The Backyard Brawl is one of the longest-running rivalries in college sports. It is named such because of the close proximity between the schools. The football game between Pittsburgh and West Virginia had been played on a nearly permanent basis since 1895, but in 2011/2012, the two programs left the Big East Conference, putting the rivalry on hiatus. The 2012 season marked the first time since 1943 that the two teams didn't go at it on the gridiron. Luckily, the football rivalry returned for the first time since the two teams' departures from the Big East last year. The Panthers bested the Mountaineers 38-31. For the second year in a row, the rivalry is back, and West Virginia is seeking revenge.
When and where is Pittsburgh vs. West Virginia?
While last year's contest was held at a neutral location, the away team doesn't get that advantage this year. Pittsburgh, the winners of the Backyard Brawl last season, have to travel to West Virginia's home field this season. Of course, getting to Milan Puskar Stadium won't be that far of a drive for the Panthers. The two schools are only separated by a 75-mile drive on Interstate 79. Kickoff is slated for Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET.
How to watch the Backyard Brawl
ABC will have television broadcasting rights to the Backyard Brawl. The game can also be streamed with the ABC app, as well as fuboTV. Sean McDonough will provide the play-by-play, while Greg McElroy will be the color commentator. Molly McGrath is the sideline reporter.
Date: Saturday, Sept. 16| Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Milan Puskar Stadium — Morgantown, West Virginia
TV channel: ABC | Live stream: Fubo (click for a free trial)
Odds: West Virginia -2.5 | O/U 47.5
Both schools have a 1-1 record going into the contest on Saturday. Being a rivalry game, it is sure to be a thriller until the end.
Pittsburgh is led by head coach Pat Narduzzi. The West Virginia coach is Neal Brown. Last season's Pittsburgh victory came after a costly pick-six by J.T Daniels. With Daniels once again on a new program, Garrett Greene is the new man under center. The quarterback has 402 passing yards and four touchdowns this season. Greene has been a backup with the program for three seasons and has finally taken over the quarterback job in 2023.
Greene's favorite target is Hudson Clement, one of the best deep threats in college football. The West Virginia receiver leads the nation in yards per reception with 35.4. He also has three receiving touchdowns.
Phil Jurkovec, the Pittsburgh quarterback, will need a bounce-back game in Week 3. Last week, he only completed 10 of his 32 pass attempts. It wasn't enough to get a win against Cincinnati, so the team will need a better performance if they expect to beat West Virginia.
History of the Backyard Brawl
The two schools had played in 68 straight games until their departures from the Big East. It seemed like a sad end to a legendary rivalry. But the return of the Backyard Brawl in 2022 was the first of four straight years the teams will be playing each other. The schools will also continue the rivalry for four straight seasons from 2029-2032 as well.
Pittsburgh dominated the rivalry in the first half of the 20th century, but it has been very closely contested since 1950. The Panthers are up 62-40-2 all-time in the series. Pittsburgh also has the longer winning streak (15 straight from 1929-1946) and the biggest blowout win (53-0 in 1904). The Panthers won last year's contest, but the home team Mountaineers are favored this year. So, who will win the Backyard Brawl in 2023? Only time will tell.