A four-game rivalry series is about to come to an end. On Saturday, which will coincidentally be the 100th meeting between Penn State and Pitt, the two teams will play for the final time in the regular season for the foreseeable future.
While there are no current plans to renew the Penn State-Pitt rivalry anytime soon, Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin is keeping the door open for a potential matchup down the road. Even in the not-so-distant future.
“One of the things that no one’s really discussed is they play eight conference games. We play nine,” Franklin said, according to Ben Jones of StateCollege.com. “That factors in to scheduling philosophies. That has an impact on it, and I don’t think there’s any doubt about it…I think if everybody was on a level playing field, if everybody was playing eight games or everybody was playing nine games, or even everyone was playing 10 games, that would help.
“I could see us possibly maybe doing a neutral site game with them. I think that’s a possibility. You know, we could have discussions. But we’ve got to be creative about it. Again, the challenges with us that have a ninth conference game and them having eight, there’s some problems with home and home.”
After playing on a somewhat regular basis for decades, the Penn State-Pitt rivalry game was halted in 2000. The two teams didn’t again meet until a four-game home-and-home series was scheduled in 2016. So far, Penn State was won two of the three matchups, winning each of the last two season.
Penn State also owns the all-time series lead with a 52-43-4 overall record.
It sounds like both sides are open to adding this game to the schedule more regularly, but there’s been some conflicts on both sides. While everyone would love to see this game annually, the 100th game may be the last one, at least for a few years.