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Pitt burned a freshman QB's redshirt for a hopeless Hail Mary, but there might've been a reason

This madness, it has method to it.

Pittsburgh v Syracuse Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

This is one of the worst Hail Mary’s I’ve seen in recent memory in Pitt’s 27-24 loss to Syracuse.

There’s a near-zero chance that Pitt could pull this off, to be fair, but typically you’d like to trigger some laterals or something. There’s nobody in that receiver’s zip code as time expired.

But for Pitt, insult to injury might be the fact that they burned the redshirt of backup QB Kenny Pickett just to throw that pass. Starter Max Browne got hurt earlier in the game, and backup Ben DiNucci’s helmet came off twice before the final play. After using their last timeout the Panthers had to put in someone at QB. They went with the true freshman Pickett over redshirt freshman Thomas MacVittie — who reportedly was No. 3 on Pitt’s QB depth chart a short time ago.

But this might not be an inexplicable burning, evidenced in the fact that Narduzzi said Pickett will be the No. 2 guy moving forward. So the Panthers seemed prepared to burn Pickett’s redshirt should the opportunity present itself. It did against Syracuse.

Either way, maybe Pitt should rep some Hail Mary plays moving forward.