THAT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE, COACH

Byline: Chris Logue

Hey, I’m back and would like to apologize to Reed, but especially the faithful readers of the POV over the last two weeks. There were legitimate reasons for my absence, such as classwork obligations as well as rebounding from a brief identity-theft crisis that erupted out of nowhere; but again, I am back and ready to keep this train rolling.

Now, to the important stuff…

Paris Ford is official. He is a Panther. He is finally a Panther. While that’s wonderful to read, there were so many flaws in the way Pat Narduzzi handled the “breaking of the news” to the reporters. To me, it’s a mystery as to why so many flaws were evident, and it doesn’t fit the past of how he has handled media, the celebrity status of players and their importance to the team.

This time around, he highly contradicted himself.

I took a look at Jerry DiPaola’s writeup on TribLive.com. When it comes to the Pittsburgh media covering what’s in front of them, no one does it better than Jerry, so in times of needing quotes and understanding the effectiveness in conveying the quotes, I go to his work.

THE GOOD

Paris Ford is on the field and able to run around with his teammates. He appears to have put on some weight, based solely on photos, but that’s not necessarily a negative thing. After all, he has been working-out alongside a perennial All-NFL player in Aaron Donald in the meantime.

THE BAD

Ford missed all 17 of the camp practices so far, placing him behind fellow position-mates in development at this level of play and has only taken mental-reps since Saturday during the scrimmage. I can’t speak for everyone, but ‘mental reps’ are not worth a grain of salt unless you’re actually out on the field putting thought into action. Still, contact was open with the coaches for feedback and guidance.

THE UGLY

Almost everything else. From his introduction, to immediate dismissal of field-time and ending at the contradiction of beliefs as a coach. There’s few things I have disagreed with when it comes to Narduzzi running the show, and all but maybe one has occurred outside of today’s media frenzy on the South Side. We can get into the other instance should it happen again in 2017.

First, his introduction.

It’s a known fact that Pat Narduzzi doesn’t make the true freshmen available to the media unless they have noteworthy plays or clearly have the opportunity to play and be a contributor to the successes of the Panthers during the season. I think back to Damar Hamlin and Chawntez Moss from last season’s camp; Hamlin was absent from the media during camp but Moss was made available. Injuries were a factor into Hamlin eventually seeing the field, but yet, both ultimately saw the field and only one had the chance to talk to the media congregation after practices.

However, this time around for a player that had incredible hurdles to clear, the red carpet was rolled out to make a grand entrance to the media…  Immediate head-scratching ensues –

“I have a little surprise for you guys,” he said while blowing his whistle to summon Ford in front of reporters. “You’ve got seven seconds (he told Ford),” DiPaola writes.

So, not only does he draw attention by blowing his whistle to bring out Ford, he goes on to say this, “Expectations-wise, he’s 17 days late,” Narduzzi said. “We’re not saying ‘Let’s go, Paris. You’re the savior.’ ”That isn’t going to happen. In my opinion, he’s going to redshirt. If something else happens besides that, it’s a miracle pretty much. It’s too hard to come in as a kid like that.”

True, it is too hard to come in as a kid like that, but you put him on a stage in front of everyone to make that fact a close relative of a myth by hitching to Ford like a parade float, showing him off. In my opinion, let him practice, answer bluntly the questions as had been done through camp until now, and let him be. If it was Grant Carrigan struggling to become eligible, I have full-faith in believing he would gather less desire from Pat Narduzzi to march him out there to just say “hello.”

I get it, as being hailed a program-reviver by media and fans alike, Narduzzi did each a service by doing exactly what he did; but, it crossed the line that the very same head coach had previously drawn and established himself. It’s precedence in the midst of preferred anonymity.

Secondly and unprovoked, Narduzzi washed off the idea of not only Ford contributing, but playing at all in 2017. In the eyes of the decisionmaker it’s just not going to happen, barring the aforementioned miracle.

I will be the first to tell you thatI find that to be the biggest joke of it all. Ford will play, book it in, he will play. Week one? Probably not, but it’s been said before by a coach and I unfortunately cannot remember the exact instance, that Ford possesses the talent and enough football wits that missing time in camp won’t have a dire impact on the season that can be had by the true freshman.

What’s really happening is Narduzzi is buying himself and his staff time to acclimate Paris to the college landscape, on and off the field, while not having to be faced with answering future questions about his prospectus for starting and playing early. Deep down, I know he believes Ford will work himself into the fold at safety. Clearly, as far as hype can take us, Ford is a better option than Briggs, Garner and Campbell to play alongside Jordan Whitehead when back from suspension.

Maybe I am just misguided with my comments and reaction to today’s breaking news from camp by Pat Narduzzi but I strongly felt there were better ways for coach to go about announcing his arrival to South Side as a player and not a spectator. Again, I am ecstatic Paris Ford is eligible and we don’t have to re-recruit him throughout the season.

For a coach so enamored with taking things in stride, this was a certain misstep.

 

184 thoughts on “THAT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE, COACH

      1. Chris, if you already don’t have some, go out and buy some thick skin. The POV is a respectful as well as a knowledgeable PITT outlet. Although from your last comment I gather you may have some.

        Did Reed ever tell you about his lengthy conversation with Inoke Brecterfield? It is legendary for sure!! . . . ..ike

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        1. The skin is plenty thick, my friend. It’s no doubt a pre-requisite for the site! I’ll have to get ahold of Reed to get the story, thanks for the recommendation! haha

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          1. Chris,
            Good to have you back posting. I think you are missing the point in what CPN did. It was a complete sarcastic manipulation of the media (my opinion). Everyone, including the media has been clamoring for this kid. Welp, Narduzzi delivered in a comical yet controlling way. Media – here he is. Paris, you have 7 seconds. Total control. It was funny.

            HTP

            Like

  1. http://www.pittsburghpanthers.com/news/2017/8/21/2017-pitt-football-camp-day-18-videos-quotes.aspx?path=football

    2017 Pitt Football Camp, Day 18 Recap
    Pat Narduzzi Introduced Paris Ford to the Media on Monday

    PITTSBURGH—The Pitt football team eclipsed the 18th practice of the team’s 2017 training camp on Monday morning at the UPMC Sports Performance Complex on the South Side of Pittsburgh.

    Head coach Pat Narduzzi held his morning media session before the workout and announced that freshman defensive back Paris Ford has joined the team. After the practice, secondary coach Renaldo Hill, defensive backs Avonte Maddox and Dennis Briggs and defensive lineman Keyshon Camp also answered questions from the collected media.

    Coach Interview Videos: Narduzzi with Ford | Hill

    Player Interview Videos: Maddox | Briggs

    Below are transcripts from all five media sessions.

    Head Coach Pat Narduzzi

    Opening statement:

    “Practice number 18, I’m excited for a new week. We have two weeks until gameday. Saturday’s scrimmage was really good, I thought. Even though our guys are a little exhausted, as you’re going to be. I thought there was great energy on both sides of the ball, as well as special teams. I thought we looked physical. We cleaned up a lot of things from the first scrimmage that we wanted to get done. They’re listening. They are locked-in, focused and listening to what we have to say.

    We’ve officially broken camp. The kids are really getting adjusted to the real life. In fact Cam Bright, after a team meeting last night, came up to me looking confused and said, ‘wait a second Coach, are we done for the night, that’s it?’ He had the biggest smile on his face to be able to just go back to his dorm room, in Sutherland, and relax.”

    On who benefited the most from Saturday’s scrimmage:

    “When I say there is movement [on the depth chart], if I said someone benefited today, it will backfire and they will go back down tomorrow. It goes in cycles really. I will know [more] tomorrow; we are going to see how they react today. A.J. Davis continues to prove that he could play this year.

    And I’ll tell you what, Keyshon Camp, when you talk about starting D-tackles, he has emerged as a guy. He has been playing really, really well. Shane Roy is playing really solid. [Rashad] Weaver is playing very well. Linebackers are about status quo. In the secondary, it is about status quo, although Dane Jackson and Damarri Mathis are in a battle.”

    On who shocked him in the scrimmage:

    “No one really shocked me. I guess I am done being shocked. After 17 practices, there is nothing that shocks you. I hope it comes out on Twitter, but Jason Pinnock continues to get better. He had a [one-handed interception in the end zone]. It was a big-time play. When you talk about DBs making plays, that is what we are looking for: guys who are there and can make a play.”

    On the benefit of having veteran Shane Roy to lead the young defensive linemen:

    “It is great to have that leadership out of Shane [Roy]. He has done a nice job for us. He is steady and consistent. I am excited for where Shane is. He is just doing everything right.”

    On A.J. Davis learning the additional nuances of playing running back:

    “He is doing a good job. He can catch the ball. He had a nice screen the other day. The great thing is the he has wiggle. He can catch the ball, he can pass protect and he can block.”

    On the winner of Saturday’s scrimmage:

    “The offense won the scrimmage, 46-40, I believe. The defense was down early, but they kept storming back with a lot of energy. So I was happy to see that. The defense really held on at the end. That is how the score got back up. They really held on for three two-minute situations, which is good.”

    On what he can gage from the team after camp:

    “I will have a better gage on the evening of Sept. 2 about where we are. I’m still sitting here guessing. I could tell you things that you might want to hear or don’t want to hear. But I love our kids’ attitude. They come to work every day, and I think that’s where it starts.”

    “I would like to thank you guys for coming out here every day. I have a little surprise for you…”

    [Narduzzi introduces Paris Ford to the media]

    Defensive Back Paris Ford

    “I’m here. It’s that time. I’ve been waiting for this moment. I would like to thank my mom, my dad, DeWayne Brown, Sean McCaskill, all my supporters, and also Duzz [Narduzzi] and Coach Harley.”

    Narduzzi on Paris Ford:

    “He has been here for a couple of days. We kept that secret in the locker room. I’m glad none of you guys found out about it. He’s fired up to be here. He worked hard this summer. It’s nice to get everyone you signed in here. Some guys get here slower. Expectations for Paris, you could really say that he is 17 days late really. We aren’t going to say, ‘okay Paris, let’s go, you are the savior.’ That isn’t going to happen. In my opinion, he is going to redshirt, and if something else happens besides that, it’s a miracle. It is just too hard to come in as a kid like that. We are just happy he is here, he’s in school and that’s the main thing.”

    Secondary Coach Renaldo Hill

    On Paris Ford:

    “He’s coming in on day 18. There is a lot of work for him in that aspect. We are just going to continue to get him caught up with what we have been doing and just play with the guys we have. They have been here 18 days, and we will see how they progress. Right now, we don’t know his situation, but he is a part of the team. That’s the way we will treat it. We will coach him up and try to get him better each day.”

    On the quality of depth at the safety position:

    “Guys are getting a lot of reps. That is the important thing. They get a feel of the other guys, whether it’s the ones or the twos. They are getting the feel on how to communicate. That’s what we need. Guys are still pushing at that position. We are still trying to find out who the guys are going to be. I like the way it’s going. It’s competitive every day.”

    On what Paris Ford adds to the team during practice:

    “He’s an athlete. Being able to see him in person affects others around him. He has an upbeat attitude, so we are hoping that he brings that to the group. He knows how to win. Coming from a high school program who knew how to win, winning a championship there. We are hoping that he brings a lot of those leadership capabilities to what we do here.”

    On Dennis Briggs’ versatility:

    “We ask all of our guys in the back to be flexible. I think we pigeon hole them if we just tell them to they’re just a field or boundary. I think is important for those guys to learn both positions because you never know when they are going to flip the formation and make it look foreign to you. So we have to make sure that those guys are comfortable in every setting.”

    On the competition between Dane Jackson and Damarri Mathis at corner:

    “There are still guys steadily improving. You have Jason Pinnock who goes out their Saturday [scrimmage] and has a winning performance. He had an amazing pick down there. He has been steadily progressing. I think these guys know this fight is not over. You have Malik [Henderson], who is a veteran and a smart player, and he’s in the mix. So we are going to keep these guys in the mix the whole time because they are capable. We don’t know just yet. We still have a few days to really get after this thing and see who steps back and who steps forward.”

    Defensive Back Avonte Maddox

    On the battle for cornerback opposite of him between Dane Jackson and Damarri Mathis:
    “I feel like they’re doing a great job out there. They’re both competing hard, Dane [Jackson] and Damarri [Mathis]. Every day they come out with an edge on their shoulder, and every time I look at them, it seems like each one of them is getting better and better.”

    On his experience getting reps when he was a freshman:

    “It was a big game-changer. The speed and, when I talk to the freshmen now, I ask them what the big difference is and they always say the speed. It’s been the same thing between four years ago and now. They’re catching up really well; they are learning really well and it’s a great thing.”

    On Paris Ford’s transition into camp:

    “Since he got here two days ago, he is bringing energy. As soon as he stepped in the locker room, you hear him talking and it’s like he never wasn’t here. It’s like he’s been here for a long time now. That’s a good thing, and I love it.”

    On Paris Ford getting caught up:

    “There’s always enough time to get caught up. When you come in and put your mind to it, put your mind to anything, you’ll be able to do anything. He definitely has enough time to get caught up. I have faith that he will have enough time to get caught up, and I will teach him. He’s a quick learner. We’ll teach him, and he’ll be able to get caught up. “

    On getting different looks with the offense and its benefits:

    “It’s a great thing. It’s very unique. It’s a lot of motion and shifts and you usually don’t get that. But if you face a team with that, we will be used to it. I like going against our offense. It’s a very nice spread they put out there and they’re able to run, pass and have a big offensive line that’s able to block. It’s challenging going against those guys.”

    Defensive Back Dennis Briggs

    On his performance in Saturday’s scrimmage:

    “I think I did well in the scrimmage. I came out and didn’t have too many mental errors. I had couple of errors to start off the first couple of practices. Every practice you need to go out and focus on the one thing you want to get better. My thing was getting my mental errors down. I think I did a good job of that. I was pleased with my play.”

    On the growth of the secondary:

    “I feel like everyone has been growing in a great way. Coach has a thing for each guy that he wants them to improve on. From every guy in the room, if you go around in a circle, like everyone has improved on what Coach has talked about. Obviously there is a lot of stuff that we need to get better at. But I feel like every guy has locked in to the one thing that they needed to get better on.”

    On the importance of the mental side of football:

    “Most of it is mental. Everybody out here is physical and talented. But the game is a mental game. That is the difference between high school and college. You need to lock in and read your cue. Those are the things that you have to get better on. Physically, we are all obviously here for a reason. Coach thought we all had potential. But that is where the real work comes in. It’s what really separates guys: being able to go out there and do your assignment without thinking about it.

    On Dennis playing other DB positions:

    “I’m getting some work at the nickel. They have been rotating some guys, so more people can learn the position. I have been playing boundary primarily, while playing nickel as well.”

    Defensive Lineman Keyshon Camp

    On what has been the biggest difference for him this camp:

    “The thing that really made the difference was the coaching change. [Coach Charlie] Partridge gets on me in the film room, telling me what I need to do and what I need to do to get better. I think the coaching helped a lot.”

    On the rotation of defensive linemen:

    “I think we’re going to have a good rotation. We have some good players that are gone, but I feel like we’re young and we’re fresh. I feel like we can keep the ball rolling.”

    On the defensive line as a whole:

    “I feel like we’re a good group and that we’re going to get the job done.”

    On how competition motivates him and other players:

    “I feel like the competition goes back and forth between some of the guys that played last year, like me and Amir [Watts] go back and forth all the time.”

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  2. We play the pre-season number 6 and 10 teams in the nation..We knock of them off and all of a sudden we are a top 10 team and we begin on another Pitt “Run to Glory!” Whoa…the alarm clock just went off….one can dream.
    Thanks for the article Chris..we have been missing you..but Reed does a great job filling in…He needs his salary bumped $30-$40K
    Reed..excellent podcast..finished it last night.
    New guy is here to replace QH….I do like Duzz getting strong 2-way players…creates a Bednarik .

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  3. Hard to believe Ford won’t be fully up to speed by the Oklahoma State game. Now, Hamlin should be redshirted as he has been limited all throughout camp.

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  4. Did you guys expect balloons and confefe (spelling intentional)? Coach introduces Ford to end speculation about his eligibility, says he isn’t going to play to keep the media off of his back for awhile and puts the burden on Ford’s shoulders. If Ford does well he plays, if he doesn’t then no expectations. Done and done.
    Life ain’t that hard.

    I’m sure he will play, have a stellar season and be suspended next year for smoking weed.

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  5. I agree with what Chris wrote above … but I also don’t think it is a big deal.

    Reed, FWIW earlier this year, you poked fun at me when I predicted that the leading Pitt rusher would get > 1000 yards. I explained that I believe 2 or 3 RBs would be sharing the load in the first half of the schedule .. then true freshman AJ Davis would take over as the principle ball carrier. I still stand by that prediction.

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    1. Can I get some of that action web, that is if you’re implying that Davis is THAT 1000 yard rusher?

      I’m good for $100, even odds. A small price to pay to witness the second coming of Tony Dorsett if the kid can pull it off.

      Let me know.

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  6. Chris, I completely disagree. To me, it’s making a big deal out of absolutely nothing. The media has been on him for weeks and weeks about when he’ll be there for practice.

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    1. For whatever reason, this stunt stuck out to me and rubbed me the wrong way. It really could be much ado about nothing, but it’s so out of stride for Narduzzi to cater to the media when it comes to things like this.

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      1. Chris? Come on Man!

        This Paris Ford circus has been going on forever!

        The last huge rumor mill involved Ford bailing on his Pitt comittment and flipping to Miami after playing in his all star HS game down in Florida.

        You don’t think that Narduzzi wants to punch that 800 lb gorilla in the room straight between the eyes, knock it the hell out cold and get back to the real business of readying his young team for their first test against YSU in less than two weeks?

        In one swift move he dispelled the latest rumor of Ford not being able to matriculate to Pitt for this year, formally introduced the arrival of his prized elite recruit from the 2017 class, stroked the kid’s ego a little bit by parading him in front of the press once he showed up in uniform at practice & defused about a zillion future questions from the sports media crews about when Paris Ford gets on the field by floating out that “Redshirt for Ford” storyline.

        End of story!

        Now from a standpoint of doe’s Narduzzi mean it? I’m certain I that he really has no clue at this point.

        You guys just refuse to accept the fact that all of a sudden that there is a whole lot of potential talent ready to explode in Pitt’s DB corps now. Throw into the mix these two true freshmen Pinnock & Mathis that are showing to have game and all of a sudden there’s a half dozen solid players that Ford has to wade through before he sees the field as a DB.

        So don’t be surprised if in fact Ford does earn a RS by getting such a late start in camp.

        It’s a great problem to have, too much talent ahead of our star recruit to see playing time.

        The times they are a changing.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Love the handling of Ford. We always have to keep in mind that coach is doing things his way and in the best interest of his players. Disagree completely on the article premise.

    I have mixed emotions on Ford, but I suspect he’ll wind up playing a lot, if not starting eventually. Either way, nice to have him!

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  8. I think narduzzi made a mistake by singling Ford out for basically No longer being ineligible.
    I’m sure the young man would prefer those problems to be left behind him and not highlighted.

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    1. I think the young man was excited and filled with joy to be there and one of the joys was of him being eligible to play this year.

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  9. Lol WHAT

    This media mental derangement re: pat narduzzi is now full on pathological. No wonder he tweaks you guys constantly.

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  10. I guess that there was not much real news to report yesterday.

    What is the word on Hamlin being granted a medical redshirt for last year? Did I miss the announcement?

    H2P

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    1. Don’t believe there was an announcement. I may be way off base here (probably am) … but I don’t believe a medical exemption will be granted until Hamlin applies for his fifth year of eligibility, if indeed he chooses to do so (or if he redshirts, then tries for his 6th year.) Wasn’t Ejuan Price granted his 6th year after his 5th year?

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  11. Thank you for your efforts Chris but I also have to respectfully disagree. It almost seems like you’re doing the same thing you’re accusing Narduzzi of. Meaning this is a non story imo. Actually, after being hounded to hell about Ford’s absence for 3 weeks, I thought his introduction was appropriate enough. Possibly a little overblown yet it seemed like he may have been poking a little fun there.

    One of the biggest gripes about Narduzzi is his secretive nature and here he throws something out there in a comical way to the media.

    Actually if you listen carefully, it almost sounded like a test he had given his team. When Ford had been on the team and at the scrimmage Saturday and he wanted it to be kept secret. He sounded a little giddy when he said he was proud of the entire team keeping the news under wraps.

    So either way I’m happy to see you’re back and feeling better and do like the fact you’re helping out on the POV. I know we all appreciate it and especially the tall guy who’s always wrong but he keeps trying… ike

    We All We Got
    We All We Need
    H2P!

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  12. The Ford introduction was clearly staged to get the media off his back with their questions about him. The idea he might Red Shirt was another attempt by Narduzzi to try to stop any questions about where is Ford on the depth chart this year going forward. If he’s as good as many believe PN will not be able to keep him off the field on a Pitt team that is desperate for any great talent to step up too the plate. The cover 4 defense requires a very talented secondary to succeed for the defense to be solid. Has anyone here seen a very talented secondary playing for Pitt the last two seasons?

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  13. I have no problem with what Duzz did with Paris..he was the biggest recruit with lot’s of speculation in the air surrounding his whereabouts..He’s here…use him wisely!! Whether he red-shirts will depend more on his FB smarts and the type of season we are having with the current starters…
    Did Hamlin get a medical redshirt for last year???

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  14. Ike you hit the nail on the head he was more impressed with everyone involved with the secret of Ford being on the field for three days that he showboated a little bit.Pretty impressive if you think about it150 plus players and staff knowing about it and no leaks.

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    1. “players and staff knowing about it and no leaks.” That is impressive but then again the Duzz keeps a lot of things close to the vest.

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  15. When I watched the Ford intro, I took it as Narduzzi giving Ford a chance to thank people that really helped him get through his ordeal. It also through the media a bone. Nothing that should rub someone the wrong way.

    Lighten up Francis. LOL

    By the way, no way he ends up a starter this year. If he wasn’t from Western PA, no one would even talk about him.

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  16. Does Ford have Whitehead talent? If the answer is yes then there is no way to keep him off the field. That is unless you believe all the others mentioned playing in the secondary this year are also Whitehead look a likes.

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    1. Coleman, Campbell, Garner, Hamlin, Miller & now Pinnock & Mathis, those last two who HAVE had three weeks head start on Ford in fall camp.

      That’s a $hit load of humanity to battle through to get some playing time! And that’s just the newbies I’m mentioning. In fact Maddox has to keep an eye over his shoulder to avoid being overtaken by some of this new talent by the end of the season. Very hard to discount a guy whose 4 inches taller with a wingspans wide enough to knock down passes that Maddox would just be waving at.

      This year our secondary becomes unrecognizable from the bunch of Keystone Cops performances that they suffered through last year.

      They’ll be learning as they go. PSU & OK St. could be ugly lessons for them to experience but experience it will be.

      If Ford gets on the field it will either be because he is extremely talented and have picked up the cover4 system really fast, that would be GREAT, or because we’ve suffered significant injuries in the defensive backfield, HORRIBLE!

      I’m hoping for greatness.

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  17. Hey NotRocket, don’t know if you read my comment to you last article about PITT apparel. Here is where my daughter bought me a really nice PITT script shirt.

    https://shopsteelcity.com/

    ….. and while I’m talking with you, I agree with most of what you posted up top, except for the last sentence. If Ford was from Florida the topic would have been even more blown up. imo. ….ike

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  18. I think it is hard to tell what any freshmen will accomplish when they arrive on campus.

    We have some pretty talented guys fighting for the position who have been in the system for a while.

    We have a lot more talent and depth than when Whitehead came.

    If he really is “all of that” he will play.

    I remember when Justin King went to PSU, he did not start his freshman year, and he matriculated early.

    Good to hear Ford was training with AD, he should be in top condition.

    Best news is that he is there.

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  19. Article on the D-line today, Narduzzi says Shane Roy is a starter.

    I still think the D-line is the biggest question mark on the team.

    If they exceed expectations, the team has a chance to be good.

    If they come up short, it will be deja vu all over again.

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    1. Nice to hear the coaches talking up Shane Roy at DT. Would be great to see him be this season’s Soto at DT.

      No one expected Soto to have an impact at DT, but he ended up making a bunch of plays…

      Go Pitt.

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  20. I do not believe a word of what Narduzzi is saying right now. Not one word. This guy is crazy secretive just like Jackie Sherrill was. It’s the reason he keeps the media out of the practices, he doesn’t want anyone to know anything. So why would he tell us anything important?

    Chris, I don’t know you obviously but I have to wonder. How do you feel about Pat Narduzzi in general? If I don’t ask I won’t know but this article comes off as being a little rough on the coach. I hear this all the time, “I like Narduzzi, BUT”

    I think that where the phrase was coined. No, if, and or butts!

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  21. Doc commented: “The White House should be so good at keeping $hit on the down low”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    LOL! Thought the very same thing good doctor.

    You have to love a head coach that pulls out all the stops and does anything he can to give his team an edge. To hell with everything and everyone else! << Especially the stinking media! 🙂

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  22. What’s wrong with getting one of your top recruits in front of the media? I could very well also see this as a recruiting move to play to the ego’s of some talent that are still out there for the 4 or so scholarships they have left.

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    1. Agree ted. And also a move to pose an even bigger challenge to Paris himself.

      On a side note, was also glad to hear the way the team spoke highly of how Ford fit in with everyone over the weekend, and what he brought to the team.

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  23. That right there is a political commentary.

    I’ve met Pat Narduzzi, I know Pat Narduzzi’s history, Pat Narduzzi is a friend of mine (not really),,,,,,,,,,,,
    So please don’t associate him in any manner with our President.

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  24. Meanwhile back on the recruiting trail, imo, PITT, Duzz and coaches have been doing a good job this year.

    The O-Line has been solidified by now and a bunch of athleticism being infused back into the program. These are a different type of 3 star recruits we are seeing and there is no doubt about that. Most in the know say the same thing.

    The downer is? I think it’s a tough road to hoe early on. Been saying that red-shirt sophomores should not be the players we are all counting on to be a powerhouse football program

    The upper is? The future is so bright you will need to hold onto those eclipse glasses to watch PITT football in the upcoming seasons!

    The middling news is? I still thing PITT has a very great chance to win the ACC Coastal division championship this year! … ike.

    H2P!

    Like

  25. Ike, you speak the truth!

    Pitt could get beat up bad by both PSU & OK St. & be looking at GT’s triple option offense with trepidation while still licking their wounds starting out 1-2.

    What happens thereafter is all that really matters concerning “The Pursuit” of winning the ACC Coastal division.

    We must remember that in comparison of how difficult our early OOC schedule is, conversely our ACC schedule is just plain vanilla this year. No Florida St, Louisville or Clemson. Miami doesn’t show up until the end when all of these new guys of ours should be battle hardened.

    Let’s see what we got in store for GT. Then we’ll figure it out from there.

    Like

  26. not to be outdone

    Aaron Wilson @AaronWilson_NFL
    Bill O’Brien on Tom Savage ‘Tom is our starter. He’s had a good camp’ Emphasized he’s No. 1 and Deshaun Watson No. 2

    Like

  27. ike

    I did get the link, Thanks!

    I think the local guys get way more attention from most POVers which is natural. You want the local kid to do well.

    Like

  28. Chris Dokish‏ @ChrisDokish 53m53 minutes ago
    Anything under 11 seconds in the 100m is very fast. Pitt’s starting WRs:

    Jester Weah 10.59
    Maurice Ffrench 10.69
    Quadree Henderson 10.80

    New commit Marquise Williams clocks in at 10.87. I’m at 11.07.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. What didn’t make sense was trying to turn a nothing burger into something. Maybe Narduzzi changed his mind….maybe he thought the press would get a kick out of it….maybe he discussed his strategy with the AG secretly on a tarmac in Phoenix…who knows.

    We have lots of real issues to consider when it comes to Pitt football. That press conference was not one of them IMO.

    Like

  30. Tom Savage ✔ @TomSavage03
    Congrats @MaxBrowne4 – Leave your legacy. #TransferQBU

    Max Browne @MaxBrowne4
    Thanks Tom! You started the movement haha
    1:56 PM – Aug 22, 2017

    Like

  31. Just an aside, Mikey, my Nitter friend said “Looks like your group(POV) has had an effect, all I see in the papers are Pitt articles” lol, how’s it feel, Nitter??

    Like

    1. No question that Brian Batko (FB) and Craig Meyer (BB) write more articles than their predecessors at the PG. Batko is a Pitt alum, don’t know about Meyer

      Like

  32. Chris, thanks for your viewpoint.

    I hope the DBs are playing so well that HCPN isn’t tempted to burn Ford’s redshirt. Injuries and Ford’s talent may make it too difficult for HCPN to keep Ford out.

    Like

  33. Thanks Doc for the link. Here, I was thinking Browne didn’t have a strong arm??

    I need to start hanging with coach Watson after this quote. ” He can make throws that guys that don’t have his height can’t make.” I get it but it somehow reminds me of myself. 🙂

    I threw that one by my wife’s head. She’s taking a nap now! . . . . .ike

    Like

  34. Found out, from someone back home today, that the Walmart in Johnstown, which is located half a mile down the road from The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, no longer sells Pitt clothing and that they only have Steelers and pswho stuff.

    Like

  35. I’m admittingly being lazy in finding this out myself, but…Where is MacVittie?

    If Browne beat out Di Nucci…and according to certain sites Pickett is ‘turning heads’ ….what happened to the prized 4-star from two years ago?

    Is this another Mark Myers scenario?

    Like

    1. Personally I believe it will turn out that way – others disagree… but then again others were also sure MacVittie was in line to start this season before Browne transferred in. They saw MacVittie as a three year starter.

      I think Browne plays this season and Pickett beats out DiNucci for the staring job next season and then MacVittie, in his 3rd year, transfers. Note that when QBs transfer away from a school it almost always happens after the 3rd year… when they have already sat in two years of non-redshirt eligibility then are passed over.

      Like

  36. How strong did Browne’s arm look in the Spring Ike? His isn’t any better than the last three QBs we have had as starters.

    Who are these players?

    A. “He shows a strong, accurate arm, a quick release, he sets up well, and is proving to be a quick and athletic signal-caller,”

    B….”can throw all the passes, has a strong arm, quick release and all the intangibles to be an excellent quarterback

    C. “He’s got a strong arm, and he’s a pretty athletic kid,”…”

    Yeah Ike – those are direct quotes from Pitt coaches on Voytik, Sunseri and Peterman respectively…

    Never in my time watching Pitt football have I ever heard a staff coach or a head coach say a quarterback’s arm was average. The only semi-believable quote in that article was this:

    “He can see over and through things. He can make throws that guys that don’t have his height can’t make

    My stance on him is that he’s an average of a bit above D1 QB.

    Like

  37. C’mon Reed, glad you got the return jab. However. Watson didn’t coach the other over-rated arms. I’ll add that Quadree Henderson also was quoted as saying Browne has a cannon for an arm.

    Schitt balls of fire Reed. I’m just flattered that you read my comments from time to time. << Yes! another jab. I’m up one now! ..Love you buddy… ike

    Like

  38. The biggest takeaway from Saturday was the performance of Denver’s free agent additions on the defensive line. Standing out along the line where former Bengal Domata Peko and ex-Colt Zach Kerr. These two big men reinforced the gaps and put on an excellent display of creating negative yardage.
    If these signings can capitalize on their opportunities, look for continuing improvement against opponent’s rushing assaults. Another fixture for the defensive line this season will be Adam Gotsis, who had some bright moment’s in this weekend’s contest. Along with undrafted free agent, Tyrique Jarrett, this promising group of run stuffing specialists could be special.

    I still can’t understand why he wasn’t drafted.

    Like

  39. 2017 Pitt Football Camp, Day 19 Recap

    Pat Narduzzi Names Max Browne as Pitt Starting Quarterback

    PITTSBURGH—Following the 19th practice of Pitt football training camp at the UPMC Sports Performance Complex, Pat Narduzzi announced Max Browne as the Panthers’ starting quarterback for the team’s 2017 season opener against Youngstown State on Sept. 2 at Heinz Field.

    Narduzzi, Browne and Pitt offensive coordinator Shawn Watson all spoke with the assembled media following the Panthers’ workout on the South Side of Pittsburgh.

    Full Interview Videos: Narduzzi | Browne | Watson

    Below are transcripts from all three media sessions.

    Head Coach Pat Narduzzi

    Opening Statement:

    “How about that band out there? Sounds good. I don’t know if it gets your juices flowing, but I got fired up when they get off the bus. It’s something annually we’re going to continue to do. Brad [Townsend] does a great job with the band. We’ll find out Sept. 2 what kind of football team we have, but Brad said this may be one of the best bands we’ve ever had. Quote that and tattoo that. I want to take a minute to really address our quarterback situation. We’ve had a long-fought battle from spring ball into camp here. We really got three scrimmages—I think most teams around the country with that extra week didn’t decide to go three scrimmages—but we gave our kids three opportunities to go out there really in game situations with headphones and the whole deal. It’s been a great situation for our quarterbacks. They’ve gotten a lot of game reps and situational football; it’s been really good. A year ago, I think everybody knew who the starting quarterback was. This year, obviously there are some decisions to make as coaches, and it wasn’t an easy one. But Max Browne is going to be our starting quarterback. We’ve got a lot of confidence in him. We’ve got a lot of confidence in Ben DiNucci as well. Last year we had one guy, this year we have two guys that we think can win football games for us. That’s a bonus for this football program. Max Browne, starting quarterback, we’re excited to move forward with that.”

    On how they break the decision to Max Browne and Ben DiNucci:

    “Coach [Shawn] Watson is unbelievable. He sits down with them daily. If I showed you the scoring sheets with all the daily grades, I could tell you how many passes they threw, how many incomplete, how many were on target, what their accuracy is and the whole deal. It’s a major grading system and they follow it each day. Myself as well as Coach Watson, who sits down with them more than I do, talked probably two times throughout with each of the guys, all the quarterbacks, and just let them know ‘hey, this is where we are, this is where we need to be going forward.’ I think we have a great situation as far as how they feel how the camp went. Like I said, Ben has done an incredible job. Max, we feel like, can win a little faster for us right now.”

    On what separated the two quarterbacks:

    “Just the whole thing. I won’t get into too much detail about what it is, but I think the experience, being there before and the little things that you see like running that football team on a day-to-day basis is probably it. They’ve both done a nice job throwing the football. They both know the offense. But just the details and the fine details of that guy that’s going to go out there and start for us has to be on target.”

    On if Browne has stepped up as a leader:

    “He has, and I think he will step up even more knowing now that this is his job. The offense relies on him and it’s his job to take this offense forward and move it.”

    On how Ben DiNucci took the news:

    “As I talked to Ben, he took it like a man. He’s awesome and his whole entire family is awesome. He competed. The competition was great for both of them; it made both of them better. Trust me, I mean you see it out there every day. Ben, compared to where he was a year ago at this time, is night and day. It’s not the same quarterback that you’re going to see during the season. He’s mentally prepared, he’s physically prepared and he said ‘Coach, I’m going to be the best backup that I can be. I’ll be prepared.’ He’s one snap away from being in. He’s very mature and obviously very intelligent.”

    On if Pitt’s offense will look the same as it did last season:

    “You guys can tell me after September 2nd. There are a lot of different things, some good stuff. It’ll be fun to watch.”

    On the difference between Max Browne prior to transferring to Pitt and after:

    “I’ve seen development. I think Shawn Watson, our quarterbacks coach, is a phenomenal teacher, educator and developer of quarterbacks. He’s done it throughout his whole career. I think it’s all what you put into that quarterback room. You see maturity on the field from both of those guys. I’ve seen everybody in that room get better.”

    On how Max Browne’s experience in his first three games at USC last season factor into the decision:

    “I think it’s a major factor. He’s a guy that’s lined up in big games. I think they opened up against Alabama, which they’re pretty good. Then they had Utah State and then Stanford, another premier program. He’s been in that game and he’s shown a lot of maturity. I’m looking forward to watching him play.”

    On Max Browne potentially playing at the professional level:

    “I would say it’s a major motivation. He didn’t finish his career out on the west coast like he wanted to and I think that’s his goal: to play at the next level. He’s got the ability to do that as well.”

    On exhausting the graduate transfer quarterback market:

    “I sure hope we have. I hope we all hold together. I think we’ve done that. We like to keep it within, but we will do whatever we have to do to win football games and have the most capable quarterback that we can.”

    On players getting comfortable following Max Browne:

    “Well I think it was a slow follow. I think you’re always looking like, ‘who’s this guy?’ I was a transfer myself as a freshman. It’s never easy to transfer, and he did it the right way. He’s a class act the entire way through. He never overpowered himself with ‘hey, I came from USC, I should be the guy.’ He just shut his mouth and went to work every day. That’s the most respectable thing you can do as a football player. Again, he was a former captain at USC.”

    On if Max reminds him of any other quarterbacks he has worked with:

    “You know what, he reminds me a lot of Nathan Peterman. He might be a little bit taller, but he’s got the same type of quarterback characteristics. You look and he’s smooth, you never see him get rattled ever. That’s how Nathan was; he never got rattled. Max is that same kind of guy.”

    On the moment he knew Max Browne would be the starting quarterback:

    “I think you get evaluated on a daily basis. You do a good job one day, but the next day your boss is after you a little bit. It’s a back-and-forth thing. It was a battle. Ben started off with a bang. I think it was the final scrimmage. If it had been after two scrimmages, I would’ve made a decision after two scrimmages, me and the offensive staff. But it was after three scrimmages and we knew on Sunday what we wanted to do.”

    On what he would say to people who thought this was inevitable upon Max Browne’s arrival:

    “It was a competition. I don’t think it was a slam dunk at all, I can tell you that. Ben fought, and this football team has a lot of respect to Ben DiNucci.”

    On how the competition helped Ben DiNucci:

    “It made Ben a better quarterback and it made Max a better quarterback. Competition is good for everybody, I don’t care what position it is. It made both of them better. I guarantee Max felt Ben on his heels, that’s a fact.”

    Quarterback Max Browne

    On becoming the starting quarterback:

    “I’ve been in a bunch of competitions. There’s been a lot of competition more often in my college career than not. You learn from each time. I think the biggest thing is to not getting worked up. Everyone makes it out to be the competition, but really it’s just a competition with yourself, about not worrying about what the other guys are doing and just taking it day by day.

    Especially for a guy like me, the new kid coming in here, I was going to have a learning curve, but I feel like I picked up fast. I just go out and play. When you start thinking and getting in your own mental games, that’s what hurts you. You just need to go out and execute the plays. That’s all you can do.”

    On his reaction when the coaches told him:

    “Let’s go! I had a feeling it was going to come. I was playing good ball. But it’s business as usual now.”

    On if he ever doubted his capability to start:

    “Once I got here, no. I felt really comfortable with my teammates. But that’s not to downgrade the other guys in the room. We have good quarterbacks; we have depth in that position. I’ve been in deep quarterback rooms, and this is right up there with them. It’s not like anything was handed to me; I had to go out there and earn it. But yeah, once I got here, I felt very comfortable with the offense, with Coach [Shawn] Watson, Coach Duzz [Pat Narduzzi] and the teammates. That part has been nice.”

    On his strengths as a player:

    “I play on time. That’s one of my good assets. I know when I see a play on time. I feel like I’m real good upstairs as far as recognizing defenses and knowing what blitzes they’re bringing at me. But I do think the best football for me is ahead. Hopefully you can tell me that in a couple months.”

    On establishing himself as a leader:

    “I think the biggest thing is to be myself. I had the beauty of eight months to be here, so there was no force in my hand. It was just being around the guys. I got to have lunch and dinner and breakfast with them, get to know them really well, and I just let my true personality come out on its own.”

    On always staying calm:

    “I’ve been around a while. I’ve been in some real stressful scenarios, competitions, battles, big-time games, all of that. It’s probably my personality, but you also, after a while, realize that getting rattled doesn’t do anything for you.”

    Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks Coach Shawn Watson

    On how Max Browne made himself stand out as the starter:

    “We wanted to judge a body of work over a long period of time. Both of the guys did a great job competing against each other. We wanted to really evaluate it over time because that’s how you can really tell what you are getting. It was close. Ben [DiNucci] fought and did a great job. I’m really proud of him and the player he’s become because of the competition. I feel like we really have two guys in that room that we can win with. I feel good about the young guys behind them too because they’ve learned from the older guys. It’s a really good room.”

    On Max Browne’s ability to come in and learn a new system quickly:

    “It’s been a work in progress for him. He quietly earned his way into everything that has happened. He did it with hard work. He has applied himself outside of football, which a quarterback has to do. He’s worked at perfecting it every day. I’m really proud of what he has done because he had a lot of competition along the way with Ben [DiNucci]. Ben is a relentless competitor, so he [Max Browne] had to compete. That mad our whole football team better.”

    On what tipped his evaluation towards Max Browne:

    “Like I said, it’s a body of work over a consistent period of time. What tipped it is just consistency and performance. You get to a point where you could just feel Max [Browne] starting to take off. He was very, very consistent. He was very consistent in his decision-making in every aspect of football—managing it, passing game, etc. And because of his performance, the team started to believe in him.”

    On how the competition in camp aided Ben DiNucci:

    “I have no reference on where Ben’s coming from because I just got here. I just know that he is highly competitive. I have a whole different picture than the guys who have seen him develop here. That’s because he came in and competed from day one. He wanted to be the guy. That will go a long way for him. All college football players need to learn that if they really want something. To be able to really go and get it, it takes so much to go and get a job. He has been through that process.

    I can tell you that it has really affected the room. Now Kenny [Pickett] and Thomas [MacVittie] have that same example of what Ben [DiNucci] and Max [Browne] just went through. It strengthened the room at the same time. I made sure that I pointed out these things to them. You have to develop a championship quarterback room; you can’t just have a championship quarterback. Because at some point in time, you may end up in your depth. There have been some years that I ended up with the four guy. I have great respect for that and what that process is in developing that room.”

    On Max Browne’s arm compared to others he has coached:

    “Max [Browne] is probably the best. The thing that really stands out to myself and people that come here to watch him is that he’s such a big guy. He has a big arm. He’s an arm talent. He can see over and through things and make throws that guys who don’t have his height could make. He can see over things and make throws, accurate throws in small windows. I think a lot of that has to do with his size because he can see, plus his arm talent. He has natural passing instincts.”

    Like

  40. Nice read, so Browne’s arm is better than than Pickett’s I take it? No big deal imo

    I want a QB with a fairly good arm that can see the field first. A good QB in order

    .1 The head, a QB needs to be a field general and run the offense
    .2 The arm, knowing what to do and not being able to do it is fruitless
    .3 The legs, this is a big help in case you can’t do the first two things.

    1The X factor here is the heart. Generally speaking this isn’t a problem with a D-! QB. This has been their lives forever. …ike

    Like

  41. No – Pickett’s arm is the best on the roster right now.

    I agree 100% on the X factor and that is one thing that worries me about Browne – he was beat up in a lot of different ways at USC and transferred out… in the middle of the season Ike. That didn’t sit well with his teammates over there.

    I’m just not sold on him being the guy to take a team that has so many question marks on it and lead it to victories beyond the games they should win anyway – and there isn’t a lot of those on this schedule.

    Like

    1. Reed – he didn’t actually transfer out in the middle of the season. The guy stayed on the roster and from everything I remember hearing at time, handled it in a forthright manner with his coach, who also handled it well. Looks like a win-win to me as his successor with the Trojans lit it up.

      Here are some bits from the media at the time.

      From SI last fall:

      “LOS ANGELES (AP) — Southern California has granted quarterback Max Browne permission to speak with other programs about a possible transfer, though the redshirt junior remains with the team.

      Trojans coach Clay Helton said Tuesday that Browne can speak to any FBS program, including other schools in the Pac-12. Browne would be immediately eligible to play next season as a graduate transfer from USC (5-3, 4-2 Pac-12).

      ”He has graduated from this university and has done everything right, so he deserves the opportunity to find his perfect fit, whether that is here or someplace else,” said Helton, who took the starting job away from Browne after three games this season. ”The biggest thing is just to get the word out.”

      From the LA Times last fall:

      “He started USC’s first three games this season before Helton replaced him with redshirt freshman Sam Darnold. Shortly afterward, Browne said he intended to transfer after the season to seek more playing time. Helton expressed support for Browne’s decision, and USC permitted other teams to contact Browne during the season.”

      Regarding the teammates reactions – where did you hear/read that? I don’t recall seeing any of that last fall.

      Like

    2. Reed, “The only thing we have to f at is fear itself”.

      Take both a deep breath & your meds and don’t worry,,,,,,
      Be happy.😀

      Like

  42. Pitt’s Quadree Henderson Named AP Preseason All-American

    Henderson Topped 2,000 All-Purpose Yards Last Season for the Panthers

    PITTSBURGH—University of Pittsburgh junior wide receiver and return man Quadree Henderson has been named an Associated Press preseason first team All-America all-purpose player, it was announced on Tuesday afternoon.

    A returning consensus All-American as a returner, Henderson enters the 2017 season with the Panthers after making a massive impact on special teams and offense for Pitt in 2016.

    Last fall, Henderson became the first Pitt player since Tony Dorsett in his Heisman Trophy-winning 1976 season to top 2,000 all-purpose yards. The speedster from Wilmington, Del., finished with a total of 2,083 all-purpose yards via a Pitt-record 914 kickoff return yards, 631 rushing yards, 286 receiving yards and 252 punt return yards.

    Henderson also scored 10 total touchdowns last season, entering the end zone four different ways: by rush (5), kickoff return (3), reception (1) and punt return (1).

    Like

  43. As I have said before, 2900 yds, 25 TDs, 10 Ints. That’s my Max prediction for the year. But that said, I have read the Pitt articles during camp, and I sense there is a tendency to over hype some of these players. Take the tight ends, for example. I do believe they are good players, but the coaches have made them appear to be all world, or even all universe! It’s good to build confidence, but when we hear how good these players are, and then if Pitt finishes with only 8 wins, POVers will be asking some serious questions..

    Like

  44. Three things this year. Defense starts to gel by the fourth game and becomes a good defense as it matures. The offense will be good. Ol is still very good and TE with Clark and the Rutgers transfer will be good. Partridge will be a significant difference in the growth of the defense especially at DE. Hendrix and Edwards will be the best DE’s at Pitt since Romeus and Sheard.

    Like

  45. If Browne was on the USC bench behind average QBs, I would be worried. But his first two years, he was behind a 10,000 yard, 88 TD, 19 INT QB who was a 3rd round pick, and last year was behind a guy who is already projected as the #1 pick.

    Sure, he didn’t play well against Alabama and Stanford when he got his shot (who would?), but I believe I will be pleasantly surprised with his play this year.

    Like

    1. DFK _ I have mentioned the same stats to Reed more than once (mainly on the round table).

      Browne should have transferred after his 3’rd year. He had already graduated & could have went anywhere,

      Got this link from the Blather. More info on Browne’s time at So Cal. (I will not use USC because that’s South Carolina,)

      http://www.foxsports.com/college-football/story/usc-trojans-pitt-max-browne-sam-darnold-spring-practice-bruce-feldman-040917

      Liked by 2 people

  46. Reed – Comment at 4:28pm

    Considering that No Car, GT, VT & Miami are also replacing starters (& Duke if you consider their ’16 season starter has transferred (not the QB who PITT played against), a bit above average will probably make Browne the Coastal Division MVP QB.

    It’s a great day to be a PITT Panther fan. Chris back writing for the POV. Chas writing again at the Blather. Browne named starter.

    Reed – Great job with the POV.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wrong again Upitt.

      We’ve all become conditioned to Debbie downer prognostications, but recently you’ve exposed your own soft underbelly.

      You haven’t been “Ford Tough” regarding the details of Pitt’s program as of late. Not knowing who Dontez Ford is, or the background specifics of our elite blue chipper’s profile dilutes the potency of your opinions for me.

      Paris Ford verbally committed like two years ago and was front page Pitt recruiting news way back then and especially as of late with his issues with the NCAA clearinghouse,,,,,,,,,you’d have Paris Ford’s profile memorized if you were paying any real attention.

      Oh, & BTW, you’re wrong because at 6-6, which Pitt may very well be in the regular season will get them into a stinky bowl game to lose their final game yet again & end up 6-7 ( that is, if you’re a pessimist, which of course you are.)

      Like

  47. I have to trust the coaches on the QB, they see these guys every day. The only thing thy don’t know is how they will execute on game day. You have to go with the fifth year senior when going against PSU and OKST early. He gives you the best shot at winning those games.

    Like

  48. I have to use an old cliche here though. A broken clock is right twice a day. Keep talking negative thoughts and one could actually become truth??

    You’re unbelievable Upitt. Although I have to say with POV love. You’re more like a broken record than a broken clock!! 🙂

    Like

  49. I’ll take 1 win,, as long as it is the one that makes us 1 – 1 for the season. If 8 wins and THAT one, I’d give him whatever he wants!!!

    H2P!!!

    Like

  50. tvax nice to see you posting more and kiski mofo, happy to see you on the POV and posting much. The POV needs good PITT people like you’s…. < Yes I tried to use Pittsburghese lingo ike

    Liked by 1 person

  51. Wow, that’s an impressive quote from Shawn Watson about Max Browne:

    Watson: “He has a big arm. He’s an arm talent. He can…make throws that guys who don’t have his height couldn’t make. He can see over things and make throws, accurate throws in small windows. I think a lot of that has to do with his size…, plus his arm talent. He has natural passing instincts.”

    And Max B. didn’t do anything in the spring game to make me walk away thinking he has an exceptional arm. I’m hoping he has made a lot of progress since then and his increased confidence is letting him play up to his talent level…

    I just hope that Watson is able to coach-up Browne to the level of Peterman as far as handling the timing and handoffs for the jet sweep plays. Peterman was amazing at handling those plays — maybe 2 screw-ups th entire season.

    Will be fascinating to see how this season plays out for Pitt… I’m thinking 8 wins, but to me, the GT game is the pivotal game of the season…

    Go Pitt.

    Like

    1. Before the suspensions & Aston’s broken ankle, I had the penn state game as the pivotal game. This team has that much unproven potential to win with just a little luck.

      But alas, the luck we received was the bad kind, compounded with the late arrival of Ford, tells me we get pounded by both PSU & OK ST.

      Hate that this kills our early momentum as well as really sinking the moral of our young team. If these guys are as strong as I think they are though, a new season starts against GT. We’ll see but I’ll view 2-2 as an acceptable early season record if we can beat GT at their place.

      So I agree with MM, that one is the pivotal game to salvage Pitt’s season.

      We’ll have a Pitt contingent there rooting the Panthers on. BigB & me brought home the Clemson victory together last year. Let’s hope that we’re good luck charms again in Atlanta. H2P!

      Like

  52. A career backup at Pitt or an Ivy League education along with the connections. If the DiNucci family isn’t looking back yet, they will in two years.

    Like

  53. I actually think the D will be fun to watch this year. They will win Pitt a game or two. Last year they lost Pitt a game or two. It could have been a magical year.

    I’m just hoping the curse of SOP has been exercised.

    Like

  54. Anon posted:
    ++++++++++++++++++++++
    “A career backup at Pitt or an Ivy League education along with the connections. If the DiNucci family isn’t looking back yet, they will in two years.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Good to see you got the kids off to bed early tonite Upitt.

    Like

  55. Nice to see Tom Savage tipping his cap to Max Browne for getting the starting QB nod, but I’m not sure a hash tag of #TranferQBU” is good for Pitt in the long run.

    Like

  56. Agree on Savage. In the NFL, I think he is a game manager and seems to play tight as if afraid to make a mistake. If he would play loose, I think it would benefit him greatly as he has a great defense he can rely upon to really help him out. I wish him well but I think Bill Obrien will use him for the first 4 or 5 games and bring in Watson if they are 2-3. I think once they fall under .500 after 6 games, he makes the change.

    A quick way not to get benched is to be 4-2 after 6 games.

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  57. How long will Browne last as the Pitt starter this year barring injury that is? (a) all year (b) three games or less (C) 4 to 6 games I’m sticking to my prediction that he will be replaced after the Pitt loss to GT and a 1 and 3 start.

    Like

    1. Browne will lead this team to a minimum of 8 wins – answer is a)

      Too much talent – tough opening month, but the Coastal is down this year. Make hay while you can HCPN.

      Like

    2. I’ll take some of that action jrnpitt. I have a Benjamin that says Browne is still our starter come the Rice game even if we are 1-3. Although, I see that scenario playing out with DiNucci getting some playing time against Ruce if that in fact is our record by then.

      I’m OK with lower stakes if you prefer. No one has been willing to bet me yet though. Like Upitt, I’m good about paying my debts when I’m a loser, but I need to have some takers first.

      Like

    1. all 3 recent transfers were out of necessity; this year Pitt had very little experience and a tough Sept schedule.

      With the 3 current underclassmen and a 4th good prospect coming in, I would have to think that we will not be seeing another transfer this coming year

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  58. Just when you think ESPN can’t go any lower … they just pulled announcer Robert Lee from the opener telecast of Virginia vs William & Mary. And get this … Lee is of Asian descent.

    Now you can argue that ESPN did Lee a favor (I mean UVa vs W&M) …. but cut me a break.

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  59. JoeL, correct that Browne didn’t actually leave the USC roster right then… But he declared publicly that he wanted out on Nov 2nd, then announced he’d be going to Pitt on Dec 16th.

    So with with a full 4 regular season games left plus a bowl game – 5 games his teammates were wondering if Browne would be 100% engaged if he had to go in at QB.

    Can you remember if any Pitt player has ever said he was going to transfer in the middle of the regular season… before the season ended and the bowl if there was one? I can’t and it’s pretty much not done that way, especially someone in the current 2-deep who easily might have been needed to start again.

    Chad Voytik didn’t say a thing about leaving until the bowl game was over and that’s the proper way it is done.

    Remember I talked to three guys that were engaged in the football media over in Southern California and they told me that Brown’s announcement so early on didn’t sit very well at all. I can understand why his teammates didn’t look that kindly on it.

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    1. If USC QB Darnold would have been seriously injured in the last 4 games, Browne would have been in a precarious position.

      I agree the decision to announce his transfer on Nov 4 was not well thought out. I can see announcing it at the end of the regular season …. remember, Browne enrolled at Pitt in early January, I believe his classes started here just a few days after the Rose Bowl. (he wasn’t on the bowl roster)

      Like

    2. Why should we care what some of Browne’s teammates thought? Those guys were probably firmly entrenched as starters at other positions. Browne was a terrific teammate by all accounts and sometimes you have to make tough decisions that are best for you. It’s all in the past now and it looks like Browne made the right decisions and Pitt appears to be the beneficiary because of it.

      Like

  60. My God you guys crack me up with the negativity on Browne.

    Do you guys think Savage and Peterman were stars at Rutgers and UofT before transferring? Give me a break. This is college ball, kids transfer all the time and some fall on their faces (Shell) and some shine like Peterman.

    As far as when Browne transferred, he had to do it early because he wanted to enroll in his next college for spring so he could partake in spring ball. Otherwise his chance of starting would be greatly diminished.

    …AND you can’t call him out for how he transferred if you defended Cam Johnson. Remember, many of you stated how he graduated, he could do whatever he wanted. Even transfer to a school on Pitt’s schedule.

    …AND show me a direct quote from a teammate saying they didn’t like how Browne transferred. I don’t buy the anonymous sources. That is CNN BS, LOL.

    You all wake up looking for negative #%#$%@ when it isn’t there.

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    1. What he said – and it was well said.

      One question for the rest of you who are negative towards Pitt players – do you c4@p in your own bed?

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    2. Fully concur.

      Does anyone think that Browne didn’t know his teammates, fans and the media would question his heart if he was put into a game and then failed after announcing his intentions?

      Regarding comparisions to Voytik…he stuck around to get his degree in April after announcing, which made the graduate transfer to Arkansas State possible. Browne had already graduated before announcing. Two different circumstances.

      Like

  61. I think Brown had every right to be pissed. If Darnold would have played vs Alabama and Stanford he would have lost those two. Probably dumb to announce early but understandable. It is a good example of why it is important to pick a school where you will play early, rather than ride the pines like Brown and Foster. How many really good and some great players sit on the benches of the elite teams when they could be starting somewhere else?

    It will be really Ironic if Brown is benched after PSU and OKST. Possible but not probable, no Darnold’s at Pitt. If Pickett is all that he would have already been in the mix. Should be a very strong battle next year.
    Will someone transfer?

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  62. My career and life would not have improved had I gone to an Ivy League college.
    Great education at Pitt; living in a better city; and coming out debt-free.
    Not a bad gig

    Like

    1. Philly is a dark jungle garbage dump compared to Pittsburgh. Spent four years there in North Philly getting through dental school. Loved my years living in the Burgh, just glad I made it out of the City of Brotherly Love alive!

      Like

      1. I have to agree and that is after going from Pitt to Philly(North) to NYC(Manhattan) to finish school…..and that is about 30+ years ago where Pittsburgh has continued to improve in many ways at a rate much greater than either of the other 2 cities IMO.
        Yet, as I think Reed and Ike would agree, the DC metro area IS and has been a great place that would give Pittsburgh a run for its money….cost of living aside….;>(

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        1. DC, no comparison with Pittsburgh. Totally different culture, much more cosmopolitan than Pittsburgh in every way and of course being the nation’s capital it is a Mecca for the movers & shakers of the political scene plus all of their Entourage that goes along with that. Add in the major airports, military bases, the Smithsonian Institute museums on the Mall plus all of the national memorials & monuments throughout the city and Washington DC is a fabulous place to call home. Best 20 years of my family’s life living in the Northern Virginia suburbs of D.C.

          Like

  63. T-Mac could very much in the mix next year and, if injuries, this year. If he doesn’t make some sort of encouraging rise I still don’t look for him to transfer out of PITT. I can really see him as an H-Back or even a tight end. He’s more athletic then some want to believe.

    Like

    1. The question for me is how many games did TMac actually play QB at Moeller? TMac did not play QB his junior year because the coach’s son was playing and was asked to play TE which he did. Do we even know if he played QB as a sophomore because if he did not then he only had one year of experience playing in live games. Perhaps this is why he is not in the mix as a backup. Playing some QB in HS is one thing but FBS is another.

      Like

  64. ike

    To start some bogus specualtion…

    I read somewhere that MacVittie (sp?) was being used on one of the special team units. Hmmm. LOL

    Seriously, that was reported. LOL

    Like

  65. Savage’s history at Rutgers was atrocious and he had a rep for not being able to read defenses, and Peterman’ s short history at UT was just as unimpressive. Both had nice careers at Pitt of course to my surprise, so I’ll bite my toungue on Browne criticism, especially since his credentials far exceed those of the past 2 guys. That said, we are also working with a new OC, so this year should be interesting with regard to QB performance. If our offense performs well again with another new OC and another new transfer QB, then PN deserves credit here as well

    Like

  66. I think Pitt is going to play much better vs PSU and Ok State than some here are 137% convinced they will and will beat at least one of them.

    Probably Ok State since their defense is going to be just as Big 12 garbage this year as it was last year. I predict a close semi-shootout loss to PSU and a close full-on shootout win over Ok State.

    Like

      1. Pitt had most of the momentum last year out in Stillwater as the second half went on until the game was delayed by lightning. I think Pitt would have won that game if the delay hadn’t occurred. This year it’s at Heinz. I think it will be a near carbon copy of last year’s game except this time when Pitt gets the momentum it won’t be stopped for an hour and a half by a stupid lightning storm.

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        1. I remembering listening to Lou Holtz on XM84 the week after that game … he was adamant that the home team has a definite advantage in a long game delay

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    1. It’s amazing the contrast of the optimism vs negativism by many here. I have no issue with any of it, as long as it is supported by sound reasoning. (and of course, that could be subjective)

      I don’t know what to expect … but I must confess that I fear a rough time at Happy Valley but also think the team will be pretty good come mid-October.

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  67. The Oakie State game is one that I had pegged as a win as well. That’s the game that will show us what the team is made of and how good of a coach Narduzzi is. Sort of…

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    1. I don’t think they’ll be able to stop Pitt’s offense at all. It wasn’t Nate Peterman making insane plays all over the place that had that game a 38-38 tie late, it was Pitt’s offensive line demolishing Ok State’s front seven all game. Ok State’s defense isn’t gonna be much better this year, if any better, and I think Pitt’s offensive line is gonna surprise a lot of people by not having very much drop-off from last year, even early on in the season. If O’Neill plays. Which all appearances point towards him doing.

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  68. @WWB – Those statistics are sad and unacceptable in my opinion. Thank you for sharing. The school we tend to mock to our east has a much larger number each year. If you knew the number, you would shudder, shake your head and most likely shed a tear. Hopefully, it will change soon.I expect it to.

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  69. tvax, not sure if you know I live in WPA in a small city called Latrobe around 50 miles east the Pittsburgh. While we all know that Reed lives in beautiful downtown, Columbia Maryland. Fun fact, after knowing Reed for maybe 10 years or more, we have never met face to face. (except in the picture of the cage match) Probably why we get along so well or not so well. … 🙂 .. Just kidding as there is a big-time mutual respect between us.

    Hope that drought ends Sept 2nd at the POV tailgate and BTW, who in on the round-table later on? C’mon guys lets get with it.. 🙂 …. ike

    BE THERE!!
    H2P!

    Like

    1. Ike – I spent a couple days in your fine town last month. Played Laurel Valley and Latrobe CC. Really enjoyed both. 98 degrees back in Richmond at that time and 72 and 64 degrees at tee-off on each day in the Laurel Mountains. A really great part of the world. Re-acquainted myself with Rolling Rock at a couple taverns in nearby Youngstown too.

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  70. I don’t like the mentality on this site that just because another QB comes who may be better, it means the guy is a dud or a bust. Savage did not fit well with RichRod’s offense .. look where he right now. And how about Peterman at Tennessee? FWIW, he is looking better right now that the QB who ultimately replaced him at UT?

    Peterman vs Voytik — and the charade that there was supposed to be a QB battle in the first 2 games of 2015? Peterman was a much better fit for that offense. Remember, Voytik was brought in to ‘run’ Fraud’s offense where the QB often runs the ball or throws on the run … two things Voytik did quite well.

    In fact … Pitt beat VT on a Thursday night game in 2014 when PC installed a read option offense. Conner who was the ACC leading rusher that year was not the leading rusher that night … Voytik was.

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  71. wwb…Weah and the deeper passing game never really took form for the 1st few games..OCMC appeared to keep it under wraps for whatever reason…might have cost us but who knows

    Regarding my comment on transferQBU..I was referring to not wanting to have that rep going forward but very glad to have had Nate and now Mad Max…hope he lights it up…at 6″ 5″ he stands right up there with the OL, and hopefully, he has great protection. receivers who can get open, and a strong arm and a psyche/mentality wear the game has “slowed down” from the 1st snap.

    Reed, I think Dintino will do well as a starter..he has size, strength and don’t underestimate his athleticism- the man was a wrestler in his 2nd sport. Wrestlers are damn good athletes !

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  72. for those wondering about Hamlin …. from HCPN this morning:

    HOW’S DAMAR HAMLIN PROGRESSING? YOU SAID ABOUT A MONTH AGO THAT HE IS AS HEALTHY AS HE’S BEEN AT PITT?
    NARDUZZI: He’s as healthy as he’s been and I’ve seen a big smile on his face, so we’re just, you know, we’re just taking it easy and taking it slow and don’t want to mess anything up. It’s a very – I don’t want to say serious deal that he had, but we just don’t want to go backwards. We’re going forward right now and that’s helping him progress.

    IS THERE A CHANCE HE COULD BE A SECOND-YEAR REDSHIRT?
    NARDUZZI: I hope not. That’s not the plan.

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  73. Dr. Tom, season starts in a few days and I hope you are under-going therapy and will be cured by 9/23/2017…Can’t blame UPitt although with some of your prior posts I thought he had a twin on here posting impersonation you..I blame our blue collar legend George “the Animal” Aston for pushing you to the edge…I have been looking for a George game jersey on-line to send you as a get-well present…I will keep searching.

    We are missing 2 important posters..the Dark One and Emel…some-on boys get back in here. You are both missed..

    Like

    1. George Aston’s loss cannot be over emphasized for it’s affect on this offense. I’ve still not recovered from that horrible news.

      It’s leadership that concerns me with this team, or should I say the lack thereof. Taleni, Wirginis, Whitehead & Blair all fumbled the ball there.

      George was one of the few character guys left in a skill position to provide said leadership on the O. That’s why it’s an especially painful loss.

      Like

  74. All great points BiggieB. Weren’t the two McKillop boys really good wrestlers.

    Carlton Haselrig was a multiple college wrestling champion who never played college football. Kinda of sure he made the pro bowl one year for the Steelers. ….ike

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  75. Wrestlers are strong, quick on their feet and anticipate/ react … all needed traits to be a solid OL… Hope he is an excellent
    snapper in the gun formation… no snaps over the QBs head and no QH fumbles this year please…eliminate those costly momentum killing mistakes in 17!

    Like

    1. While Officer was not that bad, IMO if it wasn’t for one bad snap, we would have won 9 games and there wouldn’t have been all this stuff on this site about the bowl loss

      Like

  76. Not worried so much about offensive mistakes, especially with the line. Peterson turned a unit that made far too many mistakes in 2015 into a unit with near-perfect execution in 2016 (other than some bad snaps from Officer).

    Like

  77. I appreciate this write up. I believe PF could very well be worth the wait & the hype. his football family tree is real and is populated with local leaders to be sure. his talent & his mentors determined HCPN’s actions. smart man. call me a homer but I always believed we got the better of the 2 local blue chip DB’s. My hope is we are 3-1 hosting Rice & HCPN flips the switch then. To me the question isn’t does he play its when. Viva Garfield Gators

    Like

  78. Leaders..

    The offense has O’Neil, Officer and Browne.

    Losing Taleni, Wirginis, Whitehead & Blair improves the leadership on the D. I’ll take a younger player stepping into the role that isn’t an idiot. Those players aren’t role models for the younger players and certainly not leaders.

    Like

  79. It’s a good point that in last year’s PSU and OSU games, Oh Canada was still being very conservative with the play calls for the passing game. He used running plays on a lot of third downs – apparently worried about interceptions.

    Canada gained confidence in the passing side of the offense later in the season.

    We need Max B. to show that he can be trusted to make good decisions and good throws early this season…

    Go Pitt.

    Like

  80. Last time for me with Maddox. The young man has played since he arrived at PITT and has started under two head coaches.

    Played in all 13 games as a TRUE freshman while starting 6 games that season. (2014) I think I’ll trust people who know a thing and have actually been paid to evaluate players and are paid to win football games over the arm chair QB’s throughout the entire college football world!

    It’s not just being a matter of Maddox being the best PITT has but he’s just plain good. He can cover imo. Don’t expect Avonte to be overtaken on the dept chart until he’s playing in the NFL!. . . .ike

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  81. Wwb… 2 bad snaps that come to mind occurred against the Tarheels and Northwestern . I think QH had a big fumble as well against the Heels… that’s all water over the dam… a new season will soon unfold

    Like

  82. BigB — As a Civil Engineer, I prefer “water under the bridge” to “water over the dam…”.

    Water over the Dam is something we try to avoid! 😳

    Go Pitt.

    Like

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