Saturday, July 14, 2012

Counting down the top Pitt football players of the last 40 years- No.41 Russ Grimm

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:

1.  Productivity.
2.  Talent.
3.  Place in program history.
4.  Only the player's careers while at Pitt are considered, not their NFL careers. 
5.  No current players.

41.  Russ Grimm  (1977-80)-  You know there's no doubt that the best offensive line in Pitt history came in the late 70's when Russ Grimm, an NFL Hall of Fame inductee last year, was the third best offensive line on the team at the time.

Grimm, who entered the program as a linebacker and played at that position for his first two seasons, resisted being moved to center when Jackie Sherrill told him that he needed to make the move to offense.  In fact, Grimm was going to transfer to West Virginia and talked to WVU assistant Joe Pendry, who had recruited him out of high school, but Foge Fazio convinced Sherrill to hire Pendry away from WVU immediately.  Grimm gave up and the rest is history.

Grimm was a fast learner and became a starter immediately on a line that featured two future College Football Hall of Fame inductees in Jimbo Covert and Mark May.  The record for the Panthers when Grimm started was 22-2 and he also garnered some All-American honors.

Grimm was drafted by the Washington Redskins in the 3rd round and became a four time Pro Bowler and a four time Super Bowl winner.


  1. Russ was first team all conference (Keystone Conference) quarterback for Southmoreland High School. Dude put a hurting on my Yough Cougars back in the day.

    1. I went to Yough, too, and back then everybody put a hurting on them.

    2. Chris: I knew that...Turk is short for Turkeytown... Yough actually had a couple strong years in my days, 71-74, but by my senior year everybody was feasting on the Cougars.

  2. Fellow alumni. Man, what a small world! I was on the first YHS football team! Graduated in '72.