First off, a public service announcement

The ACC Network is hosting a “Pitt takeover” tomorrow.  All Pitt, all day long.  Featured content:

  • 4 a.m. Pitt 24, Miami 14, 2017 (Kenny Pickett’s debut)
  •  5p.m. Pitt 13, WVU 9 (Pat Bostick’s swan song and possibly Pitt’s most famous win.  Ever.)
  • 9 p.m. Pitt 43, Clemson 42.  (I still get butterflies when I see Blewitt line up for that field goal).

Second.  It’s Pat Narduzzi’s birthday.

Thrid, and perhaps more importantly, there were three Pat signals today, which would put Pitt at six commits for 2021.

All I can say is it’s about damn time.

UNC has 14 (count em!) commits already.

Clemson has nine.

Miami has 11.

Virginia Tech has six, Florida State has five, Duke has eight (!) and Virginia has six.  Heck, even Boston College has five.

Of course Pitt typically makes its living recruiting in June, but it’s nice to see some action during this ahem slower time. 

We know about one commit so far…Virginia Linebacker Trevion Stevenson.  He’s ranked as a two-star on rivals, but he has 40 (yes forty…) offers, so it’s pretty safe to say that the old scouting crew missed on this guy.  Based on his offer list, he’ll either be bumped up to a mid-tier three star (maybe a 5.6) or he’ll be another Rashad Weaver who never gets ranked but had a ton of offers (Weaver had 25 I think…and he turned out to be not-so-bad).

Stevenson Rivals

So about those forty offers.  There is a lot of FCS / Group of Five noise in Stevenson’s offer list, and by the looks of it he must have developed significantly (or gotten a lot of exposure) during his most recent season.  He was originally committed to Old Dominion, and also has offers from Astin Peay, Buffalo, Charlotte, Coastal Carolina, Eastern Kentucky, Liberty, Louisiana-Lafayette, Youngstown State and Howard.  Not exactly murderer’s row when it comes to football.


There is also a lot of (assumingly recent) BCS noise on Stevenson’s offer list.  Depending on who you talk to, these offers may or may not be commitable, but dang it, at least Stevenson  was on the recruiting board.

The list:

  1. Cal
  2. Florida State (Criminoles!)
  3. Georgia Tech (weak right now but recruiting well under new HC)
  4. Kansas (yeah they are trash but Les Miles…)
  5. Maryland (dumpster fire…)
  6. Miami (also dumpster fire…)
  7. Michigan (maybe offered him a PWO?)
  8. Mississippi (clearly no bag man in Virginia)
  9. Mississippi State (Mike Leach probably offended him)
  10. Missouri (Mizz-who?)
  11. Nebraska (Cornshuckers…)
  12. Penn State (sux)
  13. Syracuse (see below)
  14. TCU (meh)
  15. Tenneseee (duuuumpster fire…)
  16. Texas (really?)
  17. UCLA (…)
  18. West Virginnny (13-9!)
  19. (Lets go) Pitt

So 19 power five offers including Pitt.  On Twitter someone said “at least five of those weren’t committable”.  Who cares if five of them weren’t committable?  That means 14 power five schools wanted him, and you know what.  That’s enough for me.

Stevenson’s HUDL stats:

  • Positions:  DE, OLB
  • Height & Weight:   6’5″ 210lbs
  • 40 Yard Dash:  4.56
  • Bench:  300
  • 185 Bench (Reps):  31
  • Squat (LBS):  485
  • Deadlift (LBS):  360

And his highlight video (sorry if it doesn’t embed – the link will open in a new window so you don’t lose this page)

I watched to about the two minute point and what I saw was a long, athletic, man-among-boys type, who has pretty good burst.  Now it’s a highlight video so they aren’t going to show you the times he got swallowed up, but he looks like a guy that has a knack for getting to the quarterback, and already knows how to play with his hand in the dirt.  Put 40 lbs on him and watch out folks because he’d be a scary good DE (and that’s been Pitt’s recipe of late).  But if his 4.56 forty time is real, he may also have the quickness to play linebacker.  Time will tell where he ends up, but I think that based on his offer sheet, and what Pitt has done with similar “tweener” type guys, you have to be confident that ‘Duzz and co will find the right home for him.

So welcome to Pittsburgh Trevion.  I for one am glad to have you.

In other recruiting news, local WPIAL standout Josh Hough committed to rival Syracuse earlier this week.  I’ve read that Syracuse was Hough’s first Power Five offer (the other two being Pitt and Kentucky) and if you want to get out of Pittsburgh but still stay relatively close to home and also have a semi-annual game in the ‘Burgh, well Syracuse is about the best you can do.  I imagine that the ‘Cuse also recruited him as a running back (but I really don’t know), and so congratulations to this young man.  Syracuse is a fine university (as long as Pitt keeps beating up on them).  Anyway, with the Hough news being fairly fresh off the press, it seemed like as good a time as any to post Richard Hefner’s Syracuse roster preview.  This will give us a down-and-dirty look at the team that Hough has chosen to join.  Enjoy!


A Way to Early Look at Roster Changes

by Richard Hefner (Pitt-Cocks fan)

The object of this series of articles is to discuss & show the roster changes for the upcoming 2020 season. It will not be a player by player review.  These articles will review All ACC team player losses/returners, Transfer Portal activity & recruiting results. If there is time, I may circle back to teams after the spring practice Transfer Portal rush.

I will be using Rivals recruiting data but 24/7 transfer portal activity. I was not able to find a Rivals transfer database but did find a 24/7 site.

So, any star/points ranking related to the portal are 24/7’s not Rivals.

Note: The 24/7 database I am using runs from 8/1/19 until 7/31/20. Players who left a team after that start time are included. A Player who transferred to a team are included even if they played during the 2019 season (Eg.-John Petrishen who transferred from Penn State to Pitt just before the 2019 season) or could be a walk on.  I do not include any transfer portal entry who was not ranked coming out of H.S. or was classified as a 2-star unless I can easily verify that he was a major contributor.

Let’s get started.

Syracuse’s 2020 recruiting year class was remarkably like prior years.  53rd in Rivals team ranking.   They averaged 2.59 stars which translates to an average 5.5 3-star recruit. The 22-man class had no 4-stars & no 5.7 3-stars. Syracuse’s class placed 9’th place in the ACC.

cuse 1

Per Rivals, below are the 22 recruits by position. Highlighted is the most/tied for that position in the ACC for 2020.

Cuse 2

These the last 5 years recruiting summaries:

Cuse 3

Three of the 5 years averaged 2.75 stars even the 2019 class that featured two 4 stars. Only the 2017 class (2.50) & 2019 class (2.59) were different but not notably.

For Tex, this is the number of 5.7’s and above for the last 4 recruiting periods.

Cuse 4

Here’s ‘Cuse’s record over the last 5 seasons (Regular season, and overall total):

  • 2015 4-8
  • 2016 4-8
  • 2017 4-8
  • 2018 9-3  (10-3)
  • 2019 5-7

Syracuse has not yet shown a recruiting bump from their totally unexpected 2018 season. Will it occur in 2021 or fade into history?

At this time, Syracuse has added 1 transfer from the Transfer Portal:

Cuse 5

Pitt had interest in Beich to shore up their offensive line.

These are the returning 2 All ACC honorees:

Cuse 6

Cisco was a 2018 Rivals 5.5 3-star. He made first team All ACC as a true freshman. Szmyt was also a first team All ACC as a redshirt freshman in 2018.

Note: The Class shown is for the 2019 Season. For the 2020 season Jr. are now Seniors, So. are now Juniors.

All of the above was a brief snapshot of who Syracuse added & returned for the upcoming 2020 season.

Who did they lose from the 2019 season?

Syracuse lost 3 All ACC honorees.

Cuse 7

Syracuse’s punter & kicker made All ACC. Are they good or was playing in a dome a help?

Syracuse had one early entry into the NFL draft, He was an All ACC performer.

Cuse 8

Syracuse has no entries into the Transfer Portal.

Dino Babers enters his 6’th year as head coach. He’s had one surprisingly good season. Like most teams in Syracuse’s position, improvement depends on the QB. Tommy Devito is a tough kid. Is he capable of an Eric Dungy level performance (I.e. the QB who led the Orange to a 10-3 season)? I see Syracuse as a bottom dweller in the Atlantic division.

Editor’s note:  Devito is probably a decent quarterback, but Syracuse’s main issue seems to be protecting him.  While Pro Football Focus rated them 101’s, they were surprisingly lenient in their pass grade analysis, although “not as bad as it could have been” is pretty faint praise.  Pitt sacked Syracuse quarterbacks nine times in the carrier dome last year and knocked Devito out of the game.


Highest-graded player: OG Evan Adams – 64.0 (156th)

Syracuse’s offensive line really struggled to move the line of scrimmage in the run game. On their 513 pass-blocking snaps, however, they allowed a pressure on 23.0% of their snaps, which is not as bad as it could have been given their 107th overall grade in the run game.

The Chris Peaks’ of the Rivals ACC Coastal Divisions did a review of their teams. They then shared with all the other Rivals sites in the Coastal. Unfortunately, the Atlantic members didn’t.

I didn’t do a review of Pitt but here is Chris Peak’s review of Pitt.


134 thoughts on “A Commit (or three) and the Syracuse Profile

  1. It’s tough to recruit a kid to syracuse. The winters are brutal. The Dome is a hole. Syracuse is known as Gods armpit. Although It is close to wine country in the finger lakes and is a quick drive to the adirondacks and Lake Ontario. But I’d rather take online classes than ever attend one on campus there. Pitt has an easy sell relative to Syracuse.

    You can see that the cuse averages about 15 percent of their class at 5.7 and above rival stars. Pitt is at around 25 percent. The benchmark is 40 percent to be consistently good assuming coaching and injuries don’t get in the way.



      1. That’s better than what I thought but still short of the goal. Not horrible recruiting but just slightly better than mediocre. It’s all relative. Pitt needs to out recruit other coastal schools.



        1. *or out-eval and out-develop. They are doing that in pockets but not across the board today.


    1. Yeah, that area’s nice in the summers, but the winters are pretty harsh. Cold, windy and snowy. The trifecta of suck.


      1. Summers are to die for. I’m now used to 40 plus summer days of temperatures 98 degrees and above. Summers in north Texas are close to what Hell is like.



    2. Syracuse has one of the top Communications programs, which for those athletes contemplating a career in sports media can make a difference.


  2. Don’t sleep on two of the Pitt hoops games that are on tomorrow. The classic Pitt-Duke game from MSG in 2007 is on tomorrow afternoon. Then in the evening, they are showing the triple OT thriller over WVU in 2010. That one was played at the Pete. Living out of town, I only get to a few hoops games a year, but I attended both of these. Worth a watch.


  3. Bleich may have helped us. But maybe not. A bit of a head case, I think. He was all over the place during his original recruitment.


  4. Eric, from a very good source, Bleich had decided he wanted to come to PITT second time around and PITT said, no thanks.


    1. In my opinion, if Pitt is taking in a Grad transfer OL prospect, think Millen. Get someone from a P5 conference or even FCS that made their conference All Star team even as a honorable mention. They have something to prove.


    2. That sounds like Narduzzi’s M.O.. Can’t say I blame him. On the other hand, we shouldn’t be turning away potentially good players on the Offensive Line.


  5. Stevenson must be good. No offers from Elon or Holy Cross. Did have 3 – Eastern Kentucky, Howard & my favorite Austin (Fly’s open, let’s go) Peay.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Just one of the funnier student chants I ever heard.

        Austin “P” had a basketball player in the earlier 3 point era named “Fly” Williams (don’t know his real first name). Liked to chuck the 3-ball whenever he could. When he made one, the students would chant ” Fly’s open, let’s go “P”.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. wow, Maestro …. you and Rich are really give us our money’s worth (LOL) on these blog articles. The gov’t guidelines for mentally dealing with the pandemic should list logging into PittPOV

    Yes, Pitt usually gets most of its commits from its June camps where many recruits come from the South and gets to see Pgh, Pitt and the facilities while the staff gets to workout the prospects. It seems the majority of commits in the last 4 or 5 classes fit into this category,

    In his virtual presser with the media 2 weeks ago, HCPN indicated that this year will be different and many recruits won’t get to travel to the schools. He pointed out that this may work out well for Pitt since he indicated that this is by far the best PA class since he arrived here.

    Again, almost every commit that UNC has gotten is in-state. And the schools from SC, FL, GA and (to a lesser extent) VA, all have an inherent geographic edge but likely even moreso this year it would seem.


    1. June in Pgh compares quite favorably to the deep South, unless one loves high humidity and temps in the 90’s. Some folks do – but I am not one of them.


  7. I don’t think the Pitt programs on the ACC Network give our southern brethren a fair idea of what we’ve gone through as Pitt fans. I would extend the programming a few hours more to include Paul Chryst’s loss to Youngstown St, Wanny’s losses to Ohio U. and Bowling Green, and Wlat taking 1AA Furman to overtime. Add in a Scottie Renolds and Barry Goheen NCAA tourney highlight as well. We have the most glorious victories, the most embarrassing defeats, and a few that go our way that take a year or two of heart damage.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I have to admit I love our Pitt emotional roller coaster, but the Wanny years just really grind my gears. Wanny was the coach for four of my five years as a student. During my freshman year, we won the Big East with Walt and earned a trip to the Fiesta Bowl. Pitt football was big deal and a big party for the students. Pitt football had meant a lot to mean as a kid because it was one of the few non dorky things my dad would watch on tv. Pitt had arrived…and then Walt quit/was fired/forced out…not sure.

        The next three years (05,06, and 07) were very awful except for 13 to 9. There were no bowls, bad losses (the student section was taunted after a game by UCONN fans and we aren’t talking mens/women’s basketball), and the students and city were apathetic towards the program. I’m sure those that were students under the Paul Hackett regime feel very similar to this after Mike Gottfried’s success in the mid to late 80’s.

        I will never forget a rainy game against Cincy (a battle of two stinky teams for a stinky trophy) where I couldn’t get anyone male or female to go with me. A beautiful girl on the track team I met in a Soc class told me to come to her apartment and we could just drink all day. Dumb me told her, “The game isn’t on tv and I’m not missing it.”

        Wanny did end up having two great seasons in the end…and then he was gone and the whole darn thing started again from square one.


    1. ajs, instead of focusing solely on Pitt, look at other programs which are similar to Pitt … above average … and see how many times these things has happened to them.

      You may be surprised …. and again I will proclaim that The U with all of its talent has out-Piitted Pitt. Just a year ago, The U which as always was projected to be among the top of the ACC

      But last season … it beat Coastal Champ UVA, whooped FSU (27-10) and Louisville (52-27) then lost to FIU and Duke. It also lost to ACC bottom feeder Ga Tech and was shutout by La Tech

      And I assure you that The U is just one of several of these programs which have had head-scratchers … all the time


      1. You are correct wwb. It really shocks me when you look at big time programs like Miami, Nebraska, and Flordia St. who in the past years have been not as good or just as good as Pitt…I bet they have bagmen.


        1. Coaching matters…

          But it’s kind of like a deal where a good generally coach can’t make the less talented players better than they are, but a bad coach can really make talented players underperform.


          1. Like I’ve always said. Coaches often get in the way. It’s really talent that wins in the end. I’m speaking as a former coach. Talent can make any coach look like a genius. Not to diminish the coaching aspect but it’s really overrated across most sports.



    2. Good list of games, but that Furman game was really entertaining. Course it wouldn’t have been had we lost, but a great game to watch as far as seeing your team come out of a stupor and come back to win…

      Go Pitt.


  8. Mike – excellent job of working in my articles. Thanks for the PFF adds & editorial notes.

    Please read the PantherLair articles I link. They are free & fairly short reads. Gives a more detail insight into some of the broad info I show.

    Wish the Atlantic conference Rivals sites did the same thing.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for taking my advice. If you can go back to the UNC article a few articles ago.there is a link to UNC’s Rivals site. Same type of info.

        My future writeups include a link to every coastal teams info. One of the last things.


  9. 2 of the tree recruits are just up the road from me in Va Bch….I bet our man Patrick Jones helped in landing these 2 kids who are from PJ’s back yard…that makes 3 from the Hampton Roads area…excellent job by PITT…now lock down some of the WPA players….

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Have all 3 of the new commits been identified? I’ve only been able to track down the LB Stevenson so far.


    1. He was so good I couldn’t stop watching.

      In all seriousness though I wanted to try to get a sense for if he was a hand in the dirt guy or standup guy. His twitter mentioned coach partridge so sounds like Pitt is thinking of him as a DE.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I think of myself as the roadie for Rogers & Hammerstein with dreams of being the roadie for Fats Domino or Little Richard.


      1. Now that I posted that, it sounds like I disrespected Mike. He does a great job & I am happy to be a member of this site & provide any info I can.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Thanks to MM and Richard for the article and their digging…

    Saw a copy of the printed version of the PG this morning. Under the some-things-never-change category, there was a large article by the Nit writer about Nit FB. There was a small item about Pitt’s commit mentioning he’s a 2-star on Rivals and a 3-star on the other one. No mention of him having some big-time interest…

    Just another huddle for Pitt to maneuver past…

    Go Pitt.


  12. In light of Stevenson’s commitment I would like to relate a story about my roommate at Pitt my sophomore year for all you negative nancies about his Rivals star rating.

    Me – had to shave for my 8th grade graduation. Was 5″10 then, same today.

    Him – had peach fuzz on his chin, literally couldn’t grow facial hair. Came to college at 6’1. Was a good athlete, had a partial basketball scholarship to a Div 2 school but came to Pitt because he was smart and wanted to do engineering. Sophomore year of college he grows three inches in 6 months and fills out his shoulders. Now instead of layups, he doing one-handed slams from the foul line at 6’4. He actually couldn’t shoot straight for the 6 months he was growing as his growth was so fast he temporarily lost some coordination.

    The point is that many kids are later developing. Stevenson looks like this type of kid. If Pitt can identify guys like my college roommate that aren’t done growing, guys that can’t grow facial hair, that talk like the kid clerk on the Simpsons, they can compete with the big boys, because these guys will be a 4 star in 3 years. This is what I believe that Narduzzi is trying to do. These are the diamonds in the rough. Twyman seems like this type of kid looking at his freshman and sophomore pictures. Look at his face, he grew into a man. (he obviously put in the hours in the weight room too, not discounting that, but some of it was just him growing up).

    Anyway just my two cents.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. The trick is successfully identifying these guys. Some are better at it than others. Pitt pretty good on DL guys

      Liked by 1 person

      1. ^^ Absolutely and that has always been a point of mine. The recruiters eye for programs like PITT are so important since there is a lack of bagmen running around the neighborhood of Oakland. I’ll tell the story again… my junior year in high school I wrestled the 88 lb class and the opposing coaches didn’t bother to weigh me in. A few years after high school I became a hardy 190 lb athlete and I could have played minor league baseball at the least. << or thats what I have been told or how my dreams go. Today? I’m a fat 200 lb old guy that revisits glory days and wonder, what if?


  13. JoeL has the answer as to why in the hell would a young athlete decides on attending Syracuse, they are undeniably a leader in the communication field. They also churn out some of the most annoying media jerk-offs the world has ever viewed or listened to. To Syracuse……… no thank me.


    Trying to keep a stiff upper lip today but these times are becoming more and more trying. If there is not a college football season this year I will, without doubt, know that the PITT football program has truly been assigned by the football Gaads…… a destiny of failure due to the idiocy of past administrations and the lack of foresight moving forward. I don’t have much times folks and this was the year we all have been waiting for. SOB! iek

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Hope Pitt developes the vaccine quickly and they give you a patch for each season ticket. It could come with the tickets. I think that is the only way I go this year unless I have the antibodies. What a promotion, first to get the vaccine if you buy season tickets.


    1. With season tickets and the vaccine right now Pitt would sell out all their games for this year. But I’m not sure many would come to the games unless all in the stadium had the vaccine and were tested for the antibodies prior to entering the stadium.


    1. ^^ This video is interesting in so many ways.. The shirt is cool but the endorsement is way way cooler. It’s no wonder how PITT keeps picking up 4* running backs.. Shady’s video may take PITT into 5* running back territory?

      Bernie, you got an O-lineman and Borbs was the lead recruiter. A win, win….!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. an OLineman !!!!!!!!!! and played for the legendary Massillon Tiger program …..I hope Borbs played a role in landing this young man

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m hoping the reason Bradley had so few big named offers is because he didn’t play WR until last year. Pitt really has to be playing the athletic card on this young man.


          1. Hey my buddy Jim played QB in high school and could not throw the ball 20 yards. He played DB at BC with Fluite. In high school the best athlete plays QB a lot of the time.


  16. Borbs introduced him to Nard at camp last year then Ohio area recruiter Collins took over. wwb loved your video.


  17. —One nice thing about this NFL draft. Don’t have to watch Goodall hugging each pick. No fan of the Commish…

    —Need these local top recruits to jump on board with the Panthers. Keep up the mo.

    Go Pitt.


      1. Good one Fran, gave me a nice little belly laugh already this morning. Looks like an old friend visiting which is nice to see. I guess you can’t stand on the grassy knoll forever? The word shrubbery is funny in and of itself. haha

        Actually Stevenson may be the second best recruit of these first six and rivals have him as a two star. Maybe I’ll give Richard and Tex a call and we can start our own recruiting service. That seems like a fair and balanced team. << or should i say task force?


  18. Excerpt from PSN article on Mr. Rankl (like that name…) committing to Pitt:

    “Rankl said that Borbely, Pitt’s offensive line coach, was a key factor in his decision, as were cornerbacks coach Archie Collins, who recruits the area, and head coach Pat Narduzzi.

    “With Coach Borbs, he’s a great coach. He doesn’t sugar-coat anything he gives it straight to you and he’s a dude I want to play for. He’s very experienced and he’s been at a lot of great programs.

    “And Coach Narduzzi is a great guy. He recruited several players from my high school, and all my coaches that have talked to him and players that have been recruited by him, they have nothing by compliments for him.”

    Go Pitt.


    1. My mistake – that’s an excerpt from Chris Peak’s article on the Panther Lair…

      Go Pitt.


  19. This doesn’t hurt — from WPXI:

    PITTSBURGH — The University of Pittsburgh has been named the top public university in the Northeastern United States, according to rankings by the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Rankings.

    According to university officials, this is the fourth time in five years that Pitt has been recognized as No. 1 on this list. In addition to being named the top public university in the northeast, Pitt was also ranked No. 25 among best public schools in the country.”

    Now, if that vaccine works, Pitt could really take off…

    Hail to Pitt!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. I would like to remind everyone that Pitt’s 15th ranked defense last year consisted of two 4-stars and two 2-stars; the remainder including oft-used subs were 3-stars

    Further, this is what CBS recruiting analyst Tom Lemmig says about low 3-star WR

    Tom Lemming@LemmingReport
    Mar 2
    I was very impressed with 6‘4“ 190 WR Jaden Bradley Dematha Catholic. Has a height, long arms, strong hands and 4.5 speed to dominate at the next level. A play maker and a red zone threat

    Lastly and I have been trying to make this point for a while because it’s the damned truth … for a few reasons, Pitt will not be able to bring in a lot of 4-stars any more. Their success depends on recognizing the potential of 3-stars and developing them.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bradley played at the WR position only last season. Prior to last season he was a QB at Dematha Catholic.


  21. @wwb – What’s a lot of 4 stars mean? Is that 2, 5, 8 per year? When was the last time Pitt brought in a lot exactly? Using Rivals, the below is what I found and the number includes the ones that are no longer on the roster with the names listed.

    3 in 2020
    1 in 2019
    1 in 2018 Salahuddin
    3 in 2017 Reeves,
    5 in 2016 Pugh, Flowers, Hill
    2 in 2015
    4 in 2014 Grimm, Jennings, James
    2 in 2013 Chapman
    4 in 2012 Shell, Rippy
    2 in 2011

    That’s a quick 10 year study of Rivals 4 stars. Pitt had a total of 27 four stars. Of those, 11 left early via transfer or retired from football due to medical issues (Grimm, Hill). So we really only played with sixteen over a 10 year period. That suggests we have been mediocre. We have been.

    I remain convinced that Pitt needs 4 four stars a year to increase our chance for success in the Coastal, let alone the ACC.Over the same 10 year stretch, VT had 53, UNC 53, Virginia 22, Miami 90. If we do a 5 year rolling average (i.e. current squad), Miami averages 10.5, UNC 6.0, VT 4.6, Pitt 2.6 and VA 0.8. Hence the predictions.

    If there is ever any wonder why Pitt is consistently predicted to finish 4th in the coastal, let the stars decide. Candidly, I didn’t go through the rosters to see which 4 stars flamed out at these other schools, so there could be some significant change, however, the point is that our recruiting is simply not as good as everyone else’s in the coastal, especially most recently. Strong 3 star classes yes, BUT, if the stars are even half right, the other schools are killing it.

    Yes, we did win a very bad coastal a couple of years ago and that’s great. And every once in awhile we rise up and beat someone we shouldn’t, also great, but we dont have consistency.


    1. Huff, where will they come from? Why would a 4-star from FL, GA, NC, TX (the hot spots) pick Pitt over Clemson, UF,, FSU, Miami. GA, UNC, Auburn, Bama, LSU, TCU, Tex, Tex A&M a— and that’s must a short list.

      PSU’s 2020 class included 27 commits but not one 4-star from PA. There were only two and Pitt got one of them. And they were outbid by OSU for the state’s only 5-star who resides about an hour east from State College.

      And, for that matter, with PSU, OSU and ND lurking, why would the few top stars from Western PA / Eastern OH consider Pitt? For the yellow seats? These teams are on national TV all the time in front of 90-100k crowds.

      Did you see the 1st Round last night? Dominated by the SEC, OSU, plus Clemson and Okla had a couple each. Even teams like PSU and ND were shut out … (Mich did have 1)

      There is absolutely no way Pitt and a 110 other teams can compete these days ….. and it’s only going to get worse when these players start getting paid by sponsors.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. While I agree we need more higher profile players, I also agree with WWB, where will they come from.. All the teams you mention get the majority of their players from their backyard. Our backyard doesn’t produce nearly enough anymore. Narduzzi has to poach from many backyards and that is why he rarely is able to compete for the elite player. Especially without generous bagmen.

      The Shady video is great, but without the injury he never comes to Pitt.


      1. the entire conference …. they are consistently inconsistent. Pitt is in with its peers (although UNC appears to be making an breakout)


  22. PITT received commitments from 6— 4* players this past year from one recruiting service or another. I’m still in shock I can write that. Bill, you are right, there are only so many 4 and 5* players to go around and if they are not from WPA why in the hell would they want to come to PITT? We think a lot alike on this subject.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Rivals web site only goes back to 2002. The 2006 class was by far Pitt’s best, ranked 21st / 8 4-stars. The 07 class was ranked 26th / 6 4-stars. The 08 class was ranked 28th / 5 4-stars and 1 5-star (Baldwin). Those were the best of Wanny’s classes.

    Then there was the recruiting budget after the 2008 season, and the 2009 class ranked 47th with 4 4-stars. (and just 2 commits from FL)

    P-G high school sports writer, Mike White has written 2 articles over the past 5 years about the sharp decrease in talent on WPa over the past 10 years. The last 3 years, it seemed this area hit the bottom, but this year seems to be the best in the past 5 years. Pitt already has one 4-star commit and allegedly Eliot Donald is still leaning for Pitt.. And there are a few other top area prospects …. hopefully this begins a trend, and not an aberration.


    1. then there was the recruiting budget ‘cut’ after the 2008 season …

      (that undoubtedly began the rift between Stevie and Wanny)


  24. Its not about where they are coming from. Pitt was the biggest beneficiary of joining the ACC because the demographics for graduating high school students is dominated on the eastern coast. We now have visibility into the living rooms and iphones to athletes that we didn’t have before. Pitt Athletics needs to understand demographics. This is why you don’t schedule OOC games against Iowa or WVU. You schedule against FAU, FIU, USF and UCF and a couple Georgia schools like Georgia St. That gets you noticed.

    I don’t buy this hogwash about we are some old northern school with higher academic standards balogna. You bought into the excuses of an administration that hoodwinked its alumni and fanbase for 40 years. The kids are out there. Somebody is getting them. Why not Pitt? Because Pitt is lazy and doesn’t hire and retain the best recruiters.

    And the coastal has been mediocre. Pitt may have missed their chance to put a stranglehold on it when VT and Miami struggled. They are bouncing back. There’s a reason we lose to UNC 8 times in a row. Look at the recruits. Same with Miami…and hush already about saying we beat miami twice in 6 games.

    Pitt needs to buy Narduzzi time every weekend on the Sunshine network in fl for even more exposure. Watch Schiano start doing it. Go where the kids are and then do your job. Look, I am not saying recruiting is terrible. It is mediocre. Loser mentalities produce losers. Mediocre mentalities produce mediocreness.


    1. OK Huff, you go recruit for Pitt with its half empty off campus stadium an lets see how many 4 and 5 stars you get to commit.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I don’t like the half empty off campus stadium. Pitt Administration doesnt support Pitt Athletics. If they did, they would build. Money is cheap. Now is the time to act.

        I would love the opportunity to go recruit kids. Kids gravitate to experienced, successful leaders. Some dude named Capel comes to mind. You know him. He was the second or third choice by our inexperienced AD. Kids will also gravitate to less experienced leaders with smaller bag men. You have to play the game to some extent. I couldn’t/wouldnt work for our current AD because she would turn me in for putting cream cheese on a bagel. or the last one. Top AD’s attract the top coaches. Top AD’s don’t need to learn how to schedule to support lower recruiting. Top AD’s glad hand big supporters into supporting a dream, a concept. Pitt Basketball sold the vision of the Pete to potential players.

        The players bought in and came. We had a solid run and then poof, bad decisions by the AD and the Chancellor. Theres not a big difference between 6-6 and 9-3. Just about 3 more 4 stars a year.

        Quit this crap about how Pitt can’t get big time recruits because our town is cold and our population shrunk. All bad excuses.


    2. ^^ Huff the Third, and with all respect…. PITT does not play football in the NFL where there is at least an attempt being made at an even playing field when it comes to competition. Many of us applaud PITT for trying be above board when it comes to sportsmanship and at the very least… don’t cheat as much as many other bigtime programs do. So I scratch my head (btw my wife gave me a haircut last night, turned out good) when we all no why why why PITT falls below at times from the Bama’s and Notre Dames. We talk about it all the time. Hell Mike just wrote a great article articulating the bagmen and all the injustice PITT has to overcome just to be competitive. Which they surprisingly do at times. See the Clemson game. If some of you want to keep ragging on PITT, the AD and the coaches, rage on, I just don’t see it.

      Liked by 2 people

  25. To me the most damning part of the Pitt stats on our 4 star players over the past decade is how ineffective most of those players ended up being. I’d like to compare those players with a school who gets a similar average of 4 stars players in terms of retrospective productivity. We need not only more 4 star players but BETTER ones as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mark that’s a mouth full right there…… To me, it sounds like stars mean little. I can take my wife to a high school football game and she as plain as day can see and pick out the best player on the field but could never pick out the young kid that may be good in 3 or 4 years. That’s the science. Now let us revert back to the bagman and you will find answers to all the questions why PITT does not and can’t compete with the big boy spenders for the out of state 5* players.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. To no surprise, I happen to think PITT has formed a very capable football coaching staff. If the administration were to make some sort of drastic change in the program I would be out and never return in supporting them. And for the life of me (I know you’re not to start a sentence with AND) what the BIG Problem is with Heather? Is it because she hasn’t turned decades of a losing football program around in three years? Does anyone understand the concerted effort to destroy the PITT football program over the years and the continued ignorance of the of the polluted BOT turning their blind eyes to the possibilities of a highly successful football program and what it means to the very brand they want to portray to the world. Like they say, we have met the enemy and it is us!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Huff is right on this.

    Pitt has many selling points. I have not once heard a recruit say they didn’t pick Pitt because of the yellow seats. But I do know that 90 percent capacity is a better atmosphere than 50 percent.

    Pitt needs to build a smaller on campus stadium. Until then, Narduzzi needs to do a better job at recruiting. Talent wins in the end people. As a former coach, I know. Coaching is way overrated. Systems matter though.

    But you don’t have to believe science, data and facts people. I would have expected more from Pitt grads though.

    And you deniers just got trashed


  28. ike, the Wall St Journal said recently (in a virus article) that Pitt is mostly known for it’s football team! But I digress… I think we are finally starting to see the benefits of coaching continuity in an athletic program with Pitt. I noticed that one of the recruits said that he spoke with coaches and other players and they all said good things about Narduzzi and Pitt. This is so valuable in getting players from the same school or region, as well as word of some late blooming players that may have only played a year or two of high school ball. The bagmen schools will always pick off the obvious 5 star and many 4 star players, but smart recruiting can help compensate by finding the little known below the radar players such as Baldonado that can really help a program.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Pitt is mediocre for a reason. It all starts with recruiting. And if Narduzzi can’t sell Pitt, he should go back to Youngstown along with his meatballs. I could sell Pitt on any recruit. Doesn’t mean they’d choose the program but they would be jacked and Pitt would always be in the final 3. Narduzzi couldnt sell an ac unit on a 110 degree day in Texas.



    1. OK TX, you and Huff can go out together to recruit for Pitt. Start off by bringing in all potential recruits for a Pitt home game and let them chose any seat they want to sit in to watch the game. There will be plenty to chose from.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I would fill every seat because I would have tarped. And I would be out front advocating a smaller MPC despite my boss who has a fondness for ugly yellow blouses.

        Narduzzi is lazy and stupid. Hence he fails in recruiting. He’s been relying on his bagman partridge more than ever now.

        Narduzzi couldn’t close a door.



    2. Tex did you or did you not read my article about bag men?


  30. Terrell Pryor and Shelden Jeter’s younger brother are two that said they wanted to play in sold out stadiums. And I’m sure there are more …. like probably Troy Apke, That’s the kid who back when PSU was under sanctions still ;picked PSU …. despite the fact that his high school (Mt Lebanon) coach became part of the Pitt staff and his parents were both Pitt alums/athletes. He would go on to make an INT vs Pitt in 2017, and is currently playing for the Redskins.

    And I have little doubt there are a lot of other area top players who won’t even consider Pitt when they could play for schools with large crowds and are always on national TV


  31. hell, even when Wanny was around, Dieffendorfer went to PSU even though his dad was tennis coach …. same for Ricketts Jr whose dad starred at Pitt (pretty sure he was a #1 pick)


  32. Huff, I don’t quite understand this northern school with high academic standards stuff …. while Pitt is a great public school for academics, its still falls behind private schools like Duke, Wake, UNC, UVa and even The U.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I give Huff the Third credit for expressing himself while identifying as well. Chicken little’s with their opinions who hide and post anonymously on a blog piss me off and make me laugh at the same time. Cause you are a joke.


  33. Lastrow, please stick around, your commentary is needed to balance out the few radical negative posters. It seems clear that recruiting is slowly improving and we are potentially looking at the best season under Narduzzi this year. We need to finally explore the theory, which I think is correct, that a winning program will fill the seats.


  34. Two things, Fran is not going anywhere. he’s just rightfully frustrated but the most loyal dog in the house.

    Anyone else notice in this NFL draft special that all the recruits from poor beginnings look like they live in a better house than ours? Well at least mine.


  35. speaking of negativity on this site …. if you watched the NFL Draft tonight, the name Tyler Boyd came up twice in the 1st 2 minutes — and it was in a positive light unlike what we saw here a few years back

    Liked by 3 people

  36. How many years does it take for an Administrator to realize that they are playing games in front of a half full stadium at best? That wasn’t a setup for a joke. The joke is whats happening to the brand, like announcing 48k when there are 20k in attendance. Why do schools like colorado state and many others build smaller stadiums? Its not all about capacity and fake ticket sales. It is all about giving kids a great chance to tie into an on campus stadium with an atmosphere that later pays HUGE dividends in donations.

    The retirement of the O should have been another eye opener. The POV is tied into campus area places and experiences. I enjoyed all your memories and they are just that, good, fond memories of a place we all grew up. I’m going to mention this because I have to. I have been commenting on this and the previous and the previous blogs for years. I’m not always right. But I can tell you one thing. Nobody comes on here EVER and says how great Steeler Stadium is and all the memories they have at Steelers Stadium. NEVER!

    Except for Frans tailgate. Thanks Fran. Would love to get to one and when haysroad kicks his cancer, I’ll make it back to celebrate with him. Point is, ALL of you have said great things about your memories of Pitt Stadium and being on campus, and the O, and what bars you went to before and after games. Today’s students at Pitt have to get on a bus before and after games.

    I am sure there will be many singing the praises of Steeler Stadium going forward. Pitt is blessed to have a few that still care but the number dwindles every year, just like the iconic connections to the campus. Re-read all the banter about places that are no more and that were packed during the on campus stadium days. Study what is written and you will see a pattern.


  37. Huff tried to post lengthy response but as all my posts it was sent to r^^^b*****swifted to prevent or delay post. Hmmmmmmm


    1. I think that has been a problem with wordpress. Would have enjoyed the read.

      Many don’t know that I am a happy go lucky person. Speaking of Lucky….wasn’t that the name of our neighbors dog?

      I hope you didn’t rip into me too bad. Just mixing what I know with what i think i know. We don’t have a lot of years left and I don’t want to be mediocre. It can be done.


  38. I’ve been going to games since the late 60s and I don’t remember too many games other than nd, psu and wv being sold out even during the glory years of 74 to 81. Do I think they shoul have torn down Pitt stadium and replace it at that site yes, do I think they should build an on campus stadium in Panther Hollow now, yes but the thoughts of Pitt stadium being packed is not true. The fan base back then is about what it is today (40 to 45,000). We did the walk up center from the fraternity house and would stop at the Luna or Thirsty’s after games. Even back then there was no parking.


  39. Tex, that “lazy and stupid” comment when referencing Narduzzi is over the top. Many of us are frustrated with this level of animosity directed on this site towards any Pitt coach. If you support Pitt athletics you must know that players, coaches and recruits read this site and it doesn’t help the cause to talk this way.

    Liked by 2 people

  40. Voice. My comment can be ignored by the coaches, players, recruits, parents and administration. But to me, a mediocre program gets that way by making lazy and stupid decisions over time. It’s been 5 years of this under Narduzzi. I can compile a rather lengthy list that leave me scratching my head. Maybe lazy is not working hard enough. Maybe stupid is not working smart enough. In Pitts case it’s both. Pitt still won’t finish as a top 20 team after year 6. If I were a recruit, I’d notice things like this rather than the obvious yellow seats.



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