Early Signing Day Open Thread

Small class this go-round, but this staff always seems to produce a surprise or two.

There are open questions abound Chubba Purdy and Konata Mumpfield (Akron transfer – freshman all American WR)

140 thoughts on “Early Signing Day Open Thread

  1. 1st LOI came in hours ago. Rule is you can fax your letter at 7 am local time. So Sam Vander Haar from Melbourne did just that. Yes, another Aussie punter

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 2 people

    1. Cam Guess from Belle Vernon is on the roster as a redshirt freshman punter. I saw him play in high school and he’s got a monster leg. I was hoping we’d see him this year given the punting issues. Any insights into his status?

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I have no problem with them extending Narduzzi. He has taken us to two ACC championship games and won one. Given the turnover at the other Coastal schools Pitt’s stability gives us an advantage. This is from a former Narduzzi skeptic!

      Liked by 6 people

    1. Recruits want a coached signed for at least four years.
      Obviously Picket was a big reason Pitt won, but his coaches recruited and developed him.
      Picket isn’t the only star on the team.
      You reward a championship coach.
      PN and staff proved they can win when they have talent and a good OC.
      Was Nebraska foolish because Whipple no longer has Picket?

      Liked by 5 people

    2. I don’t think that will matter, POD. If you are following the long-game stability approach, you endure the 6-6 season or seasons, the 4-8 season, and enjoy the good times. I see Coach Duzz staying until Coach Duzz decides to leave. Yep, there may be unrest in some corners of the fan base, but I expect the administration to ignore the noise.

      Take a look at Kurt Ferentz’ record. He won conference championships in year 4 and year 6. Immediately followed by 7-5, 6-7, 6-6. Then turned it around for a couple of years. Then back to what some folks here call mediocrity, 8-5, 7-6,4-8, etc. I think many here would hold up Iowa as a program we would love to emulate. Certainly not all. But enough to allow the administration to keep following this path.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. The wrath of Annie(the letter) shook Lyke’s world who in turn brought her wrath upon Duzz… Annie gets the credit for changing the Panther’s trajectory following that crap, totally embarrassing loss … so we’ll written and she spoke for thousands of PITT FB fans at that moment in time.

        Jus read on PSN that PITT had to turn away a DL due to lack of schollies… he is looking at the Hoopies.. “ ya’ll come back… next year… through the portal door!”

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Love the Iowa reference, Wolfe! I have been beating the drum for Iowa being a level of success Putt could sustain for a long time.


    3. With Pitt not going to be a big NIL school, keeping Narduzzi for stability is imperative.

      Where are all these wealthy alums to pay players since I always read Pitt is the greatest school in the world? I mean, too good to accept Johnny Unitas, Elvin Bethea and I’m sure a litany of others.


  2. PN said the entire staff is involved in the hiring of the OC. With the way these guys network and bounce around, their is no shortage of names they would come up with. Of course no reporter asked him if he had a short list.
    He said they didn’t decide on the interim OC. I call BS. He’s already trying to hide things from Mich State. If he says Marion, MSU goes and pulls Howard and W&M tape. He may not announce it til game day.


  3. If a couple of these guys have the impact of Addison, Izzy and Hammond….
    Still over the limit. The thing that put us over the top may limit us from taking the next
    giant leap. (all that senior depth)
    Hopefully our lines are finally replace and reload every year and the coaching staff keeps finding the diamonds in the rough.
    Now about that QB issue…..

    Liked by 4 people

      1. All visits are over for both freshman recruits or transfer portal candidates until I believe mid January. But once a transfer portal candidates commits he can visit anytime. All we know about Purdy is that he wants to enroll somewhere in January someplace. it’s all well and great for any transfer candidate to delay his decision for the time being. But what if in the interim Pitt decides to offer another QB and he commits on the spot?


  4. OT, I have been meaning to mention how much Phil Campbell and Chase Pine meant to this year’s defense.
    Their coming back had a lot to do with team success.
    Still wondering why Davis left and ended up with Northwestern?
    Lot’s of holes to fill this year.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Didn’t we have lots of holes to fill going into this season? I count 4 defensive starters that went to the NFL along with one other(NFL selection) that sat out last season.


  5. Pitt should be all about the transfer portal. Hundreds of available free agents but those kids are no different than high school recruits, some will work out, some will not. There’s no proof yet, that Chubba will be better than all the the QBs currently on Pitt’s roster.
    Either way, next years QB won’t have Picket’s experience and knowledge to succeed so the surrounding talent has to be even better..


  6. Regarding Lyte’s RUSH to already be in discussions to extend Narduzzi’s contract… there is really no evidence to suggest that this year was anything but an ANOMALY.

    How about let’s FIRST see if Narduzzi is capable of winning 9 or 10 games a SECOND time without a 5th Year All-time Best Quarterback and a proven “Quarterback Whisperer” calling ALL the shots from the sideline.

    Obviously I have my doubts.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Narduzzi can’t be dinged for recruiting and developing Pickett. He brought in Peterman and deserves credit for that because Moose left a roster littered with holes, including terrible speed.

      Purdy shouldn’t wait on the OC. Narduzzi isn’t going to make a mistake again with a Watson-like hire. Pat knows how the game is played on offense these days. Everyone wants Marion due to this Go-Go offense that no one really knows anything about, so if he is indeed tabbed then the masses should be happy.


      1. It wasn’t Narduzzi but Jim Chaney who brought in Peterman after coaching him at Tennessee.

        But you can certainly credit Narduzzi for briinging in Chaney who pretty much EVERYONE here absolutely despised.


        1. Chaney got two SEC jobs after he left Pitt. It was a good hire since Pitt went 8-4 after all those 6-6 seasons. Who cares if Pitt fans hated him? The same fanbase wanted Wannstedt gone, Dixon gone.

          Some still want Narduzzi gone after two Coastal titles and an ACC championship.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Didn’t Narduzzi want Chaney gone? Any OC who works for Narduzzi is going to get chewed out regularly. Zeise said Whipple left because he didn’t get along with Narduzzi.


        2. Narduzzi was the coach when Peterman came to PITT….he gets credit IMO. Regardless of who recruited him.


    2. To me, extending the contract isn’t a big deal. The issues are for how much money and how tough will it be to end the contract if/when Pitt wants to. If those two factors are reasonable, then go for it…

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 3 people

  7. For you povers who predictably are giving us the old but can he do it again next year expected refrain. Here are a few already known facts about the hairy armed, gorilla calved “Meatball” .

    Narduzzi has the third most wins in the ACC since his arrival there.
    Narduzzi is the only coach to win the coastal division twice since he’s been there.
    Narduzzi coached the team that stopped the Atlantic division dominance.
    Narduzzi is doing a great job with keeping his student athletes out of trouble and on the team.
    Narduzzi beat the #1 team and eventual National Champions on the road.
    Lastly on this list, he shut up his critics if only for a short while, NOT EASY TO DO!

    Liked by 17 people

    1. Always up for a point counterpoint with one of my adopted dads here. There are only 4 coaches in the ACC that have head coaching tenures as long as Nardstop. Of those 4 coaches, Narduzzi has the third best by winning percentage. He did beat the Duke coach however. Number of wins against a coach with less years just doesn’t impress me. Crazy manipulative stat Pitt produced. It is true, but context is missing.

      Winning the coastal twice in 7 years does not make a juggernaut, since every coastal team has won it once. The odds would suggest that every team should win one out of six years, like rolling the die. Yes he was the first one to two, congratulations for sure, but somebody had to do it this year. If not Pitt next year, then a team will tie him. Funny numbers, like attendance, can be a smoke screen. Here is an interesting number. This is the first year since at least 1996, that the overall record of the ACC was less than .500, inclusive of our 11-2 record. That is how weak the ACC has become. So we were strongest in the weakest year of the conference in 25 years. I take that, but it provides some additional context around the accomplishment. Again, why not Pitt.

      The team that stopped the atlantic division dominance, would be Wake Forest. The atlantic division dominated the coastal this year, again. Clemson was down this year and we will see if they bounce back after losing their OC and DC. Money on Clemson if they get a new qb. Most on here did not want to see clemson in the acc final, me included. The precursor to an awful ACC season in 2021 was a 2020 bowl record of 0-6.

      Well again, rashad weaver did have issues while at Pitt. Sure, argue away, but that is semantics. Maybe lock the gates means keeping the players out of jail? Pitt has learned to cover things up a bit more, like class clustering, which is a good sign. Kudos there, I suppose. It becomes a bit embarrassing when we use arrests as a measuring stick of coach success. I read alot about other schools and arrest typically aren’t a barometer of success. Only in Pittsburgh do we let the media control our thoughts.

      I missed the beating of the number 1 team in the nation on the road this year? That said, the team won big this year when the acc was down (look at rankings and won/loss records of acc coastal teams). One great year. Not a dynasty yet. Loved the upset of number 1, but that was awhile ago. Now if they would beat Alabammy or Georgia this year, I would be ultra impressed! But we had a stinker against WMU which prevented a playoff appearance. Coach didn’t adjust.

      Maybe I will get a bunch of unlikes or dislikes for this, but it is okay. I am just countering some points expressed. I don’t think anyone has shut up about Nardstop. He makes a lot of blunders, admittedly has no idea what goes on offensively (and some still give him credit for developing peterman and pickett). He did show me some growth moments from early in the year defensively when he went away from the cornerback island concept and had success. He is not a complete coach, but I will look at the tape. He still doesn’t say he is going to look at the tape after a win…..unless someone asks about a blunder.


      1. My man Huff the III lots of stuff you say, stuff that can be counterpointed (I didn’t know that word existed) but I just got up after a bad night of not sleeping. Your points are all true and realistic if not also negative in some crazy way or you just like playing with my positive mind 🙂


        1. I enjoy messing with you Ike/Iek. AS a trained lawyer, we tend to look at both sides of the story, find inconsistencies, then exploit them. We tend to trust, but verify. Understanding that the middle is where you end up most of the time. I don’t get too high on sports, nor too low.

          I try to act like I have been to the championship before and won. I try never to be like west virgina or farmers high, gloating obnoxiously with victory, and making excuses (like reffing) for everything that goes wrong. I dated a NFL refs daughter and we had many discussions about penalty calls. They can throw flags on every play, they don’t. They can watch someone hold two times in a row and let it go, but on the 3rd time, when it is a questionable hold, a flag may be thrown because the player lost the benefit of the doubt on the prior plays. That is why you see so many calls and say “it wasn’t that bad”. Watch every play and you will get it.

          I am a huge fan of my kids, but I don’t tell them how great they are when they win. I tell them how great they are, when they lose, for they know they are good when they win and I don’t have to tell them. When they win, I tell them the things they can improve upon to get better. I am a believer that you can learn just as much from winning, as losing. None of it is negative. Ask em!

          And yes, I tell them that their poop stinks! Always has…. which led me to perfect the two swipe wipe as infants.

          Same goes for here.


          1. I knew you were an attorney Huffman and I know a good bit about you guys and gals having worked on a Common Pleas Court Judges personal staff. I’ve never bump into a profession quite like lawyers. The talent pool goes from 10 to 99, nobody is perfect. Sorry Eric.

            I still want to dive into your flawed comment that is all true. My wife’s sister died today so you will have to wait. 🙂

            I hate writing since I’m so bad at it, maybe I’ll get a dictation gadget and duke it out?


  8. BTW, I’d like to nominate missingwlat for a POV-Zoom Award for joining the Zoom meeting last night from his car!

    Plus, as usual, he had insightful comments…

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I have been as vocal as anyone with my game day criticism of Coach Pat, but Ike points out that “the facts is the facts”..I give him his due for all of the above but guarantee I will still want to leave my seat, run on to the field and choke him plenty of times next year! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. But…did you ever want to do that with Chryst, or Graham, or Wanny, or Walt, or Majors II, or Hackett, or Gottfried, or Fazio…???

      Go Pitt.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. My thoughts on this day:

    How often do we get excited about 4 star recrits, only later to see them not pan out?
    How often do we get unexcited about a 3 star’s offer list, only to see them turn into an impact player?
    Who really knows how today’s class will do?

    Channeling my inner-Ike….

    Liked by 5 people

  11. They need to go back to Feb signing day. Feb is a slow month, even moreso since the Bball team stinks.
    And has for quite some time. They get even worse as the season progresses.

    Talk about a Dark Winter ! Oy


  12. Duzz, with the big season, must be Number 2 now in ACC wins over the last ? years.
    Somebody posted the coaching victory totals before and I think he was number 3 early in the year.

    So, I’ve been critical of him in the past, as most on here have been.

    But you gotta give the man his due.

    One thing is: with a decent to good defense, year in & year out,.,,,,it gives you a chance even
    if the Offense.,,,,isn’t a,,,,,,,wait for it……….


  13. The problem with POD’s argument is that Heather does not have the luxury of waiting and seeing what if?
    I would say it is pretty hard to argue that Narduzzi didn’t earn his las extension and is due another one.

    Most of his competition that the critics all raved about over the past few years have hit the trail and he is still standing, much to the critics dismay.

    Many of the critics are now willing to say “I might have been wrong” and I’m real happy that I was, for others that gets stuck in their throat.

    I was certainly one of the critics after the WMU game, but I and a few others said, if he goes on to win 9 would you concede redemption, even though at the time it seemed most unlikely.

    But there are those that long for the days of criticism, right or wrong and can’t wait for their return, because none of this fits their narrative.

    They are already setting up the straw argument that if Narduzzi doesn’t win some arbitrary number of wins next year, they can say “I told you so”

    I for one will enjoy this season for a long time and know that it doesn’t mean we have turned some kind of mythical corner.

    Every team in the ACC is trying to get better and are spending lots of bucks to do it, and guess who they are trying to emulate?

    Liked by 8 people

    1. One could argue that Narduzzi is the “best of a bad lot” in the Coastal, and only won the ACC because Clemson had a down year.

      One could also argue that he’s made the most of his opportunity in the coastal and he’s built the “Michigan State” of the ACC. A not-quite-top-tier program, but one that can certainly compete for titles and win them opportunistically.

      IMO a team that wins 8 consistently and competes for a conference title every 4-5 years – and DOES IT THE “RIGHT WAY” (kids out of trouble, good grades, no overt recruiting shenanigans) is a relative rarity in college football and the coach that can deliver that is worth an above above-average salary. Certainly not $9M, but certainly more than $5M.

      Liked by 9 people

      1. After all Pitt football fans have been through over the past 40 years, would love to become the “Michigan State of the ACC.” Hope it’s so.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Aaaaa. No

          Michigan State is almost on par with Pedo State for lurid sex scandals.

          Plus other than a few years….they’re mostly an ‘also-ran’.


          1. I’ll take the Narduzzi years in football, 2007-2014. Pretty much as MM stated above: “A not-quite-top-tier program, but one that can certainly compete for titles and win them opportunistically.” And I’ll add winning some top tier bowl games as well. Sounds good to me.


  14. In eight years at PSU, Franklin has one division championship and one conference championship. Same as PN. He has four seasons with 7 or less wins. He does have two additional 11 win seasons. All that with three times the budget and salary. Just saying.

    Liked by 5 people

  15. Narduzzi definitely earned an extension. Like it or not. It just is what it is. He’s won two Coastal titles and an ACC title the last few years. Look at the hires that VT and UVA made. There is no way you could possibly know if they’ll end up better than Duzz. Miami swung for the fences … they always swing for the fences … and it hasn’t worked for them, yet. I do think Cristobal is a great hire. But … if you’re not going to renew Duzz, you better have a Cristobal in your back pocket.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree with it all except your last statement. What did Cristobal do at Oregon? Lost to Utah (who kind of like Pitt tends towards hard nosed, with a defensive focus IMO) twice in a year?

      I won’t believe the Cristobal hype till i see it play out on the field.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I’m just saying that they had a big name in mind. I alluded to Miami star chasing and failing previously. I personally like Cristobal in Miami though. Oregon had some big recruiting years under Cristobal that just haven’t paid off yet but will for the next coach. He also won 10 games 2/3 years.


  16. I don’t see a problem with an extension for the Duzz. The current season has bought him at least 4 to 5 years of job security unless he commits a felony or strings together a few 3 win seasons. So an extension only confirms the reality of the situation.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. @GC – all-time list is very interesting. I would have thought Aaron Donald was higher. And I’m surprised at the resemblance between Pat Bostick and Tyler Palko.



  18. Pretty sure Pitt is quite limited in the amount of available scholarships this year due to an extra year for players this year and next.

    Also, recruits usually lag a year behind after a good season, so 2023 class should be a great one.

    Nice to still be talking good Pitt football this time of year.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I really wish I didn’t forget to unpause the recording of last night’s Zoom discussion. All involved said they wouldn’t mind an audio recording posted. I won’t do a visual recording as I feel there is privacy involved with that. Audio you can listen to anywhere…

    We had great in-depth talks about a lot of the the subjects above (not recruiting though).

    I already have a list of commenters who couldn’t make it last night but I think we’ll keep it around 10-12 POVers as that gave everyone a chance to speak on the six questions I threw out.

    90 minutes of fun and really good Pitt discussions.

    Maybe we will schedule another two weeks from last night on the 28th which would be two days before the Bowl game… and we can discuss incoming and outgoing players.

    Liked by 4 people

  20. December 15, 2021​

    Pitt Lands Three Players on AFCA All-America Football Team

    PITTSBURGH—Three Pitt standouts—quarterback Kenny Pickett, long snapper Cal Adomitis and wide receiver Jordan Addison—have been named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) All-America Team announced today.

    Pickett and Adomitis were first-team selections at their respective positions. Addison was a second-team honoree.

    The AFCA All-America squad is one of five used in the NCAA’s selection of an annual college football consensus All-America team. The others, previously announced, are Associated Press, Football Writers Association of America (FWAA), Sporting News and Walter Camp Football Foundation.

    The AFCA is the second selector to honor Pickett with a first-team nod. He also was named a first team All-American by Walter Camp. The winner of the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award and a Heisman Trophy finalist, Pickett has completed 67% of his passes (334 of 497) for 4,319 yards with 42 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. Including his five rushing scores, he has totaled 47 touchdowns this season.

    Pickett is the first Pitt quarterback since the legendary Dan Marino in 1981 to be named a first team All-American.

    The AFCA added the long snapping position to its annual All-America squad for the first time this year and Adomitis made history by earning the inaugural honor. He has handled both long and short snapping for the Panthers in every game since the start of the 2017 season—a streak of 63 consecutive contests.

    Adomitis was named the 2021 recipient of the Patrick Mannelly Award as college football’s top long snappe

    Addison, winner of this year’s Biletnikoff Award as college football’s outstanding receiver, has unofficially clinched consensus All-America status. He has four first-team honors in addition to his second-team AFCA nod.

    Addison has compiled 93 receptions for 1,479 yards (15.9 avg.) and a national-best 17 touchdowns. His yardage ranks third in the country and first among Power 5 receivers.

    With these three honorees, Pitt now has 97 all-time first team All-America citations. Pitt has three first team All-Americans in a season for the first time since 1982.

    Addison, Adomitis and Pickett helped lead the Panthers to an 11-2 record, their first ACC championship and a berth in the Dec. 30 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, where they will face Michigan State (10-2).

    Liked by 3 people

  21. Kayla Lund named to the first team AVCA All American Team. In total five players from the ACC where named to the first team. In all the previous years of the poll only one ACC person has been named to the first team!! Congratulations Kayla Lund!!

    Liked by 7 people

  22. Pitt adds Samuel Okunola a 4**** recruit/DE to the new list 50 + offers WOWZA//including PSU/Michigan and Clemson +++believe it or not 6 offers from IVY League schools…he can obviously play and is an all-star in the classroom….great afternoon news!!

    Liked by 11 people

  23. To finish off the AVCA All American Awards list for Pitt: Chinaza Ndee was named to the Third Team All American Team. Serena Gray was named to Honorable Mention All American. Congratulations to Chinaza Ndee and Serena Gray!!

    Liked by 8 people

  24. With such a small class does that mean another year of super seniors? I haven’t seen anything about returning seniors, maybe HCPN is still working that out.


    1. Yes – all teams can have super seniors again & if I calculated right, through the 2025 season. This is due to the “free” 2020 covid year. The problem all coaches are working thru is the max scholarship limit reverts back to 85 for the 2022 season. The NCAA allowed teams to have more than 85 scholarships for the 2021 season, up to the number of super seniors on their roster.

      The Pitt super seniors should be from the recruits from the 2017 season who did not redshirt their true freshmen year.

      Liked by 2 people

  25. Having endured 14 FB coaches since the 60s, I think we need to keep PN. We have always said it is about winning and the kids and this is what he does. H2P

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Could agree more with Rice. Ithiel Horton has been a good kid his entire life, that shouldn’t be wiped out by a few bad hours. The kid should be at least practicing with the team.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Did you see where Coach “Prime” was able to flip the #1 recruit in the country from FSU to Jacksonville State….


    1. Why in the world would this recruit agree to play for a FCS (1-AA) program? After someone wakes him up he’ll be in the portal.


  27. Pitt Football National Letter-of-Intent Signees

    Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown/High School/Last School

    Ryan Baer OL 6-6 335 Eastlake, OH/North

    Jordaan Bailey RB 5-10 185 Tampa, FL/Hillsborough

    Addison Copeland III WR 6-2 175 Buffalo, NY/Western New York Maritime Charter

    Sean FitzSimmons DL 6-3 290 Monaca, PA/Central Valley

    Ryland Gandy DB 6-0 170 Buford, GA/Buford

    Kyle Louis LB 5-11 200 East Orange, NJ/ East Orange Campus

    Isaiah Montgomery OL 6-4 290 Virginia Beach, VA/Landstown

    Che Nwabuko WR 5-10 165 Austin, TX/Manor

    Samuel Okunlola DL 6-4 225 Brockton, MA/Thayer Academy

    Marquan Pope LB 6-1 210 Denton, TX/John H. Guyer

    Jimmy Scott DL 6-2 250 Cheektowaga, NY/St. Francis

    Sam Vander Haar P 6-0 180 Kew, Victoria (Australia)/Box Hill Senior Secondary College

    Ryan Baer, OL, 6-6, 335, Eastlake, OH/North
    Highly coveted offensive lineman who garnered more than 24 scholarship offers…selected first team All-Ohio Division II by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association…first team Northeast Lakes All-District…first team News Herald All-Star…as a senior, earned a 91% blocking grade while compiling 78 knockdowns…rated Ohio’s No. 11 overall prospect by ESPN, No. 14 by Rivals and No. 15 by 247Sports…played under Coach Shawn Dodd.

    Jordaan Bailey, RB, 5-10, 185, Tampa, FL/Hillsborough
    Highly productive running back at Florida’s Hillsborough High School, where over three varsity seasons he compiled 2,867 rushing yards and 33 touchdowns…led team to a 10-3 record and the Florida 6A playoffs as a senior…rated one of Florida’s top 55 overall prospects by 247Sports…played under Coach Earl Garcia Jr.

    Addison Copeland III, WR, 6-2, 175, Buffalo, NY/Western New York Maritime Charter

    Considered the top wide receiver prospect in the state of New York…starred for co-op program Western New York Maritime Charter/Health Sciences…an all-purpose threat on offense who also excelled as a defensive back…led team to a 10-3 record and the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class B semifinals…first team All-Western New York…rated New York’s No. 2 overall prospect by 247Sports, No. 5 by Rivals and No. 7 by ESPN…played under Coach Ty Parker.

    Sean FitzSimmons, DL, 6-3, 290, Monaca, PA/Central Valley

    Four-year starter who earned status as one of Pennsylvania’s elite defensive linemen…finished his career with more than 100 tackles for loss and nearly 50 sacks…had 100 total tackles in each of his final two seasons despite facing constant double teams…led Central Valley to 27 consecutive wins to close his prep career, including a 7-0 victory over Wyomissing Area that clinched the Warriors’ second straight PIAA Class 3A championship…recipient of the Bill Fralic Memorial Award, presented to the WPIAL’s top interior lineman and named after the legendary Pitt offensive tackle…Pittsburgh Post-Gazette “Fabulous 22”…Northwestern Six Defensive MVP…rated Pennsylvania’s No. 21 overall prospect by Rivals and 247Sports and No. 23 by ESPN…played under Coach Mark Lyons.

    Ryland Gandy, DB, 6-0, 170, Buford, GA/Buford

    Cornerback prospect who starred for perennial Georgia power Buford…held nearly 20 Power Five scholarship offers…helped lead team to three consecutive 6A championships…All-Region 8-AAAAAA honoree…rated one of Georgia’s top 40 overall prospects by ESPN…played under Coach Bryant Appling.

    Kyle Louis, LB, 5-11, 200, East Orange, NJ/East Orange Campus

    Hard-hitting linebacker who led East Orange to a 13-0 record and the North Jersey, Group 5 Regional Championship…in the title game, a 30-24 win over Clifton in triple overtime, Louis collected a game-high 11 tackles (all solo) with a forced fumble…in the semifinals, had a 70-yard punt return that broke a scoreless tie early in the fourth quarter, sparking East Orange to a 14-0 win over West Orange…on the season, collected 118 tackles, 32 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and one interception…rated New Jersey’s No. 10 overall prospect by Rivals, No. 26 by 247Sports and No. 27 by ESPN…played under Coach Rae Oliver.

    Isaiah Montgomery, OL, 6-4, 290, Virginia Beach, VA/Landstown

    Earned stature as one of Virginia’s top offensive linemen…three-time All-Beach District…first team Class 6 All-Region A…first team All-Tidewater…rated Virginia’s No. 18 overall prospect by Rivals, No. 29 by ESPN and No. 31 by 247Sports…played under Coach Tommy Reamon.

    Che Nwabuko, WR, 5-10, 165, Austin, TX/Manor

    Dynamic all-purpose player who excelled as a receiver, running back and return specialist…compiled more than 1,000 all-purpose yards each of the past two years and had 2,984 over his three-year varsity career…district’s Utility Player of the Year…as a senior receiver, had 45 catches for 739 yards (16.4 avg.) and eight touchdowns…also rushed for 215 yards on 41 carries (5.2 avg.) and a score…led Manor to a 9-3 record and the Texas Class 5A Division I playoffs…played under Coach James Keller.

    Samuel Okunlola, DL, 6-4, 225, Brockton, MA/Thayer Academy

    Highly regarded edge rusher with more than 50 scholarship offers from across the country…All-New England…All-Independent School League (ISL)…ISL Co-Most Valuable Player…a two-way player for Thayer Academy…compiled 49 tackles, 25 tackles for loss, 17 sacks, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries…averaged 31.7 yards per reception as a tight end (222 yards on seven catches)…rated Massachusetts’ No. 2 overall prospect by Rivals, No. 5 by 247Sports and No. 6 by ESPN…played under Coach Jeff Toussaint.

    Marquan Pope, LB, 6-1, 210, Denton, TX/John H. Guyer

    Standout safety for Texas state championship finalist John H. Guyer…has three interceptions, including a “pick six”…Dave Campbell’s Texas Football 6A preseason all-state selection…as a junior, was named third team all-state by the Texas Sports Writers Association…All-District 5-6A…team is currently 14-1 and will play in the Texas Class 6A Division II championship against Westlake on Dec. 18…played under Coach Rodney Webb.

    Jimmy Scott, DL, 6-2, 250, Cheektowaga, NY/St. Francis

    The top defensive end prospect in the state of New York…compiled 43 tackles, five sacks and a forced fumble on defense…as a running back on offense, scored seven touchdowns (six rushing and one receiving)…finalist for the Trench Trophy, presented to Western New York’s Lineman of the Year…first team All-Western New York…rated New York’s No. 3 overall prospect by Rivals and 247Sports and No 5 by ESPN…played under Coach Jerry Smith.

    Sam Vander Haar, P, 6-0, 180, Kew, Victoria (Australia)/Box Hill Senior Secondary College

    Continues Pitt’s Australian punter connection following the career of Kirk Christodoulou, the Panthers’ starting punter the past four seasons…like Christodoulou, Vander Haar worked with the renowned Prokick Australia program that has produced many successful collegiate and NFL punters…Prokick Australia’s “exports” include Minnesota Vikings punter Jordan Berry, the San Francisco 49ers’ Mitch Wishnowsky, the Seattle Seahawks’ Michael Dickson as well as the Houston Texans’ Cameron Johnston.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. As someone stated, Samuel Okunlola, DL, 6-4, 225, Brockton, MA/Thayer Academy was a great late addition.

    Half of this class will be early enrollees.


  29. —With a small recruiting class, nice to see 3 Olinemen. Got to keep improving the OLine — a good OLine will make the new OC a lot smarter. 😊

    —The kid who is 5-11 and 165 pounds better be quick as a jackrabbit…🤔

    —The linebacker Louis, at 5-11 and 200 pounds, sounds like he might be one of those linebacker/safety hybrids, a la Johnny Petrishen…

    —Nice late add of the 4-star DE. Did anyone notice that Coach Salem’s name came up in his recruiting. Seems like Coach Salem’s name has been associated with a lot of our recruits lately. I used to complaint about him because of our terrible situation at TE…. That’s looking better too…. Coach Salem trending up!

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 5 people

  30. Seems to be more players from the State of NY. They got a couple of top 10 rated players in NY it appears. The class may be small, but pretty good quality based on individual state rankings and other offers.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Maybe Yellen just wants a Pitt degree and will stay around because of that. Not something coach Narduzzi might want however.


    1. Anyone have any idea why Beville and Patti have seemed to pass up Yellen on the depth chart? Last year Yellen got starts against Miami and Notre Dame and Patti and Beville didn’t really see the field much.


      1. I originally thought Yellen was taking his redshirt year, but I am not sure. He was a 2019 Arizona State recruit but only played in one game (and started). What year did the NCAA change the redshirt year eligibility from zero games to the current 4 games played?


      2. Thought I heard that Yellen got those starts because Patti had an injury.

        As far as Davis Beville, I was surprised that he appeared to be higher on the depth chart than Yellen. But I liked it because Beville seemed a lot more mobile to me.

        I think a QB who isn’t so mobile gives the defense a big advantage. (See the Steelers for the last few years… )

        Go Pitt.


  32. —. UNC got another great class, Rivals #9. Did well again in NC but also killed Va. However…

    — Va Tech did well (#23) despite the coaching change. You cannot tell me that a sell-out stadium is not alluring to these 17 year olds. Which leads into …

    — Despite back-to-back disappointing seasons, PSU got another top 10 class. I guess the helicopter doesn’t hurt. It made an appearance at the state final in Hershey last Friday nite.

    — Narduzzi said “to our knowledge” we have many coming back. Yesterday, Dabo said pretty much the same thing. “You don’t know who will show up in your office today or tomorrow saying ‘Coach, I’m leaving”

    It’s a whole new world

    Sent from my iPhone



  33. You never know about a recruiting class until they leave. On paper Pitt did fine yesterday.
    Very encouraging that many are coming in January.


  34. I noticed on Cal’s commit list that Jackson Brown did not sign his LOI yesterday. It’d be sure nice to flip him in February. This class really could use two more O-linemen. Nonar was a loss and I forgot where he ended up, but maybe a kid or two are added via the portal or a super senior return.


  35. So I guess Jackson Brown became The Pretender and decided to Take it Easy or was just Running on Empty

    Sent from my iPhone



  36. So we definitely need to know which O-line seniors are coming back one more time.
    On the D-line which of the young guys are ready to step up. Probably need some receiver and tight end depth. Also linebacker depth.

    Other than the big questionmark at QB, it just looks like a tweak here and a tweak there. Providing that none of our defensive stars leave early. Baldonado and Dennis would be a huge problem.


    1. GC – how you feeling these days?

      I think replacing Bartholomew in that TE/H-back position may be more than a tweak. I’m assuming Bartholomew will move to full-time TE…and that the new OC will keep using that personnel set…

      Go Pitt.


      1. Thanks for asking John. Pain management for now. Hoping that it starts to ease up this week.
        You are probably right about the tight end position. I don’t know who replaces Krull? Likely to be Bart, but if so, who replaces Bart? Sure was nice having both of them.
        But at least we have one and it was only a year ago we had close to zero production at either position.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been voting some too, but KP’s number won’t go up…. We need to keep him in double digits! 😊

      Go Pitt.


  37. Game 6 of 71 World Series is on MLB Note how fast the game goes, no batting gloves and most check swings are balls

    If nothing else, check out Clemente’s throw in bottom of 9th

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 2 people

  38. —I read where Olineman Baer is Pitt’s highest-rated OL recruit in 8 years…

    —Jimmy Scott was committed to Tenn. at one time…

    —Only 11 WPIAL players signed with FBS schools. The previous low was 15, according to the PG.

    —Only 6 local players signed with Power-5 teams – tied for the lowest ever. The teams were Duke, Kansas State, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Cincinnati, and Pitt.

    How times have changed…

    Go Pitt.


  39. “Juggernaut” sighting!

    From an excellent PG article by Craig Meyer about how the Pitt volleyball team has been able to attract recruits from far and wide:

    “Together, they’ve created something of an unlikely juggernaut at a program that had just two NCAA tournament appearances from 1995-2015.”

    With all the winning that Pitt teams are doing, the term “juggernaut” just had to be brought out and dusted off…😊



Comments are closed.