There is Spring Football (or a Picture is worth 1000 words)

Now that basketball is (mercifully) over, we can turn our attention to spring football. Out of a sense of self-preservation, many of you may have done this already. As we know, Narduzzi will give us next to nothing, and so we’ve been forced to turn to the science of body language in an effort to gain insight into how things are going on the South Side. My analysis in italics. Enjoy.

“Both quarterbacks have looked well”. I’m worried.
“It’s a totally new offense”. So I’m giving them a pass.
“It’s everybody learning a little bit” Did I mention I’m worried?
“Sirvocea obviously has looked good.” When I’m looking up, you can be pretty sure I’m telling the truth.
“Solomon DeSheilds has done a nice job at the star position.” He’s certainly a hell of a lot better than last year.
“Bangally’s really looked good.” I’m not looking up, but it’s because you’re short.
“Shane Simon’s done a nice job” I wouldn’t be looking you in the eye if he wasn’t, but the way I’m holding my mouth says he’s got room to grow.
“Brandon George has done a nice job” But he’s still a liability in pass coverage
“A lot of guys have gotten bigger.” What kind of a dumb question was that?
“We’ll be fine at linebacker” Our DC was a linebacker coach, you marrone.
“Kenny Pickett did well at the combine” This is my confidence smile
“We have an all-leage guy at (middle linebacker)” And this is MY confidence smile

Regarding Linebackers: “We’ve got a bunch of young, eager guys, and a good, older guy experienced guy who’s transferred in. I thought they had a good start.” Outside of that all-league guy at Mike…they need a lot of work

On what he’s looking for out of the linebackers: “I’m looking for basic football skills, tackling, getting off blocks, alignment, assignments. That’s it right now” And when I see it consistently I’ll let you know

We had 51 sacks, probably should have had 60. And if our guys had focused more on the stuff I just talked about we’d have gotten 60.

Editor’s Note: In an effort to calibrate our findings here is what Narduzzi was saying around this time last year. As you can see there are some pretty consistent cues. Again, my analysis in italics. (This was After spring practice #5, 2021)

Kenny Pickett’s been really good. Do tell. Like Heisman candidate good?
“The backup quarterbacks are still…what they are” Not…very good.
Defensively Deslin’s been really good. Eh…He’s been kind of good. Defense a work in progress this year fellas. (Editor’s note, Alexandre notched a solid 41 tackles, but only 2.5 sacks and 5 TFL. Baldonaldo for comparison posted 41 / 9 / 12.)
Question: “Are there going to be enough footballs to go around for all those experienced wide receivers you have?” Pat’s Answer: “I don’t know…we’ll find out” Heheh, wait till these guys get a load of our passing game.
“Gavin Bartholomew had showed us he can really help us this year” No. Really. He can help us.
“Carter Warren (has looked good), although he jumped offsides today…” I meant false start of course, he does that a lot.
“Izzy’s been really good” Except for his pass blocking

Editor’s note: The following are about the young LB’s that Pat called out as needing development.

“Aydin Henningham” Is he still on the team?
Solomon DeShields This is the one guy who might have a shot
AJ Roberts I hope he can stay out of the transfer portal. (MM Note: He’s in the transfer portal)
Bonus Material:
Question: “Any matchups that have been interesting to watch?”
Answer: “Watching Jordan Addison on our safties is always in interesting day”

Here is this year’s video in full

Here is 2021. The first 5 mins is covid stuff so skip it.

285 thoughts on “There is Spring Football (or a Picture is worth 1000 words)

  1. The receiving corps might be the deepest and best in Pitt history. If Slovis has time to throw, watch out. It all depends if the linemen lose some pounds this offseason to improve their pass blocking. That bowl game performance by the unit was unacceptable.

    Jared Wayne sure has proven to a few POV detractors that he wasn’t a wasted scholarship.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. The Pitt OL was much less effective after the Kradel injury. I’m hoping some of our younger OL candidates push the returning starters for playing time.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Perhaps they should enlarge the Kennywood OL picture from a couple of years ago for bulletin board motivation on what not to look like………..

        Liked by 1 person

  2. MM

    You are a wonder. However, I am disappointed about no “girls with hand stamps being tramps” narrative. Maybe next time.

    h2pPMD

    Liked by 1 person

  3. New Pitt PWO. I took a quick look at his film. He’s a PWO. A little small, a step slow, not quite DI athletic ability IMO. But looks to have good ball skills, awareness and fundamentals and I bet he’ll be a hell of a worker. You need guys like this in the program because they will absolutely push the starters and provide better looks on the scout team. And on top of that you never know if one of them is a late bloomer.

    https://pittsburghsportsnow.com/2022/03/09/2022-new-jersey-cb-matthew-amofa-commits-to-pitt-as-a-preferred-walk-on/

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I’m guessing that 1 out 10 PWO’s actually get that scholarship awarded to them. Never the less Pitt would be a lot worse off without our PK Scarton who by the way still hasn’t been awarded a scholarship.

    Like

  5. MM, thanks for posting and for the laughs. PN gives us no info and the reporters don’t ask good questions. Those interviews are boooooooring.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. In response to the starting OL being pushed by the the backups, there appears to be really good depth which only lacks PT

    Matt Concalves and Blake Zubovic both have much experience… followed by Ryan Jacobi (OSU transfer) and Branson Taylor with some experience

    Young and inexperienced: Terence Moore who was on 2 deep last year as a frosh. Also Terence Enos and the Ex TE transfer from BYU Anderson. Lastly, incoming 4-star Ryan Baer and 5.6 3-star Isaiah Montgomery

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 3 people

  7. If there is a stat out there that shows the ratio PWO’s who are eventually awarded scholarships, I know just the guy who could find it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m bored and tired of data gathering and rewriting an article, I’ll give it a go.

      Besides the walk-on program is something I know little about and is worth looking into to broaden my knowledge of the subject. Basically, my belief is that there is only 20 PWO’s bring a roster to 105. But I have read teams having more. Are there two types of walk-ons? If so, what’s the difference?

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Erie, Heather has extended Narduzzi, so any future successes or failures will be her responsibility. Similarly, she hired Capel but doubled down by extending him which makes it even worse if he fails. I think Capel stays for this reason alone. The next 5-6 weeks will determine if Capel lasts beyond next year as head coach. Heather won’t talk to the press, and her reputation is starting to take a hit..

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Isn’t there a song to que up for this, like “we don’t talk anymore” from the 70’s?

        I’m at work and need to be working or I’d look it up…

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      2. I think that relationship soured immensely with the Big John Hugley and the following mass exodus debacle!! Again, hugley and Capel know how to play the game and will say there is NO animosity, but there is and it grows deeper with every loss.

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  9. MM – Thanks for your time in putting that article together —and for your posts.

    I still think HL finds a way to move on from Coach Capel, in spite of her mistake in extending him. We should know soon…

    Go Pitt.

    Like

  10. Dokish definitely has connections. Not liking his POV and distrusting his information are two different things. Dokish does not mention sources often so there is no reason to not believe it. Common sense would also tell you that his statement is true as well.

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    1. I still remember when Richie Walsh’s inside source told him that Sean Miller on on a plane here to sign on as our new HC. And it wasn’t even April 1st… 😂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Just throwing this out there. Today is national meatball day. Who can make a post of Coach Narduzzi celebrating this holiday?

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      1. Wow – now that’s funny.

        I enjoyed your comedic ride on the Duzz presser quotes over last Bach today.

        The meatball response was well played.

        Thanks!

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  12. It would seem that the major issues with Capel’s termination are the buy out, and the availability of a successful coach to turn things around. Heather will not be able to pull $12-15 million out of the athletics dept. budget. Boosters will wonder why she extended him and if she could do any better next time around. Any booster with this kind of money to throw around would likely want a say in selecting the next coach.

    In order to get the best coach available, they need to axe Capel asap. But I’m guessing he has 5-6 weeks to land some transfers who are capable of fixing this mess or he will be gone.

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    1. Boosters aren’t wondering. They KNOW she made a mistake and probably have little trust she can get the job done with the next selection. If I had upitt’s money I would buy him out with the requirement that I get to choose from her candidate list. Unfortunately, athletic coach relationship’s are not her strength because of her compliance background. The question is whether she can admit to the mistake, eat it and get a better coach stat! Or, she puts her career on the line by letting this play out to lost millions in revenue and shrinking attendance in hopes that he strikes gold in the portal potty. There is a reason those kids are in the potty. Getting 4 of them to gel when there is a losing culture is probably a bit difficult.

      Like

    2. How do land transfers with the possibility that Capel won’t be here next season? Don’t you think the colleges competing for the same transfers might not be letting these candidates know that Capel is on thin ice at Pitt?

      Like

  13. The perfect coach for some Pitt fans just hit the market today: Bruce Weber.

    Anyone read today that Bruce won’t cut his hair until some of these coaches involved in the FBI investigation are punished? Perfect fit, Pitt.

    His hair will grow as long as a singer from my youth, Crystal Gayle (sp?). It almost touched the ground.

    Bruce, the NCAA hypocrites don’t care if basketball teams cheat. The Association pockets every penny from the NCAA tournament ticket sales. Do you think it wants Kansas banned from the tourney?

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Weber is a pretty good coach but he is also 65 years old. As a rule, I think most of the older coaches just don’t want to deal with the portal … year after year

    I wouldn’t mind the Monmouth coach, the Wagner coach, or Pitt alums Kevin Willard or Brandin Knight

    The above all have one thing in common …. Deep roots in the NYC / NJ area

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  15. After a short search of the internet and lunch, I found this out.

    The maximum roster of a college team is 105. Only 85 can be on scholarship. That means that 20 players can be walk-ons. But according to this article (12/1/21) https://ibaworldtour.com/how-many-college-walk-on-athletes-per-football-program/ the average FCS team has 118.

    I think the main difference between the 105 and 118 numbers is the max number who can “suit” up for a game. Also, it can explain why there seems to be a lot of young men not in uniform milling around the bench area,

    A PWO is guaranteed a roster spot. Non-PWO’s have too tryout to make a roster spot (105) or the team (118).

    If you use the 118 average, there are (130 x 33) 4,290 walk-ons playing FCS football per year. There is no data on the % of walk-ons who eventually receive a scholarship. As to percentages, it depends on the average number of walk-ons given scholarships per year and if you use 20 (roster) or (118-85) 33 practicing. If average is 1 per FCS team roster (1 x 130)/(130 x 20) = 5.0%. or (130 x 1)/4,290 = 3.0%.

    If I was a data seeking, hard-hitting, narcissistic, dilettante sportswriter, I would ask just how many walk-ons Pitt has practicing. Of course. my follow-up question would still be what is a team pass or rush?

    Liked by 2 people

  16. https://triblive.com/sports/college/pitt/
    I would bet my house that if Pitt would spend the $$ on hockey it would become a major sport in Pantherland. Hockey is not easy to develop because obviously, you need a quality rink for play and practice.
    Recruiting can not be restricted to our backyard and HEY HEATHER you would need to hire a top notch coach and staff. Hockey is very big in Happy Valley>>>do the cows have a goalie?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Speaking of POW’s how many have received a scholarship at Pitt since Narduzzi was named the head coach? We just had one enter the transfer portal by the way Vardzel.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Mike – most PWO’s or other walk-ons are normally granted scholarships in their 3’rd or later years on a team. The awarding of a scholarship (always a great and emotional ceremony) only occurs when a team comes out of fall camp and only if there is an available scholarship. Pre-covid that means only one or two years of remaining eligibility, With the extra covid year, I believe Pitt had 4.in the 2021 season. But w/out covid Pitt would only have had 2. At least that my take after reding 5 different articles on walk-ons.

        Like

  18. Jimmy Morrisey was walk-on. I believe Scarton (PK) was a walk-on who is now on schollie.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  19. George Aston was a walk-on and to put it mildly, he was a bulldozer. When you have a questionable O line a hard charging FB is a huge plus…..especially near the goal line.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. My mind is so far from basketball in our present dire situation that hockey came to mind. The Trib article brought me back to one of my favorite sports. I played in a roller hockey league in Brooklyn 3,762 years ago in roller rinks. I wear glasses and had to wear goggles>>>>yepper my nickname was spaceman.
    College hockey is great fun to watch and Notre Dame, PSU and BC all play on a high level. Our basketball team would barely be missed (the way they are playing) if we had a decent hockey team /// great winter sport that is well-loved in the Burgh.

    Like

    1. Alpha Ice Rink in Harmarville. Uniforms are awesome actually. Their coach tried to recruit one of my kids. Such a funny conversation. Mercyhurst, RMU, OSU and State Pen have teams. RMU President took the wrong stance and tried to cut hockey. He is no longer Pres.

      Pittsburgh has like 6 AAA youth teams with the Pens Elite usually holding the top spot. So many recruiting hotbeds in addition to Pgh, such as Buffalo, Detroit, Cleveland and the entire north east coast.

      Interestingly, Alabama, Arizona St and UNLV (soon) will be Div 1 hockey programs. Cha ching.

      Like

      1. What the RMU ex-president did was a crime! He kills their most successful program, then leaves. Why was he given the power to do so and not stopped? The program will never be the same. He gave his own college the equivalent of the NCAA death penalty for no good reason.
        I heard rumors, that I doubt are true, that he wanted to even out the diversity of RMU sports. That sounds ridiculous, but his decision is unexplainable. Devastating for the college.

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      2. Pitt retains 2 basketball coaches who dwell in the basement. I think hockey is a no brainer and Pitt would draw big crowds////Heather NEEDS HELP BADLY in making decisions that would move Pitt forward in athletics.

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      1. The Pens would let them use Consol. It is only 2.5 miles from campus.
        That is the only way it works.
        Hockey is a title 9 nightmare.

        Like

          1. I can delete the comment but not the email address. Ok by you? Reply to this comment. Will have to repost your comment. Sorry I didn’t see earlier.

            Like

            1. If you can’t get rid of email address then it is not worth doing.
              It is really odd that the email came up.
              Thank you for the prompt response.
              Kman

              Like

  21. Thanks for the laughs, Maestro!!!

    I guess we will just have to see for ourselves how the team looks at the Spring Game.
    Looking forward to seeing Red5A friends there….and this year we should be able to tailgate again.

    As Roger Huston used to say….. “be there!”

    Like

  22. Heather may need to give Capel a vote of confidence so that he can recruit over the next few weeks. That could be happening on Monday unless someone has some inside information

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  23. danh72 and VOR,
    What is the significance of Monday as far as knowing Capel’s fate on that day?

    Like

  24. Capel is going nowhere. Basketball is dead for another season.

    That extension was the definition of negligence, and Lyke isn’t the lone person the blame. The higher ups who signed off are just as guilty.

    Jeffrey is guaranteed the full $16 million. After next season, he’d be owed $12.3mm, a substantial number for poor Pitt.

    The trucking tycoon would pay the buyout now but wants Sean Miller. Gallagher doesn’t want him.

    Get ready for another empty Pete and more blowout losses.

    Pitt leadership at its finest.

    Football deserves all the donations in the meantime.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Crean another coach crushed by the portal. Lost three top players to the portal and others to injury. Sound familiar.

    Like

  26. Crean was a proven winner at two other universities. The portal is very bad.

    I’d take him at Pitt before the Millers.

    Like

    1. I for one would not. If Pitt would have hire Crean instead of Capel four years ago, I’d turn my back on Pitt BB.

      Not a good fit IMO.

      The ones I pegged as the “right candidates” are all developing good, winning programs. Most are headed to the dance this year.

      Like

  27. Spent yesterday evening looking at the Pitt Athletic Department football roster. It looks up to date on scholarship players including 2022 recruits who are not enrolled.

    I identified 30 current walk-ons on the roster. None of them are identified as a PWO. Most have the cryptic message “joined as a training camp walk-on in “year” in a brief bio.

    Only one former walk-on (Chris Maloney-DL) now has a scholarship (awarded prior to 2021 season start). He was a walk-on starting in 2018. I didn’t include him in the 30.

    Trevor Faulkner (TE), the recently identified PWO from Avonworth, is included in the 30.

    Like

  28. So can Crean coach in the portal Era?. Retention of players as important as recruiting.
    Coaches can no longer be hard asses. What a mess. How do you build a program when everyone can leave?
    Plus you better have a competitive NIL program. That is what Heather really needs to be working on.

    Like

  29. If Capel is axed, it may be announced at 5 pm today. I forgot the details but late Friday is the best time to make an announcement when when you don’t want a lot press at the announcement

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  30. Dixon keeps on winning. The skunk ( I wanted him gone) is 1000 x’s better than All in the Family Capel. He won 20 games and just beat Texas. Unreal. Lyke loses credibility every day. Own you mistake and get rid of this guy.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dixon’s had 4 bad seasons out of 6 at TCU. I wouldn’t say he keeps on winning but it is better than the Pitt debacle.

      Liked by 2 people

  31. If the trucking guy (i assume PGT Trucking) will pay the payoff and wants Miller is true, can something be added to the contract that if he gets caught cheating per ncaa regs he can be fired for cause with no more money paid.
    Also, wouldn’t you think the trucking dude would contribute NIL $ for the cause?
    #Keepontruckin’

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Contract stipulations probably aren’t real to Gallagher, who is adamant that Sean Miller will never be the coach at Pitt as long as he’s the chancellor.

      It is a miracle football is where it is at. The Pitt leadership is about as bad as it has ever been, which is pretty amazing considering the bozos who’ve passed through. Pitt might be stuck with Capel TWO more years when the buyout would finally be under $10 million.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. The Pitt brass watched the disaster at Barclay’s and thought, how do we get out of this mess?
    Simple, make BIG changes sit in your own stew.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Pitt softball wins a game today vs Bowling Green 5-4 in 9 innings. Was up 4-0 after 1st inning then gave up 4 in the 5th and 6th innings. They won on a walk off bunt.
    They play Houston Baptist next today.

    Like

  34. Let’s face it. Pitt isn’t rolling in money for athletics. If they have to wait out another year of a contract to save 15 million then so be it. It stinks but Pitt is in the same boat as most universities.
    Didn’t people on here erroneously blame Heather for her last employers financial issues. You can’t turn it around now and say she needs to blow millions at Pitt, LOL.
    I want Capel fired and a proven winner of a head coach hired but I don’t see Pitt having the resources to do it. Hope I am wrong.

    Like

  35. Define a proven winner? Tom Crean was a proven winner until he took the job at Georgia. He had top 20 recruiting classes in 2019 and 2020 and managed to lose 26 games at Georgia this year. How does a proven winner turn into a big time loser so fast?

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  36. Crean is like Bobby Knight. Neither could win in this day of the portal. The day of the tough guy coach is fading fast. The best chance to keep players now is to lock them up with a long term NIL contract.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. 20 Seconds ago Heather announced Capel will be back as Head Coach next year. Via PSN

    Let the wailing begin!

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  38. Heather speaking on the record with Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports at 5:20pm today. BS statements from Jeff, Heather and Gallegher available. I do not know how to transfer the article to POV.

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    1. She spoke at 5 o’clock on a Friday because not many will notice nor talk much about it.

      Meh….

      Two more years of bad basketball.

      Liked by 1 person

  39. Toney and x man lead their teams today and will go to the tournament. Do you think those two and Hugley would have led Pitt to the tournament this year. Oh the transfer portal.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. Meaningless drivel from Heather on a Friday night so no one will publicize her utter stupidity!

    PG, Trib and Zeiss have ignored it so far.

    Like

  41. I am thrilled that Coach Jeff will return next year.
    Because that means no Pitt grad is daft enough to fork over their hard-earned to bail out compliance Heather and her bone-headed extension of a coach with a losing record.
    Cream’s buyout supposedly $3.2M
    Just sayin.

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    1. What the …?

      Say it isn’t so that Pitt could fall so low.

      Someone should go and not the players to the Porto.

      Like

  42. Now let the portal recruiting begin! I predict there will be 4 new players from the portal, and a couple of existing players will be run off.

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    1. Like this guard from Eastern Kentucky who shot 31% from 3 point land, averaging 12 points per game, 1.6 assists and 1.7 turnovers on a losing non-P6 .

      Milan Brown, Pitt Showing Interest in Transfer Guard Jomaru Brown…why?

      Like

    2. We are probably going to have to settle for low hanging fruit until we get a DYNAMIC (wishful thinking) new coach. Pitt is a basement dweller in the ACC and NIL $$ ain’t gonna happen to a large degree.
      Our outlook is poor///Pitt is in a bear market for talent.

      Like

  43. Capel returning was the only REAL option. There wasn’t ever going to be the big Donor to pay that insanely exorbitant buyout. Great ready for more Back 2 the Future style beat downs next year at the Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  44. Capel can’t get transfers from just lower level colleges like Delaware, Stoneybrook, etc. He needs to land some power 5 players. Players that have put up decent stats like Burton did at his first stop.

    Watched Duke vs Miami. You can see the offense Duke plays is what Capel is attempting. One huge difference, Dukes talent is off the charts. The have it all. Pitt needs soooo much.

    Like

    1. Let’s start with a point guard not named Felton Jeffery Capel.

      If he can land a really good PG who can distribute the ball & make free throws like nothing we’ve seen since James Robinson.

      That could be the cornerstone piece that propels the program back to respectable levels.

      The next piece (IMO) would be a PF who could start, score and defend at a P6 level and sometimes slide to center when Big John is in foul trouble.

      The conditioning program needs adjusted as well – too many times at the end of the 1st and 2nd halves the team runs out of gas and the opposition takes full advantage of their conditioning and talent by pouring on the points.

      Just my 2 cents as I take a coffee break at work (or is it 3 cents now?).

      I’d rather be golfing but we all need to do what we need to do to keep ahead of out of control inflation…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Agree. The conditioning is fine. The gassed players are a result of no bench and Capel not developing his bench.

        Like

  45. While scanning the web, I just noticed an article entitled “Passing on Kenny Pickett may be 1983 all over again for the Steelers”.

    Interesting thought. A few differences .. in his senior year, Marino moved from a top 5 pick to the 30th. Conversely, Pickett moved from a mid-rounder to possibly the top 10 and 1st QB chosen. Oakland Dan came to Pitt highly heralded with great natural talent; Pickett not so much

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  46. As far as transfers go …. Capel needs to bring in more Mo Gueyes and Jamarcus Barton’s and less Chris Payton’s and Dan Oliagapas.

    I know I’m running this into the ground but he needs to get a recruiter with NYC/NJ connections.

    Lastly, the alleged trucking magnate needs to offer some attractive NILs to potential recruits and transfers

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wouldn’t offer any NILs until Capel is gone. Let Pitt’s admins watch this dumpster fire since they signed off on the extension. They’d rather sign it and throw it at Heather’s feet.

      It’s a miracle football is where it’s at with that chancellor and the always sports illiterate BoT.

      Like

  47. The basketball team, despite everything, still turned a profit last year. There was no urgency to make a move. As I’ve said before, it’s a terrible time to hire right now, too. Heather has a year to put a list together that will simultaneously excite the fan base and have immediate results.

    We’ll see what happens but Pitt will not improve next year. At least not to the heights Pitt fans want. Capel is a dead man walking. Get that list together, Heather.

    It is what it is. He got a ridiculous contract and buyout to protect him from leaving … little did they know that they would welcome him leaving. Funny how that worked out.

    Dixon has struggled off and on at TCU and tried leaving for UCLA but TCU did the opposite of Pitt and said you still owe us your buyout.

    I was pro-Dixon but also felt a change of scenery would be good for Pitt and Dixon. The issue with letting Dixon go like they did was that they hired someone not as good as Dixon and not only did Pitt fans revolt, the city did. The newspapers did. The beat writers did.

    If you’re going to let your best coach ever walk, you better swing for the fences. You have to hire someone who has potential to be better.

    The entire city called out that Stallings hire. It was great to see. Capel, oddly, still has some support. Whether it be in the administration or papers or former Pitt players.

    I would not be surprised in the least if we saw a shining Knight come in after Capel with Woodall on his staff.

    I’m not promoting that … I can just see that being Pitt’s answer. Let’s reach back into our recent history, in a more successful era, and see if lightning can strike twice.

    Liked by 2 people

  48. If a coach is fired after season starts, is buyout still good? Just asking. Depends on contract I guess.

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    1. the contract will usually have dates on it so I’m assuming they can move on from Capel at the end of next season and not before.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The longer the fire burns, the more damage is done to the program.

        Tougher to recruit transfers unless exorbitant NIL money is given. Pitt has no mister or miss money bags or even a booster club.

        Tougher to recruit a quality and proven successful head coach. And Pitts AD can’t be trusted to select another HC.

        Tougher to convince fans that there is hope. The $200 million dollar Pete will be empty for most games. They tore down Pitt Stadium for this?

        Pitt has to be one of the worst run administrations in P5.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I expect no changes. Jason Capel should have been fired Tuesday night, but Jeff will keep his brother and essentially give the fans the middle finger.

      Capel isn’t fixing this. You Don’t figure it out in year five. When you stink, you stink.

      Like

  49. Another business lesson learned the hard way. If you have a decision to make and your alternatives are both bad options, make it quickly!

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  50. Lykes statement and Coach Capels followup mea culpa is like putting lipstick on a pig.

    All it does is buy another year so that the buyout tastes more like bacon than pigs feet.

    Capel isn’t going to miraculously turn this program around unless boosters come to his rescue and pay incoming transfers six figures and provide a non stolen Chevy Malibu as change.

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  51. If I were HCJC, I would focus on some players with basic skills in the transfer portal. Guards who can dribble and shoot free throws, wings that are above average shooters, bigs with soft touches around the basket. It seems as though Capel places too much emphasis on height and athleticism in recruiting. We have a few great athletes on this roster, now we need some gym rats to go with them.

    Liked by 1 person

  52. Just let this play out. We all knew it would be an epically bad season. We didn’t know the buyout insanity but it appears that it’s going to have to run its course. Nothing anyone can do at this point. Part of the issue may be that Heather’s feelers came back awww heck no. I wouldn’t spend $15M to get out of a contract to hire someone that isn’t on my A list either. As fans we like to speculate but we lack context to the entire situation. My guess is at this time next year Capel is gone. Progress or more likely not.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Unfortunately, our AD doesn’t have an “A” list because she is compliance based, not a seasoned Administrator with deep coaching contacts. She will have to rely on a search firm and she is indebted to one of those already, which is problematic. That’s how we got Stallings and Capel.

      I am confused on the let this play out statement. It has played out for years and life always plays out. Doing nothing is a choice. Doing nothing will play out. What do you do if you are our AD and Capel comes in at .500 next year? He will say it is great progress and we have finally turned the corner. She should be in Indianapolis meeting coaches that tend to go to the final four. Make new relationships and get out of your compliance comfort zone. I was a supporter of the Capel hire and was good with him or Hurley. Not so much after giving him plenty of time to produce.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, everyone uses a search firm. Even if they hired internally they would. My company does the same thing for executive level searches. It’s not only the common practice, it’s the only practice when you’re filling an executive level post. Call it what you want … legal, HR, compliance … it’s how you protect yourself.

        You also don’t know any of what you just posted. It’s speculation and a part of a narrative that you’ve read on here. You have no context into Pitt’s search, if there is even one, or if they want to have one. The only thing we know is Capel has an insane buyout which I’m guessing is a factor in Capel returning. But who knows. I don’t know that either.

        People trash Heather but I’m seeing an improved athletic department across the board with one last project left … It fascinates me, actually.

        Liked by 3 people

    1. But Pitt doesn’t operate like a normal university. Pitt is very risk adverse. Pitt would rather react than be proactive. Pitt has no entrepreneurial spirit. Pitt is run by incompetent and non business savy bureaucrats. You have the American version of the old Soviet Union in Oakland.

      Like

  53. Pitt operates exactly like a normal university. Big time endless money universities are not the norm.

    Like

  54. Capel mentioned changing playing style in his press release. I think that is as important as the recruits he needs.

    Like

  55. The beginning of the end for college football? Rumor has it via the Athletic that 5 star 2023 QB Nico Lamaleava has signed a $8 million NIL agreement to play football at Tennessee. $350K upfront and monthly payments on the remainder thru his Junior season.

    Like

    1. too bad Pitt’s D-line doesn’t get a shot at Nico. As a young college student-athlete I would not be intimidated by his status or worth. In fact, that would motivate me to knock him on his arse several times, even more than a normal game.

      Then again, I was a long distance runner – lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  56. If the Nico experiment blows up, (injury, jail, attitude, and a host of other reasons) it should knock some sense into universities that simply want to buy good high school players. It’s hard to even list the things that can go wrong with this approach, unless a college’s boosters are risking the money and don’t really care.

    Many athletic depts. are considered the arm pit of the university, and are staffed with athletic alums and other jock sniffers who have never run a real business or large organization before. Is it any wonder that incompetence proliferates within these departments and academia is basically not competent to run them? Academic institutions cannot even run themselves!!

    Liked by 2 people

  57. Can the Steelers or other entities issue NILs to Pitt players or others and essentially become their farm team players? Addison? Follow the $$$.

    Like

  58. Mike Vucovan just posted an interesting article on Capel on PSN and alludes to what he says are facts about Capel’s four years at Pitt. There are quite a few folks on the POV that know basketball inside and out and I’d love to hear opinions. I’d post it here but don’t know how.

    One thing I’ll say ahead of further discussion is that Jeff Capel is the CEO and Head Coach at Pitt and thus responsible for every last thing under his watch!

    Like

    1. good article by Vukovcan – apparent that idiot’s can write for PSN

      there are so many things Capel has shown he can’t execute successfully as Pitt HC but Vuk “chooses not” to recognize Capel’s responsibility in each and every one of them to overcome

      f’n pathetic

      Capel sounds like the right guy, sometimes
      Capel acts properly, occasionally
      Capel looks the part, always, but not when you brush back the veneer

      WTH is Vuk going to say when addressing Capel and the future after the next several weeks or months of FIXING NOTHING

      sucks right now looking into the Pitt basketball abyss with nothing but darkness ahead, not even a flicker remains from the UNC miracle

      Capel needs a miracle and I see absolutely no reason to believe he’s able

      Liked by 1 person

  59. Pitt baseball loses game two in the bottom of the 9th to the tar heels.

    Competitive game but the Panthers start the ACC season 0-2.

    Like

  60. I saw the PGH article, great job by them to generate discussion. I don’t buy the “Pitt is a tough job” drama, or the hypothetical ‘what if Pitt had xxxxx this lineup”, stupid arguments quite frantkly.

    I will say this, I love the Capel hire, as did most Pitt fans and more importantly, neutral media, so no regrets with the hire. Hindsight is 20-20, and most of the largest universities with big $$$ support have failed with hoops and football hires on numerous occasions (think USC, Texas, Michigan, etc.), so again, no regrets with the Capel hire. That said, he seems to be a terrible administrator of a program and seems destined to fail, but it strikes me as irresponsible to have paid a huge buyout if we’re one year away from a significantly reduced buyout.

    I will be rooting for Capel and his assembled group of part-timers next year, but when he fails, we should be well prepared to bring in our next guy.

    One other thing, winners bring fans in Pittsburgh. Big name or not, our next coach will bring back the fans if we are successful, and he will lose them if he is not. the whole idea of a big name guys to bring in fans is irrelevant banter imho.

    H2P

    Liked by 1 person

  61. Unless there is a cap put on NIL (probably not) college sports will look more like MLB than the NFL.
    Taxing, what is the income tax on that 8 million?
    Different states with different state tax rates too?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So will the poorly paid O-line block for him? Will he have a target on his back? What if he Stinks? Can he be cut? What a mess they have created by not creating a salary structure. Crazy stuff

      Liked by 1 person

    2. If received all in one year, I think the max individual tax rate is around 42.5% but since it’s spread out over several years it would depend on what other income this chap earns.

      If the $225k/month is correct, that would be about $2.7M a year and the federal tax rate would be in the 40-42% range. Don’t know about Tennessee’s state taxes.

      Like

    1. As a UD grad, this was devastating,, however I don’t think either Richmond or UD can beat Davidson.

      Like

    1. Actually rooting for Duke with the Mrs.

      She is a huge Duke fan.

      Trivia question: what year is the VT coach in with the hokies?

      It wasn’t too long ago that buzz was roaming the hokie sidelines.

      Like

      1. I tend to root for Duke against the other blue blood programs in BB.
        But always enjoy it when the blue bloods get taken down.

        Mike Young is in his third year with VT.

        Like

  62. Transfer portal, teenage immortal, buyout contract, Capel still intact, AD now unlyked, Vol fans now psyched

    NIL money, outlook sunny, super seniors returning, nobody learning, freshmen making more than the dean, and 8 million to a teen

    It’s the .. end of college football as we know it, it’s the .. end of college football as we know it, it’s the end of college football as we know it

    And I feel fine

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 9 people

  63. Probably one of the very best basketball coaches in America>>>>and not well known outside of New England. A great recruiter and teacher of pure fundamental>>>WINNING basketball. I am not remotely suggesting that he be considered by Pitt because he is too good. He is a lifer in his present job and is living in one of the most beautiful parts of the Country.

    https://uvmathletics.com/sports/mens-basketball/roster/coaches/john-becker/2627

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Beckers always been one of my favorite coaches. Fundamentals and small details are his forte.
      Kind of opposite of JC.

      Like

  64. Now that Will Wade is gone from LSU, any chance Reid enters the portal and joins up with Capel at Pitt?

    Somebody open up the lines of communication and their pocket book. We can do this.

    I’ll supply the McDonald’s bag.

    Like

    1. Capel burned the bridge with Reid’s mom. He is just a very smart person or coach.

      Maybe Jason “jerk” Capel can go find some players in the portal. Of course, I’m laughing as I write it.

      Like

  65. Erie, it’s the announcers on the ACC championship game. VT is still winning but the constant review of Coach K’s legacy, his former players in the stands, etc. are giving me heart burn..

    Like

  66. Liked by 1 person

  67. 6points per game and 4 rebounds per game this year for Efton Reid.

    Speaking of VT, Buzz Ridl Lightyear Williams has texas agricultural and mechanical playing really well. So, you can turn programs around pretty quickly, so why haven’t we?

    Dan, that article from PSN creating excuse after excuse for Felton made me puke a little bit in my mouth. I am thinking they wrote that because they (along with many others) wrote for Nardstop to be gone after the western michigan tech loss. Now they are paranoid to write the truth.

    Like

    1. I liked Isnore’s response. I literally had to wait a few days after reading it as my blood pressure was about to explode!

      Huff has said it best over and over. We hired a compliance officer as AD. She had never ever negotiated a big time contract or hired a big time coach. This is what you get. Nice lady, means well, no idea on how to make it happen!

      Still, looking back … once she extended Capel to 26-27 cough -cough…. There was no other choice but to retain him for next year. I would have hoped that she would have used the moment to negotiate Capel into staff changes but again…..she’s a compliance officer!

      It was Capel she had over a barrel
      because if he loses the Pitt job, he’ll never be hired again.

      Like

      1. Maybe other teams should have hired a “compliance” based. AD’s. Worked out well for LSU and Wade. Tennessee ADs with Pruitt and Pearl. Might as well throw in Auburn’s AD with hiring of Pearl after Pearl flat out lied to the Tennessee AD. Throw in Louisville AD with hiring of Petrino (a year later) after lying to his AD at Arkansas. Double pump with Louisville with Pitino. And all the fun occurring at Arizona State with their compliance issues.

        That is just the tip of the iceberg of problems caused by weak compliance department. And don’t bring up Stallings and Narduzzi infractions. HL was smart on letting the compliance people loose on Stallings. She knew a bad hire and used the compliance issues to fire Stallings with cause saving $ on buyout. Narduzzi was just caught in spillover – NCAA level III infraction. Just like Fulmer, as the AD, had a NCAA level III infraction charged on him personally.

        HL used compliance against Stallings. Do you think she would not have used it against Capel?

        I hit the “like” button Ike’s comment on his belief in firing Capel. I also believed Capel should have been fired.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Last i Looked, LSU, Tennessee, Auburn are all in the dance with two of the three expected to make deep runs. No institutional harm.

          The new NCAA Constitution will change the college game again and we are not prepared. NCAA got smarter and penalized coaches versus programs. Each Conference will make their own rules. The big unknown is will the P5 conferences agree to something similar? My expectation is that the SEC will push the envelope but for the most part, there will not be concurrence between conferences.

          Don’t believe me? Look at how each conference addressed covid? They couldn’t agree or even come close. SEC said to play full schedule, Pac12 said cancel all season, Big10 started with cancel and then changed course so they could compete with sec, but it took time. ACC was a mess. No leadership!!

          Like

          1. So, the overall reputation of a school is only based on sports results? My personal belief is that all those universities reputations were harmed because of their prior actions. I’m probably not alone in that belief.

            As to the balance of your comment, I am already aware of what you wrote. Why did you think Jim Phillips of the ACC voted against expanding the playoffs? He wants to put the horse before the cart.
            I do more than gather stats. I read and try to make sense of it all.

            BTW, the SEC did not play a full schedule. Just played teams within their conference. The ACC allowed one OOC games hoping the SEC would allow the traditional 4 end of season rivalries. The SEC didn’t because of poor leadership.

            Like

        2. Excellent post. I, for one, would be embarrassed to be associated with a university that condones behavior like that of Petrino, Pearl, etc. no matter how many wins they were responsible for. Sorta like a university that would hire a Sandusky or his boss who turned a blind eye.

          Like

  68. Just read both Lyke’s and Capel’s statements.Its hilarious.
    Lyke has to write something… and she does, but its all air. “Committed” – thats hilarious.
    Capel’s statement on the other hand rings true – even if I don’t think he can turn the program around.
    He wins the battle of the press releases, imho.

    I may need an off-ramp for my criticism of Huff’s “she’s in over her head” position. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  69. I don’t know what you expect them to say. Sorry but we screwed up royally and have to live with this mess for a while. I’d have to be nuts to walk away from these millions so deal with it.

    VT showed us the formula. Don’t recruit anyone that can’t make a three.

    Liked by 3 people

  70. The previous comment about “reporters don’t ask good questions” reminds me of my first sit down group interview with Narduzzi. It was during his first spring practice time and I asked ” Coming from the Big Ten and that conference’s history of dependence on the run, how do you see Pitt’s offense leaning this coming season?”

    Which I thought was a valid question. PN smirked and said “Oh, we’ll just pass that ball all the time. Short passes, deep passes, pass, pass, pass – who needs to run the ball” thinking everyone would laugh at his joke – no one did.

    Of course once OC Jim Chaney convinced Peterman to come to Pitt PN really should have passed the ball more – but it was about 50% pass and 50% run for that year. The next year Peterman threw for 27 TDs.

    Like

    1. I think one reason Peterman had more success that second yr is that Chaney was gone. Guy had a terrible feel for calling plays – Canada and Watson were better, at least imo.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I’m giving Narduzzi credit for nabbing Peterman since he was the lone guy who recruited Slovis to Pitt. The head coach makes the final pitch, so he said enough to land Nathan.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I hear you Nate. Let’s hope we get similar results from Slovis. Nathan Peterman was a great college QB and a stand up guy as well IMO.

        Liked by 2 people

  71. They tore down ‘old Pitt stadium to give a new home to the rising BB program. Now that it is in the 🚽 can we tear down the Pete and put back an OC stadium 🏟? 🤣🤣🤣

    Liked by 1 person

  72. Read that Vukovcan article about Capel and the BB problems not being all because of him… What jumps out is that while the author states Capel’s bad but not horrid start to his Pitt HC career (51-69) he never put in the most important detail of 21-52 (.284) which is about as bad as can be over four seasons.

    But this doesn’t surprise me as Vukovcan has always been a strong Pitt homer. That article was the ultimate in excuse making.

    Liked by 3 people

  73. Capel is here because of his buyout. That’s it. Nothing left to see on that matter.

    The Heather criticism is fascinating to me. The entire athletic department is improving and moving in the right direction … with one exception … so, she has one project left. Not only is the athletic department moving in the right direction, it’s moving at a remarkable pace.

    Regarding the buyout, it was designed that way to prevent Capel from leaving early. It’s ironic that we would prefer he leave, now. But, at the time, no one of substance wanted to come to Pitt. Hurley used Pitt as leverage for UCONN. We had just forced out our best coach of all time and the entire city turned on his replacement. Pitt also had the recency bias of our football programs’ similar head coach trajectory. The Pitt administration probably felt, and rightfully so, that they had to go to some exceptional extremes to get someone in place.

    That’s on Heather. No excuses. But, football on down is all on an up trajectory … I’ve seen the results that I need to see to trust Heather will get the basketball program right once she can move on from the current coach.

    Anything else is just smoke and mirrors to take your eyes off of the successes. The narrative on Heather is actually pretty scary.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Lyke never pushed the reset button after Hurley said no. Duke immediately reached out about Capel and her and Gallagher flew down and were talked into hiring him. Nothing learned from Alvarez playing Pitt like a fiddle with Chryst.

      These other schools find these good mid major coaches while Pitt keeps hiring stiffs. The current stiff is even worse by making sure his jerk brother is on staff. It is a massive problem and it appears there will be no staff changes this off-season.

      I swear a board comprising of fans could make better decisions when it comes to hiring basketball coaches than the Pitt brass. At least there’d be compassionate discussions instead of Gallagher looking at his watch and saying “Let’s hurry this up. This guy sounds good, we’ll hire him.”

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes. Not a soul at Pitt knew who Jeff Capel was. Pitt can’t find coaches on its own, someone else needs to do it. Sonny with Howland, which brought Dixon (thank you, Jesus), Todd Turner with Stallings and coach K with Capel.

          Pitt should be embarrassed in regards to its leadership.

          Like

    2. LMAO. Capel is a bad hire and the extension is worse. The ladies basketball coach is terrible. Baseball just swept and terrible and I can keep going. A remarkable pace? I wish I reported to you in my job.

      Like

      1. Per Tex, the Director’s cup was the end all be all they were top 10 … until he changed his narrative … as he’s wont to do

        Liked by 1 person

  74. So if Capel pulls a rabbit out of his hat and gets some portal talent and the team improves greatly, does Pitt give him another contract? What if they make the tournament? Yes, it would take a miracle.

    Like

    1. Capel will never get another contract extension from Pitt. Lyke will not make the same mistake a second time with Capel IMO.

      Like

  75. Pitt softball loses to Bowling Green 8-5.

    Baseball losing to UNC 4-2 in the bottom of the 8th.

    Both teams with late inning leads and both bullpens failed to close.

    Like

    1. Softball was up 5-4 in the 9th when BG hit a walkoff grand slam. I think there was 2 outs at the time…. oh so close!

      Like

  76. Ben Howland fired at Mississippi State after 7 years.

    I remember when Ben came here with a “Recruit to Shoot” philosophy, then adapted to what would work in the Big East.

    And now, we really do need the “Recruit to Shoot” approach.

    Go Pitt.

    Liked by 1 person

  77. Heather cannot afford to make another major hiring mistake. She extends these guys so that she can claim continuity while avoiding another potential misfire. She doesn’t come from the basketball coaching community where she can call a half dozen head coaches and get their true opinion of upcoming talent. That info comes from the back room cigar sessions that she will never attend. Another hiring failure of a major sport (maybe even ladies BB or baseball) and she will end any chance of moving up to the Big Ten or SEC as AD.

    Like

    1. He’s got one at a baseball school on the west coast close to family.

      Very low expectations at Oregon State for FB and BB.

      He’s set for life…

      Like

  78. The baseball team lost their 3rd in a row to the tar heels 9-2 this afternoon.

    The starter (Corcoran) handed the ball to his bullpen with a 2-1 lead. The first 2 relievers gave up 2 runs each without ever getting an out. The other 2 relievers gave up another 4 runs. That equals 8 runs over that last 3 innings of play.

    HC Bell is a former pitching coach and was never a head coach until Heather hired him to lead our Panthers.

    Pitt is 0-3 in ACC play to start the season.

    Like

  79. I’m not sure I can be entirely critical of the Capel hire since I was completely on board with it when it happened. I’d like to know who among us being rightfully critical of JC’s performance was screaming that he was a terrible hire at the time.

    If like me you thought he was a good hire, we should be more temperate in our criticism as 20/20 hindsight is not a luxury HLyke has. The extension was widely panned as a bad move however.

    Liked by 2 people

  80. You can be critical. I was on board until I wasn’t. You’re allowed to change your mind. I’ve just accepted the fact he’s here another year. Not worth pouting about something that I can’t control.

    I don’t think anything can save Capel at this point. Even winning will likely still end to a mutual decision to move on from each other. Winning would make the program more appealing to a wider net of coaches. So there is that. Capel probably tries to piggy back off that success and jump ship. This relationship has run it’s course regardless of what’s next.

    Liked by 2 people

  81. In order to recruit exceptional players to Pitt, an exceptional NIL program is required.

    Heather needs to put that together.
    It will also be a necessity to recruit the next coach.

    If the Tennessee QB can command 8 mil what will bonefide one and dones command?

    Liked by 1 person

  82. I don’t blame her at all for hiring Capel, especially since she had done her due diligence in contacting the better candidates Again, she had the task of trying to get someone to a program that had just gone 0-18 in league play with few promising returnees

    I don’t even blame her for extending Capel at the time. Her only and big mistake was the massive buyout

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 3 people

  83. Tossing, I agree! Like every last person on this blog save for Tex and UPitt, I liked the hire of Capel. In fact I was stunned Heather could get someone of his caliber and fame. I read the very critical OK Alum comments but also read the adoring comments from VCU Alums.

    I have changed my mind because of the awful floor coaching I saw over 4 years and many suspicious locker room problems leading to transfers of key pieces of Pitt’s BBall core. Capel and his 4 Asst coaches never seem to be in charge and leading this team. They are always reacting. It may not be true but that is perception.

    I’m also beyond exasperated that this staff does not seem to recognize or recruit effectively ACC Talent. SHOOTERS. They had plenty of head notice that this past year that lack of talent was going to be a problem. Every once and a while a “near death” experience can be enough of a jolt to fix some of the issues. Let’s hope this is one of those times! H2P

    Liked by 2 people

  84. Dan, agree. Heck, as late as the UNC win a few weeks ago, I was still hopeful. But what happened since then is inexcusable. The collapse at the end of the last few seasons has to be coaching …. whether it be floor coaching or having the team prepared. Neither box is checked

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  85. Ben Howland was paid $2 million per year at Miss St while compiling a record of 134-87 over 7 seasons.

    At 64 years old, I wish Ben all the best – rumored to be the top candidate for the SanDiego job.

    Like

    1. Not a fan of Howland…He treated dear old Pittsburgh like crap on his way out the door and the UCLA basketball staff even worse…Good riddance Ben!

      Like

      1. He was the best coach ever at Pitt despite being there only four years. Pitt should have gone all-in on basketball like it acted like it was doing and given him a 10-year/$30 million deal. It would have been a bargain at the end of the contract.

        Ben is probably the second-best coach ever at UCLA with those three consecutive Final Fours. Crazy though how it spiraled for him after that last FF.

        Liked by 1 person

  86. The men’s BB HC at The Citadel was fired. The same Citadel that boat raced the Capel lead Pitt Panthers.

    Pitt has sunk lower than the lowest in the P6 world of college basketball.

    Like

    1. The Citadel has higher standards than Pitt Athletics. That is what you get when you don’t care or hire top talent.

      Like

  87. Tossing, sooner or later Heather will want to move on. I still think she will want to spend the second half of her career at the Big 10 or SEC where the real money is. But she would first need to get comfortable with cheating.

    Like

  88. Capel’s excuses that the team was tired at the end of the season or that they were star struck when Coach K came to town were pretty lame. I wonder if he can motivate his team at critical stages of the season.

    Like

  89. There is a reason Duke lost to UNC and VT at the end of the season. They weren’t going to lay down for the perfect conclusion to the Coach K era. Meanwhile, Pitt was star struck..

    Like

  90. When we start celebrating victories over MAC opponents in softball and baseball wins against some very small under-funded teams we have problems. When we celebrate our non-last place ACC basketball finish as improvement, during a year where the ACC only put 5 teams in the big dance, we have a problem. Of course we won more ACC games. The conference was bad!! Not my opinion. The ACC had the fewest number of teams make the dance since full league participation in 2014. VT makes a run to get ACC to 5 teams, that’s how bad the league is.

    WBB did not do well again. I don’t pretend to follow that revenue sport but trust several contributors who seem to report problems.

    Not cherrypicking here. Only talking about current sports in action…or should be in action.

    Like

  91. In the last decade: Coastal Carolina and Fresno State won NCAA Baseball championships; Akron won 2 D1 soccer championships; Yale and Denver won NCAA Lacrosse titles;

    Even in NCAA D1 basketball, Butler, Wichita St and Loyola-Chicago have reached Final 4s … as did Gonzaga which is the current top seed. A couple of the more than once

    Only in football can you expect a major school from a major conference winning (and of course Cincy from the AAC made the final 4 this year)

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  92. Correction— Akron won one soccer title, but so did Marshall and Georgetown

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  93. More and more money being thrown at men’s basketball and football. It’s an arms race. Makes me wonder what future impact it will have on the college sports that generate no money like baseball, softball, swimming, soccer, etc.
    I guess as long as the TV money is there, all is good.

    Like

  94. Perhaps I should have indicated revenue producing sports with full p5 participation. Not all P5 schools participate in lacrosse, hockey and soccer. As such, non-p5 schools make runs. We have only had P5 for less than 10 years.

    Butler had good years during Chris Holtmann (OSU), Brad Stephens (Boston Celtics) but have struggled a bit lately as P5 is more established. Wichita St. paid off their coach who physically and mentally abused his players for years. They are struggling. Loyola-Chicago has had a nice 5 year run, but should not be confused with a P5 school generally. Gonzaga is an outlier in that they had never been ranked in their history until Mark Few got there. He hasn’t left and is the one directly responsible for keeping them relevant. So yes, there are outliers that make runs, but let’s not confuse the horizon league with the big10, ACC and other power leagues to those leagues generally. Same with baseball. Southern based teams have recruiting advantages over michigan state, nebraska and other northern teams. That said, Pitt and Bowling Green are similarly situated in the north and we shouldn’t celebrate beating that northern powerhouse! Good grief!

    Like

  95. Ben Howland was a good coach who’s time has passed. But with his firing at Mississippi State he got what he deserved even though he won some games there, and this is further proof that what works at one institution doesn’t necessarily work at another (see Mack at L’Ville). Howland has two firings on his resume now when he could have had a long career at Pitt. His empty excuse that he left for UCLA because his aging parents lived nearby was found to be less than valid. I don’t feel sorry for Howland.

    Like

  96. Ben Howland brought UCLA to 3 straight Final Fours — 2006-08. The Bruins hasn’t appeared again until last year.

    Mississippi St is not a basketball school. Its program is much better now than it was before.

    There is no need to rap Howland who planted the seed for Pitt’s success in the 00s and early 10s. And especially for Howland to return home and take the UCLA position

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

  97. As I wrote above, Ben was the best coach ever at Pitt. The turnaround was incredible and the average Pitt fan never appreciated it. Pitt should have doubled down on basketball and extended him at 10 years/$30 million during his last season. He wouldn’t have left I don’t think. The Bruins are notoriously cheap. That was an era where a big contract for a coach was making $1.5mm a year.

    Liked by 1 person

  98. In addition to the $8MM NIL package being dangled at a UT Vols QB recruit, we have a rather troubling development at Florida State:

    https://www.totalprosports.com/2022/03/11/report-florida-state-db-becomes-first-college-player-to-hold-out-due-to-lack-of-nil-deal/

    SMH… just another fun thing for coaches to deal with. I’d be inclined to tell the kid he’s expected at practice and if he doesn’t show up because of his NIL holdout, we may not honor his scholarship.

    Liked by 1 person

  99. OK this NIL business is KRAZEE. If the useless NCAA wants to semi-professionalize sports let a minor league system be developed. A formula would have to be designed to determine which institutions would meet the criteria for AAA, AA, A, and developmental… Players would be paid according to the level of their conference designations. All the Conferences would have to be completely realigned in order to attempt to achieve a minimal degree of parity. TV $$$ would be bid the same way ESPN, FOX, CBS and NBC handle the NFL. We then all say GOODBYE to college football and watch the bidding wars for players between Clemson, Georgia, Texas A&M, PSUX, etc. Pitt would fall to AA and join Temple, CINCY, BYU, Northwestern, Duke, etc in a lower level conference. When players are negotiating. whom to play for based on NIL $$$ the College game is OVER!!!

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  100. We should offer to be the farm team of the Steelers. Recruiting would not be a problem, our games would be near sellouts, structure for wages (NILS), better coaches and training, new stadium somewhere, new courses in football strategy, etc. It is coming someday.

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  101. In my opinion, good, level comments re Capel, which I completely agree with. I think he was a very respectable hire at the time who just hasn’t worked out. It’s easy to compare his similar fate at Oklahoma, but that’s not the whole story, and recent history has proven that some of the largest universities (Texas, Michigan, USC, Oregon, Florida, Florida St., etc.) have struggled with hires in the two major sports, because it’s apparently not that easy. Obviously, in hindsight, the extension to Capel was a poor, costly move, but at least we finally (think) we can see the light at the end of the tunnel: next year or bust.

    My perspective on Capel now is that he’s not really that bad of a game coach or recruiter, I think he’s competent in both areas, though I’m sure many would disagree. Rather, I think his achilles heel is as a program leader/administrator; this has shown up (imho) in the areas of team inconsistency, lack of player development, selfishness and lack of chemistry, and ultimatley defections. As a result, I think in order for him to be more successful, he’s not only have to bring in better talent, but also bring in higher level character that does not have to be taught.

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  102. I happened to read where the Head Coach of No. 1 seed Arizona, Tommy Lloyd, is in his first year at Arizona and had never been a head coach before. They went 31-3 this season. Before being hired at Arizona, he was an assistant at Gonzaga for 22 years.

    His resume reminds me of our women’s Head Coach, Lance White. White was an assistant at Texas Tech for 10 years and then an assistant at a very successful program at FSU for 15 years before being hired by Pitt.

    I think White may end up having a good season, like Coach Duzz, due to the Covid extra year. Next season and the year after, he will have his recruits as seniors and super seniors. As poor as they have been, they are much closer to success than the men’s team, IMHO (admittedly a low bar…).

    Go Pitt.

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  103. I agree that Howland was a good coach for Pitt, and then at UCLA. That is not the point. Where is the loyalty?

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    1. Loyalty is a two-way street. These schools will fire you for going a decent job at a tough spot to win. How many years ago was it when that college hoops coach was burying his mother and his AD called him and said he’s been fired and needs to clean out his desk and return his cell phone.

      Brutal and no one felt bad for the coach because he wasn’t winning more. Tough business and understandable they jump jobs. They busted their butts for years, putting in the hours for little pay and it’s all about hitting that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

      Who in their right mind would be loyal to the Pitt BoT and Chancellor Gallager?

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  104. Loyalty smoyalty!!

    The most loyal coach Pitt ever had was Dixon who turned down and possibly didn’t even discuss very attractive $$ offers from very attractive programs

    And what did it get him for his loyalty? Pitt totally screwed him back in 2011. If I were Dixon back then, I would have told Pitt to go F itself

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You can’t stop your entire athletic program from moving to a better ( $$$$) conference because one coach doesn’t want to move there. ACC was a big step up over the Big East (still is). Dixon needed to adapt and he did not want to (or could not) do so. Sorry, you might not like the move that’s best for your program, but do it or move on. And move on he did.

      Liked by 5 people

  105. I liked Ben Howland….a lot. Strict disciplinarian. However, his time has passed as have all the strict disciplinarian’s (that are not blue bloods). Athlete students have the control now. They don’t like discipline, hello portal potty.

    Felton tried to be a disciplinarian like coach K, but that time has passed. He isn’t nimble enough to change his “spots”. It’s a different landscape now in my opinion. I talked to a D1 coach this morning who just lost in his tournament game over the weekend and we talked about this very subject. Power. He said he uses the athlete-student “power to portal” as leverage to keep his AD off balance and afraid to make moves. So interesting how the portal has affected relationships.

    Liked by 1 person

  106. Please note that I’m not implying that Pitt shouldn’t have accepted the ACC invite. I’m just saying Dixon got royally screwed

    At that time, he had just brought Pitt to its 2nd No. 1 seed in 3 years. If I were him, I would have immediately looked to get out. I’m sure he would have gotten some very good offers

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  107. Pitt does so many things that are inexplicably stupid in athletics over the years, if they had a committee on “unintended consequences,” they would all have committed suicide”!

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  108. Loyalty is the most overrated thing in every facet of life. It’s rarely a two way street. Loyalty to a company is even more absurd … If you hire expecting loyalty you’re doing it wrong.

    Liked by 2 people

  109. Remember also that players enter the portal without having a committed landing place (unless there is some tampering going on). As the number of players entering the portal increases more D5 players may end up playing for the Little Sisters of the Poor.

    Just look at where some of Pitt’s transfers have ended up (with a few exceptions such as X and Toney). Some such as Lucas Krull got lucky because of the extra COVID year. I think very few transfers in the future will end up improving their situation- either better team or more playing time- because they weren’t good enough to play at their initial college.

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    1. Krull didn’t get lucky IMO. He was playing behind a NFL first round draft choice at TE in Florida.. Pitt was in desperate need of a TE with potential decent talent.

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  110. About a month into the season, the 8 and 7 Pitt baseball team will play its home opener tomorrow!!

    So far, they’ve played games in FL, TENN, and NC.

    A reason why it’s tough for Pitt to compete in baseball with the southern schools…

    Go Pitt.

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  111. My God Heather Lyke is useless. Why are there no changes to the basketball coaching staff? When she had discussions with Capel, what did they ttlk about? She is an embarrassment to the university. Let’s see: losing men’s basketball, losing women’s basketball, losing baseball,,,

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    1. AD’s usually don’t force staff changes. That gives the coach the upper hand. If he makes changes and it’s the same old, the coach can now say “You made me make changes. I had it right before, we just needed time, blah, blah, blah.”

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  112. Just what do you think the good can come from changing the Pitt BB coaching staff? And do you really think Capel would fire his brother? Capel has Lyke over a barrel with his long term contract. What could see do if she asked for changes and Capel said no?—-And without the talent on the roster there is almost no hope for an immediate transformation.

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    1. likely the biggest factor in Slovis’ decision

      wouldn’t go with best in the nation but close and if Addison has a healthy year the group should be spectacular

      gotta think there will be near ZERO dropped balls if Slovis doesn’t throw the ball with the point sideways or whatever wrong way that KP’s tiny hands did incorrectly 🙂

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