Hall and Whitehead receive ACC honors


Thomas J. Yang

Safety Jordan Whitehead gets drafted by Tampa Bay Buccaneers after being selected 117th in the overall draft. (Photo by Thomas Yang | Assistant Visual Editor)

Two Pitt football players received ACC honors this week for their performances in Saturday’s defeat of the Duke University Blue Devils.

Junior running back Darrin Hall earned the ACC Offensive Back of the Week title, and junior safety Jordan Whitehead was named Co-Defensive Back of the Week.

This marks Hall’s first ACC weekly award. He had a career performance and led the team with 254 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries. He dominated Pitt’s rushing game, as the next best rusher came in at 24 yards.

After a 72-yard run in the first quarter, Hall also broke the Panthers’ 100-year-old record for longest touchdown run with his 92-yard touchdown in the third quarter. The previous record was set by George McLaren with a 91-yard run in an 1917 game against Syracuse.

Darrin Hall (22) rushes against Youngstown. (Photo by Anna Bongardino | Assistant Visual Editor)

Not only did Hall set a record, he scored all three of the Panthers’ touchdowns in their 24-17 victory — the team’s first ACC win of the season. He nearly logged the same number of yards in Saturday’s game as he did in his entire 2015 season when he rushed for a total of 257 yards.

With eight games played this season, Hall has racked up 362 rushing yards and four touchdowns.

Whitehead earned his fifth career ACC weekly award after his defensive performance against Duke. He recorded 10 tackles in the game — both a team and season high.

With the Blue Devils trying to overcome their deficit with less than a minute in the final quarter, Whitehead intercepted the ball and secured Pitt’s victory.

Whitehead began the season with a three-game suspension, a disciplinary decision by Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi. With Whitehead being one of Pitt’s top athletes, the suspension was notable.

He was named ACC Rookie of the Year, Defensive Rookie of the Year and was voted to the Third Team All-ACC after his Pitt football debut in 2015. He moved up to Second Team All-ACC after his 2016 campaign, where he started all nine games before a season-ending injury.

Hall and Whitehead will look to record top performances again in the upcoming matchup with Virginia at home Saturday.