It’s quiet out there. Very quiet. The OC search has gone dark for the weekend, and it’s been talked dead anyway. It’s an offical visit weekend, and there have been no leaks. Pitt Basketball played their hearts out yesterday, and that has dominated the Pitt-o-shpere. And the divisional round of the NFL playoffs is underway.
Regarding the OC search, a couple of new names have surfaced since my last article: Joe Rudolph and Mark Whipple. Based on casual observation of this board and Twitter, neither of them appears to be considered a splash hire. We know what Rudolph brings to the table (and it’s not bad, but not what a lot of people profess to want). Whipple looks like an also-ran (which, sadly, probably means he has the inside track).
In recruiting news, Aliquippa four-star DB MJ Devonshire is on an offical visit this weekend. The biggest update to come out of this so far, is that Penn State called Devonshire while he was in Oakland and apparently the call was “great”. There has been no mention of the Pitt visit on Devonshire’s Twitter (as of yet), but you would assume that since it’s Sunday, the visit is still going on…
Devonshire is reportedly down to Pitt and Ohio State, but if Penn State worms their way back into the mix and eventually snaggs yet-another-four-star out from under Narduzzi, it will surely elicit a fair amount of impotent rage, at least from Pitt fans.
In NFL News, Aaron Donald had a nice TFL in the Rams Playoff win against the Cowboys yesterday night. It was much celebrated on the Twitter.
Pitt fans will also get to watch Avonte Maddox try to defend against Drew Brees and the Saints tonight. As a lifelong Eagles Fan I hope he is successful. (For the record I was born in Philly and raised in Eastern PA, and both sides of my family are from Philly, so I’ve earned it.) Regardless of outcome, he’s had a great season and outperformed expectations. Heck, we put a couple more like this in the NFL and we might start becoming known as #CornerBackU. (Attention MJ Devonshire…)
While we are on the subject of beating expectations, Pitt Alum Tyler Boyd has been nominated for the little-known and awkwardly-named Vizio Top Value Performer Award.
According to the press release: “The TVP award is given to the NFL player who’s on-field performance most-exceeds the value of their contract and with the season he put together this year”
I’ve listed the nominees belwo. Based on the production Boyd is probably the least-qualified, but if you want to exercise your University of Pittsburgh Pride, go ahead and vote for him anyway. I don’t think he will get anything if he wins, but you will be entered to win a shiny new TV (which ostensibly is also a great value if you were to buy it at retail…)
Also, WHY THE HECK WASN’T JAMES CONNER NOMINATED FOR THIS AWARD? This will undoubtedly go down as one of the most epic snubs in Pittsburgh Football history (I’m joking here). Not only has Conner outperformed everyone on this list, but he actually saved the Steelers $12 Millon dollars and represents the feel-good football story of the decade (not joking here). The marketing department at Vizio really needs to do their homework next time…
- Tyler Boyd, WR, Bengals – 76 receipt, 1028 yds, 7 TD | $787k
- Chris Carson, RB, Seahawks – 1314 total yds, 9 TD | $550k
- Kenny Golladay, WR, Lions – 70 receipt, 1063 yds, 5 TD | $586k
- Phillip Lindsay, RB, Broncos – 1278 total yds, 10 TD | $480k
- Blake Martinez, ILB Packers – 5 sacks, 91 tackles | $630k
- James Conner, RB, Steelers – 1470 total yds, 13 total TD, beat cancer, saved team $12 Million dollars (Not Nominated)
Lastly, some housekeeping and odds and ends. I recieved a couple of texts from posters over the last few weeks, and I’ve been remiss about posting them. One was from Rick in Columbus aka OhHowIHateOhioState. It was sent during halftime of the Sun Bowl, and the pic clearly got lost in the Sun Bowl Aftermath. Looks like the Columbus Pitt Club was representing well!
The other was from one of our favorite raconteurs, Bernie, aka Big B. Who was playing a round of winter golf, and apparently made quite an impression on someone at the 19th hole.
I’m sure the subtext was that they were talking football, and this woman expliained that the Clemson recruting staff has a room full of this stuff. You know, for when they recruit against thier in-state rival. (Pitt-Cocks fan maybe you can shed some light on this?) While we are on the subject of unfortunately named college teams, go ahead and take a look at this list. I’ll let you you pick out your favorites.
At any rate, I’ll always be thankful that we are the Pitt Panthers. Try to keep the 14 year old comments PG folks, and enjoy the NFL playoffs.
PS – if you have photos from game watches or other football relevant content. You can reach me via the contact page on this site. I’ll do my best to post it all.
#FlyEaglesFly & Hail to Pitt