“My thought process was, we had a chance with – what was there left, two minutes, 2 1/2 minutes – on fourth and six inches to try to get a first down and win the game and (it) backfired,” he said. “Give them credit. They made a play. They stuffed us.”
On the other side, Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi was less than confident. Asked if he liked his chances, Narduzzi replied, “Heck, no. Who likes a 4th-and-1 chance? But you believe in our guys. The odds are against you.”
On the play, Mills took the handoff from quarterback Justin Thomas and ran behind left guard, but defensive tackle Tyrique Jarrett won the matchup. Jarrett stuffed Mills, and linebacker Matt Galambos drove hard into Mills, knocking him back. On the measurement, Mills was inches short.
“It was just man on man and they knocked us back,” Johnson said. “I really felt that Dedrick would get the first down even if we didn’t get a whole lot (of push). He’s a pretty strong runner. Woulda, coulda, shoulda. Could have tossed the ball. They had a hard time playing the toss.”