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June 27, 2013
The countdown to the start of the 2013 season is under way, as Pitt is 67 days away from its Labor Day opener against Florida State at Heinz Field. Panther-Lair.com is counting down the days until the biggest season opener in recent memory.
Today's number is 67, so we're looking at the one-win seasons in Pitt history.
The "honor" for worst Pitt football season ever probably goes to 1903, when the Arthur St. L. Mosse-led Panthers went 0-8-1 and scored a grand total of 20 points. That was the fewest total of points scored in a season of at least six games and the only time Pitt has gone undefeated in the 124-year history of the program.
So 1903 stands alone as the worst, but there have also been six one-win seasons in Pitt history as well:
1947, 1950, 1966, 1967, 1968, and 1972.
There aren't many hairs to split when it comes to one-win seasons; since the futility of only generating one victory is inglorious enough as it is. But there are a few distinguishing factors among the one-win seasons:
- 1947 and 1950 were nine-game seasons.
- 1966-68 were ten-game seasons.
- 1972 was an 11-game season.
- Of the six one-win seasons, 1947 was remarkably unproductive, as Pitt scored just 26 points over nine games, with five shutouts, two six-point performances, a 12-0 win over Ohio State, and a 17-2 loss to West Virginia.
- 1966-68 were the infamous David R. Hart years, when Hart led Pitt to three consecutive 1-9 seasons in his three years as head coach.
- Of the Hart era, 1967 was arguably the worst. Pitt scored more than 12 just twice that season - a 13-11 win at Wisconsin and a 22-21 loss to Navy - while suffering losses like 40-8 (the opener vs. UCLA), 58-0 (a mid-October game against Miami), 38-0 (to Notre Dame), and 42-6 (the finale at Penn State).
Less than ten years after the middle season of Hart's tenure, Pitt won a national championship, so there was reason for hope on the horizon. But in 1967, the Panthers weren't inspiring much hope for anyone.
Previous entries in the Countdown
Countdown: 68 - The most prolific receiving game
Countdown: 69 - One of the biggest plays in Pitt history
Countodwn: 70 - The origin of Pitt's nine championships
Countdown: 71 - A good player in a bad era
Countdown: 72 - An All-American who became a dentist
Countdown: 73 - May Day
Countdown: 74 - A "groundwork" season
Countdown: 75 - A successful DL-to-OL move
Countdown: 76 - The 1976 national championship
Countdown: 77 - The last three-sport athletes
Countdown: 78 - An underrated pro
Countdown: 79 - One of the best
Countdown: 80 - The greatest non-championship team in Pitt history
Countdown: 81 - A crushing end to a great season
Countdown: 82 - The dawn of the Foge Era
Countdown: 83 - The most accurate kicker in Pitt history
Countdown: 84 - Pitt in the Pro Bowl
Countdown: 85 - A play that will never be matched
Countdown: 86 - A long but unfulfilled play
Countdown: 87 - The final year of Ironhead
Countdown: 88 - Pitt's All-American tradition
Countdown: 89 - Iron Mike
Countdown: 90 - The four 9-0's
Countdown: 91 - The two longest plays in Pitt history
Countdown: 92 - The senior year of the most productive QB in Pitt history
Countdown: 93 - The only 9-3 season in Pitt history
Countdown: 94 - The statistical oddity of 1994
Countdown: 95 - A relentless player and his dominant season
Countdown: 96 - The biggest win in Pitt history
Countdown: 97 - A dominant current Panther
Countdown: 98 - A transition year
Countdown: 99 - Hugh Green
Countdown: 100 - A look at Pitt in 1913