The rivalry between Penn State and Pitt may not have to wait another 16 years between games after the current deal expires following the 2019 match-up.
The two Pennsylvania Power Five programs renewed their rivalry in 2016, the first game between the two since 2000. Pitt won last year’s game 42-39, while Penn State took home the return battle in State College this season 33-14.
The current deal has two more games on it, in Pitt next season and at Penn State in 2019. However, the rivalry could continue on from there, according to Pitt athletic director Heather Lyke.
She spoke to The Canton Repository about myriad issues, including the continuation of the Pennsylvania rivalry series:
On the football rivalry with Penn State, which resumed in 2016 after a 16-year hiatus: “We have two games left in football. We play them next year on Sept. 9 at Heinz Field and it’ll be the 99th meeting between Pitt and Penn State. Then we play the Century Game back in Penn State in 2019. We have a contract very close to being done and being sent to Penn State to extend the football deal and I think that’s a huge priority and a huge rivalry and it’s necessary, so we’re working hard on that.”
Last year’s game between the two schools was a thriller. The Panthers were not so competitive this year, after heavy roster turnover from the 2016 team. Still, it was good to see the rivals play again, and hopefully they can keep this series going regularly in the future.