FootballScoop is proud to announce that Charlie Partridge is the 2020 FootballScoop Defensive Line Coach of the Year presented by AstroTurf as selected by prior winners.
Pitt led the nation in sacks in 2019, registering the national best in both total sacks (51) and sacks per game (3.92).
Their pass rush was even more fearsome in 2020.
The Panthers hounded opposing passers to the tune of 46 sacks in 11 games, tied with Clemson for the most in college football. Pitt's 4.18 sacks per game number places this year's club behind only 2014 Utah (4.23) for most sacks per game among all FBS teams over the past decade (minimum four games).
Pitt was equally ferocious against the run. The Panthers stuffed 111 plays behind the line of scrimmage, which led the nation among all teams. Their 10.09 TFLs per game also led the country (minimum five games), joining this year's Pitt squad with just two other teams over the past decade to average 10 tackles for loss per game over the course of an entire season.
The Panthers soared above the double-digit mark six times in their 11 games. They posted 14 TFLs in a win over Syracuse, 12 against Louisville, 13 versus Boston College, 12 against College Football Playoff semifinalist Notre Dame, 14 in a win over Florida State, and a season-high 15 at Miami.
Those numbers were buttressed by a number of multi-sack games. The Panthers inflicted at least two sacks on every opponent, and hounded Boston College for six, and Syracuse, Louisville, and Florida State for seven apiece.
Pitt's 46 sacks meant they snuffed out more than one in every 10 pass plays (377 passes defended) and turned nearly 30 percent of all running plays into losses. Buoyed by a stunning 452 yards in negative plays, Pitt ranked third nationally in rushing defense. Opponents rushed 388 times for 1,029 yards (2.65 per attempt, also third nationally) for 93.6 yards per game.
Seniors Patrick Jones and Rashad Weaver paced the club with 9.0 and 7.5 sacks, respectively, while a total of nine Panthers defensive linemen recorded at least half a sack. Weaver tied for the team lead with 14.5 TFLs, Jones posted 13, and eight more registered at least one.
While Clemson and Notre Dame dominated the All-ACC teams, Jones and Weaver both earned First Team All-ACC nods.
Also Pitt's assistant head coach, Partridge has spent the past four years on Pat Narduzzi's staff. The Drake graduate began coaching as a GA at his alma mater in 1996 and obtained his first full-time job as the director of football operations at Iowa State in 2000. His first on-field job came as the D-line coach at Eastern Illinois in 2002, and by 2003 he'd begun a 5-year stint in a variety of roles at Pitt. After stints as the associate head coach at Wisconsin and the assistant head coach at Arkansas, Partridge spent 2014-16 as the head coach at Florida Atlantic.
The FootballScoop Coaches of the Year awards presented by AstroTurf are the only set of awards that recognize the most outstanding position coaches in college football. The finalists (Todd Bates and Lemanski Hall [Clemson], Cornell Brown and JC Price [Marshall], Byron Dawson [Tulane] and Partridge) were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors, and athletic department personnel. The prior winners selected this year's winner.
Previous winners of the Defensive Line Coach of the Year award are Dick Bumpas (TCU, 2008), Jim Panagos (Central Florida, 2009), Bill Kirelawich (West Virginia, 2010), Brick Haley (LSU, 2011), Randy Hart (Stanford, 2012), Ron Burton (Michigan State, 2013), Craig Kuligowski (Missouri, 2014), Bo Davis (Alabama, 2015), Greg Mattison (Michigan, 2016), Larry Johnson (Ohio State, 2017), Ron Burton and Chuck Bullough (Michigan State, 2018), and David Turner (Florida, 2019).
1st Nationally - Sacks Per Game
3rd Nationally - Rushing Defense
1st Nationally - TFLs Per Game
20th Nationally - Red Zone Defense
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