Yesterday Pat Narduzzi was quoted in the media saying this about recruiting:

I don’t know if our staff needs reinforcement with what we’re doing here. They know the plan,” said Narduzzi. “I guess it’s the fans that need reinforcement. We have a plan and we’re going to execute it. We know who we’re talking to, who we’re texting, we know who we need to work harder on, that’s recruiting. Pitt football is on the way up.

“We know who we’re dealing with out there and we know who we like. No one out there, including the players know who we really like. We don’t care about star rankings, I don’t care about stars.”

I think every college head coach says this, the thing is the coaches themselves don’t believe or do it.  Case in point using Pitt as an example:  Here are the Top 17 offers we have out to 2019 recruits. Note their star rankings and hometowns (and here is the rest of the long list):

Top 17

Ask yourself this: How did Pitt know to offer all those 5* and 4* Blue Chip players from far away places?  Pitt is doing, and has always done, just the same thing every college football program does and that is relying on the recruiting sites star ranking system for early on targeting.

Pitt does not have staff, scouts or recruiters scouring California, Minnesota, Michigan, Texas, Hawaii, etc. yet all those offers from Pitt to players from those places went out many months and sometimes over a year ago.

You can bet  money that at any time in the recruiting process if any of those 17 kids listed, and remember those are only 17 out of the 97  5* and 4* offers we have out, called Pitt (or any school like Pitt)  and said “Coach I’d like play football for you and want to commit to you right now.” Pat Narduzzi wouldn’t jump up and down while he was saying “Oh Hell Yes!” and then start turning on ‘The Lights’.

Do we really think that he, or again, any college coach not named Nick Saban, would tell those highly ranked kids who called – “Well, let’s take a step back because we’d like to have you come to a camp or take an official visit first before accepting your commitment”? 

Not on your life.

I’d say that with the large majority of those 97  4* and 5* kids did that their name would be on Pitt’s official commitment list within an hour.  Positions needed of course, but even then many recruits get position-switched when they get to their school. The key is to lock the best kids in.

So again, how do the recruiting staffs know how good those far away kids are and why were they offering them so many months ago? Because they sure as anything look at recruiting star rankings when drafting up their first edition of their “Recruiting Big Board”.

Now all that said- when they get the uncommitted 3*, 2* and NR kids into the summer camps or on official visits like last weekend then perhaps those stars don’t matter to them but it is a whole different world with the highly ranked blue chip kids.

BTW – every HC says the same thing that our coach said the other day. I’m not really singling him out because I clearly remember Dave Wannstedt saying just about the exact same thing then when Feburary came around and they did the annual the fan’s LOI Day Signing Event he, or his staff coaches, very often mentioned that the kid was a four star or five star recruit.  The current staff has done so also.

It isn’t the end all and be to be sure, all but another example of college head coaches saying one thing then actually doing another. But tell you what – I’d love to hear Pat Narduzzi, or his position coaches, when up on the LOI Day stage this year say “…and here is another of our 4* kids for 2018…”  Fingers crossed.

Note: Here is an example of how early we jump on these blue chip kids to offer scholarships for the next year- this is a small sample of offers out for 2020:

Top 2020

BTW – we have 33  4* and 5* offers for 2020 out already and 13 total (all unranked at this point) for the 2021 class.


65 thoughts on “A Little Deeper Look Into Recruiting

  1. I think we all need a bit of info pertaining to Pitt football and academics because there is a misconception going around.

    I verified this fact with the Pitt AD’s office – Pitt does not have higher academic standards than the NCAA minimums. None.

    So – the thought that Pitt is going after only high achieving students or that we are turning away recruits because they won’t meet Pitt’s academic standards is false.

    Again – Pitt goes by the minimum NCAA academic requirements for recruits and for as long as the player is on the football roster. These are the standards:


  2. Well we will know if our recruits are any good when they flip to another school.

    Plus the guys that hated them will love them then.


    1. PS. Brima, 6’6” and 235 pounds, is a three-star prospect out of Williamsport (Pa.) Loyalsock Township High School. He chose Pitt over offers from Rutgers, Syracuse, Albany, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Fordham, Kent State, UMass, Temple and Towson.


  3. there are only 6 4 stars in all of pa this year
    but there are 7-11 each in the states of oh, md, va and nj
    thats about 40 4 stars within driving distance of campus
    who recruits in those states from the pitt staff?


    1. the state actually has 11 4 star players and michigan state has already grabbed a few of them
      and paulie grabbed the top player in the state
      paulie also grabbed the top player in pa
      i want his recruiters


  4. Since I was dismayed that PC’s recruiting classes were way too slanted towards the offense (the 2013 class had 18 offensive and 9 defensive including James Conner) … I must admit concern that PN’s class favors the defense thus far. I wouldn’t mind seeing some OL recruits soon



  5. Well. There you have it. Anson’s not worried. He has no doubt we’ll end up with a “halfway decent” class. I don’t know about you but I think that’s all we need.

    Pitt’s motto is- Veritas et Virtus. I believe translated from Latin it means “halfway decent.”

    I don’t care who you are… that’s funny, right there!


    1. That is funny Jay!

      If you look at this kids offer sheet it was trending towards Edinboro and Slippery Rock but I’m sure everyone is ecstatic with it including Narduzzi.


  6. So frustrating reading, but it still do it every day. Basically we’re f’d with no recruits a f’d with 12 recruits. Some of our best players have been 3s recruits, but who the hell cares. These guys are all crap, right…..

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I don’t remember anyone saying that.. noone said “crap” or “f’d”. The terms were “mediocre” and “halfway decent.”

    Doesn’t the SAT have a reading section anymore?


  8. It’s getting pretty much unbearable. Let the guys have their fun. I’ll be sitting it out. along with many many more of you. bye!


    1. LOL – You will be posting tomorrow morning Ike.

      It amazes me if the opinion isn’t the same as many they say it is negative here.

      Look at the kids offer sheet? That is going to get you to the Coastal? Beat Miami or VT? PSU?


  9. Jay my SAT’s were more than fine, I would think you would know that about me. And what I said were that some of our best players were 3s recruits, but I guess they were metiorcre to you.


  10. Michigan St is averaging 5 4 star recruits each year over the past 4 years
    Pitt is averaging 1
    I dont think Pitt is following the Michigan St approach
    But Narduzzi says he has a plan
    He conveniently shifts the focus to the fans…we need ‘reinforcement’.
    He must read these forums


  11. Ja’quay Hubbard is a 4 star OL and has Pitt in his final four. Also, we have a shot at landing 4 star running back Daniel Carter and local 4 star corner MJ Devonshire- not saying these are definites, but I’m sure Pitt is busting their nuts trying to bring these kids on board- can’t say some blue chippers aren’t interested…just have to land a few of these guys. H2P


  12. Fitz – That would be great but MJ is a solid WVU Lean.

    Ja’Quay must love him some ex PSU OC cause he is Heavy Miss St. Lean.

    I think Carter is going to Miami.

    Hope these are wrong though for our sake and we get 1 or 2 of the 3.


  13. 3 stars are what most programs (similar to Pitt) get. I definitely agree with the posters who say we shouldn’t compare us with the elite programs at this point because it really is silly. I’m not sure if Narduzzi can get us to the next level, and yes this current class is not elite (when considering stars), but Jesus, please remember we are in a much tougher conference now and we really do need some stability. The fact that this many southern kids chose Pitt is a good sign, at the very least for establishing a stronger pipeline. I am an optimist, but I’m also a realist.


      1. I’m saying we don’t know, so why be negative. We’ve had more than our share of 4s busts as well.


  14. Matt.

    I know you’re not stupid. Just questioning why when someone says “mediocre”, you quote them as saying “crap”. It’s BS hypbole and your “optimist” group CONSTANTLY uses it to justify your criticiam of me, Upitt and Tex.. Blaming us for sating something we didn’t say.


    Alright. You get your wish. I won’t post anymore…

    I don’t understand the problem. You and others can call people (UPitt, for one) names and it’s all in good fun but I point out that I’m being misquoted, and I’m a criminal.

    3 stars is mediocre, medium, etc by definition. Anson Whaley calls them “half decent”.. another word for mediocre.

    I’ll bow out so you can enjoy your summer… before the reality of Pitt football smacks you squarely in the face week 2.

    But it’s ok.. ratings mean nothing, strength of schedule, empty stadium, Paul Christ, Steve Pederson, injuries, we need to wait till year 9.. did I miss any excuses?


  15. Devonshire is a 4 star CB from Aliquippa offered by big time
    schools including the Ohio State U and we don’t offer until late… player credits Pitt’s new DB coach with showing interest…what gives there- if OSU sees his talent and Duzz didn’t until he got a new coach???


  16. What I’m saying is what you think is mediocre may not be, so why tear them down. It’s been negative when we had no recruits and seemed to get worse when we got quite a few. If I actually read something, actually anything positive from some of you my opinion might differ. You can be “realistic” and have positive thoughts 🙂


  17. I agree, way too late. I just hope there’s still a shot. He has been visiting campus a lot lately and has an upcoming visit. Hope that means something.


  18. If 4 stars dont want to come here, then why?
    I can understand 25k yellow seats but besides that?
    It has to be the coaching staff
    Pitt offers everything a 4 star wants (except for 70k screaming fans at Heinz)
    If Capel (after 2 horrible Pitt seasons under KS and a bad last 3 years under Dixon) can recruit 4 stars and is already getting serious interest from 5 stars, why is it that Narduzzi is having it so difficult?
    I say its the cult of personality

    4 stars want to play with other 4 stars
    in a 4 star environment
    under a 4 star coach

    Pitt needs 4 stars to attend camps and visit campus
    I guarantee you that they will be impressed


    1. I also think some guys want a total college experience. A campus and alumni that love football. A campus with a buzz come Wednesday for a Saturday game. Tens of thousands coming into Campus walking the campus and going to eateries and bars and walking around. We get none of that because we don’t offer that as a campus and the stadium is not on campus. It loses the smells and sounds and feelings other schools have with 50k to 100k screaming your name.

      Now it offers the pro element but 95% of the roster never smells the pros. I think it is time to create a campus more people can visit and be proud of.

      I said before I would purchase then bulldoze South Oakland. It is a Hellhole and redo the infrastructure and build more buildings and a stadium with tons of green spaces. Make it pretty.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Upitt

        I totally agree. The upper campus project is a start but Pitt needs to expand the campus.

        There is one major road block. As Reed has stated, Pitt likes where it is at. I really don’t think they want to expand enrollment and student population.

        However, the mayor is a liberal, bike lane loving, tree hugging Pitt alumni. Also spent years at CMU. You think he would want to work with Pitt to beautify Oakland. That isn’t a political statement. A fact that should help Pitt work with the city…..and yes, I realize he is also a PSU alumni.


  19. Jay, I know you are a true Pitt fan and I know you want them to be the best. We just have different ways of looking at the program. It’s all good.


  20. Pitt recruiting will get better as they win more. I do think the program will win and be an easier sell. Winning in the ACC Coastal is not insurmountable here. But the program and staff are very seasoned and know what is needed to build the program and get over the hump. Pitt is closer and will see good things after a couple tough games. So all the gloom and questioning the recruiting and coaching comes with the territory. The turn is at hand Pitt isn’t an elite program and most aren’t. It doesn’t mean PItt can;t be good to very good


  21. Jay, I know you don’t like it when someone puts words in your mouth. Well I never said I didn’t want you to post on the POV so that’s unfair of you. I just feel the timing of others and the efforts to tear down the recruiting weekend is a lot telling and badly timed and actually, I don’t remember mentioning you at all in this fiddle faak.


  22. I think the difference in views on the recruits comes down to this – some see 3 stars and hope for the best, others see 3 stars and expect the worst. I am of the opinion that, just like the speculation on who would AD Lyke choose for a BB coach, we should stop predicting and see how things shake out. Just chill a bit, guys. We all love Pitt and want them to do well, but honestly, all this negativity about the verbals has me wondering if I should take a break from reading this. Stop expecting Pitt to recruit like the big guys. We just aren’t there yet. We know the problems that Pitt has with putting fans in the seats, fan donations, etc. Do we really need to read about in every damn post? WE KNOW ALREADY! Find a differrnt horse to beat, for crying out loud!


  23. Annie great post. When the downbeats come out they come out in force. They just love to feed off each others posts. Upitt looking for support from Jay the other day is indicative of the negative crowd group just looking to mobilize on any given day or topic. And of course Reed’s slants on almost ever writeup just gives this group more ammo for the daily beating up on anything related to Pitt athletics.


  24. There are three poster in question here. If I don’t want to read what someone. Thinks I skip them.

    Personally, I have no problem with these kids so far. But I do think that we should be doing better from this point on until LOI Day.

    My real concern is that coming off two 8 win seasons we seem to be going backwards with blue chippers. When schools like VT (3), NC State (2), North Carolina, Wake Forest for the ACC and some others; Oregon State, Illinois (2), Kansas, Maryland, etc… Can pull some in this early you have to wonder why Pitt has not.

    But the truth is that every school (almost) is going to have mostly 3* kids as a majority on their roster just as Pitt has always done so they are OK by me as long as one in five are 4* or 5* star kids.

    Another thing that bothers me is the fact that this last group of verbals have offer sheets just like some of the kids had under Chryst…but the more optimist on here praise them only because Narduzzi is the HC…but blasted Chrst for same level offer sheets.

    Consistency would be nice when you are both praising and/or criticizing.

    Anyway it’s an OK start on a full 25 spot class but IMO this class has to get 3-4 bigger starred recruits to be fully successful.


    1. same thoughts here
      wonder why we dont have at least 1-3 4 stars at this point
      i think 25% of your commits being 4 stars is a good target (thats 4-6 each year)
      then you build up from that
      not impressed with many of the offers
      solid 3 stars but not many difference makers on paper
      roughly 8 more scholies to give; time to be selective and go after quality


  25. Why is Pitt being compared to Mich State here? A few facts about MSU FB ….

    — the average home attendance is well over 70,000
    — as recent as 2015, they made the Final 4 in FB … the national semi-finals
    — unlike Pitt, they have had one HC in the past 11 years … and has had 6 double-digit win seasons in that period

    (BTW, in 2016, they went 3 and 9 but bounced back to 10 and 3 last year …. 3 OOC games were Bowling Green, Western Mich and ND, which spanked them)



    1. because many on here say that Narduzzi is following the Michigan St model
      solid 3 stars that are coached up
      thats the plan

      Liked by 1 person

  26. I guess I’m somewhere in the middle with the start to recruiting this year. A couple of these guys really seem like they’ll be very good players (beville, Mack, hill) while others look like “wait and see their development” type kids- the sheer number of kids that committed Sunday and the recruiting strategy to have a bunch of southern kids visit together was really cool to see and definitely paid off- hope the coaches continue to do that- however, I agree with Reed and others that we need to bring in at least a couple higher level recruits, as many other schools (plenty less relevant than Pitt) have already- Narduzzi does seem to get the blue chippers later in the recruiting period and I’m not sure why, but it would be nice and would put a lot of people more at ease if he got some earlier- here’s to hoping for that soon so we can all be excited together


  27. On a side note, read the rivals article from this morning about Beville- seems like a great kid and he said some pretty cool things about how everyone at pitt seems “genuine” and there’s the feel of “a brotherhood” that made him decide on pitt earlier than expected- nice to hear

    I know some have heard some negative things about Narduzzi and I’m not discounting that- just hoping maybe that was something from his first few years as a new coach, and maybe he learned from that and became a better, more appealing coach for it


  28. Reed

    Good article and totally true. Every head coach says that about stars.

    I like where Pitt is ranked right now. Absolutely no problem with the kids that committed. Like some of them a lot.

    Also agree, that you have to grab some 4 stars every year. So let’s see how the rest of the recruiting turns out.


  29. IMO, PN and PC recruit pretty much the same. One put more emphasis on offense. I remember PC mostly offering kids at camps. His staff wanted to see kids in person before offering or really pushing to get them. I think that is wise.
    You can’t recruit kids off film. For one, that is plain lazy. Two, if you do get them to a camp you build a better relationship. Three, a kid under the radar may show more skill at a camp than he did on his team. Maybe he was out of position, the team sucked, etc. Sizing kids up against each other in person is key.


  30. No wonder prospective recruits and their parents are turned off to Pitt. They read the comments on this site. That’s enough to turn any 11th grader off as well as us 60 year olds .


    1. Yeah a few posters saying the same negative stuff over and over has made this blog toxic.


    2. FT… That is untrue in the extreme. I’ve had many conversations with recruits parents and a lot read all the Pitt media sites, including the POV.

      What parents and recruits want more than anything else is two things.

      One is to get a good solid education and a chance of good career afterwards and second to a chance to get early playing time and into the NFL if possible.

      Those are the two distinguishing ideas for recruits picking Pitt or really any other school.

      Whether or not a recuit and his parents choose Pitt is all up to the recruiting staff and the HC and has nothing to do with the media.


  31. Here’s a great idea. How about leaving other posters names out of it and quit speaking about them in the third person when you’re discussing Pitt football.

    If you don’t agree with someone’s thoughts then either ignore them and don’t read them or make a counterpoint to it.

    You don’t have to drag their names into it or point specifically to certain posters.

    Tell you what…so many people are talking about a timeout on here maybe we should have one for a week or so.

    That’s the ticket starting now.

    Liked by 1 person

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