I will be counting down my own list of the top 50 Pitt football players since 1972. I have spent time doing a lot of research and talking to a lot of people when formulating this list, but ultimately it is MY opinion. The great thing about lists like this is that people will disagree, and feel free to, but just remember that there is no right answer so there's no need to go crazy if you do disagree. I will post this same intro with all 50 bios because I know the one time I don't, people will complain about not knowing what criteria I used. I will add at least one a day, maybe two.
My criteria for selecting the order is as follows:
3. Place in program history.
4. Only the player's careers while at Pitt are considered, not their NFL careers.
5. No current players.
26. Jerry Olsavsky (1985-88)- Despite being undersized his entire career, the Youngstown native got every bit of his ability to come out on the field. Olsavsky was considered a Division 1-AA prospect and Pitt, offering very late in the recruiting season, was his only major offer.
But after lettering as a true freshman, he surprised everybody by leading the Panthers with 127 tackles as a sophomore . As a junior he missed almost four games due to injury, yet still managed 101 tackles and 5.5 sacks.
As a senior he was healthy again and the 217 pound middle linebacker finished the season with 129 tackles and was named a first team Kodak All-American.
His 367 total tackles are 7th all-time and his three straight 100 tackle seasons were the first time a Pitt player accomplished that in over a decade. He was drafted in the 10th round by the Pittsburgh Steelers, and played in the NFL 10 years, an amazing feat considering his lack of size and speed.