Monday, February 20, 2012

The early Chryst regime

He hasn't been the head coach for long, but let's look at how things are going for Chryst so far, the good and bad.  To be blunt, if you see all positive in this or all negative in this then you're not being realistic.  No matter how you look at it, though, it's been very eventful for less than two months on the job.

1.  Chryst was great at the press conference announcing his hiring.  He was not polished but he was sincere and showed much more stoic charisma than many could have guessed.  Since then, however, we haven't heard much from him.  

2.  Chryst hired away Bob Bostad, Joe Rudolph, and Dave Huxtable from Wisconsin.  Bostad and Rudolph were huge coups.

3.  Bostad left to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

4.  Running back coach Eddie Faulkner left to join Wisconsin not longer after being hired.

5.  Chryst hired some potentially good young assistants in Bobby Engram, Matt House, and Chris Haering. 

6.  Chryst had trouble finding a DL coach then hired Inoke Breckterfield, who was fired after one season at UCLA and only has west coast ties.  While he may end up doing a great job, the hiring was suspect, especially when nobody on the staff has recruiting ties to New Jersey, Washington, DC, Florida, or eastern PA.

7.  Chryst still hasn't found a replacement for RB coach Eddie Faulkner.

8.  Chryst and his staff has moved at a slower pace then his competitors on the recruiting trail.  Penn State, West Virginia, and Ohio State have already invited groups of prospects for junior days and other events, while Pitt has yet to announce when their junior day will be held.  The staff has also offered significantly less scholarship offers initially, even amongst top rated PA players, and have had less contact with recruits than most of their competitors.  

As we can see, there are some good things, some bad things, and some things that are still to be determined.  But what we do know is that Chryst has an excellent offensive mind.  That shouldn't change.  Chryst and Rudolph also proved at Wisconsin that they don't need to recruit stars, they make stars.  

Those are the facts.  My opinion is that the Pitt administration continually fires 8 win coaches and replaces them with more 8 win coaches that will be fired, too.  To me, Chryst has enough brains and offensive expertise to be an 8 win coach at Pitt.  What he needed to be better than that is a great staff and  to be able to recruit extremely well.  The staff started out excellently with Bostad and Rudolph.  Then Bostad left, an out of the blue DL coach was hired, and a RB coach still isn't hired.  So my initial excitement over the staff has waned some.  But that doesn't mean there still isn't hope.  House, Engram, Haering, and even Breckerfield may turn out to be excellent recruiters for all we know.  Time will tell.

Speaking of recruiting, Wisconsin did well with lesser recruits, that's true.  But it was a process that took many years, first started by Barry Alvarez.  They had their system down and did it well.  Maybe Chryst and his staff can do the same, but they also don't have the recruiting restraints that they had at Wisconsin.  

Above all, this is the point I want to make.  There are much better prospects available to Pitt and with better prospects, Pitt needs to make a killing if they want to do better than 8 wins.  And with an all out assault in recruiting, they can make a killing.  If Pitt is ever going to be excellent again, and if Chryst is going to be a coach who can do better than 8 wins, he can NOT let the elite WPIAL prospects go.  Wisconsin had to turn average prospects into players because they had no choice.  There aren't a lot of elite players in that state.  But Pitt has them right in their backyard.  Bottom line, if the Pitt staff lands Robert Foster, Patrick Kugler, Tyler Boyd, Scott Ordoff, and Dorian Johnson, then they have the makings of a team that has an offense that could seriously contend in the ACC in the future, and has the potential to be a legitimate top 20 team, if not better.  If Chryst doesn't land a great recruiting class locally then he is still too good of a coach not to fail miserably, but we all know what 8 wins gets you at Pitt.  

It's only been two months that Chryst has been at Pitt and the 2013 recruiting class is just a little over two weeks old.  But Pitt needs to be aggressive.  Find a running back coach who can recruit in a strong recruiting area.  Recruit like hell in PA and OH especially, but be aggressive in neighboring states, too.  Maybe they will turn up the heat soon.  Maybe methodical is part of their process and they know exactly what they're doing.  None of us know what they're thinking and none of know how it will turn out.  But I want Chryst to succeed because, one, I like him personally, and, two, I'm sick of having 8 win coaches get fired.  


97 comments:

  1. Chris, didn't we have excellent local recruiting and a top 20 team under Wanny?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wanny never had a Top 20 ranked recruiting year..
      his rankings ranged from 21 to 48... average about 33.
      Even under Wanny, Pitt lost the tops recruits out of wpial...
      I think it's unrealistic to think Pitt will get all the 4-5stars out of wpial... nice to think that but unrealistic. That said, need to get as many 4-5star recruits from somewhere... where it is less competitive.. ie. MD, NJ, EastPA, VA. Please note... NOT OHIO.

      Delete
    2. Joe - you are using Rivals.com's rankings only.

      In the past seven years under Scout.com DW had 17th, 8th and 11th years.

      In the past seven years under ESPN DW had 21st, 19th and 16th years. Under ESPN Wisconsin didn't make the Top 25 cut at all.

      Wisconsin was in the Rivals Top 50 three times; 41st, 34th, 40th. In Scout.com the best year they had was 26th.

      1) It shakes out the same really - According to star rankings, PITT far our recruited Wisconsin over that seven year time period but didn't produce the quality football play that Wisconsin did with lesser recruiting classes.

      2) Even with that clear lead in recruiting PITT was greatly trounced in the W/L record by records of 60/19 for Wisconsin and 45/32 for PITT. Wisconsin went to seven straight bowl games in that period with two BCS games in the Rose Bowls.

      3) PITT only had one year where their W/L record was better than Wisconsin's - 2008 by 9/4 to 7/6.

      4) The final AP Top 25 rankings had Wisconsin in it five times over those seven years with finishes as follows: 10th, 7th, 16th, 24th, 7th. PITT was in it one time with a 15th ranking in 2009.

      Chris may be correct with his opinion that it took years to build that but that also might not be the case here. We just don't know until Chryst's recruits start playing ball.

      Delete
  2. Doke:

    Who is the recruiting coordinator for this staff?

    Also, do you think Chyrst realized that he was taking a chance by hiring Bostad? It seems strange that they were reported to be friends, and yet this happens. I know it's a cut throat business, but it would seem that Bostad would have told a friend that his real goal was to get to the NFL. But maybe Chryst was hoping that things wouldn't work out with the NFL immediately and that Bostad could help him for a couple of years. If this was his thinking, it could be considered naive since Bostad was such a hot product as a line coach.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yep...
    Those are the FACTS!!! and I like Chryst also... as a person and as a "coach". As HC, that is yet to be determined.
    My issue is:'
    1. It's the recruiting stupid!!!
    2. It's about attracting and retaining assistant coaches..
    We all know the formula it takes to be successful... and right know... as of this moment in time... it's not looking good!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I used to think it was only about the recruiting as well but my mind has changed on that. Case in point would be Urban Meyer at Florida, the guy was intense and stressed accountability, this past season, Florida under HC Will Muschamp (loaded with talent,) the team faltered. Talent and speed are desired but so are the tangibles like being able to block and tackle. Assistant coaches are just that.......... assistants (as we've seen with Charlie Weiss,) who when put out on his own has failed miserably elsewhere.)

      Delete
  4. ...and a poor a game day coach. Chryst's offensive mind separates him from Wanny.

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  5. Who's Dave Hawkins? Can he coach RB's or QB's?

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  6. that last paragraph sums it up beautifully. "none of us know how it will turn out'... JOE D.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. But, it's not looking good from the recruiting front or the assistant coaching front!!
      That was the point of the facts!!

      And good recruiting and good assistants is what you need... or the formula... for success... or as Chris puts it... more than 8 wins a year.

      My expectations are rather low...
      1. Win 8 games minimum in regular season (12 games) every year!!!
      2. Be ranked in Top 25 at end of year every year!!
      3. Win a league championship (BE/ACC) every 3-4 years.

      Delete
    2. "NONE OF US KNOW HOW IT WILL TURN OUT"

      ive said it before, ill say it again. i would like them to move faster... they have a plan... wait and see

      Delete
  7. Chryst - please hire Tyree Foreman, RB coach at Temple...from Maryland, went to UVA, and recruits DC/MD/VA area! Also recruited those areas plus OH when he was at Army.

    His bio: http://www.owlsports.com/coaches.aspx?rc=256&path=football

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please send this to Chryst and Stevie-P. You can get their email addresses on the university website.

      Delete
    2. Does anybody have a hint as to who is going to fill out the staff? Moreover is it more likely they go to the pro's so they wouldn't be seen as poaching another program? The guy from temple sounds good, but more than likely have to pay a little more due to situation.

      Delete
    3. How about Rod Rutherford as QB coach?

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    4. Rutherford is at IUP...
      I would take him unless better candidate from the VA area...
      The RB and QB coach should be look at not just for knowledge... but how good they are in recruiting.

      Delete
    5. How about Apollo Wright from FIU. Was Westbrook's coach at Nova and recruits where we need.

      Delete
  8. Also, there's an assistant
    at Delaware, Brian Ginn, who should get consideration as QB coach. Brian
    grew up around VA, played his college ball at Delaware, he recruits Delaware,
    Virginia and Eastern PA for them. Team him up with Foreman in the recruiting trail,
    and that could be a plus for PITT, and they are both excellent position coaches.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Joe D - you keep bring up recruiting examples like MI. Wouldn't the counter be how many recruits do Pitt similar schools have. I looked up the Big East and the most I saw for any given school was one commit. Pitt has never started fast, give the new staff some time.

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    Replies
    1. No...
      You have to look at the competition within your recruiting area... the 1 tank of gas radius..
      MI, OSU, PSU, Rutgers, WVU, Maryland.

      I don't look at just commits... I look at how many offers were made!!!
      Pitt has made 28 offers..
      others range from 60 to 120. that is aggressive... but that is your competition and who you measure yourself against.

      Delete
  10. Joe D...Wanny's best recruiting classes were never lower than the 20s?

    http://recruiting.scout.com/a.z?s=73&p=9&c=14&yr=2006
    http://recruiting.scout.com/a.z?s=73&p=9&c=14&yr=2007

    Scout gave Pitt the 11th best class in 2006 and the 8th best in 2007...those are just the FACTS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I used Rivals...
      2006 was 21
      2007 was 26
      2008 was 28

      Those are the facts!!! look it up!!!

      Overall during his tenure... about 30.

      Delete
  11. And here's a quote from Foster:

    "Right now, I would say Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Ohio State, Florida, Oregon and Clemson are on me the hardest. I don't really have plans for anymore trips right now."

    ReplyDelete
  12. Foster said that right after his trip to PSU. It was from an article Bob Lichtenfels did. Anyway, this was a very nice run down and I pretty much completely agree.

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  13. Chris,

    Great work, as always.

    Serious question: knowing that Stevie-P is a notorious micro-manager -- which in this case could be a good thing -- is it time for him and our shiny new head coach to meet to reset the direction of the program since his hire? (the early signs aren't good, to be kind...). Maybe they've already met?

    Let's be honest enough to admit that the trend is disconcerting at best. I haven't had this much dread this early in a new coach's regime since Foge Fazio.

    1. Hiring assistants with no sense as to what good they'd be in harvesting recruits. "X&Os first & foremost" is an NFL mindset that has nooooo place in CFB. If Chryst knows this, he surely doesn't show it.

    2. It's hard to believe that Bostad -- reported to be Chryst's friend? -- left just for a few more $$. In fact, the demotion from OC at a BCS-AQ school to a position coach in the NFL might be a pay cut.

    3. Chryst inherited a class rated in the top 25, but delivered one in the mid-40s to 50s. And that wouldda been worse but for the heroic efforts of Voytik as self-elected recruiting coordinator.

    If he was selling cars instead of our school, his sales manager would have called him into the office for a pep-talk just for those results.

    4. His clueless "we just offer" comment wouldda made my head explode as AD (his boss...). I still hope that was taken outta context; a guy with experience in CFB -- even if he just sat back and watched others do the recruiting at Wiscy -- can't be that clueless ... can he?

    Put it this way: schools like 'Bama and Texas -- the gold standards of recruiters -- spend million$$ on recruiting. If the "we just offer" approach worked well enough to fill a roster with blue-chippers, then everybody would do it.

    I keep looking for any glimmer of hope that Chryst "gets it," but so far none appears to be coming...

    ReplyDelete
  14. Chris:

    I can't help but think Pitt's problem is they don't spend enough on staff. I know Wanny got more money for his position coaches back in 2006. But do you have any hard numbers that show what Pitt is paying their coordinators and position coaches on average compared to Acc teams? In the past you have mentioned that money is not the object but don't offer any details. I realize Pitt is like the CiA but it was reported in Wash Post that Marylands's def coord was getting close to 'j$500,000 and that school had to cut a dozen sport programs because they are so far in debt. Is it really that hard for Pitt to offer $150,000 more for each coordinator and give selective position coaches a reason to consider or at least not leave Pitt?

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  15. Pitt actually pays pretty good for coaches now. Not among the elite, but on par or better than the rest. I can guarantee you that Bostad and Rudolph didn't come cheap and neither did Cignetti, Phil Bennett, Matt Cavanaugh, or Calvin Magee.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cignetti took a paycut from Cal to come to Pitt... I think his salary was about 250.

      Calvin Magee was about 275 because he was "Co"... that is why he left as soon as Richrod got to arizona... he doesn't have "co" in his name.

      Pitt OC should be in the 350-400 range... but don't if that is the case..
      Stoops got 700K as DC to stay at FSU or something like that...
      Clemson OC... didn't he get close to 1million?

      Delete
    2. I think you guys simply fail to realize that the PITT program has been decimated by "uncertainty." Uncertainty that's been spawned by an erratic AD coupled with the Haywood and Fraud hirings. Assistant coaches and players are weary of these kinds of shennanigans.
      (Remember these coaches didn't fall off a turnip truck, they are well aware of AD Petersen's meddling at Nebraska and his poor track record at Pitt.) Chryst is basically starting from scratch and as much as recruiting and finding assistant coaches has been stressed on this board, it will take some time to find loyal players and coaches who really want to be at PITT for the long haul. I guess what I am saying is the culture and stains of stupidity need to be erased at PITT before big name guys sign on.

      Delete
  16. Why do we think Breckterfield was fired from UCLA? He was the D-Line coach at UCLA last year for Neuhisel. Neuhisel was fired and Jim Mora Jr. was hired and brought in his own guys. Pretty much like every other head coach does. Breckterfield was hired by Mora to be a quality control coach. To me, that looks like a positive that Mora would say in essence "I want my own guys to come in but I like you enough that I still want you around and am going to give you a job"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Breckerfield was demoted...
      Mora kept him as some sort of Quality person... it was a demotion from DL!

      Delete
  17. Wow this is like "Groundhog Day" I guess if you keep saying the same negative thing over and over and over and over it will come true. So let me say this over and over and over Chryst is undefeated and has the same number of LOIs for 2013 as everyone else. I can see it now if not 12-0 and national champs lots of posts calling for Chryst to be fired. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Keep drinking the koolaid...

      Is this EJBorghetti in disguise?

      Delete
    2. better than the tainted beverage you are drinking( perhaps it is the Rolling Rock brewed with Jersey water) that makes you so negative.

      Delete
  18. Chris, I'm really making an effort to give our shiny new head coach some credit that he's not completely clueless as a recruiter -- which isn't going too well so far, frankly.

    With that background, is it at all possible that, in hiring Breckterfield, Pitt has hopes to reap some of California's bumper crop of annual recruits?

    As a guy living in Pac-12 country, I know that California feeds many programs several time zones east of their borders, just like it does (literally) with its farms and orchards. It's every bit as fertile as Texas and Florida.

    I know there are several kids from Colorado that have Pitt listed as medium interest. Colorado isn't California, I know, but weather wise and culturally it's a lost closer to CA than PA.

    Looking at it realistically, it's no more of a stretch for a kid from California to attend Pitt than it is for a kid from Texas. Florida makes only a little more sense ONLY because Pitt will at least make an annual trip to Florida.

    Or am I dead-wrong, and back to pessimism?

    ReplyDelete
  19. Chillax people! Pitt has given out just as many scholarship offers as PSU and Wisky. The sky isn't falling.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The number of offers made looking at competition:
    Pitt - 28
    PSU - 30
    MD - 44
    VT - 47
    Rutgers - 59
    OSU - 66
    WVU - 72

    Average is 54!!!
    Can't compare to PSU as HC just came on board 2 weeks ago.
    However, PSU added 8 recruit in 1 week whereas Pitt add 1 recruit in 1 week!!
    Wisky is not a direct competitor for recruits... quite frankly, should have added Michigan but didn't... but in any case, it doesn't matter what Wisky is doing nor Alabama for that matter.

    But, its not looking good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Joe D, I think I know who you are on the lair and you are truly a whiny, miserable loser.

      Delete
    2. I'm not on the lair...
      but right back atcha...

      Delete
  21. Pitt hasn't offered 28. They've offered less than that. Many of their offers are from the previous staff. And Penn State has at least offered all of the top kids in PA which Pitt hasn't. I'm not saying it's guaranteed to mean anything at the end of the day but it's a fact that Pitt is not offering kids at the same rate as the programs they recruit against. I have no idea why people keep arguing that fact.

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  22. But having said that, Joe D, it's been two weeks. The entire recruiting season is not going to be awful just because they started slow for the first few weeks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd rather be one of the first colleges making the offer to 4-5 star recruits instead of the last!!!
      Otherwise, 2013 will be loaded with 3star recruits..
      not saying that is good or bad...
      but by the numbers... I would rather take my chances with lots of 4-5 star recruits over 3star recruits.

      It's not that hard to figure out the top recruits (4-5star) within your area and "just offer"...
      finding good 3stars are probably harder to find and a longer process.
      There is no excuse NOT to offer the top recruits in PA...
      There is no excuse NOT to give Orndoff an offer..
      I just don't get it!!

      Delete
  23. Hopefully, the apparent slow start to recruiting is the result of this staff being, as was said, “methodical.” Otherwise, the only explanation that I can think of is that these guys are either laze or incompetent, which I doubt is the case.

    The good thing is that the few comments that I’ve seen coming from recruits, and even their parents, concerning these coaches have been positive. My guess is that the staff is using honesty and integrity to sell the program. They’re not going to b.s. the kids. They may not land all the prospects they go after that way, but I’m hoping that some will find it a refreshing change from the high pressure tactics used by most other programs.

    MC

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  24. Lets assume for a moment that the offer stats are correct (I have no reason to believe they aren't).

    Those numbers really speak to the need for some serious reform in CFB. I can think of a few ways to do it, but the fact that schools over-offer and then pull them away is just not right.

    Why not forbid schools from offering more than they have to give? Capit it at 20% above the available 'ships. Make it difficult for a school to pull an offer simply because they found someone they liked better.

    I'd rather the NCAA let up on all the silly rules - like buying a kid and/or his parents lunch - and spend some energy stopping this unsavory practice.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Im hearing that malik zaire really liked his visit

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  26. Chris: i heard that pitt just offered qb travon chapman. Do you know if its true?

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  27. Pitt is now up to 29 offers!!!

    Some other stats... 125 prospects for 2013 has some interest in Pitt.... 20 are 4/5 star types.
    Of the 29 offers, 18 are 4/5 star types.

    ReplyDelete
  28. You guys don't get it. Pitt will always be average in football. The
    administration has not exhibited anywhere near the level of
    commitment it takes to be successful in the current CFB climate.
    Great programs pay big money and bend the rules to get the top
    players, top players that make the CFB world go round. How do
    you think Bama, TX, FSU and those types of programs get 5-7
    5* recruits? Because their philosophy is "we just offer."
    Pitt FB is what it is. A middling, wishful program that trys with what
    its got.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is there a reason your post is written like a poem

      Delete
  29. Joe D also known as Joe Douchebag really needs a girlfriend or at the very least a new model train.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This isn't Scout.com KS.....people are free here to express honest opinions about Pitt without the fear of being banned.

      Delete
    2. Those who lack intelligent thought resort to childish games and namecalling....

      At least put forth some sort of factual background with your opinion.. it is what it is...

      You can disagree with my opinion...
      but you can't disagree with the facts!!! Chris listed them above and I agree with them!!

      I want Pitt to succeed but I think it's going to be years before we see that... in my opinion.

      Delete
  30. Ok, i disagree with pretty much everything joe says, but personal attacks are un-called for.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Thanks pk...
    but I'm good... no biggie...
    obviously someone who doesn't have anything intelligent to say or doesn't have any facts to counter those Chris listed above!!

    I hope the pressor tomorrow that Chryst shares or someone questions him as what is going on in recruiting.... and when will he have 2 new assistants on board.

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    Replies
    1. Im curious as to what the presser is about. I hope it to introduce a quarterbacks coach.

      Delete
  32. It's going to take time Joe D to change the environment around here. There are on there fourth coach in 2 years. Given the past snake, i'll the sincerity and slow pace over the high octane hoopla. I dont need a press conference every week like Graham.

    Pitt needs to start filling Heinz Field before they can pay there Asst. coaches a half million like Joe D wants to. To do that they have to start winning and play an entertaining style of football. It also wont hurt getting the money from the ACC in a few years. It's all tied together. If they do this recruits will also start coming. Take a pill and relax man. Dont waste your entire day filling up posts on blogs.

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  33. The presser may address the schedule first, the ACC schedule (which has yet to be released), the coaching positions and an update on recruiting (which will be limited because the coaching staff cannot discuss recruiting particulars).

    The schedule is unbalanced, with Pitt having four BE games on the road and two at home. If Pederson wanted out of the BE tomorrow, he would kindly tell Mary Natto that he is not going to add or change any games that have been scheduled. At that point the BE would be hosed because of a competitive imbalance. Forget paying anything more than 5million to leave. Pitt would be gone immediately and Boise would take their place. The problem for the BE would be Syracuse.

    The reason this makes sense is that if Pitt picks up two weak opponents for home games, Pitt will not sell tickets. As such, they would be better off just not scheduling James Madison, the Helen Keller Institute and Youngstown State. Pitt needs to negotiate their way out of the BE from a position of power. If the BE now tries to re-schedule games, Pitt would have a further breach claim which they could use to their advantage to get out.

    Final point. I hate anonymous posters because you can't reply to a specific anonymous. At least Joe D signs off on all of his gobblygook. Negative Joe D is a better handle.

    ReplyDelete
  34. I saw someone write something about one problem with coaches leaving being the administration. Perhaps this has to do with administrative instability at this time. One of my buddies told me to expect big changes within the next year to a year and a half. Not too surprising info, but the rumblings of Pederson interviewing for other jobs privately may satisfy some of you.

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  35. my problem with chryst from the start of the interviews til the time he was hired was never x's and o's. my problem with him was lack of experience as a head coach, his lack of knowing enough good coaches to hire that can coach and more importantly recruit, lack of experience at and perceived general dislike for recruiting, and lack of organizational skills that are needed to be a good head coach. there were better candidates in my opinion but he got the job. he is the man and i will support him until he gives me a reason not to because i want to see the team succeed. its way too early to form an opinion on if he will or will not be a good head coach. i will wait and see what he puts on the field and how he coaches the team. having said all that i will be honest and say that as of this moment i am nervous about him and have a right to be as he has not given me (nor anyone else) reason to put my previous fears about his hiring to rest. hopefully in the near future he will and his plan for what he is doing now and will do in the future becomes more clear. i am impatient and bullheaded when it comes to most things as Chris D can attest to from personal experience. so this is a big leap of faith for me to give chryst time to prove one way or the other that he is the man for this job. if he is i have no problem with saying i was wrong about him. if he isn't then we will be here in 2 or 3 years wondering who the next man up will be. personally i'm hoping i was as wrong as i've ever been about anything.

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  36. Did Haley leave Rutgers? Why not try and bring him in as RB coach? Obviously he excelled as a recruiter here getting guys like Graham in the program.

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  37. Chris, you didn't answer my question about possibly trying to establish a recruiting presence in California. Maybe that's because you thought it was too stupid to tackle, but if not I'd like your opinion.

    Of course, Pitt can't live on CA recruits, but maybe they'd get a few. If memory serves, isn't there a DB already on the roster from CA (maybe he's a JuCo transfer).

    If Chryst is something of a maverick regarding how recruiting is done (and it seems he is, we just hope it works), maybe that's part of his scheme? Of course, here I'm giving him benefit of the doubt regarding his hire from UCLA.

    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Imma,

      I was once told by Zeist in a reply that Pitt will not pony up the money for expensive plane tickets and room and board to their recruiters to actively go after players out west. (Oh they may go after a few but he inferred it was just too expensive for them to go all out in the west.) Heck it was hard enough for my 10 year old son to get an autographed photo of Dave Wannstedt from the PITT PR Dept, whereas he was USC/Pete Carroll and 'Bama/Nick Saban sent beautiful quality Kodak colored autographed photos to him with one click of the mouse to their PR Departments. Night and day.

      Chilco (banned)

      Delete
  38. Reply to Anonymous "How do you think Bama, TX, FSU and those types of programs get 5-7 5* recruits? Because their philosophy is "we just offer."

    Dude (I'd use your actual or screen name if you had one), better get your facts straight. Texas, etc. get a few kids from the neighborhood by simply offering. Nebraska is especially famous for this.

    But you're dead wrong otherwise. The schools you mentioned work as hard (probably harder) than anybody, and spend a king's ransom, on recruiting. Didn't you see the movie 'Blind Side'? And at that time, Oher was a no-name. Imagine if he was a 5-star out of the gate?

    Which is why it's fool-hardy to think that strategy can work at Pitt (again, other than a few middling WPIAL kids).

    The elite players from WPIAL will be constantly inundated by the rainmakers from all the elite programs (and polls by ESPN show kids LIKE the attention, remember that most of them are prima donnas anyway).

    If Pitt is quietly waiting in the corner, I predict they'll hear the sound of crickets more than fax machine dial tones on NLOI day. I hope I'm wrong, but highly doubt it on this topic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As a Pitt recruiter I'd simply point out to potential recruits considering schools like Texas or Ohio State that many of the star players that chose the big name schools ended up behind bars, on an NFL practice squad or returning their trophies and being unwelcome at those schools that they won so many games for. There's along track record of broken promises and shattered dreams at those power house programs.

      Delete
    2. See? Now you're selling the Pitt program, and not just offering and standing back hoping.

      Which is what we've been asking Chryst & Company to do.

      Delete
  39. Yea, cuz the Blindside is what we should be basing our comments on...

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  40. Chris,

    As a PITT fan it all depends who those 8 wins are over. If the team continues to struggle against teams like Maine then once again that's unacceptable. If the team can beat the teams in their conference and do it convincingly as opposed to simply "hanging on for a win" or blowing games like the Iowa game, then we're back where we started.
    All the talk about talent has me somewhat irritated! I've watched this PITT team come out year after year unprepared and undisciplined. Wanny had a slap on the back approach and Graham had the glaring stare down approach, neither coach seemed able to get their players in sync and eliminated simple mental mistakes. As a PIIT fan I'm looking for the next head coach to stress accountability, team work, and mental toughness. Dropped passes, missed blocks, motion penalties, boneheaded QB plays, and poor tackling have been a hallmark of Pitt teams in the past. So I guess I'm looking for a slow rebuilding effort that stresses sound fundamental football skills, as opposed to the quick fix. As far as press conferences and public statements out of Chryst, again, as Steeler fans we should be used to the politbureau approach implemented by the Rooney family. Not too worried about assistant coaches who don't want to be at PITT, let them go where the grass is greener.......... they are simply ladder climbers and wouldn't have been in ti for the long haul anyway.

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  41. Obviously it takes more than just talent, but to be honest I'm not worried about the other things with Chryst. The man can coach offense and I have no doubts that at least the offense is going to be extremely well coached through and through. I think if he can utilize his excellent offensive mind with elite players like Foster, Boyd, Orndoff, Shell, and Voytik then Pitt's offense can be exceptional.

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  42. On the CA recruiting, they would never get enough players that would make the cost worth it.

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  43. Chryst announce (or led many to believe) Sunseri would be the starter... he has a leg up on everyone for spring!

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    Replies
    1. what did you expect? obviously theres a TON of time left before the season starts but tino has a lot of experience and nobody else (myers) really jumps at you, like "tino better watch out". i believe chris has been saying all along that tino would start.

      im still sticking by my opinion that pitt should use chad voytik in oal line or short yardage situations. maybe give him some option packages to put more pressure on the defense.

      Delete
  44. chris, any word on the likes of kugler, foster, and boyd? i know that the latter two have either visited or met with the staff recently, but do they have any more visits? have any favorites?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. foster wearing PSU jersey in his twitter pic!!
      Heard he visited PSU and MI this past weekend... maybe MSU also.. don't know for sure.
      getting this 2nd or 3rd hand... nephew working out at Rod's.

      Delete
    2. that doesnt mean anything. deaysean rippy used to wear clothes from all kinds of schools. the good news is he said himself that pitt was one of the schools on him the hardest. if chris is right thats promising for pitt

      Delete
  45. Chris,

    After Pederson fired Wannstedt, Pitt very obviously went on the cheap in trying Haywood.

    Then after that disaster, they threw $ at Graham. After the Graham disaster, they went on the cheap again right?

    I mean, the head coaches that they really wanted excluding Cristobal were too steep salary wise so, within their budget parameters, they settled on Chryst.

    Is this accurate?

    I personally think that this hire was at best a big reach - kind of like recruiting a two star athlete and then hoping that he blossoms.

    What is your take?

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  46. I'm pretty sure the salaries for Chryst and his assistants are identical to Graham's staff which was one of the top in both the ACC and Big East so not really cheap, more so competitive given the caliber of the school and conference affiliation. As for being a reach...his only true knock prior to the hiring was his lack of previous hc experience, but as is always the case, you have to start somewhere. Jamie Dixon's first (and only) head coaching gig was Pitt. While he was pretty much always passed over, he was a candidate at several Big 10 schools and as he said, he really wanted the right opportunity for him, so its possible that's a big reason he was passed over before, he didn't really feel comfortable with the situation. I think his candidacy was right on par with the caliber of candidate Crisotbal was. Cristobal had been a hc for a few years and did great things at FIU but it was still a weak conference. Chryst ran some great offenses at Wisconsin and is a much more natural fit in the city of Pittsburgh, unlike Coach Graham.

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  47. You guys sure know how to beat this Chryst thing to a bloody pulp. Let it up for air already. Round and round. One big circle j---.

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  48. I saw that they are going to use EJ Banks as a QB. Do you think it is because the depth in the secondary or lack of good QB play? Also Gonzales is back at QB. Think he is mature enough to push for playing time?

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  49. You people are absolutely crazy.

    To the posters who say that schools like Bama, OSU, Texas, etc. throw millions of dollars into recruiting, I have but one thing to say. THEY CAN AFFORD IT. We live in a state in which the education budget has been cut, and faces additional cuts, so schools like Pitt have to take that into account. We also have to realize that those schools draw 100K fans to their games...Pitt is lucky to draw 30. So for anyone criticizing the money, I ask one question...do you purchase season tickets? If so, great, but we have to do more as season ticket holders. We have to do our own "recruiting" by talking our friends, family, coworkers, etc. into buying season tickets.

    To those of you who say we're not recruiting fast enough, do you realize there are 346 days until NLOI day?

    I also ask this...have any of you actually been in a position of leadership? As a leader, especially a new one, the first thing you do is take stock in what you have. You examine the strengths/weaknesses of your team, then work on filling the holes. Same philosophy here. Let the guy have a spring practice, let's play the spring game. By then, you'll have a better indication of what you have and what you need. Then you have a dead period between April and July that you can go all-in with recruting. Does it really matter that we've only offered 20+ at this time? NO IT DOESN'T. What matters is the ringing of the fax machine on 2/1/13.

    CHILL THE EFF OUT PEOPLE! H2P!

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    Replies
    1. Ridiculous post. The education budgets in FLA, TX, and I'd guess OK have been slashed as well. Let's not dare turn this into a political argument.
      Filling the house on game day is important but so are lucrative t.v. contracts.
      I gather many of us bloggers have never been in a position of leadership. Most of us are blogging from our parents basement in Pitcairn.

      Delete
  50. I read the Zeise article on Chryst..
    I'll keep it short...
    Thank God Pitt will have a powderpuff schedule for 2012 as Chryst eases into being a HC/OC/QBcoach (control freak) and learns to be a leader and manager. It's obvious he doesn't know how to delegate or manage or lead... I know understand why Pitt only has 29 ships offered for 2013..

    However, God help Pitt in 2013 when they play an ACC schedule.

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    Replies
    1. A smart guy once told me......... "watch what everyone else is doing and then do the exact opposite." For all of the fanfare of the Weiss's, Neuheisels', Petrinos, and so forth, none has actually brought down the house. Give this guy a chance.

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  51. Doke - I saw a big kid with a Monthclair High School jacket at the football facilty today. Do you know who it was and if they offered him a scholarship?

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    Replies
    1. That's Sam Zeff, one of the best OL in the east. He has Pitt connections.

      Delete
  52. Joe D

    Your constant inane diatribes are not only redundant but they are getting old as well. You present yourself as a Pitt fan yet never have anything positive to say. If the current staff, administration, etc irritate you so much, simply go away. Many of us come to these sites for information exchanges and good nature banter about the school we love. Unfortunately, you only fail to contribute along these lines. I am sure there are those who welcome your comments but I have a feeling many more feel the way I do. As Shakespeare wrote (yeah I actually make reference to him on a Pitt blog) you are full of sound and fury yet signify nothing.

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    Replies
    1. I presume you did not read the article!!!
      That was the cliffnotes version.

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  53. 6 QB's!!!!!

    Sunseri, Meyer, Anderson, Gonzo, Banks, Voytik....

    My first reaction... who is leaving or being nudged to leave!!

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  54. Anderson has to see the writing on the wall. Banks wont last at QB.

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  55. Chris, paul mentioned there may be some other plays changing position after he gets a chance to see them. Do you have any guesses who they may be.

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  56. I don't know who the other position changes will be but it's something that often happens with a new coach. It's a good move by Chryst, and it's a great move to put anybody they can into the QB mix. It doesn't hurt to try them because you can always send them back to another position which I'm sure will happen.

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  57. does anyone know at this point as to what kind of defensive scheme chryst wants to run?

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