Both the Panthers and the Mountaineers will don special uniforms for this Friday’s “Backyard Brawl” match-up between Big East rivals Pitt and West Virginia.
WVU Assistant Athletic Director for Communications Michael Fragale says while the Panthers’ new duds will commemorate Pittsburgh’s historic steel industry, the Mountaineers’ jerseys will honor West Virginia’s coal mining industry.
Fans can also look for a sticker on WVU players’ helmets reading the number 29, in honor of the 29 miners who died in the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster this April.
Authorities are still investigating that accident, but it’s believed a spark triggered an explosion of methane gas in the mine, killing all but two of the miners on site.
Fragale says Pitt and WVU were two of the ten teams chosen to wear outfits designed by Nike for the company’s “Pro Combat” uniform series.
The Panthers sit atop the Big East standings with a 4-1 conference mark (6-4 overall), while the Mountaineers share second place with Connecticut at 3-2 in the Big East (7-3 overall).