Here is a bit of a two for-one-piece.  A “Make a Wish” Piece by POV poster Mark Kerestan and also some quick updates on the Pitt football program.

First, as we may have suspected, Alabama three-star DE recruit Brandon Mack has decommitted.  Additionally, per Reed’s prediction earlier this season, backup QB Ricky Town has left the program and Jeff George Jr. has stepped into Town’s position on the depth chart.  According to the Trib’s Jerry DiPaola, Town has finished up his degree (or is close to finishing it), so congratulations to him on achieving that milestone.

Pitt’s 2019 QB depth chart is now expected to look like this, unless Narduzzi and Watson go back on their statements made in support of Kenny Pickett after the ACC championship game:

  1. Kenny Pickett (JR)
  2. Jeff George JR (rs SR)
  3. Nick Patti (rs FR)
  4. Davis Beville (FR)

There is some hype around Beville due to his recent four-star Rivals ranking, and he is due to enroll in the spring, so it will be interesting to see how spring practice plays out.

Second, and also somewhat in-line with the quarterback conversation, here is Mark Kerestan’s “All I want for Christmas” Piece.

We are deep into the holiday season and are surrounded by constant reminders of the magic of the Holidays, and their ability to make our dreams come true.  Many Christmas songs revolve around wishes for the holidays, from “Two Front Teeth”, to a “White Christmas”, or the opportunity to be “Home for the Holidays”.  The really ambitious songs wish for “Peace on Earth”, (editor’s note:  I’d settle for upgraded ACC officiating) and if I am understanding Mariah Carey correctly, she wants me for Christmas!  

As Pitt fans we all have our hopes and dreams for the Pitt Panther Athletic programs. Some may have modest wishes like a win in the upcoming Sun Bowl, or more ambitious goals like landing a once in-a-generation player at the position of your choice in football, a 4 or 5 star center for the basketball team, or even a specific coach you would like to see on the Panther Side line (Head Coach or otherwise).  As such, this is your opportunity to make your one holiday wish for the Pittsburgh Panthers for this Christmas.  I’m into immediate gratification so I’ll start with my wish being a big decisive win for the Panther Football team to hopefully jump start recruiting and fuel our enthusiasm for this team heading into next year.

What would your ONE wish be for your Pitt Panthers this Holiday season?

55 thoughts on “All I Want for Christmas… + News and Notes

  1. I’ll kick this off. Give me a decisive bowl win over Stanford and the 8 win season that goes with it. I can wish for the rest of it next year!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. That’s an easy one I’m wishing for Narduzzi the capability of recruiting the 4 stars for FB much like Capel is doing for the BB program. But then again filling up the Pete is a hell of a lot easier than filling up Heinz.


  3. Replace offensive coaches Shawn Watson, Tim Salem and that one-trick pony Dave Borbely with truly competent, experienced coaches who are not currently friends with Pat Narduzzi.


  4. Mark and Mike, thanks for the article, Great job! My answer is simple and it’s a bowl win any which way they can pull that off and yes, I’m serious. Coming off the heels of the coastal division title and then the two bad losses it’s become paramount to win this game against Stanford. A loss and I won’t be able to take the off season and all the SOP fans. So yes, that’s a selfish wish more than anything else but everyone should benefit from it. Ho Ho Ho!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Good job Mike and Mark. We need the bowl win and would like to see a statement game that sends a message that Pitt is on the rise. It will help recruiting along with the hopes of a beleaguered fan base.
    As someone who attended 10 games in person last year I need the win too.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Fran — between attending 10 games, and organizing the tailgates, I am nominating you as “Panther Fan of the Year!”

      Go Pitt!

      PS: That’s not even counting all the BB games you went to LAST season. Yikes!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. For Football: finally win a stink’n bowl game.
    For Basketball: A 4* center and power forward.
    For Duzz: A better ability to recruit much better players.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I wish that …

    …first and foremost all the young men and women athletes at Pitt continue to grow and learn and have a healthy, productive, and fun year.

    …all long suffering Pitt Pigskin Fans enjoy a Sun Bowl win wrapped up with a bow.

    …the coaches in every sport each get their top recruit under the tree.

    …The Athletic Department receives a big box of chocolates and many spring sports titles.

    …#PittsburghStrong drives a candy cane through SOP’s heart.


    Liked by 2 people

  8. On the bah humbug front: Georgia Tech gets this one (a pass catching TE?).

    One of UConn’s best offensive players will spend his senior season elsewhere. Huskies tight end Tyler Davis announced Friday on Twitter that he will play at another school next year while pursuing his master’s degree. As a graduate transfer, he will be eligible right away for his new program.


  9. I wish good health to all my POV friends ( especially EMel and UPitt) for the new year so I can see you at next year’s golf tourney.

    That and the beginnings of a near campus stadium!

    Liked by 5 people

  10. Good article Mike and Mark and I wish you well with Mariah, Mark. No wait, that’s not my wish ….

    I wish for a shockingly good basketball team this year that wins numerous ACC games unexpectedly, causes a national buzz for the program and puts Coach Capel in a position to pick the recruits he wants. As in, “I’ll take you, you, and, umm, you!”

    Liked by 5 people

  11. Wish… George “the Animal” goes to the next level (Man, I woulda loved to have seen him play some linebacker for us!) plus all the same things you folks are wish’n for…and a kidney for MissingWlat-Eric…

    Liked by 9 people

  12. The obvious Christmas wish outside of the ONE for my Pitt Panthers is good health for my family members, friends, POV guys/gals and of course myself.

    To answer Mark’s article question – What would your ONE wish be for your Pitt Panthers this Holiday season?

    For coach Duzz to get his 8th win for the 3rd time in four years against a coach at Stanford who has won 10 games five different times in his career, and have that win catapult the Panthers to their own 10+ win season in 2019.

    To get that wish granted, our Panthers need to be ready to rock and roll from the start of the coin toss to the final gun. Mentally, physically, strategically and discipline-wise, when they step onto that field in El Paso, we need to see this team perform to the best of their abilities that they have in 2018. This is a real football game – they should want to win game #8 for the seniors, for their fans and for their future.

    But what do I know – there has not been one mention of pre-Bowl practices (practice? Who needs practice? We don’t need no stinking practice). We fans are told that none of the injured have healed. The newest recruiting class is ranked in the bottom third of the P5 teams and our former back-up QB just left the school. And this team is riding a 2 game losing streak where the O has scored 13 points (7.5 per game for the liberal arts majors). Oh, and our starting QB threw for a total of 8 yards in his last performance (that’s TWO yards per quarter folks).

    Here’s hoping our Seniors power us to a large first half lead and our SO’s and JR’s drive home the victory.

    Go Pitt!

    Liked by 5 people

  13. Rick, your penultimate paragraph above spoke volumes. My concerns exactly.
    Hopefully steps are being taken to address these issues…


  14. Expanding on my wish for a Sun Bowl win, hopefully the extra practices will help the Oline to get in sync and Kenny Pickett, realizing that he now has a 4 star QB on his heels, recruited by the OC, has a statement game. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Keeping with the theme of my good buddy Markpt, Well I spoke of my one BIG Christmas wish for a PITT bowl win out there but I have another Christmas wish for you all. My favorite song during these holidays that begs the question. Why can’t the Christmas Spirit last all through the year? I truly wish you all the best in all your lives each and every day throughout the entire year..

    Upitt, you need to check in with your POV family.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. ESPN commentators mentioned on the radio in the pre-game intro for the W_F vs Memphis bowl contest today that Wake destroyed Pitt in it’s last game of the season. That reference was made about 3 different times in a span of ten minutes.

    Do your homework fellas…

    We can’t win for winning!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Christmas wishes with regards to Pitt Athletics
    1. A bowl win over Stanford
    2. Several ACC wins in men’s basketball. Hopefully on some away games that I will be attending.
    3. Pitt Women’s volleyball getting to the Elite 8 next year.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Everyone seems to be writing Nick Patti off, as though Pitt will jump directly from Pickett to Beville. As I recall, there was some enthusiasm when Patti was recruited. Was he another “character” recruit that can’t pay football? I wonder if he gets a look in the bowl game. Should Pitt be playing back ups to get them some experience (especially the OL) or leaving the Srs. in to ensure a win?


  19. Playing favorites as a head coach or any coach for that matter will get you to the unemployment line faster than shaking your head. In other words………. if Nick Patti is better than KP and can win more games, I believe he will play. It’s as simple as that. Pretending that we know what goes on in practice and who’s better than who is exactly why practices are purposely closed. Cause we just don’t know.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Especially if you dont have people feeding you info from the Southside. How do you think Peak gets his inside stuff?

      There is plenty to know about what happens there; you just have ask the right questions.

      You make it sound like Narduzzi doesnt play favorites but he sure did with Max Browne coming out of camp in 2017. DiNucci outplayed him the last two weeks of that camp yet Browne was PN’s gamble as the starter because he got him and spoke like he was the sure starter from Day 1…and it bit him in the ass.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. HCPN did make a statement earlier this month (see Trib or PG) that he may open it up a bit more in the future.
      I’m not sure how many folks actually caught this statement in a deep transcript which I believe was a statement made in the run-up to the ACCCG.
      It’s wishful thinking. But I’d like to think that Lyke or EJ have introduced the advantages of the concept — a little more transparent would lead to more interest on behalf of the casual fan. And it’d certainly let please the die-hards who rightly demand some truly open-practice observations and reporting.

      Liked by 2 people

  20. My point exactly, Reed. Will Patti get a fair shot in the Spring? Narduzzi’s obsessive reliance on Pickett is hard to understand.


  21. Dinucci would have been horrible if he was the day one starter against that schedule. Turns out, he was pretty bad against the easy part of the schedule anyways.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Narduzzi struck gold with Peterman and thought he would go 2 for 2 with Browne. Unfortunately, it didn’t work. DeNucci never should have received a scholarship IMO; his talents are FCS level. I always believed Narduzzi and staff were trying to influence Jurkovich when they offered BD because they played at Pine Richland together.


  22. I know that the original question asked us to identify the ONE thing that we wished for relating to Pitt athletics, but I expanded my list to include a Twelve Days of Christmas theme. Here goes….

    Twelve four or five star football recruits (Ok, I know this is delusional)
    Eleven Mulligans for Erie Express
    Ten (not Nine) National Championships in Football
    Nine Packages of Grecian Formula for Richman’s moustache
    Eight TJ Maxx gift cards for Heather to buy some new blouses
    Seven plane tickets for UPitt, so he can attend ALL POV tailgates in 2019
    Six ACC basketball wins, enough to get us in the NIT
    Five Carrick Third Graders to paint a new LARGE Pitt script logo at midfield
    Four Touchdowns in the Sun Bowl, enough to beat Stanford 31-24
    Three Red 5a Parking Passes for Lastrow, to allow for expansion of the POV tailgates
    Two Fishing Rods for Big B (so he’ll have one for me when I come visit)
    One Bottle of Dom Perignon, which I will open so that I can toast to Reed, the founder of this tremendous blog, and MM our new host. Cheers fellas!!!

    Liked by 7 people

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