The University of Pittsburgh fanbase loves a good Tight End. Maybe it’s because Mike Ditka helped to define the position in the late 50’s when he played at Pitt (’58-’60) and in the 60’s when he played for Bears, Eagles and Cowboys. Maybe it’s because we were spoiled by Paul Chryst’s fine recruiting of the position and Matt Canada’s outstanding usage of it. Maybe it’s because we just love power football.
Either way, Offensive Coordinator Shawn Watson’s usage of the Tight End position has been a sore topic for Pitt fans since Watson took the controls in 2017. The fanbase’s disgust seemingly manifested itself over the off-season when four-star Tight End Charles Reeves transferred, and then again mid-season in 2018 when starting Tight End Tyler Sear had a supposed disagreement with head coach Pat Narduzzi, which ended with Sear leaving the team for “personal reasons”. There was also the Chris Clark debacle, where the seemingly talented but also seemingly-troubled four-star UCLA transfer stepped away from the program for personal reasons.
When you combine Sear, Reeves’ and Clark’s departures with the fact that Watson & Narduzzi had two tight ends de-commit from the 2018 recruiting class – Matt Alaimo and Jay Symonds, and one from 2019 – Travis Koontz, you can see why the fan base is concerned.