of the last six games, and losing to Syracuse by only a point. Meanwhile, Notre Dame has been a juggernaut -- it is 8-0, with three wins against ranked opponents. Paul Chryst said that this matchup is just about getting a win, not about ruining Notre Dame's season:
"It’s not about knocking them off to ruin their season," Chryst said. "It’s an opportunity to go play a great team and to win for us. It has nothing to do with being a spoiler. Every week you want to go win, and this week is no different.
Tino Sunseri has quietly become an impressive quarterback for Pitt -- he's completed 70 percent or more of his passes in three of his last four games, most recently going 20-for-28 for 321 yards, three touchdowns and no picks against Temple -- but the Fighting Irish boast the No. 2 scoring defense in the country, led by a rare Heisman hopeful at linebacker in Manti Te'o. They're supposed to manhandle a Pitt offense that has often looked stagnant in its first year under Chryst, but the Panthers will hope for a shocker.