It wasn't pretty, but if truth be told, in past years the result has often been much worse in the opening game of the year. Some thoughts:
1. James Conner is back and he looked pretty good. They threw him the ball more, and he even caught a TD pass to go with his rushing TD.
2. The offensive line, which is expected to be a strong point, played poorly. Center Alex Officer even had two poor snaps out of the shotgun. They better get much better for the rest of the season or the Panthers could be in trouble.
3. Partly because the offensive line played so poorly, quarterback Nathan Peterman played just okay. He completed 19-32 passes for 175 yards, 2 TDs, and no interceptions.
4. Tight end Scott Orndoff may finally be living up to his potential and he led the Panthers with 5 catches for 68 yards. Jester Weah had 4 catches for 38 yards, and he also had a TD reception. Almost as importantly, he didn't drop any.
5. Quadree Henderson had 4 catches for 35 yards, but he was dynamic in the return game, and it's safe to say that he may be one of the best return men in the country this year. He had a 96 yard kickoff return for a TD and returned 4 punts for an average of 14.5 yards a return.
6. The defense was consistently excellent, and they gave up no points (a fumble recovery was the only Villanova TD). Unofficially, safeties Jordan Whitehead and Terrish Webb led Pitt with 6 tackles, and he also had the lone interception. Avonte Maddox had 5 tackles and 2 late sacks. Ryan Lewis had 5 tackles. Mike Caprara had 4 tackles and 2 sacks.
7. The second team defense came in on Villanova's last series and Amir Watts looked fantastic. He was destroying his man on every snap. He's going to be a star.
8. Pitt had 261 total yards. Villanova had 172 total yards.