Jan 10, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Panthers head football coach Pat Narduzzi (front left) poses for a photo with members of the Panthers student section before the game against the Clemson Tigers at the Petersen Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
The change in coaches has actually been a pleasant transition for Pitt fans, as new head man Pat Narduzzi and staff have generated a ton of buzz via social media and campaigning.
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Furthermore, the staff consists of serious recruiters, who have been exploring the entire United States. I don’t think that these guys sleep. I can’t recall past Pitt coaches putting in so much effort on the recruiting trail. They are literally everywhere.
It will pay off.
I am more excited for football than I am for basketball, and I never thought I would be typing that.
Before getting into the Class of 2016, Narduzzi added Michigan State defensive tackle graduate transfer Mark Scarpinato to the current roster. He will be eligible immediately. He has an interesting story, having retired from football in 2013 and is pursuing a career in health administration. He is a welcome addition for a team who needs a pass rush.
Pitt used the Mayweather/ Pacquiao fight as a recruiting opportunity, as they invited 11 of the top WPIAL players down to the Southside facility to hang out and watch the match.
With the First Pick
Miles Sanders, a running back from Woodland Hills, has been committed to Penn State, but rumors are that he may be considering other schools like Alabama, LSU, and Pitt. Sanders may be the top senior in Pennsylvania, and he was seen at Pitt’s spring practices.
As of today, Pitt currently has 3 commitments for 2016.
The first commitment for Narduzzi’s first recruiting class is 6-foot-2 safety Tony Butler from St. Edward HS, Ohio. Currently a 3-star on Scout.com, Butler also had offers from schools such as Arizona State, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Purdue, Rutgers, and Syracuse.
A day later, local 6-foot-5 offensive tackle Brandon Ford from Upper St. Clair committed to Pitt. Ford wanted to play at home, despite offers from Maryland, Akron, and Bowling Green.
The third commitment was 3-star 6-foot-4 quarterback Thomas MacVittie from Moeller HS, Ohio. MacVittie had offers from Cincinnati and Miami, Ohio, and he may be considered a steal at this point.
This list will become much more impressive, but Narduzzi and staff have already targeted two positions of need in a tall safety who can hit and a tall quarterback with a strong arm.
Pitt football recently had coaches visiting states such as New York and California. Pitt recently offered JUCO WR Rafael Araujo-Lopes, who currently plays at Reedley College, California. If he commits to Pitt, he could play this upcoming season opposite of playmaker Tyler Boyd.
This coaching staff gets it. Recruit all over the country. If you don’t recruit and fail to send an offer to a playmaker, you will never get them. If Pitt wants to win championships and be taken serious, they need to be serious.
Pitt linebackers coach Rob Harley is currently on a “6 states in 5 days” recruiting trip, and I recently got an alumni email from Pitt Athletics that Coach Narduzzi was going to be talking at various locations across the country.
If you are not excited with the direction of the football program, I don’t know if you will ever be excited for Pitt football.