Cincinnati (1-0) at Pittsburgh (1-0)
September 9th, 2022, 6:30 PM ET
Acrisure Stadium, Pittsburgh, PA
Weather – Partly Cloudy, 75 degrees
Cincinnati 27 – Pittsburgh 21
The majority of this game was fairly anticlimactic, but Pittsburgh did end up making it a much closer game by the fourth quarter.
Cincinnati got out to a fast start by scoring on their first drive of the game. After a second three-and-out by Pitt, the Bearcats kicked a field goal to go up 10-0. Finally, Pittsburgh got on the board after a 75-yard drive to pull within 10-7 at the end of first quarter.
It was at this point the Panther offense shut down. They would punt twice, have a fumble, and miss a field goal on their next four trips. The Bearcats would take advantage and start to pad their lead. A touchdown early in the second extended the lead to 10. Then a field goal to end the half made it 20-7 Bearcats.
Cincinnati scored the only points in the third quarter to go up 27-7. Pitt did make a valent comeback effort though scoring touchdowns on their first two drives of the fourth. This brought the Panthers back within 27-21. They had a couple chances to take the lead on their next drives but ultimately came up short on reaching the end zone again.
Final: Cincinnati 27 – Pittsburgh 21
This was the first stadium from my trips that occurred in an NFL stadium. It was located on the North Shore downtown. I parked a few miles from the stadium and took the light rail which had its final stop right next to the stadium. It was an easy trip to the stadium, but the train did fill very quickly once the game was over on the way back out.
The stadium is a triple decker stadium around 75 percent of the bowl with a double decker style on the other 25 percent. All of the seats had individual seats except the third tier of the south endzone which still had benches with backs. That was probably the biggest perk of being a pro stadium.
There was a large video board above the north endzone and a medium sized video board in the Southeast corner. Runner boards went between the second and third decks.
The game was not a sell out but had a decent attendance. The lower decks were around 80-90 percent full. On the upper decks, about 40 percent of the stands were occupied. My pet peeve of the stadium not being next to the campus was in full effect here. But they had plenty of buses to bring students to the stadium and the light rail is free if you are just riding downtown.
Being an NFL stadium, the concession prices were much higher than at normal college stadiums. They did have a much larger range of food stands though. Some of the stands that were represented included Franco’s Pizzeria, Primanti Brothers. Quaker Steak and Lube, Pierogi House, Little Caesar’s, and Crabfries.
Hot dog – $6.79
Souvenir Soda – $9.89
Bottled Soda – $6.79
Other Sporting Event – N/A
The only other University of Pittsburgh sporting event that was going on while I was in town was a men’s soccer game that was played at the same time as the football game. Thus, I was not able to attend another venue while on this trip.
The Pittsburgh campus automatically hit my main dislike by being right in the heart of downtown. This made it a little hard to get to as well as find parking. Luckily, I did get the last parking space in the lot I went to first which saved me some trouble.
One difference between this campus and the Nebraska campus I visited last fall was that Pitt was much more entrenched in the downtown motif. This made it harder to tell where the campus actually began and where other regular buildings were located. It always makes a difference for me to get a full campus feel and that definitely could not happen on this trip.
Being amongst the other downtown buildings, the first thing that stuck out was the Cathedral of Learning. This was a 42-story building and the second tallest educational building in the world behind one in Moscow, Russia.
Another building that has a lot of history behind it is the Heinz Memorial Chapel. This chapel was built in 1938. It was not open when I visited the campus and the exterior is going through some renovations, but it still rose up in the middle of campus like a beacon.
The Heinz Museum was selected as the second-best history museum in the United States by USA Today, just behind the Underground Railroad museum in Cincinnati. It was a huge building in the downtown area that had several different featured exhibits.
Of course, the first major exhibit is the Heinz exhibit. This gives a history of the company, including a huge set of memorabilia from throughout the years. They also had many televisions airing old Heinz commercials.
The next area was the Western Pennsylvania sports exhibit. This showed everything from major sports teams like the Steelers and Pirates, down to individual athletes that made a difference in local sports.
Finally, one neat area was the Mister Rogers exhibit that displayed some scenery from the Land of Make-Believe including King Friday’s castle. It was cool to be able to see some of the set pieces from a show that made up a big piece of my childhood.
In total there are six floors of exhibits and we weren’t able to get through them all in one trip. Before you go, make sure you know which exhibits you want to see most and make a list. This was a fun museum!
Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium
The Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium is a pretty large zoo with a wide variety of animals to view. It was very well maintained and easy to walk around. The first thing you noticed after you entered is taking a huge escalator up to the top of a large hill where the main zoo is located.
One of the first things we noticed around the park were the huge displays for the Asian Lantern festival. During the day these displays of various animals would stick out, but in the evenings, they would light up becoming even more prominent.
Of course, there were a lot of animals to see as well. One of the fun things to do is see any baby animals that are out and about. The first were a couple of Canadian lynx kittens. They were out playing and jumping around to the delight of everyone watching. There was also a baby gorilla that was napping next to her mom while visitors stopped by.
The aquarium was a larger one, which makes sense with aquarium being part of the name. It had a large variety of fish as well as a larger penguin exhibit. Overall, this was a fun zoo and one that the area should be proud of.
Friendship Hill – Point Marion
Friendship Hill is located about half an hour South of Uniontown, Pennsylvania. It is a National Historic site that is a former home of Albert Gallatin.
Gallatin was the Secretary of the Treasury under the Jefferson and Madison administrations. He helped with the purchase of the Louisiana Purchase and funded the Lewis and Clark exploration.
There was not anything special about the house other than knowing the history of it. They had quite a few original pieces throughout. The original part of the house was built in 1789, though quite a few additions were put on over the years.
Probably one of the biggest perks is the area of land the house was built on. There are many hiking trails in the area to take in while enjoying the quietness of nature around you.
Beto’s Pizza serves its pizza as individual slices called ‘cuts’ and in a unique way that is popular to this part of the country.
The pizza is made by first baking the pizza crust with just sauce and a small amount of cheese. Where the difference comes in is after the crust is cooked. After the pizza comes out of the oven, they put a handful of provolone cheese and any additional toppings you would like, all put on cold.
The pizza itself I thought was pretty good. I really liked the sauce and it was an interesting contrast to have the cold toppings with the hot pizza. The only thing that took away from the pizza to me was the amount of cheese they piled on. It was a little too much for me as it sometimes seemed like you were just eating a handful of cheese.
The place was a pretty popular place and had a mom and pop like feel to it. This is a place that has been around since 1953. If you’re in the area it’s definitely worth at least a try.
The Grand Concourse is an upscale restaurant in the Station Square area of town. The restaurant was in a former train depot and the interior of the restaurant was very eloquent.
Going during the lunch hour led to a fairly subdued atmosphere. We were seated in a side room with a view of the outside river. The views down around the river were not as nice as I expected, but it was still was not bad. I think the restaurant would be a lot more fun to visit in the evening when the crowds are a lot larger.
For my meal, I went with the planked salmon. It was topped with a tarragon mustard glaze and served with whipped potatoes and asparagus. The fish was good and the potatoes were some of the best whipped potatoes I had. There were only three pieces of asparagus though, which seemed light to me.
Overall, this would be a nice place to take someone for an upscale dinner. But, it is probably not the best place for just a random lunch location.
One of the foods it was suggested to try in the Pittsburgh area were pierogis. To try these out I went to a small restaurant named Forgotten Taste that served a lot of different Eastern European food.
I went with a combination platter that included four potato and cheese pierogis, a stuffed cabbage, and haluski (a noodle dish). They had the pierogis pre-made, but they actually fried them to order.
The pierogis were large and tasty and definitely worth the order. The haluski also had good flavor and was mixed with some cabbage and onions. The only part of the order that I did not really like was the cabbage roll. The tomato sauce on top was a little too thin and the cabbage was hard to cut into.
Usually I avoid chain restaurants, but Primanti Brothers is a chain that is based out of Pittsburgh that has a lot of positive reviews. There are currently a total of forty locations throughout Pennsylvania, West Viriginia, and Maryland.
The atmosphere was very sports bar like. Being a Sunday afternoon of the first NFL weekend, there were a lot of people inside watching the Steelers game at the bar.
Wanting to try one of their popular sandwiches, I went with the capicola and cheese. What makes the sandwiches different is that their sandwiches include French fries and slaw as part of the sandwich. It usually comes with tomatoes as well, but I took those out and added onions instead. It is served on large pieces of Italian bread.
This was a delicious sandwich. The capicola had a nice kick of heat to it and the slaw contrasted nicely with it. The sandwich was large enough that you really didn’t need a side with it to have a full-sized meal.