On a night of blowouts, Utah’s upset over PITT was a savior

SALT LAKE CITY - NOVEMBER 22:  Head Coach Kyle Whittingham of the Utah Uteswatches the game against the BYU Cougars at Rice-Eccles Stadium on November 22, 2008 in Salt Lake City, Utah.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Just to have football on my television again was enough for me to sit through South Carolina’s 41-13 dismantling of Southern Miss and not have the goofy grin leave my face the entire game, but opening night in college football was largely a dud.

I guess that’s what you get when No. 2 Ohio State opens up with feeble Marshall, or No. 13 Miami hosts the Florida Institute for Dishwashers or whomever the hell they played last night.

But one game did live up to the hype, despite it being one top 25 team against an unranked.

Pundits knew how good Utah has been at home over the years. The Utes hadn’t lost a game at Rice-Eccles Stadium in close to three seasons, winning 18 in a row while also racking up a 7-0 lifetime record against current Big East teams.

That included PITT.

The Panthers got on the board early with a Dion Lewis 3-yard touchdown run, but Utah fired back with 17 unanswered points in what looked like a potential rout. Then PITT added a Dan Hutchins 37-yard field goal with just under four minutes remaining in the third quarter to make it, 17-10.

In the fourth, PITT added another field goal and Utah responded with a DeVonte Christopher 61-yard touchdown pass from Jordan Wynn. Just when you thought the Panthers would mail it in, they scored 10 unanswered points in the final 7:59 to tie the game.

Of course, that doesn’t even begin to tell what happened. PITT missed a field goal as time expired, but because Utah called a time out in effort to try and ice the kicker (which is turning out to be one of the dumbest strategies in football), Hutchins got another attempt and of course, nailed a 30-yarder to force OT.

In the extra session, Utah intercepted PITT QB Tino Sunseri (which was a great play along the sidelines), setting up Joe Phillips’ 21-yard game-winning field goal. (The final was, 24-21.)

Perfect.

On a night where the blowout was king, PITT and Utah’s thriller stood above the rest. Thank God football is back…

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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