Editor’s Note:  I had originally planned to do a more in-depth analysis on the class, but I have an 18 month old and a job and so this will have to wait.  I’ll plan on publishing it sometime between Christmas and New Years when there is some down time.  In the meantime have a look at Pat Narduzzi’s presser and feel free to weigh in.

There isn’t much that hasn’t been said about this class already.  Narduzzi, as he is known to do, said a lot in his press conference yesterday afternoon.  He said they are building depth.  He said they are bringing in better athletes.  He said some guys could probably switch position.

Something interesting that I don’t think we’ve heard from him before, is that there are three different groups that work with strength coach Dave Andrews.

There is the “Power” group, and that is the big linemen, both offensive and defensive.  Pitt brought in seven of those.

There is the “Big Skill” group, which includes Quarterback (and what else?).  Narduzzi said Pitt brought in five of those.

There is also the “Skill” Group, which Narduzzi mentions includes Tight Ends and Linebackers.  Bigger guys who can run.  Pitt signed six of those.

Narduzzi mentioned the geographical breakdown.  Four from PA, Five from Florida.  A couple of kids from Canada.

He mentioned that 17 of the 18 signees were team captains.  Six were state champions.

He gave props to the recruiting office.  He gave props to the academic staff.  He gave props to Andre Powell for being from South Carolina and opening up that state.  He gave props to Shawn Watson for recruiting (four star QB) Davis Beville.

He talked about each one of the recruits.

He took a veiled shot at Penn State (ostensibly), and covered his hind-end on the whole Nick Malone thing.

“I consider the whole state of Pennsylvania is my message out there is we go slow. I am not going to offer guys early in this area and try to pull out on them. I just don’t want to do it.   So we’re always going to take our time in this area because too often people offer kids and then they back up and you never hear from them again. That’s not going to happen here. At least we sure hope it’s not going to happen. Sometimes things happen, but we want to offer those guys and we want them.”

He answered questions.  He acknowledged that Pitt is not Clemson, and threw out the obligatory remark about five stars.

“But we’re going to recruit the guys we’re capable of recruiting. We’re not going to whine if we don’t get a five-star. There are a lot of five stars that we love. There are a lot of five stars that we don’t love, and we’re like see you later, not good enough and there are a lot of things you don’t like about them. I like those hungry guys.”

All in all we’ve learned that you have to take everything that Pat Narduzzi says with a grain a salt.  And yet, he’s also shown that in many cases there is a grain of truth buried in all that hyperbole.  (See you in Charlotte anyone?)   And while I am guarding my expectations, it’s hard not to be a little bit excited.

Hail2Pitt!

Michaelangelo

 

 

134 thoughts on “Six ways to Saturday – Analyzing the 2019 Early Signing Class

    1. We brought in 4 DEs last year and 4 more this year – plus we’re still after one more in Mack. They already switched one of them to TE ( Mimes).
      I’ll be surprised if one or two more aren’t moved to TE.

      Nate Temple would be one of my guesses. I just don’t see the quick twitch in him to play defense – but I could see him at TE…

      Go Pitt.

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  1. Agree about Narduzzi’s comments. They are odd at time.

    Some of his statements (not exact quotes)…

    He mentioned that they did not offer the kid that ran the 4.3 forty on a visit until a few weeks later. Hu? Any kid that runs that should get an immediate offer.

    They actually watch tape on kids running their forty yard dash to see if something affected their time. Bad start, tripped, bad stop watch person.

    I liked that he bashed the Nike camp forty times. There is zero consistency in how they time kids and the guys working the stop watches don’t know how to properly time kids.

    It explains why they wait to offer kids (most of the time) until they see them in camp.

    He pretty much admitted that they don’t get many 4 and 5 star kids to even visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Michaelangelo “Acerbic” now I am running for the dictionary…I will gain some knowledge…we didn’t use that word in Apollo (we didn’t use many words come to think of it)

    Wouldn’t it be great for these kids and us to be celebrating a victory on New Years…will make for a changed tone over the off-season.

    Off-season will be better on the POV because of the genuine BB interest and Coachdan72 as our color guy…
    Thanks to Reed for seeing this thing through and passing the torch to an excellent writer and true PITT fan in Michaelangelo.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. haha indeed the dictionary says “archaic” usage for that one.

      a·cer·bic
      /əˈsərbik/
      adjective
      adjective: acerbic

      2.
      archaic•technical
      tasting sour or bitter.
      synonyms:   sharp, sarcastic, sardonic, mordant, trenchant, cutting, razor-edged, biting, piercing, stinging, searing, scathing, caustic, bitter, acrimonious, astringent, abrasive, harsh, wounding, hurtful, unkind, cruel, virulent, vitriolic, venomous, malicious, vicious; More
      

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      1. Also to be fair, Acerbic can trend harsh and Reed while less than optimistic at times, wasn’t exactly “venomous, malicious or cruel”

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          1. “You can’t handle the truth!”

            As I read those synonyms for acerbic, I must admit that UPitt came to mind. Hope all is well with UPitt…

            Go Pitt!

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  3. I guess the 4-star QB coming in means that Coach Watson is firmly entrenched as the OC/QB Coach.

    I hope he re-evaluates his offense approach in the off season – or Coach Narduzzi demands he get more creative.

    One thing about football, all the successful offenses are out their on tape – nothing is a secret, except maybe for how to most effectively teach it…

    Go Pitt.

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  4. MM..is your contact info on here…I can’t find it…some might want to send you pertinent pics that can be used or a donation to help with the expenses…just ask’n.

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    1. Also Reed is covering blog expenses so far…but I’ll probably connect with him over the holiday to see how that will transition. Pls hold on any donations for now but I’ll reach out to you once I have a handle on it. Pictures are welcome!

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  5. I’m fairly sure Pitt had a difficult time in getting some offensive recruits interested in coming to Pitt this year after watching our non passing game plans week after week. Anyone else think those TE’s that we sought were not very inclined to sign on the dotted line with Pitt? Actually, I’m surprised that Beville didn’t back out his commitment to Pitt. It would have been interesting to listen in to the give and take between Watson and Beville on his plans for the Pitt offense.

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  6. Tonight on ESPN from Tampa is The Gasparilla Bowl … which sounds kind of acerbic to me.

    Just in case you’re wondering (from Wiki) … José Gaspar, also known by his nickname Gasparilla (supposedly lived c. 1756 – 1821), is an apocryphal Spanish pirate, the “Last of the Buccaneers,” who is claimed to have roamed and plundered across the Gulf of Mexico and the Spanish Main from his base in southwest Florida. Details about his early life, motivations, and piratical exploits differ in different tellings.

    A bowl named after a plunderer …. seems about right

    Liked by 1 person

    1. a·poc·ry·phal [əˈpäkrəfəl]

      ADJECTIVE
      (of a story or statement) of doubtful authenticity, although widely circulated as being true.
      “an apocryphal story about a former president”
      synonyms: fictitious · made-up · untrue · fabricated · false · spurious · imaginary · mythical · legendary · dubious · doubtful · debatable · questionable · unverified · unauthenticated

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Actually while this bowl isn’t quite top tier Gasparilla is supposed to be a great time to go to Tampa. Basically their version of Mardi Gras. The fact that that plopped a bowl game on top of it just makes it that much better. And no matter how you slice it it’s always better than Birmingham!

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  7. Agree Mike, kids always come first. Our sign’d recruits look ok to me. I think HCPN actually likes the recruiting process. He relishes getting certain needs completed. We know you cannot get everything you want ….

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Narduzzi’s recruiting philosophy is to offer high character kids who are good fits.

    There is nothing wrong with this approach. But, you need to have good coaches that can develop players (3 stars), and you need to make sure you can plug the player into your system to make the biggest impact (thats the fit piece).

    I just dont see Pitt being extremely good at player development and I’m still scratching my head on what if any system or scheme that Pitt runs on Offense or Defense. What is their identity?

    I dont know why Narduzzi cant get more elite talent to visit summer camps or campus. I think that is a real problem.

    Based on this recruiting approach and game day coaching, Pitt will most likely win between 6 and 9 games each year. Thats enough for bowl eligibility. It may be enough in some years to win the Coastal. But its not going to consistently generate 10-12 win seasons.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You have summarized where we are as a program very succinctly. Whether or not you choose to accept that level of success is another matter. I myself am happy with it for now. But then again, I was not alive in 1976.

      Dokish tweeted today something along the same lines. I’m paraphrasing but it was basically “Pat plays by the rules and the WPIAL is no longer a built-in recruiting advantage. In that context he’s doing as well as you could hope him to.” You’d basically have to be a transcendent type of coach to consistently win 10 within Pitt’s current parameters. Narduzzi is solid, but he’s not transcendent.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Fully agree with your comments, Mike and much of what TX wrote as well.

        I was around in the 70’s (it was a great decade to be a Pgh sports fan for sure), but things are just different now. So much has changed and Pitt’s ability to become and remain an elite football power has many more barriers now than then. I have chosen to accept that and re-set my expectations for the program. I appreciate that others have not and believe that Pitt can become elite consistently once again. Its their right and their choice, frustrating as it must be for them.

        A consistent performance as a 6-9 win team over the an extended period of time is OK with me. If we have a special year with 10-12 wins, I will be over the moon. In the end, I’d much rather be a fan of a program that has great kids doing the rights things while at Pitt and becoming great alums afterwards than one that which takes risks on kids with the objective of winning first. Student athletes with good character is OK with me.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. If he wins in San Antonio and Pitt goes 8-6, winning our conference division & our first bowl game in years, I would consider that transcendent.

        That would be three 8 win seasons out of 4 with some pretty exciting wins over good to excellent programs in the process.

        If Stanford is defeated, it will be the “level” that Pitt has transcended to, that will have to be considered. There is a pretty big chasm between where Pitt has been, to getting the program to the point of 10-12 wins consistently. Little steps in the right direction. The level that Narduzzi is striving for now is to be competitive. With the loss to UNC & the beat downs at the hands of psu, UCF, Miami & Clemson, you could argue that he still has a long way to go in that regard but with just a little lighter OOC schedule & Pitt coming through with a solid final offensive drive to have beaten ND at the end, & Pitt’s year could have been knocking at that door of 10 wins already.

        No doubt about it though, better recruiting with a sprinkling of true “blue chip” players in these recruiting classes of Narduzzi’s is essential to get to the level where Pitt becomes regularly included in football discussions at the national level, but if you haven’t recognized the transition in the underlying attitude & mental conditioning that this team displays under Narduzzi, then you just haven’t been paying attention.

        Beat the Cardinal and I contend that we’ve transcended to the next level. Unfortunately that next level is still a big step below rubbing elbows with the likes of Clemson and the other elite programs that dominate the interest of the average college football fan in America.

        First things first. Huge game at the Sun Bowl. Beat Stanford.

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      1. Wanny era, which was not long ago. Dave recruited better – coaching is debatable.

        Ten wins is doable, with the right coaching staff. Next year will be all Duzz players on the field, I believe.

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  9. One note until I get more time to comment. After watching Narduzzi’s presser, I don’t get the disdain from some towards him. I think he came off congenial and professional. Yes at times he can be a bit of a smart ass but I think it’s his lousy sense of humor more than anything else.

    To no ones surprise, I like this recruiting class all things considered but no wet dreams just yet, just powder. ike

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  10. Here is a prime difference between the college game and the NFL.

    Peterman did an absolute excellent job for us in his SR year – his QB rating was 163.37 (best ever at Pitt for a full-time starter) and threw 27 TDs to 7 INTs with 15.3 yards per completion – which is astronomical for a Pitt QB. Our offense scores a record 41 ppg…

    Then he gets drafted and is now…

    https://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/ny-sports-phillips-peterman-white-privilege-20181219-story.html

    BTW – I think this year’s recruiting class is just like every other PN class – blah as hell with one or two good recruits. Say what you will about his previous classes but this fact sticks out to me – still and after 4 full seasons not one of Pat Narduzzi’s HS kids he got to commit to play for him at Pitt has been anywhere near a star player.

    After four full recruiting classes his ‘kids’ are giving us sub-.500 football over the last two years when his players were supposed to be maturing into better upperclass players… I see more of the same with this class and always with him – he just cannot recruit blue chip players .

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I read the link Reed provided to us from the NY Daily News and I had to laugh at the author’s white privilege stance…isn’t the NFL over 75% African-American? Yes, signing Peterman is a huge conspiracy at making the league whiter lol by the Raiders who were pioneers in diversity and race relations in the 1960’s and 70’s with the hiring of minorities in management positions like Tom Flores and Art Shell. I hope Nate can break this unfair stereotype and prove to the author that he has what it takes in the NFL.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Read Dokish’s comment again. While it is realistic, it’s certainly not a ringing endorsement. He like all Pitt fans wants continued 9-10-11 win seasons but realizes the constraints.

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    1. With all due respect to both you and Reed, that was hardly a tough call.
      He was an emergency band-aid because of DiNucci’s departure, nothing more.
      I think most here saw that coming.

      Its encouraging to see that the need to desperately grab transfers at the position is not where it was the past couple years.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s ironic. For the longest time, Devonshire was considered a strong WVU lean; he even wore a WVU handwarmer in the state championship 2 weeks ago. The fact that he delayed his decision may well have something to do with the recent full court press Pitt put on him in the past month.

      And just the opposite for Mack. Pitt was his first visit and he immediately accepted the offer. And then after having a real good senior year, he got some real attractive offers including Nebraska and a few SEC teams. I guess the good thing is that he still hasn’t decomitted, but of course, he also delayed his decision

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  11. 2 comments on the Nate Peterman article listed above#1 Jon Gruden had Nate on his ESPN QB evaluation show and really liked Nate so no surprise there. #2 the author sounds like he doesn’t like white people or is in Kaepernick’s corner… or no statues to tear down and too much time on his hands…just felt I needed to respond and move on……

    Acerbic and apocryphal…just too much to remember !!!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Good article on PSN on the need to get Devonshire and Pat’s lack of getting our star WPA players.

    Just saw a Post Gazette headline – Gallagher getting a nice pay raise plus a $500.000 bonus.

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        1. Good thing those of us on the POV are not on the board because changes would be made…I haven’t exactly been thrilled with anything Pitt has done athletically or academically over the last ten or so years.

          Liked by 1 person

      1. Per PG: Material accompanying the resolution Thursday included three pages of highlights from Mr. Gallagher’s 2018 annual report, citing gains in areas from research and education to diversity and community outreach.

        It was deferred compensation (100k each year) under a 5 year contract. Designed to keep him at Pitt.

        Narduzzi still makes 7 times Gallagher’s base salary. Thats flat out wrong…my opinion.

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  13. Acerbic and apocryphal…
    We need one more word to coin our own version of the old beer commercial word “travashamockery”
    I once used it at a work meeting a few years ago and the only ones that got it were the sports fans / beer drinkers.

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  14. Again, PITT sports teams just won two team titles or was it three this past year. Not the greatest but then again, it’s never been done before. If anyone expects changes then wish for something else for Christmas cause Santa ain’t bringing any changes…

    Players I like in this years football class. I like Liam Dick, Jason Collier AJ Woods and Kancey. Brandon George could also find a place in the lineup sooner than later. This by no means is Narduzzi’s worst recruiting class and maybe his best.

    Beville goes without a mention but he could be PITT best freshman QB recruit since Marino.

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    1. I heard the same thing ad nauseam all last off-season about Kenny Football, Kenny Heisman and he turned out to be Kenny Eight Yards so now Belville could be the greatest freshman since Marino and he hasn’t even thrown a pass yet. Pump the brakes!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. the only program that won a conference championship was womens volleyball I believe. And not to poo poo the accomplishment, but Pitt would be a middling program in the Big 10.

      This years football class is ranked in the middle of the ACC by every publication that I’ve seen.

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  15. Just to analyze Narduzzi’s recruiting a little further:

    Next years team will only have four seniors that he recruited (we will leave out transfers and his first class since some folks think Chryst gets all credit for those players).

    As you can see below, most of Narduzzi’s recruits still have two or more years to play. Most of the O players have three or more years to play. His defensive recruits have made an impact first because 1) his first class had more D players and 2) many of the O players in the first class left the team. You have to put the defections partially on the head coach. It is still hurting the roster.

    Are any of his recruits star players at this moment? Nope
    Will they become star players in the next two to three years? By looking at the list below, I would say yes. Remember, the best D players still have two years or more to play.

    Besides Ffrench, Mathews, B.Ford, Picket, Davis, Morrissey, Hargrove; the rest of the O players were just a year removed from redshirt in 2018. We will know more about them after the 2019 season.

    In my opinion, SO and RSSO year is when players should start to see some action or become starters. That happened on the D side and we saw many promising young players. This coming year it will happen on the O side of the ball.

    Seniors:
    Ffrench
    Hamlin
    Mathews
    Watts

    RSJR:
    Coleman
    Camp
    Mack
    Weaver
    Campbell
    Garner
    Pine
    Reynolds
    B. Ford
    Morrissey
    Hargrove
    Wheeler
    Jones
    Kessman

    Juniors:
    Pickett
    Pinnock
    Mathis
    Davis

    RSSO:
    Alexandre
    Smith
    Ford
    Sibley
    Tucker
    Bright
    Nunn
    Twyman
    Houy
    Drake
    Warren
    Carrigan
    Van Lynn
    Butler Jenkins
    Christodoulou

    RSFR and SO: not sure who lost their RS besides Carter.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. understood

      womens volleyball finished ranked at #14 (best final ranking ever)
      mens wrestling should also finish the year ranked (You old timers may recall how Pitt was The powerhouse in the 50’s)

      those are the two programs that are consistently ranked (based on final rankings) over the past 40 years

      little progress has been made in the others although I am hoping that both basketball and football bounce back

      mens soccer has a good chance of being ranked next year and hopefully staying ranked. That would be a very significant accomplishment since the ACC is the SEC of mens soccer.

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      1. I watched the BB game last night & more than once I said out loud, “who are these guys” No resemblence to the undisciplined team Stallings put out on the floor last season.

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  16. what real barriers to recruiting does Pitt have?

    Dokish makes the point that Pitt will never be elite in football because Pitt doesnt cheat. Is that really why programs win? I know some cheating happens but is it enough to consistently land ten 4 star recruits each year? And frankly Pitt doesnt need that level of elites to compete each year for a Coastal title.

    So what are the real constraints holding Pitt back from landing more elite recruits?

    There are 4 reasons that I see:
    1. Coach doesnt offer
    Narduzzi is fine going after 3 stars who are good character and fits for the program. He’s confident that he can coach them up and find a place for them.
    2. Empty seats at Heinz
    I’m sure the yellow seats are used against Pitt in recruiting elites. Pitt plays in too large of a venue. I hope they seriously consider tarping off sections.
    3. WPIAL
    Its not what it used to be. But to Pitt’s credit, they have expanded their recruiting footprint. I still think they can do a better job landing kids from Ohio, Jersey and Virginia though.
    4. Culture
    Maybe this is where the cheating hides. But I dont want players taking courses like Cow Tipping (a Penn State favorite), getting fake degrees (like what WVCC hands out), running a program comprised of thugs like Miami, having separate athlete dorms, and worshipping coaches like Poopy Pants.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. TX — I think you nailed it, but I think the yellow seats are by far the biggest reason. Imagine a recruit coming in for a game-visit if we had a Steeler-like atmosphere in Heinz.

      We lack the “wow” factor that the big- crowd schools offer and which seems to be more and more important in the social media age we now live in…

      Another factor – especially since we now go after so many southern kids – is that the northern weather is not for everyone…

      When elite kids have offers from 10 good schools, I think these factors give them reasons to scratch off Pitt as they do the difficult task of narrowing down their options…

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. When Pitt’s football budget matches Alabama, Clemson, PSU, Ohio State, Michigan, etc. then I will expect them to recruit the same. Until then, it is not happening.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pitt doesnt need to recruit at that level. They need to recruit at the level of other teams in the Coastal.

      I personally have no delusions of national championships. But I do think Pitt can consistently compete in the Coastal and possibly win an ACC championship if the recruiting improves.

      Pitt has a decent budget for recruiting. Narduzzi is flying in chartered jets with his assistants. And Pitt’s facilities are every bit as good as the elite schools.

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  18. The Pitt 2018 Roster has Paris Ford listed as a RS Freshman this year. So unless the Roster posting is wrong that would make him a RS Soph next season. It may not make much of a difference since I don’t think we will see much of him playing any meaningful minutes for Pitt.

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  19. Thinking about the Narduzzi presser, one thing hit me: PN won’t offer WPA kids early because he doesn’t want to pull the offer back if a better position player comes along. Apparently, it is a common practice to offer kids early knowing that a kid won’t accept right away, then pull it back if a better player accepts afterwards. A coach can get away with this when recruiting nationally, but if he cuts a local player loose after offering, then that kid’s head coach will remember it for a long time. So this makes sense and could be why some of the early WPA super stars aren’t getting offers from Pitt while still Freshmen and Sophomores.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. In one sense that is perfectly logical to not look like a fool locally by having to pull an offer. But in another sense the local kid who doesn’t get a Pitt offer early thinks they are not interested in him. And as a result he doesn’t give Pitt the time of day when they come in late with an offer.

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    1. No issue on Ford from my perspective except for the fact I don’t think he’ll will beat out those on the roster that are playing ahead of him currently.

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  21. I happened to stumble upon this article during a search today. It is dated but it is a recruiting article about a Greensburg kid choosing Penn State over Pitt and Notre Dame. From his comments, it appears that the game atmosphere at Penn State was the deciding factor in his selection. So I don’t think we can fool ourselves into thinking that a relatively empty Heinz Field does not affect these kids.

    https://triblive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/college/s_459655.html

    I realize that this is a sample size of one and not proof. We also lost a valuable recruiting tool in that Coach Narduzzi can’t take recruits to the Pete to let the Zoo love on them, have them put their check mark next to Pitt on a cardboard placard, and feel the excitement of a UConn/Syracuse/Georgetown win. Now it’s like a tour of a morgue.

    I really think our only path to meaningful success is to take baby steps forward, baby steps forward, a step back, baby steps forward …. I just hope we don’t once again allow great to be the enemy of the good. The drumbeat to hire someone who can take us to the “next level” has been our enemy, in my opinion. We have seen how you can destroy a program in two years with one firing and then take decades to get back to the level we thought was not good enough (Wannstedt and Dixon). As much as I like Coach Capel and the freshmen players, I do fear that the road back to making the NCAA Tournament 12 out of 13 years is going to be a long one.

    One more comment. I think we are in universal agreement that we would like to see our four football out-of-conference games be scheduled against easier opponents. But if you look at the financial analysis that Forbes magazine recently published, you’ll see that the top 25 teams make big bucks. In addition to covering the expenses of their Olympic sports, some actually funnel millions back into their academic side. The last I saw, Pitt was losing 7 or 8 million dollars a year. The administration may not have the option of swapping out a sellout against a top 10 team for a buy-a-win opponent. They have got to be struggling to keep this whole thing afloat.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. you are correct
      tough to peg what the program makes given Pitt’s accounting and what and how they choose to publicly share
      But historically, the program has lost millions each year…monies from the general fund are transferred to offset
      thats why this $30M check from the ACC is so important each year
      Olympic sports at Pitt could not be competitive without it

      The basketball program has shown the ability to generate a very nice profit (around $10M each year)
      That doesnt include last year obviously

      So getting back to my point – revenues are key for football. Biggest driver is attendance. Tough for fans to get excited about a weak OOC home schedule. But tough for the program to win enough games to be ranked and to get noticed. Your OOC schedule cuts both ways.

      Bottom line is Heinz is just too big. Tarp those yellow seats and move people down. the atmosphere and look will improve.

      I still think the Zoo once ACC play begins is a good recruiting tool.

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    2. I suspect — given the recruits he is in on — Coach Capel will have the Pete packed again as soon as next season.

      Unlike football, Pitt checks the most important boxes for BB…

      Go Pitt.

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  22. ^^ I believe he makes mistakes in practice and has trouble getting the system??? At the same times he continues to make plays at practice as well.

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  23. Well, Ford will be a RS Sophomore since he red shirted his first year when he came in late. So after 2 years he should start figuring things out soon or he will be a 4 star bust. Narduzzi claimed in his presser that he has seen 5 star busts so I guess it wouldn’t be the first time a 4 star crapped out. When recruiting, it’s often hard to tell if a player has it above the neck.

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  24. well, Brandon Mack just decommitted so you can kiss him goodbye. According to Rivals, he is high on 3 or 4 SEC teams … UK, LSU, Mississippi and possibly Missouri. All have offered him in the past few weeks. He also is considering Louisville. Not hard to understand why an Alabama native would have interest here.

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      1. A 2* no less…but probably a high character person. Pitt dropped to 42nd in the recruiting rankings. Slip sliding away…

        This will be an interesting season in 2019. Fans want a winner – will Pitt “market” the team as the ACC Coastal champs who won 8 games or the team that lost 7 games?

        Does Pitt have a Marketing Department?

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  25. Pitt slipped one more spot to 43rd in the recruiting rankings on Rivals. UNC with their coaching change have flipped a Pitt recruit and have a better ranking.

    Hmmm…

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  26. As for the Ricky Town decision to leave town… Anyone who saw him in action in the Spring Game should have seen the writing on the wall.

    Not very good at running or throwing.

    Pretty much explains why he never quite made it at his other stops and why Narduzzi succeeded in LURING him to Pitt.

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  27. You guys who are bashing Pitt’s academic ranking-please stop for a minute and think about the fact that for the second year in a row Pitt is ranked as the number 1 public university in the northeast by the Wall Street Journal, yes that Wall Street Journal! That means we are ranked above schools such as Rutgers which has been traditionally considered almost an ivy by many, U. Conn., U. Mass. all of those good SUNY schools and CUNY schools and many others including that farmers high school in the middle of our state.
    I am aware of the high school gpas of this year’s entering freshmen for three schools just because I have a connection to them and get information from them. I don’t have such info on any others. Allegheny College 3.75, U. of Michigan 3.85 and University of Pittsburgh 4.01.
    Just some food for thought. H2P Soccer Gramps

    Liked by 4 people

    1. school rankings are very subjective

      but the source pretty much all prospective students and their parents look at for ranking comparison is US News
      its well regarded and has published rankings since the beginning of time

      There is no doubt that Pitt’s overall ranking has slipped (50’s to the 70’s)
      is that all that meaningful? Probably not

      But students now see 20 schools ahead of Pitt in the rankings
      granted one should chose a school based on ones intended program and the rankings of the program

      But these overall rankings give a good representation of the overall academic playing field
      sticking with the ACC, what I find interesting is that FSU has dramatically improved their rankings over the past 20 years
      and Louisville is still similar to WVCC; not saying that Louisville doesnt have ‘some’ very good programs

      Like

  28. VoR – I find it interesting that Narduzzi says he doesnt want to offer a local kid and then pull it back. That is BS by narduzzi. If we are honest and our coaching staff is honest, they will tell a recruit that Pitt is going to take 2 tight ends in the class and make offers, They should include the local in that offer. If 2 national recruits verbal, than the math is simple and the offer gets pulled because of numbers. That is an honest approach and for narduzzi to explain it differently is BS. We only need to go back a year or so when the exact same thing was done with TE Banks, a local 4 star. He was a casualty of the numbers game.

    If all else fails, our backup plan is to send Salem out to have his special talk with them. It isn’t a strategy to pull the offer. The strategy is to say stupid stuff so much that the recruit goes elsewhere.

    Gramps, nice job. With grade inflation in high school and college, score inflation with act and sat it is a silly, circular and unprovable argument. I enjoy your passion. I will say this again. Rankings are based on answers to surveys that each university completes. To me, it’s a farce with the aim being more scholarship and grant monies. WSJ does their own

    Back in the day, the smartest kids in school got a 4.0. My daughter is in the middle of her second year in high school and maintains a 4.75. Yes, she is a snowflake. It is what it is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Banks would be a gem on this current Pitt roster right now and would double Pitt’s success rate with the last ten WPIAL 4+* recruits to 20%, up from our current 10%.

      Pitt has landed 1 of the last 10 – that would be Paris Ford.

      Hmmm…

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Narduzzi’s answer about not wanting to withdraw a kids offer seems like BS to me too. Good local kids should be a priority and if you can land one take them and don’t withdraw the offer because someone ranked 0.1 higher seems to be interested, the local player has added value in publicity. My guess is the true answer unfortunately is Pitt doesn’t want the negative publicity of having a high profile kid decommitting.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Duzz is as adverse to local recruiting as he is to throwing the ball in the middle of the field…………….when you throw/recruit 3 things happen and 2 of them are not good…..

    Liked by 4 people

  31. BigB got me thinking with his Woody Hayes quote. Here are a few more.

    “The reason women don’t play football is because eleven of them would never wear the same outfit in public.” Phyllis Diller

    “I wouldn’t ever set out to hurt anyone deliberately unless it was, you know, important —like a league game or something” Dick Butkus

    “Gentlemen, it is better to have died a small boy than to fumble this football” John Heisman

    “The NFL draft is going to be this Thursday. That’s a huge night for college players. That’s the night they start being paid over the table.” Jay Leno

    “I don’t know whether I prefer Astroturf to grass. I never smoked Astroturf” Joe Namath

    “I am delighted to have you play football. I believe in rough, manly sports. But I do not believe in them if they degenerate into the sole end of any one’s existence. I don’t want you to sacrifice standing well in your studies to any over-athleticism; and I need not tell you that character counts for a great deal more than either intellect or body in winning success in life. Athletic proficiency is a mighty good servant, and like so many other good servants, a mighty bad master.” Theodore Roosevelt

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  32. There are occasions when the recruits tell a school … thanks but no thanks! And that may well be the case for some of these locals. Back In Wanny’s day, Terrell Prior was very direct in saying he wanted to played in front of 90k, and it cam down to PSU and OSU. Most recruits would not be so public, although I have certainly heard a few times that a kid was a lifelong PSU or ND fan … that doesn’t seem to be the case for Pitt when it comes to blue chips (Hamlin and Ford possibly being exceptions.)

    Banks was different. He was offered by Pitt earlier than most and was long thought to be leaning toward Pitt … but never pulled the plug. Then, since they already had Reeves, Sear and Carrigan, once they received a verbal from a 3-star TE from NJ (same HS as Patti) they told Banks that they didn’t have room any more. Obviously, things didn’t turn out so well but there was no guarantee he was coming here … especially since he had a Pitt offer in his hand for a very long period

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Huff, I was mostly referring to kids who are Freshmen and Sophomores getting offers. Also, it is not always clear that the reason for pulling the offer gets communicated to the head coach. PN must deal with the same local coaches each year in the rare event that a super star emerges that they must have. All I’m saying is that with local kids there is the added complication that Pitt must continue to have a solid relationship with the head coaches. Also, if they reach for a local kid who doesn’t end up playing, or even transfers, there is the added complication that they aren’t playing the local kids. In some ways, I think it is easier to go into a hot bed such as South Florida and get what you can get without all the local baggage.

    Like

  34. Look at Aliquippa, Huff. It looked like the well went dry for Pitt there for a while until their current new coach came in. Maybe it will now open up again for Pitt.

    Like

  35. My point with Banks was that Pitt was being honest with the numbers and therefore no shade or complications for pulling it later in the process once Pitt received their full allotment. Being transparent with a kid is good. Being not smart, is not smart. Pitt should ALWAYS find room for a local 4 star, period.

    There is a certain amount of reputational swag associated with bringing in 4 stars. Bring them in and if it at the cost of a 2 star non-contributor, so be it.

    I am glad we got Gipson from Aliquippa and I hope we can get Devonshire as well. There are certain schools where we should be all over the talent with Aliquippa being one and St. Thomas Aquinas being another. I would also have Charlie Partridge or one of the younger assistants live 1/2 the year in Bradenton, next to IMG academy.

    Maybe we get a couple 4 stars in February, which can lift the class into the low 30’s.

    Out of 13 recruits that we signed that also had offers from Purdue, we were 2-11 in signing them. Ouch! That is Purdue, not the big three in the big 10.

    Like

    1. Played in the Shrine Bowl – North Carolina vs. South Carolina. Only heard his name called once.

      South Carolina also has a North vs. South all star game.

      Shrine Bowl more prestigious.

      Like

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