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November 3, 2008
A trio of honors
Pitt's 36-33 quadruple-overtime win in South Bend on Saturday vaulted the Panthers back into the Top 25, and on Monday a trio of players won individual recognition for their performances against Notre Dame.
The group of honored Panthers was led by redshirt senior placekicker Conor Lee, who was named Big East Special Teams Player of the Week. Lee connected on three extra points and five field goals, including the game-winner to close out the fourth overtime. Lee's five field goals - from 22, 35, 22, 32 and 26 yards out - set a new school record, and his 18 points were a career high.
Lee extended his own school record to 100 consecutive extra points made, and his 46 career field goals made are also a Pitt best. On Pitt's all-time scoring list, Lee ranks fourth with 238 career points.
The 26-yard field goal in the fourth overtime that sealed the victory was Lee's first career game-winner.
Of course, for Lee to get in position to make that field goal, the ball had to be moved on offense. For that, Pitt turned to workhorse/superstar running back LeSean McCoy, who rushed 32 times for 169 yards and 1 touchdown. 42 of McCoy's yards came in overtime, and he was named to the Big East Weekly Honor Roll for his efforts.
The 169-yard performance was McCoy's fifth-straight game with 140-plus rushing yards. For the season he has 1,004 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Pitt's third honor of the week went to redshirt senior middle linebacker Scott McKillop. McKillop recorded a team-high 15 tackles, 8 solo stops, and 2 tackles for loss against Notre Dame, and he was also named to the Big East Weekly Honor Roll.
With the win over Notre Dame, Pitt improved to 6-2 overall this season. The Panthers also climbed back into the AP rankings at No. 25 after falling as a result of last week's loss to Rutgers. Pitt has four games left on the 2008 schedule: Louisville at home, at Cincinnati, West Virginia at home, and at Connecticut. The Panthers sit in second place in the Big East with a 2-1 conference record.
Pitt needs one more win to guarantee a post-season bowl bid.