Triple trouble? Navy's offense a worry to Pitt Print
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Thursday, 16 October 2008 12:35
NCAAF Headline News

 PITTSBURGH (AP) -A year ago, in one of Dave Wannstedt's worst moments as Pitt's coach, his Panthers looked as if they had never seen an offense like Navy's.
Probably because they hadn't.
Taking advantage of excellent field position created by repeated Pitt kicking game problems, the Midshipmen ran their triple-option offense as if they were taping an instructional video on a system that is rarely seen in college football these days.
Quarterback Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada ran for 122 yards and a touchdown and threw for 166 yards and two scores. Navy also rushed for 331 yards on 70 carries during a 48-45, two-overtime victory in Pittsburgh that was its first over the Panthers in 22 years.
Rather than remain in contention for one of the Big East's bowl berths, Pitt slipped to 2-4 and would lose seven times in nine games before upsetting West Virginia to end the season.
ts. You never see this offense, and they're going to get their yards. They've led the nation in rushing for a reason.''
Former Navy coach Paul Johnson is now at Georgia Tech, but the triple option remains and will test the No. 23 Panthers (4-1) in Annapolis on Saturday - their first game since a 26-21 upset of then-No. 10 South Florida on Oct. 2.
A bye week following that Thursday night game gave Pitt plenty of time to prepare for the triple option, which gets its name because a run-oriented quarterback has the option of throwing, handing the ball to a running back or running himself.
``We had a bye week before the Navy game last year, too, and that didn't help,'' McKillop said. ``But our mentality is totally different this season. ... Any time you have a big victory, that makes it a lot easier.''
The Panthers were on a three-game losing streak when they played Navy last year, but they have won their last four this season. Navy (4-2) has won three straight.
During practice, Wannstedt has emphasized the necessity of remaining disciplined against an opponent that runs on almost every down yet remains difficult to stop. Navy is third among bowl subdivision schools with 1,881 yards rushing and is second at 313.5 yards rushing per game.
'
Kaheaku-Enhada has been hurt, but replacement Jarod Bryant ran for 101 yards and a TD and fullback Eric Kettani ran for 75 in a 33-27 win at Air Force on Oct. 4. Navy blocked two punts and returned them for touchdowns.
``They have multiple ways of blocking each play and multiple plays with each offensive formation,'' Wannstedt said. ``It's really unique because you follow them during the course of a game, a defense will come out and change their front or slide somebody to take something away, and it's almost as if they just turn the page and say, `OK, that's over, let's go to this.' There's nothing that you're going to do on defense that they haven't seen before.''
The Midshipmen have their own worries in trying to stop Pitt running back LeSean McCoy, who ran for 165 yards and three touchdowns against them last season.
McCoy got off to a relatively slow start this season, but ran for 142 yards and two touchdowns against South Florida. McCoy is coming off successive 100-yard games that have raised his average to 106.6 yards per game.
 

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