Here is another All-ACC team listing. Pitt isn’t as well represented this last season as in the past.  We have only three 2nd string players show up here; Maddox at DB, Newsman at Kicker and Henderson at Kick Returner.

Two of those three are gone for next year.

What is interesting, and I think  adds accuracy to this particular list, is that both OL’s O’Neill  and Officer are not on it, nor should they be in my opinion. They both played well below what fans, and I’m sure what the coaching staff, expected.

There is a good chance O’Neill  will declare also even though he’s be better served sticking around for his SR year. But here is an interesting about that. So much of an OL’s individual success relies on the quality and teamwork of the other lineman around him.

I believe that was a big part of O’Neill ‘s problems in ’17… The fact that the other lineman pretty much sucked, especially  both Officer and Jared Jones-Smith. Our Center Morrissey  was a true rsFR also and his “or” Center mate Dintino was sub-par. Transfer Hodges was brought in for depth and he was about average for his short time here.

I have written in the past that our offensive line for 2018 makes me very nervous.

Below is a listing of those players that I think we’ll be seeing as starters next year and they aren’t something that jumps right out at me to say ‘Boy this is going to be a big improvement over last season.‘ and folks this last season wasn’t very good for us in this area.

Left Tackle
70 BRIAN O’NEILL JR*, 6-6, 305 (If he stays)
72 Tony Pilato (SO*, 6-5, 320)

Left Guard
66 Mike Herndon (JR*, 6-4, 310)

Center
67 JIMMY MORRISSEY FR*, 6-3, 300 OR
76 CONNOR DINTINO JR*, 6-3, 315Ȏ

Right Guard
78 ALEX BOOKSER JR*, 6-6, 315
66 Mike Herndon (JR*, 6-4, 310)

Right Tackle
71 Bryce Hargrove (FR*, 6-4, 310)

Not exactly Murder’s Row is it? I am not impressed at all with Narduzzi’s OL recruiting. His OL recruits have all been 3* players save for a 2* thrown in.  He’s recruited only nine OL over his first three years and of those I’d say maybe three had any offers that really stood out above average FBS schools, and a few had mostly FCS offers.

Two key stats for me when looking at OL effectiveness are “Sacks Allowed” and “Rushing Offense”.  As to the first – Sacks Allowed – we let the opponent get to our QB 31 times last year. 31! That is as bad as it has been for sometime. We ranked 102nd nationally in that category… and that was in only 12 games. Boy, compare that to our 2016 season’s  work in this area when we were 3rd nationally allowing only 10 sacks over 13 games.

Our Rushing stats were almost as bad as we were 85th nationally with only 3.85 yards per carry.  That is as low as I can ever remember over the last ten years at least.

Can you imagine what we’ll  be like here if O’Neill declares?  Pickett under Center will help with the sacks as he is more mobile, and smarter with his pocket presence and decision-making, than our other two ’17 QBs.

We’ll  go into more detail with this when we get closer to Spring Practices but from what I watched last season, and what I’m  looking at now, this is an area of huge concern for me. We saw a marked decline from ’16 to ’17 and even if it stays at the ’17 level next year it will be a hard thing for the rest of the offense to overcome…but that maybe wishful thing on our part.

116 thoughts on “Another All-ACC Listing Out & OL Talk

  1. That was a joke, right? I never want to see Rhoads near Pitt again. He isn’t being added as a tenth coach there. It is a new staff.

    I totally agree about the OL for next year. O’Neil leaving will be a HUGE impact. Jones-Smith and Officer not so much. Herndon goes back to D. He actually played well on D against Miami.

    I think you missed some youngs guys. Morgan, Ford, my pick Drexel, Hargrove, Drake. All will be SO or redshirt FR. There are others also.

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    1. New staff doesn’t matter – he was in the ‘eligible to be hired pool’ and Narduzzi stuck with his buddy Conklin.

      I’ll take Rhoads any day at Pitt as the DC – he was a great DC for us. We have been anywhere near the quality of defenses lately that we had with him under DW…

      2007 – 31st nationally
      2008 – 27th
      2009 – 23rd
      2010 – 8th

      Compare that to our last three years with Conklin:

      2015 – 37th
      2016 – 101st
      2017 – 67th

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Rhoads left Pitt after 2007, his last game was the 13-9 game. Phil Bennett replaced him.

        Partridge also left after 2007. Just more examples of the great Pitt athletic budget

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  2. The OL should be ok.

    Jerry Drake is going to be a stud, for one. No idea why you don’t have him in this write up.

    Morrissey will be improved.

    Bookser and O’Neil hopefully return and I really didn’t hate what I saw out of Herndon. He’s big, mean, and strong. Brandon Ford is a big kid that people expect to start one day. Justin Morgan is a house.

    Chase Brown has a good chance to play immediately.

    Others – Pilato, Hargrove, Drexel, Houy, Warren, Dintino and the incoming freshmen round out the 3 deep.

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  3. 3 guys to consider for Pitt OL next year are Jerry Drake and Carter Warren … both were redshirted this past season … and Chase Brown, 6’6 310 lb who is a JUCO transfer.

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  4. Alright, it’s not a great secret that PITT’s defense has pretty much stunk out the joint 2 1/2 of the 3 years Narduzzi has been the head coach @ PITT. I would have been in favor of Rhoads rejoining the team but far from a dumb move by Narduzzi. It’s about the scheme more than anything. Rhoads wasn’t going to come to PITT and be on the same page as the current defensive scheme. No way. There’s no connection at PITT anymore with PR

    I, and in no way, believe Narduzzi is sitting there watching all the changes and not having his own plan in place. This head coach is playing with all our minds. Why do we sometimes believe him and then turn around and not believe him? We all better get use to being faked out by this guy. Sorry but Pat is more on the beam than some give him credit for.

    The O-Line is going to be a work in progress again. << This sucks I know but it’s the way it has to go down.. and yes, I truly hate to say it but Reed and myself don’t see eye to eye on HCPN recruiting of the O-Line. Question, where are all Paul’s great O-Linemen for next year? << Yes, this coming year would be Lumpy’s recruits as 5 years seniors. Don’t bother looking because they are not there. Bookser is the only one. It took Narduzzi and his staff to move O’Neil to the line.

    Yes, the O line is going to be the biggest question mark moving forward. Young and unproven will be the cry this coming season but I’m looking at the roster and see some talent there. Morgan, Drake and Warren are pretty highly regarded recruits. I expect two of those three to start next year or at least see a lot of playing time.

    Morrissey (who doesn’t look 310lbs) or Dintino will be probably moved to another position leaving room for Drexel. A favorite of mine as well. Pilato, Ford, Houy, and my long shot….. Rainey III. They may struggle and like this years defense… improve as the season moves on.

    back to the QB, the weak play from that position this year made the entire offense look bad. Narduzzi hurt the team and the progression by bringing in Max, hate to say that but… Still like Ben and he will be a more than capable backup and PITT may need him the way KP runs around. ok . . . ike

    H2P!

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  5. College stats are less meaningful than NFL stats where the talent level is 90% equal. College stats of course do have meaning but schedule strength, talent level, etc.have greater effect. Look for college coaches who do more with much less of the above and you have someone going to the NFL. Just my thinking.

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  6. ^^ I agree frank, factors that need to be factored in. College football is not necessarily black and white… and lets not leave out the cheating….

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  7. This is the 3rd class Narduzzi is recruiting currently. Many power 5 schools develop the offensive lineman over 3 years before they see any playing time. Narduzzi did not have the luxury of any great OL depth when he arrived. He’s was basically playing with cards he was death when he arrived IMO. Thus I can’t really fault him for poor recruiting of the OL. Let’s see what the 2019 OL looks like before we give him a failing grade on his OL recruits.

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  8. I have been making this point for a while now (below is a Dokish tweet) that Pitt has to rely on 3 stars, and then develop them over time. The teams listed below are Pitt’s peers … not PSU or OSU. And it would also help if the program had some continuity and stability.

    “Because they won’t do anything to win, Pitt won’t have a top 10 class. But what they can have is a lot of good prospects that they develop into really good players. If they do that, they’ll be very successful.
    Wisconsin is doing that now. So is TCU. Michigan State did it for years. Don Nehlen made a long career out of doing it.”

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    1. wwb,

      I would agree on face value on this remark. However, the question I would like to have answered would be in those other scenarios what level of stability of coaching/system has there been to help elevate/mold/develop these good players.

      Wisconsin…commits $$$$ to keep coaches in place (not just he head guy in charge). MSU same thing. How long was Narddog there under Dantonio? TCU?

      Perhaps there is no correlation to one or the other but if I were a betting man, my guess is that there was greater stability in the coaching level for those programs than there has been at Pitt.

      The fact is you can’t have a revolving door with your coaching staff bringing in new coaches, new systems, hell even large tweeks to existing systems and expect to develop 3 star players…effectively.

      Dave D

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    2. Look at the programs of those schools listed…tons of admin support, money to work with and good coaching staff.

      Pitt may have 1 out of 3 there.

      We need blue Chip kids and we aren’t pulling them in.

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  9. Reed, I agree with you about Browne and DiNucci not helping with the sack totals. I think it will go down next year.

    However, I agree with NRS that I never want Paul Rhodes near a Pitt defense ever again. He was an assistant under Larry Coyer, and when Coyer left for the NFL Rhodes inherited his scheme and players. The decline began immediately. Granted, Walt Harris did not help with defensive recruiting, but I think Rhodes was as ineffective as Conklin.

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  10. “The decline began immediately.” Huh?..

    2007 – 31st nationally
    2008 – 27th
    2009 – 23rd
    2010 – 8th

    Isn’t going from 31st to 27th to 23rd to 8th an ascension? Am I missing something?

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      1. Please explain further. Coyer left in 1999, correct? What were Pitt’s defensive ranks in the years 2000-2006? Using your logic, they should have been much better than 31st. Is that the case? I ask because I don’t know. Seems to me, an 8th ranked defense 8 years after Coyer left is pretty good. No?

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  11. Exactly right David and another fine comment by you. …but first.

    I know I have said this many times but I just don’t buy this star ranking crap. What’s the difference between a 5.7 and 5.8 recruit as some biased knucklehead decides who to give a .1 advantage to? It’s stupidity at it’s finest. We have to realize that some of these goofy scouting services have a limit on how many players are allowed into the upper tier 4 and 5 star groups? Why the cut off and what is the significant difference between the players? << There is none.

    Just another made-up stat that some may use to make their point or otherwise. It’s false football news.

    Back to David D’s comment. 100%, a team and a university like PITT cannot afford to have a constant change of consistency. Continuity is the only way PITT can dig themselves out of the hell hole steve put them in..

    PITT fans are confused by all the crap that has been flung on them. I get that patience at this time may be a little light and hard to come by considering the absolute futility provided by a meandering administration a few years ago. but hey? it’s all we got, you know that drill. Stay patient people and look out the front windshield.You can never look back, you can never look back.. .. ike

    H2P!

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2uytyg

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    1. Almost as stupid as the pre-season rankings. Aaron Donald was a 3 star because he was short. Meanwhile Dumervil and James Harrison were tearing up the NFL.

      Just think, if Donald was 2-3 inches taller he would have been at OSU or Alabama. Thanks Scout & Rivals…

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    2. I agree Ike, the star system is quite flawed. Thank goodness it is because I think Kenny Pickett was a 5.5 three star. Had they tagged him properly (probably 4 star) Pitt doesn’t land him IMO.

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    3. Agree that the difference between 5.7 and 5.8 is likely insignificant.

      Question. Have our 3* recruits been 5.7, just short of 4? Or, have they been closer to 2 than 4*? I ask because I don’t know.

      What I do know is we seem to land recruits when fighting Temple, MAC schools, etc. for recruits (like we did with Majors and Walt) and losing to the big boys rather than competing in recruiting 4* like we did with Wanny.

      Other than Whitehead and Ford, I haven’t been EXCITED about too many players. And signing 9 OL in 3 classes isn’t enough bodies, especially if Chryst did as poorly as many of you say.

      I was happy with the Narduzzi hire and I hope he works out. That said, there’s no way anyone can be impressed just yet.

      After next season, we’ll see. There will be no more excuses.

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  12. Agree about consistent staff in place and that’s why I think Narduzzi’s extension was a good thing.

    But to get better you have to tinker and find the right person in the right place. If that means firing staff if needed then do so.

    The constant should be the AD and HC. After that they are expendable for cause.

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    1. Yeah….Pitt can ill afford to keep rewarding mediocrity with job security. Some coaches seats have to start heating up soon.

      I would say the same thing for the Steelers defensive coaches….but I digress….

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  13. Good comments Jack, Reed I agree. Next year and the year after, the hot seats need a complete reevaluation. I would have thought that after this past season we may have seen a little change or two but dam it, PITT went ahead and upset Miami. << and no, I’m not being sarcastic at all.

    There are times when a small piece of positive really is a negative in a wolf’s clothing. I hope that’s not the case with the big PITT upset.

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  14. Reed, the honest to heck truth is that PITT is not likely to pull in many of the so called blue chip recruits. What PITT needs and you agree, is consistency and a head coach with good recruiters with that special eye for undervalued, overlooked talent.

    Well at least until PITT can turn the corner and start winning 9 and 10 games in the regular season. Which is about to happen in a few short years. Hope I’m around to see it.. ike

    H2P!

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  15. The other thing about these recruiting websites — I would venture to guess that if a coach with a reputation as a “good recruiter” offers a kid, the kid’s star rating goes up. Wannstedt had that kind of reputation, perhaps because of his NFL connections or success in getting good athletes to play football for Miami when he was there. And under Wannstedt, we signed highly ranked players and classes according to these scouting services. But I’m not convinced that the 4 and 5 star kids he brought in were that outstanding. I think a couple were, but there were more busts than home runs out of those highly ranked kids. But simply because a “good recruiter” offered them, I’m willing to bet the scouting services ranked those kids higher. Narduzzi at Pitt (or Chryst at Wisconsin, or Gary Patterson at TCU or other coaches that don’t necessarily have reputations as top recruiters) could offer the same type of kid as that offered by Wannstedt, but the scouting service won’t rank the kid as high.

    Didn’t that TE from New England that flipped from Pitt to Stanford magically go from a two star to three star once or around the time he changed his commitment?

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    1. yes, the ironic part was that Symonds was the only 2 star on Pitt’s commitment list, everyone else was a 3 star …. yet he was the one Stanford went after. And I believe he is now a 3star

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  16. I do want to turn the upset into a negative. But when the defense is very bad for most of the season. You have to look at the season as a whole. Not the last game. It was nice to go into the office season with a great win. But one game does not make a season. We need great defensive performance vs teams we are somewhat comparable to in talent. Play defense and run the ball.

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    1. Except for the UNC game, I thought the defense played well for the entire 2nd half of the season. Duke scored 40 on Northwestern but 17 vs Pitt, UVa scored > 40 at Boise St but only 14 at Pitt. Note that NW and Boise both made the final rankings. And of course Va Tech and Miami did very little on offense vs Pitt.

      They certainly still have to keep on improving but only Maddox and Whitehead will leave, and ther seems to be some depth in the DB

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  17. Symonds was the player that some people used to point out Narduzzi’s lack of recruiting efforts but when he moved on to Stanford it was brought back up as losing a recruit?

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  18. Although there is a .1 difference between a 5.7 three star and a 5.8 four star there is a .5 difference between a 5.5 three star and a 6.0 four star. Please don’t make believe that this not so. And of course this does not mean that a 6.1 five star can’t fail as a collegiate player and a 5.5 star can’t become an NFL hall of famer.

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  19. I’ve got a prediction. Grant Carrigan (6-7, 275) has the wing span of a condor and will be moved from TE to OT ala current tackle Brian O’Neill. He’s versatile, athletic and has a lot of room to fill out.

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  20. Thanks 6&34. I also pointed out that there are only so many players allowed into the 4 and 5 star rankings in some services. Which imo, is completely stupid. Only allowing so many players means there is a cut off. If a player is a four star talent then he is a four star talent, cut off or not.. It’s a completely flawed system..

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    1. I saw Carrigan play against Cleveland St Edward’s in 2016 opener … he was a beast at DL. Remember, Pine-Richland rarely uses a TE so he would often line up at OT

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  21. Jay you make a good counterpoint but at the same time confirm mine, yes the rankings are subjective at least and prejudice at best. I agree, a 5.7 player is certainly not guaranteed to be better than a 5.5 player. Who thought this crap up in the first place? $$ Cha Ching…

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  22. Reed – not many people noticed that Justin Morgan played a decent amount at right guard in the second half of the NC game. He was in on a scoring drive. Expect him to start at a guard spot next season.

    —And on recruiting 4 Stars, someone explain to me why one of these kids, getting all the accolades and adoration they get, and all the attention from “Football Factories”, would go to a school with a half full stadium. How do you expect the Duzz to sail the seven seas with that anchor around his neck?

    Go Pitt.

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    1. That’s good news

      When a couple of ex-coaches (JayPA, Schiano etc) face trail aiding in the decades long cover up, and PSU puts up a statue of the young red-headed coach who spoke up instead of JoePa, we will be closer to justice than we are today.

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        1. The update is that all 3 were found guilty, and two of them already served their short prison terms (slap on the wrists considering the gravity of their actions)

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    1. Good news.

      The linked article indicates that several coaches have been involved in the recruitment. Hopefully Pitt staff is on the attack where there have been coaching changes.

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  23. Major, that wasn’t Justin Morgan who was playing in the second half of the NC game. It was Bookser. He changed jerseys at halftime. His uniform was ripped. He wore #54 with no name on the back.

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    1. Thanks for the info. I thought #54 looked awfully good in that game. Had no idea it was Bookser with a different jersey…

      Cheap trick!

      Explains way there was no talk about Morgan playing. Reed is right again – darn it!

      Go Pitt.

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  24. No idea why so many of the OLs puppies were left out of Reed’s projected two deep for next year??. Myself, I have no dread if O’Neill goes pro. There are many 2017 RS Freshman with a year of S & C now under their belts at Pitt ready to do battle in 2018. The list includes:

    Justin Morgan 6’6″ 350lb RS S. Considered the cream of the crop out of the state of NY for OL recruits.
    Brandon Ford 6’5″ 310lb RS S. Hometown hero who stayed at home to play his college football.
    Jerry Drake 6’5″ 315lb RS F. Florida product that enrolled early in Jan 2017, and will be a “stud” as posters above have already mentioned.
    Carter Warren 6’5″ 325lb RS S. A great product out of NJ and highly regarded.

    Yes, it will be another year of a unit getting experience via “trial by fire”, but that’s college football to start with, always has been, always will be. We will be fine by midseason. Unfortunately for us, PSU comes to Heinz Field on Sept. 9th. UGH!

    BTW, Herndon was moved to the DL last season and was serviceable there. I do not see him flipping back to the OL. That would be a poor coaching decision IMO.

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    1. yes, there will be a lot of inexperience and of course, it will be deemed as a lack of talent. Heck, I can remember Dorian Johnson and Adam Biz really struggling when they were new.

      Reed makes a good point about being surrounded by talented people on the OL. I remember natural frosh Lucas Nix fitting in nicely but it certainly didn’t hurt to be surrounded by Joe Thomas and Nat Byham … two very solid players.

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  25. I was really surprised by how bad the line was last year. Thought they would be better with all of the upper classmen. Think that weak QB play made them even worse.

    Maybe this year we will be surprised if some of the young guys step up. A mobile QB will help, but we don’t need him taking off all the time.No doubt O’Neil and Bookser’s decisions will make a difference. Hope they both stay and improve their draft positions.

    Unfortunately, the lure of the pros is great..

    Next year is fully Narduzzi’s team and it looks like the defense will be better than the offense for the first time in some time.

    May not be a good thing in today’s ball. You need to be able to score frequently.

    Hope there aren’t too many typos, going in for eye surgery today to fix a bleed.

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  26. Not quite sure that all these units played well in the second half of the season. In the 12 games we played we were 3-4 to end the season losing to Syracuse, NCState, North Carolina, and VT. I guess it depends on what color glasses one is wearing. #H2P

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  27. It’s too bad Picket has to work with a mostly inexperienced O line in his first year as starter. Here’s hoping they develope quickly.Some of the redshirts were recruited by some good programs,so maybe there’s some talent there. Defense got better as season went on but I still think we need upgrade at linebacker. They were just adequate, but how long has it been since we had the big stud linebacker who just dominated and blew up plays all over the field. The good teams all have one of those players. Receiving group has couple of real good possession short route guys(Lopes and Tipton) but desperately need deep threat. As up and down as Weah was he was only receiver who made the big splash plays. Hope Narduzzi can land at least one of those Florida recruits.

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  28. Not to beat a dead horse but here are the OL from the last 2 classes and their other offers:

    Blake Zubovic 6’5 310 – Penn St, VT, WVU, UVA, NC St, Mich St, many others
    Jake Kradel 6’4 275 – Ohio St, Iowa, UCLA, WVU, Wisconsin, NC St, UVA, VT, Minnesota, many others
    Chase Brown 6’6 310 – Tennessee, VT, WVU, Minnesota, Maryland, Kansas, UCF, etc

    Jerry Drake 6’7 300 – Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Oklahoma, UNC, Mich St, Tennessee, UCLA, many others
    Carter Warren 6’6 320 – Michigan, Penn St, Miami, Tennessee, Mich St, VT, UNC, South Carolina, many others
    Gabe Huoy 6’6 270 – Louisville, Maryland, Illinois, WF, others
    Owen Drexel 6’3 300 – Rutgers, others (extremely early commit)

    Zack Williams 6’6 275 (DNQ) – Miami, Louisville, NC St, Oregon St, WVU
    Justin Morgan 6’6 335 – Illinois, Rutgers
    Bryce Hargrove 6’5 255 – Rutgers, Cincinnati, others
    Brandon Ford 6’5 300 – Maryland (extremely early commit)
    Jimmy Morrissey 6’3 280 – WALK ON STARTER

    These guys will all be Sophomores or younger next season (except incoming JUCO Brown). Throw in fifth year seniors O’Neil, Bookser, Dintino, Herndon and the cupboard doesn’t seem especially empty to me.

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    1. Agreed. Maybe not a group that we “reload” with like the Big Boys do annually but we’re not looking at a OL roster that is a barren moonscape lackng potential like we had before HCPC showed up at Pitt.

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    1. Always thought he was NBA talented. Taller, quicker and better shooter than previous Pitt wing draftees Young and Patterson.

      It’s a damn shame Artis didn’t board like that while at Pitt. His best year was 2014-2015 when he averaged 6 rpg.

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  29. Reed – Paul Rhodes doesn’t run the defense Narduzzi runs. Duzz is not changing his defense. We’re entering year 4 with a new 7 year contract to boot … He’s spent 3 years installing this defense. Change isn’t happening.

    You can complain all you want about the defense but it’s here to stay. Look at the numbers below … This defense takes about 4-5 years to install. In fact, the defensive collapse while they transitioned to new players recruited to play in the system lasted 3 years at MSU dropping from #39 to #59 to #87. Pitt rebounded by 30 spots after last season’s precipitous fall … with a very young defense.

    You like numbers, well here are the numbers. You can argue the differences between the Big10 and ACC but the coastal is not that different.

    If Pitt stagnates this upcoming season, I agree there should be concern but when we hired Duzz it was always going to be a waiting game. Year’s 4 and 5 were always going to be the years we’d see if this defense works.

    In year 1 of Duzz at MSU (2007), MSU was ranked #39 overall. Pitt was ranked #23 (2015).

    In year 2 of Duzz at MSU (2008), MSU was ranked #59 overall. Pitt was ranked #96 (2016).

    In year 3 of Duzz at MSU (2009), MSU was ranked #87 overall. Pitt was #65 (2017) this season.

    In year 4 of Duzz at MSU (2010), MSU was ranked #46.

    In year 5, MSU was ranked #8.

    If (based on historical data) Pitt follows the same trajectory, expect a 30 – 40 ranking jump this season and another in year 5 … the first year that Duzz has a full class his staff recruited for an entire recruiting cycle.

    Data collected from this link:

    http://www.espn.com/college-football/statistics/team/_/stat/total/position/defense/sort/totalYards

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    1. change already did happen. This year mid-season, Pitt start going to 5 and 6 DB sets. This happened after Whitehead returned and Gricen and Hamlin gained some experience. Phil Campbell also became a factor in last 2 games.

      But to your point, I never had doubt that the defense would come around once the current staff’s recruits got some seasoning. They may bot be ready et to be a shut-down unit, but they will continue to improve.

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  30. Combine the thoughts of Anon with those of Tossing and we will achieve a top ten ranking in no time. I love the enthusiasm. Ike is rubbing off on you guys.

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  31. wbb – yeah, I was implying overall defensive philosophy, not tweaks. There has to be adjustments to stay relevant because teams adapt. I’m glad you got my overall point though.

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  32. Hey missing, do you have any idea how many eyes rolled when you mentioned I was rubbing off on other posters? One of me is too many…

    TT good to see you posting again.

    Patience has become an ancient outdated philosophy in PITT football fan mentalities. We forget that transition is spelled with a 3 or 4 in it…. as in years..

    Give Reed more credit, hell, do we remember how many times he’s been right the past few years? Ride Commander Ride. << I played this once before but… here it goes again… We are with you Reed…

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  33. Ike – I have a ton of respect for Reed. We disagree often but I’ve learned he knows things about the inner workings of Pitt football. On the field play is a more level playing field to argue Pitt football with Reed. Reed, I don’t think, minds people disagreeing with him. I don’t think he likes it when people disrespect the work he puts into this blog. If my post came across as disrespectful, it wasn’t meant to be.

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    1. IMO, Reed’s strength is analytics. He crunches the numbers to substantiate his points and in that regard he is hard to argue with. However in college fooball trends are short llved due to the many variables that constantly are in flux with most programs. It is a rare program that just consatantly puts out a quality product year after year.

      When talkng about a program like Pitt’s, with all of it’s warts & blemishes, depending only on previous statistics to predict our future is a tenuous strategy at best.

      Some call it blind hope, but a program that could have been left for dead after Fraud Graham took the midnight express out of Pittsburgh is undeniably on the upswing over the last few seasons with both HCPC & HCPN.

      This is where speculation trumps analytics. It is also where people like me, who sees the glass almost always half full, butts heads with analysts like Reed who are “show me” type guys.

      The upward trend doesn’t mean that there are no bumps in the road. Defenses can stink, QBs can fail, and coaches can make mistakes but when a young team like thi,s finds it’s future QB, hardens it’s young defense over the breth of the season in the crucible of the game day experience, and can conclude an otherwise dismal season with such a convincing upset of an undefeated #2 Miami team, then I’m all about “speculating” about the unrealized potential of this team going forward.

      For some reason, many so called Pitt fans simply will not permit themselves that luxury of dreaming of the “what ifs” for Pitt football. I’m pretty sure that it’s a defensive mechanism that has developed to protect egos that have endured years of disappointments surrounding a mediocre Pitt football program. But fear not, the times they are a changing. At least that’s what I’m speculating. H2P!

      Like

  34. This year was rough but honestly I called for a 6-6 year and it wasn’t too far off. As long as the players don’t quit on themselves and the fans I’m basically ok with what happens. I try to look at the positives while being realistic. It sucks we lost to Syracuse and UNC (AGAINNNNNNNN). It was awesome that we could humble the Miami Hurricanes on senior day with one of my personal favorites Avonte Maddox having the game of his life.

    For me the story of the year was the emergence of Kenny Pickett and a defense that was flying around the ball and consistently shutting teams down on 3rd down by the end of the season. Pickett still has three years of eligibility and the defense stands to lose only 3 players from the entire two deep (albeit two playmakers in the secondary). Two very solid classes are coming up as rSO and rFR this spring and will serve as the backbone of the program for the next 2-3 seasons.

    For next season we could have up to 13 fifth year seniors coming back for basically the sole reason of competing for an ACC championship.

    I had a small fear that the team would give up after the Oklahoma st debacle but the team stuck together without nearly any upperclassmen leadership. I like where the team is going. Narduzzi can beat anyone in the country on any given Saturday (or Friday)…

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  35. Ike – phew. Haha. I need to jump on one of the calls so people can see I’m not as dick’ish as my posts may appear. Sometimes I overcompensate on the optimism to counteract perceived negativism.

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  36. C’mon TT, easy to tell you know your PITT stuff and your love for the the school shines brightly… and don’t getting lost again. We need you….

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  37. Anon – Not beating the teams you’re supposed to beat was the most frustrating part of the season. That’s a coach killer along with losing to your rivals … and has to be remedied.

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    1. Truly the only teams I thought we actually should have beaten but lost to the past three seasons Navy, Northwestern, and UNC (with maybe Syracuse thrown in). The first two were basically meaningless.

      Before this season I thought narduzzi was as good as any pitt coach since Johnny majors II at avoiding the upset. Still basically do. Harris, Wanny, and Chryst – decent as they were – tended to get upset by lesser teams quite frequently

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      1. Navy was favored and franked. When you lose your top 3 offensive players and 3 of your better defensive players, you have good reason to lose. Don’t know what happened vs UNC … other than Pitt is destined to lose against them

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  38. ike – I’m always here. I feel like I can be an instigator (or agitator) with my overt positivity so I’ll refrain from posting until things cool off sometimes. Especially, recently, with the issues Reed’s had with the blog and commenters.

    Ask Dr. Tom, patience is a virtue. I try to be patient with Pitt since nothing is easy for Pitt (usually self-inflicted). We hired a career DC with no HC experience and a defensive system that took 4 years to get up and running at MSU. Plus, he’s had a new OC every year. I didn’t really expect the journey to be smooth.

    As I mentioned on the Blather, I do like his vision tho. I think he sees college football with a 21st century slant. I’m not a big fan of the pro-style offense but Graham ruined any shot at an RPO offense for the foreseeable future. I always look back at that season when Walt tried installing the spread to disastrous results. Part of me wishes he’d stayed the course. He saw the future but didn’t have the patience (fans didn’t help) to see it thru.

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    1. Patience is a absolute must as a Pitt alum/fan. And the ability to keep on ‘believing’…that someday…..our greatness will return !

      And if history is any indication (and it usually is in all things)…..it will happen at some point….in the future.

      In the …..As Yet to be Determined….Category.

      VeV

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  39. History of Pitt Football in a nutshell.

    Hatched>Greatness>Continued Greatness>Total Collapse>Rebirth>Utter Collapse>Rebirth>Greatness>Collapse>Total Collapse>Rebirth>Mediocrity

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  40. Not bad Emel!
    Short and to the point!
    Sadly, we have been stuck in mediocrity too long with the ” we will be better next year rose glasses approach” repeating like a bad info commercial! ……But hey, wait til next year!

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  41. It takes all kinds of people to make up such a great PITT football talk venue… eight to eighty blind crippled or crazy as we used to say and beyond. No offense intended to anyone left out. It takes all kinds…. ike

    H2P!

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  42. Iek,
    Agree! Life would really be boring if we all thought exactly the same buddy! Of course, we all can agree that I’m the best commenter on the POV! (LOL)

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    1. No Pittman, your star shines the brightest on the round-table… How are your little doughnuts coming along this afternoon? … and yes I meant little doughnuts… kei

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    1. Ahhh, so that is where I had gotten the idea of ike being from Northern VA, crossed him up with TT. Do you recall me thinking YOU were from Northern VA Ike? Similar generally positive perspectives on things and such. TT has the far superior screen name – unforgettable DB with the semi-vicious act under the basket.

      I am losing it but not completely lost just yet.

      Like

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