Right now there is a good discussion here on the POV regarding what is going on with Pitt’s recruiting. I’ll add to that today in looking at what it took, in modern Pitt football history, to get to double-digit wins and how recruiting was a huge part of that.
We all know that the primary task of a college head coach is to win football games, preferably more than he loses and most desired enough to win championships. So far Pat Narduzzi has fulfilled the first part of that with consecutive eight win seasons and a two-year record of 16-10. Not an easy thing to do at Pitt for sure, especially for a rookie HC.
Next on his agenda is the 2nd part of the equation; championship football, and to do that a lot of things have to fall in line, most importantly in my opinion high quality players to put out onto the field. The head coach does that in three basic ways.
First and foremost he recruits the best he can get high school football players to fit his needs. Secondly he attracts transfer students who can fill in immediate holes in the lineup, as we have seen Narduzzi do with great success so far.
Third he needs to look at Junior (or Community) College players with an eye toward the same as above – fill gaps left by recruiting failures by either himself or his predecessor.
I suppose you can throw walk-ons in there somewhere but those are usually individually driven by a kid wanting to play college ball at all cost – most notably tuition, room and board – which the scholarship players have awarded to them.
Those transfers, walk-ons and hell, add greyshirt players to that as rare as they are, would be considered ‘others‘ when discussing recruiting and recruiting classes who have signed Letters of Intent to play football at Pitt.
There was a comment on the POV the other day stating that I “totally discount” those ‘other’ players , meaning transfers and walk-ons, when discussing Pat Narduzzi’s recruiting. That isn’t true at all – I certainly give Narduzzi credit for bringing in those guys and I have written that many times.
However to attract incoming transfers is a whole different, and much, much easier, task then it is to get highly ranked HS recruits to sign a LOI for four years of play at your school.
Believe me the different in competition for the HS SRs who are highly ranked and have numerous offers is like night and day from convincing a QB or other position who has perhaps two or three schools asking him to transfer in after he didn’t do well at his original college.
In essence there was a reason why guys like Peterman, Browne, Hendrix and Chris Clark chose other colleges out of high school rather than sign with Pitt back then. They chose to play at schools who might have had better football programs than Pitt had at the time. Or maybe not, as we see below:
1st ranked 5* Max Browne went into a 10-4 USC program in the Pac-10. His best offers included; USC, Alabama, Clemson, Oklahoma, Wisconsin…etc. He was ranked #7 nationally.