Pittsburgh Football Picked To Win Big East, but Left Out of Top 40 Nationally

Paul SieversAnalyst IAugust 4, 2009

TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 2:  Coach Dave Wannstedt of the Pittsburgh Panthers applauds first-half play against the University of South Florida Bulls at Raymond James Stadium on October 2, 2008 in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

As Pitt Blather, Cat Basket, and just about any other Big East blogger fortunate enough not to be stuck in entry-level purgatory posted earlier today, Pitt is the media's pick to win the Big East this season.

The 24 media members who cast ballots voted as follows.

1. Pittsburgh (8) 161
2. West Virginia (5) 151
3. Cincinnati (8) 144
4. USF (3) 130
5. Rutgers 126
6. UConn 74
7. Louisville 51
8. Syracuse 27

No ballot had Pitt outside of the top three. I personally, would have gone USF, WVU, Pitt, Cincinnati, Rutgers, UConn, Syracuse, and Louisville. But it's way too close to call.

Any of the top five teams can win this thing or miss a bowl gamethere is not a single team without a fatal flaw in this league.

Before Pitt fans get too excited—and by the looks of it, they aren'tit should be noted that the preseason pick to win the conference has only made the BCS once since the ACC invasion (WVU in 2007).

After a morning of unsubstantiated respect, it was an afternoon of absurd disrespect, as espn.com's Ivan Maisel, Pate Forde, and Mark Schlabach decided to pick a 40-team college football "premier league."

Pitt was not one of the 40 teams chosen, as WVU was the only team picked out of the Big East.

I can't state strongly enough that none of this stuff matters, but it does make you wonder just what kind of program Pitt is.

Is it realistic for Pitt fans to expect to be ranked every year and occasionally contend for a national title if their program is left out of the top 40 in America? Is it realistic for Pitt fans to accept mediocrity if the team is being picked to win the conference?

I think a lot of questions about the program will be answered this year. Even though the team is in a bit of transition, I think this season will tell us just what kind of program we have.

Read more about Pitt at The First Church of Fitzgerald.

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