Monday, January 27, 2014

Paul Chryst adds second for '15 class

The Panthers have only offered four WPIAL players so far for the 2015 class, and they have already landed two of those four.  Last week Alex Paulina became the first commit for next season. Today Kittanning TE Nick Bowers becomes number two. The 6'4" 240 pound Bowers, like Paulina, is a very good pickup.  He's under the radar at the moment, but he already has the size to go with good speed and athleticism. He also catches everything that comes his way and makes many acrobatic catches.  Bowers played out at the wide receiver position this past season but he projects as a tight end for the Panthers.

172 comments:

  1. Strong start to next years class. He probably wont end up with a ton of offers since he committed so early, but he would otherwise garner a dozen or so bcs offers. Temple already offered and Purdue, Cincy, NW and BC still might if they think they have any chance at all. It sure looks like Chryst is starting to find his groove with recruiting and handling his own program.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There was an article written about Bowers in the Trib about a month ago.
      His HS head coach never had a D1 player before and did not to know how to market his player since it was all new to him. Pitt was the only camp Bowers went to last summer.
      3rd team all-state in AA.

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    2. I didn't see him on any all-state list. Do you have the link of the all-state announcement.

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    3. There were only 1st and 2nd All State Teams. There was no 3rd team All State

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    4. John,
      Thanks. I should have figured Rivals (king pom pom shaker) spewing false info.

      Delete
  2. i think one of the 4 is OT sterling 6 foot 8 300 pounds his mom and dad went to pitt but i hear he likes penn state and MS i dont get the penn state thing if i was his dad penn state would be a no no i would say so any were but there.
    how can he do that to his mom and dad how can they let him go there i dont get it ucla ok yale ok but not penn state.

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  3. Wisky model: find tall bodies, bulk them up and use strength and grit to push the pile.

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  4. Congratulations to Nick. I hope your a superstar both on and off the field.

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  5. ...“He probably was our best two-way player before he got hurt last year, and he was coming off a great game against Greensburg Central Catholic, who has got some big boys,” Fabian said. “It was a big loss on both sides of the football, so we're real happy to see him back.”

    What makes Bowers a special player, according to his coach, is his all-around athleticism. Though he is nearly 6-foot-5 and 200 pounds, he can run as well as the team's smaller players and has great leaping ability that he also shows when he's on the basketball court.

    “So often you get those big guys that don't run as well, but he has all the tools,” Fabian said. “No. 1, he's big, but he's physical, and he can run. He's what we call an eraser on defense. Sometimes you get caught in the wrong look or the wrong call, and he bails you out just by making a play.”...

    http://triblive.com/sports/ hssports/football/4508396-74/ bowers-season-count# axzz2rbvzfjhY

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  6. If this is the 2nd of the 4 WPIAL recruits to have an commit, that would mean that either Brumbaugh, Jenkins or Whitehead doesn't have an offer and that would be a travesty because those are the top 3 players of the 2015 class.

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    Replies
    1. Do you think Brumbaugh will start racking up offers coming off of the Junior year that he just had Chris?

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    2. I don't think he will have a lot of major offers. Not many QB only prospects get a lot of major offers.

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  7. I work at CV and have been told that Whitehead has been offered. He was offered two years ago after the West A game at home where he came across the field from the far hash and picked one off. Chryst and Engram were on the field for that game. Chryst was at CV last Friday to visit. Of course, Meyer and Fickell were in as well earlier last week too, so I don't know where Pitt stands. They did offer however.

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    Replies
    1. Whitehead and Jenkins were both offered months ago. They are the other two.

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  8. I heard Whitehead was a WVU lean because he wants to play opposite of his cousin Dravon Henry & they're going to WVU together this weekend for Henry's official.Whitehead put out a top 5 on Twitter last week that included Michigan, Pitt, Penn State, Ohio State, & West Virginia.

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  9. Cant see him going to Hoopie U. O$U been his leader for ever.

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  10. Scouts does a lot of predictions(it is a lot of guessing and going on things they hear, but here is what they have)

    Jenkins.... Michigan
    Ried.....PSU
    Whitehead....OSU
    Robinson...PSU(Bollinger and Robinson are recruiting him...why not Poteat leading the way?)
    Bates...PSU
    Adams....PSU
    Bonner....Wisc
    Gibson...No prediction(Johnstown sends most of their talent Pitts way)
    Stocker...OSU
    Brumbaugh...Pitt
    Buckholtz...MD
    Givens...PSU
    Miller....Rutgers
    Cooper...PSU


    It is worth noting that Mich, PSU and OSU are the favorites for way more recruits than they have scholarships for.

    Having solid early commits can only help, next step is having a good season. Nothing brings recruits in more than success... well and if you are WVU, selling false hope also seems to bring in recruits.

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  11. Well prep yourself my friend. OSU & Michigan were recruiting him and slowed down his recruitment for no apparent reason. Pitt absolutely pissed him and his mother off

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    Replies
    1. What are you talking about?

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    2. Gotta ask the Whiteheads, if they're willing to share that information.

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    3. Well, apparently you know. So let's have it.

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  12. Pitt v Duke.
    Pitt just got its "Welcome to the ACC" by Duke.
    For Dixon to keep saying, it was Pitt's defense that lost the game not Pitt's inability to make shots. smh It's not the Big East Jamie. Those ugly, grind them out, physical, low scoring games are not going to happen in the ACC.
    But, 4 of Pitt's starters played 32-36 minutes. They didn't have legs in the last 5 min. That is why they lost. That is on Dixon.

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    Replies
    1. What hasn't really shown up until last night is that Pitt doesn't have much experience behind their starting four (excluding Young) with Johnson being out. It's just one loss, not a big deal, but this game completely over hyped and I think that played a great role in their performance last night.

      I get it, IT'S DUKE, but it's a regullar season conference game, and it isn't like they haven't played big regular season games at the Pete before. Dixon didn't do a very good job of managing that with his team or the media.

      Mike W.

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    2. @Anony 8:39 AM

      Pitt did not lose because they didn't have legs in the last 5 minutes. Pitt was allowing Duke uncontested shots all game long. Pitt can play "ACC-type" basketball. This is the best Duke played all season. Pitt did not play good D while Duke did. While Duke blanketed Patterson effectively for the most part, Pitt really missed Johnson.

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  13. It remains to be seen if PC's strategy is a viable one.

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    Replies
    1. I think you're starting to see the fruits of his strategy. PC is developing relationships with the HS programs, and a lot more than athletic performance goes into whether you really push for these kids. A lot of these kids do not like that coaches look at what type of student they are, how do they relate with the faculty and the student body, what else do they do besides being a jock and showing up at school.

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    2. Seriously? Most D1 programs, and I'm talking BCS here, not Patriot League, look at the entire kid, not just athletic ability. Pitt had to learn a tough lesson with Rushel Shell, and if anything, that is putting the damper on some of these WPIAL kids that are choosing to go elsewhere.


      BTW, the CM lineman is currently 3 starts with offer from VTech and I believe WVU, the Bowers kid will draw more D1 offers.

      Delete
  14. Chris: Where is the Duke blog post? You never post anything after losses.

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    Replies
    1. I was on the road tweeting the entire game. I wasn't about to write an entire blog post on my phone. Too hard.

      Delete

  15. Regardless of his early commit, Nick Bowers will rack up offers before it's all said and done.

    This kid passes the test of every potential Big Time Recruit... a "Man among Boys" at the High School level.

    PittofDreams

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  16. Happy that we are landing some decent players on offense but where are the impact defensive players? why are we not getting them - is it House, the scheme, poor recruiters on the defensive coaching staff? It was great to see Conner contribute on D in the last game but do we really need to be doing that? Doke, it would be a great post to have you break down the defensive side of the ball and where we are with starters next year, depth, needs, impact players, and your assessment of recruiting on this side of ball. thanks for the great work as always.

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    Replies
    1. Already planned a look at every unit for next year and beyond.

      Delete
  17. Chris,
    What kind of impact does Damon Wilson have on the recruitment of Cheick Diallo and Kassoum Yakwe? Any reason to believe these guys will all want to continue their careers at the same school? Or would they each look for the best individual situation? I'd imagine that each recruitment is unique... But still, Wilson has to be in their ears right?

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  18. Chris is it true pitt hoops hasn't defeated a top 50 RPI team?

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    Replies
    1. It's true. Go to yahoo sports or Sagarin.
      0-3 against Top 50 RPI. Cuse, Cincy, Duke.

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    2. C.Dokish can you confirm this?

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    3. Why, are you to lazy to look it up yourself!! Yahoo and Sagarin keep the records and report as a few other entities. Did you graduate from Pitt?

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    4. What does it matter if I graduated from pitt?

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    5. Hey anonymous, you dufus! This has been mentioned by analysts for weeks prior to the duke game and after. You are definitely a troll and I am embarrassed that other folks took the bait.

      Ge outta here skeeziks!

      Doke, any surprises on the Pitt recruiting side? They say Maddox is now soft. Is it because of the Gateway CB? Thanks man

      Delete
    6. Here is an interesting factoid.
      Pitt is the only Top 25 team Without a win against a RPI Top 50 team.
      Pitt will need some quality wins down the stretch if they want a decent seed regardless of their AP or RPI or Sagarin ranking.

      Delete
    7. Who cares. If Pitt goes 0-6 versus the top 50 RPI, make the tournament and get to the Sweet 16 that's all I care about and what will be remembered. This season started as a transition year, then it became apparent this team was better than anticipated, then losing Durand Johnson, now this team is back to having some warts. I'll be happy with a Sweet 16 appearance.

      Delete
    8. Sweet 16 is a huge stretch for this team even before the loss of Durand.
      It will all depend upon matchups.
      1 and done wouldn't surprise me though.
      But Pitt has exceeded my expectations this year.

      Delete
  19. After Duke took a big lead, they decided to run the clock, even though there was still 5 minutes to go. They dribbled at half court and didn't start any offense until 5 seconds on the shot clock. And they got an open shot nearly every time! Sometimes a layup, sometimes an open three.

    Contrast that with Pitt in the last few minutes when they needed to score quickly. They ran down the court, out of control, and threw up prayers.

    Very frustrating. Two teams that needed to score quickly (Duke because of shot clock, Pitt because of a deficit), and one team was much better than the other. It wasn't even like Duke was making NBA plays. It was more like Duke was making plays that they had practiced, while Pitt was making things up.

    Pitt is very good at running its offense. But when they need something quick, or in an ad-hoc fashion, they just can't do it. My guess is it's because they don't practice it much.

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  20. Personally, I think the Duke game was lost on shooting ability...Duke can shoot. Pitt still can not. For it's shooting deficiencies, Pitt is really successful, not a lot of teams can be successful with poor shooting percentages..but they pound the glass and play tough D. But if a team can rain down 10 + 3's on pitt, they won't be able to compete...

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  21. Having a couple tougher pre conference games would have helped as well. Once you win a couple legit, hard fought games. there would be more confidence, more been there done that.

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  22. What is the word on Anthony Davis? Looks like he has Pitt in his final 3, but I heard that he was a Temple lean...not sure why. I'd rather have his size over some of the other smaller CB verbals.

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  23. Boy I remember the days not long ago when the blog was full of dread, despair, teeth gnashing, etc. because PC and crew hadn't signed anyone yet. :) Now, months later they have another full class coming in and have already started on next years group.

    Maybe, just maybe, supporting PC is the better way to go than calling him names, second guessing every word he says, and demanding he be fired him after every loss. Pitt football is on the rise and I think the future looks very bright.

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  24. KENT BOWLER,
    You're full of s**t and it sounds like you're on the University's payroll with every unrealistic post that you make.

    This years class gives you a lil hope offensively and absolutely nothing defensively. Plus we're 7 scholarships over the limit which means some kids are about to hear some bad news.

    Please, listen to yourself sometimes

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    Replies
    1. Relax bro...no need to make it personal.

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    2. Im sorry anonymous
      He's sounding like the girl whose boyfriend consistently cheats on her, everyone else knows it, but she's in denial. Just asking him to WAKE UP

      Delete
    3. I'm confused about Pitt recruiting. I heard an overwhelming amount of comments that PC's first class was a lost class but Scout ranked it #40. This year's allegedly good class is ranked #39 with a lower star per player average. Yes, 15 of those recruits are gone, but who sent them packing? The 2013 class was ranked #21 but had the lowest star per player average of the Top 35 classes. I'm not sure I see a real vs. perceived uptick in recruiting.

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    4. John,
      I've heard Pitt admin is on several blogs with under different names.
      This is one of the few blogs that actually permits some negative posts unlike rivals or scout that seems to delete them at Pitt admin's request.

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    5. John,

      Kent does tend to look at the bright side of things regarding Pitt football, but he points out negatives as well, such as when he gives analysis of individual games.

      I don't think he's in denial, but rather looks at the glass as half-full. I think some of the recent recruiting news does bode well, as I think Coach Chryst is maybe getting more acclimated to the recruiting game.

      However, I agree with you that the recruiting on the defensive side of the ball is lacking at this point.

      I think it's possible to agree to disagree with Kent without the vitriol.

      Delete
    6. I think Pitt is six over, but that's not a problem. Ifill, Crockett, Christian, Felder, Shane Johnson and Lezenga won't be back. Lezenga is a hard-working former walk-on. He's probably close to graduating and got a year's worth of tuition last season, which he earned the hard way.

      Delete
    7. Sam,
      Rivals ranked the 2013 class 35th with 27 players.
      The 2014 class is ranked 39th with 24 players. Ranked 7th out of 14 in the ACC. John is correct that Pitt is 7 over the limit.
      There is no uptick in recruiting. Same ole.

      Delete
  25. I'm a Pittsburgh guy through and through and a straight shooter. Don't feed me a load of craps and try to get me to believe I'm eating lobster and shrimp

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  26. There is some credence to what Kent is writing. I certainly have issues with PC's defensive recruiting and hiring, and for that matter, I have an even bigger issue with our AD. These issues have been expressed on this and other blogs.

    However, we are going to have both AD and PC for a while so we may as well make the most of it. In fact, when you consider all of the promising underclassmen (and especially freshmen) that Pitt has in both FB and BB, not to mention that we even have a class women's basketball coach, you can make an argument that things are looking up.

    bill

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  27. haha, this blog has to be the most negative pitt blog on the net. Maybe it's because it rains so much in Pittsburgh. Honestly I've never met a true Pittsburgher who isn't an ardent pessimist.

    I don't work for the university, but I can't wait to see Pitt start posting 8-9 win seasons consistently in the ACC. And for you monkeys to start badmouthing it!

    Chryst is doing things the right way. His way. And it's working. Sadly I won't have any proof in the short term. Continue your badmouthing...i'm sure it's fun.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Will you be happy with 8-9 wins a year epecially when 3-4 are against little sisters of the poor?

      Sorry, I wanted a football program that would compete for a national championship>

      I guess that's not happening as long as this AD is here.

      Delete
    2. "And it's working." I'm not sure if that's true yet or not and neither does anyone else...especially recruiting...

      I'm not going to go so far as hoping for a NC... for a top 4 finish in the ACC from time to time and a shot at the ACC title would be nice though. A NC will never happen at Pitt....the top brass aren't interested in sports near enough for that to ever happen again. Won't happen in my life time again, that's for sure...

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  28. After watching so many freshmen play well this year, many of which weren't so highly regarded by people like John Wright, I fully support Coach Chryst and his recruits.

    John Wright, Pittsburgh through and through, aka a typical yinzer who (1) complains after every snap of every game that doesn't result in a Pitt touchdown; and/or (2) doesn't even go to the games because he is too cheap.

    He feels the need to criticize Kent Bowler, who sounds like the type of guy who goes to every home game, sets up a tailgate, and enjoys the day with his family and friends.

    If there were more Kents, and less John Wrights, Pitt football would be much more enjoyable for us all.

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    Replies
    1. Well stated !!!!!!

      Delete
    2. I don't complain about a 9-3 or better season. I do complain about 3 straight 6-6 seasons. If the Steelers had 3 straight 8-8 seasons, there's not a Steelers fan that wouldn't be calling for Mike Tomlin's head. So why should I accept that happening on Saturday's with Pitt when Steeler Nation would never accept it happening on Sunday's.

      2015 starts now. (24/7 reports) WVU is currently ranked 8th with 3, 4* & 2, 3* commits, Ohio State is currently 22nd with 2, 4* recruits, and Pitt is 50th with 2 unranked recruits. We gotta do better. Our coaches can not continue to be outworked on the road and have to start getting better players instead of settling for 4 year special team players.

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    3. I don't think judging Pitt against OSU is a fair assessment. We have not been in their class for decades. I agree WVU is a going school to judge against. I also agree they are having early success in 2015. But I noticed you failed to mention WVU's 2014 class, why? Maybe because it is ranked lower then PITTS.

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    4. Actually, I didn't mention 2014's class because those results will be in in 6 days my friend.

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    5. Here's another vote for Kent. I grow weary of the John Wrights (aka naysayers). Give Chryst a chance. A real chance - and not just through 2015. After the embarrassment we went through with the SI article and the coaching carousel, I think Chryst deserves a real chance to do his job without the continual sniping that we see on this board and others.

      Delete
    6. Wine,
      If you want to compare Pitt to anyone, it should be how Pitt stacks up versus other teams in ACC.
      2014 Pitt is currently 7th of 14.
      In 2013, Pitt ended up 7th of 14.

      Delete
    7. John, Coach Chryst has only been here for 2 years, so he's not responsible for three 6-6 seasons.

      We all want Pitt to do better than 6-6. I think there is some reason for optimism, and not everything is gloom and doom with Pitt. Constantly negative posts, without pointing out anything positive, are tiresome and don't serve any real purpose.

      Delete
    8. @ winedogs and anonymous 2:36

      Why would you not compare Pitt to OSU? We're both major Division 1 programs. We're both in major conferences. We both recruit PA & OH. OSU came into our back yard and took Malik Hooker, they're definitely competition.

      That's the attitude that has to go. You don't just lie down because they're OSU, Penn State, or Michigan, you gotta stand in the ring and fight as if you belong there too. QUIT SETTLING FOR MEDIOCRITY. YOU HAVE TO WANT TO DO BETTER.

      Delete
    9. WV will have a top 50 class when Dana gets the boot next yeer when they go 6-6 or 5-7. Look, this is cyclical. Their commits are from the same florida area where geno smith and bailey came from.

      If Pitt were strategic, they would find a coach with a great relationship with chris weinke. Weinke has partnered on a new high school concept where he recruits 3 and 4 star high school talent and plays a tough schedule in florida. It is called IMG Prep or some odd name. It will be a division 1 factory. One top program already hired terrel buckley and assigned him to IMG for that reason. Pitt needs to do some background checking and find a connection to Weinke. Proactive, strategic hiring.

      As far as PItt Duke was concerned. Pitt was beat by a team that said we will out physical you and out desire you. That said, the score is closer with Durand Johnson in the lineup but without physicality to exceed dukes, we had no chance, nada! As J Bilas said when asked what it would take to beat Pitt, he responded......helmets and mouthguards

      Delete
  29. Big game for Pitt BB this weekend vs Virginia.
    Could get their 1st win against an RPI Top 50 team.

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  30. John Wright unsurprisingly further proving my point @9:22.

    Dokish (and quite frankly every other review I've read) has had glowing reviews about the two commits Pitt received for the 2015 class already. Yet, for some reason, John Wright has to reach for some negative spin based on rankings on one site over a year before signing day.

    To me, Chryst, is providing the stability this program has needed since Wannstedt was fired. I hope he continues to improve and stays here for a very long time. He's a refreshingly honest person, and that has specifically resonated with many of our current players and recruits.

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    Replies
    1. I do like these two. I don't know if PSU was interested but they are good prospects. Both in the top 20 prospects in PA. I'd probably have Paulina around No.12 so that's pretty good.

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    2. Last year everyone was complaining that Pitt had no recruits until the last week of April. Now they pick up 2 recruits early and people are complaining that they don't stack up to other teams early recruits. I'm not saying PC will be a great recruiter but when does the negativity end?

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    3. Winedogs - That's the way it is with some haters. Nothing that's done by PC or any coach will be good enough. They feel they know better and should be running things. Heck, if you can recruit good on Xbox real life mustn't be that hard, right.....

      Delete
  31. Anyone care to bet that "John Wright" is actually one of our favorite former posters?

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    Replies
    1. He's not. That person gets deleted daily because he's not smart enough to change all of his terminology. He just can't help himself.

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    2. You mean that genius actually still puts "just offer" in his posts? That's priceless.

      Delete
  32. Just compare his twitter page to any of the posts and bingo!!! Pretty easy for Chris!! Hahah

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  33. Wow, what a busy time on the blog since I last posted..LOL

    John, John, John - Sorry to disappoint you but I'm not on the Pitt payroll. Just a fan who feels PC is making good moves with the team. As I've posted in the past, since I'm not willing to be a big-time booster and use money to change the way Pitt runs the football team, I can either accept their plan or reject it. I feel it's better to accept and support vs. complain and rant.

    As I read through your name calling rant, you don't understand why I feel the team is getting better?

    I feel this way because, in my opinion, PC keeps improving the roster year over year. When he took over the team they were a joke of a program, had no direction, and had no depth on the roster. We now have a coach who's stabilized the organization, is implementing his plan, and continues to recruit well while building depth across the roster.

    Has he done everything perfect? No, but I feel his done much more good than bad. And so with that I'll support PC and his plan. I too would love to see Pitt sign a class full of 5*'s but that's not going to happen. To me, the administration has made it clear that winning at all cost is not acceptable and so that's why you can't compare Pitt to a OSU, PSU, etc. They have differing thoughts when it comes to football.

    So if you'd like to keep on hating, have at it. But instead of putting out nothing but insults and immature rants, why don't you explain what should be done differently and what actions you are going to take to help those things get done.

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    Replies
    1. Very well put Kent. Unlike some people, I can take constructive criticism. Offensively, I don't knock what PC & Rudolph are doing, as I've stated before, I applaud that. Defensively is where I have my issues. This year, we'll be playing the easiest schedule we will have in our next 10 years in the ACC. No Clemson, FSU, Louisville, or Notre Dame. With the 2014 class, Defense was supposed to be a major focus and with the schedule we have, building depth and molding these young defenders should've been a must. Since we struck out defensively with this class, Defense has to be a focal point for 2015.

      Delete
    2. This might be the first time I agree with John. I thought we would see one or two defensive coaching changes after 2013, but now I don't see that happening.

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    3. I agree, the D will be a bigger question for next year, provided Voytik doesn't get hurt and they find a WR to replace Street.

      But I'm not necessarily ready to say it will be worse either. The DL, besides Donald, didn't do much but I liked what I saw from Price and Mosley in their limited time. Hopefully they can fix Price's back and Mosley continues to develop. Both of them, along with Soto, seemed to have the best quickness and potential to create issues in the backfield.

      The other DT and DE positions along with the backups should be a good battle. And it will be better than we've had in the past with the group of kids available.

      I do feel the LB's will be stronger this year. Gonzalez seemed to get better as the season went on, Thomas was overall average and I feel would be best if moved to ILB to give him free range of the field. Also, I really like Grisby and feel he's a better OLB than Thomas anyway. While not as much depth here as along the DL, this group could be pretty good but injuries would cause big issues here.

      As for the DB's. They were terrible last year and I place that on both the coaches and players. House needs to do a better job and the players need to focus and want to be great (mainly speaking of L. Pitts).

      For all his warts, Vinopol got better as the year went on and looks to be an in the box SS type. But with Mitchell transferring in, I see him taking one spot and that leaves Vinopol to go at it with the others. Who wins, I have no idea but again they have enough bodies to make it a good competition.

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  34. To take a break from all the fine discussion above, Pitt's women's basketball team just won their second conference game of the year with a win over Boston College. That may not seem so great but in the context of what has occurred over the past two years, it is huge! It is a great example of what great coaching can do in a short period without much change of personnel. With a top 5 class coming in next year, the future is looking much brighter for the Lady Panthers!

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  35. Really, a top 5!! That is awesome. Where does that info come from as I would like to follow.

    Still no news on Bostad? That would be nice.

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    Replies
    1. Bostad was hired by the Titans over a month ago

      Delete
    2. while we're talking about our wish list:

      - Teryl Austin was hired as Lions' DC
      - Jeff Hafley was hired by the Browns

      I guess we should be happy that none of our assistants left ... but then again they may not be in demand (except for Engram)

      Delete
    3. Why would/should anyone be happy that "none" of the assistants left??
      I would be quite happy if Beckerfield, Haering, and House were given the boot.
      If not already, Engram should be the highest paid assistant behind the coordinators. He is extremely valuable to Pitt not just in recruiting but in coaching.

      Delete
    4. Anony 11:24 - I too felt PC would make a change or two, my thinking was Haering, but looks like he's going with what he has.

      And after looking at the recruiters assigned to this years group, might have been a good thing he kept Haering. He's tied to most of the OL and other local players they have. But I don't know how accurate they are on those listings.

      Was also surprised to see Engram only credited with one recruit this year (Jennings).

      Delete
  36. Only problem is, outside of 5 teams, no one but the players and their parents give two squats about girls' basketball. Great, I hope they get respectable but girls' schools is a money drain in the AD. It doesn't move the meter one iota. If Pitt fans have to get behind Pitt girls' hoops we are doomed.

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  37. What are these rumblings that Wade Freebeck is taking visits with Vanderbilt? Something we should be concerned about? Or just a kid using up his visits?

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    Replies
    1. Is he really a Pitt commit if he is still taking visits?
      If he were "uncommitted", no problem in him doing all 5 visits. I don't know how others feel, but I would pull the offer.

      Delete
    2. Several scouting reports have that he visited Vandy last weekend and he is scheduled to visit Pitt this weekend. All still have him currently committed to Pitt with two saying that he is warm towards Vandy.

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    3. Wouldn't worry about it. Boyd visited tennessee prior to signing day last year, still honored his verbal and signed with Pitt. For a lot of these kids, it's a free trip, why not.

      Mike W.

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  38. It is kind of funny that people complained about how lowly rated Freebeck was when Pitt recruited him, yet now people are worried that he will de-commit. Make up your mind folks!

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    Replies
    1. @ bizmarkie

      It's not kind of funny, it IS funny. Good one !

      Delete
  39. Pulling the offer would be a terrible idea. Freebeck had a connection with someone on the Vandy staff so he took the visit. Based on what's been written on one of the Pitt sites, sounds like Freebeck will be signing with the Panthers on LOI day.

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  40. When will Pitt be having its Junior day / weekend? Will you be doing an article about who is attending and info about them? Thanks for all the good info.

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  41. Wow Chris, almost 100 posts and they didn't even lose a football game or a recruit. LOL

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  42. By signing day are we going to move up in the rankings?

    Compared to Franklin at Penn State, who is quickly becoming the kind of annoying bully you want to pound into the ground, Paul Chryst seems like a go-to guy who really does have a plan to get Pitt up to an eight or nine win level most seasons.
    Yes, an FSU-like championship run would be terrific, but that might not be in the cards.

    Paul Chryst is already better than Dave Wannstedt, Walt Harris, Carl DePasqua, and Paul Hackett in his first two seasons.

    I have the articles bookmarked you wrote, Chris, about Pitt becoming an elite football program. I don't know if we're headed toward elite status, but I believe we will continue to see improvement and, best of all, Pitt's offensive production will be a joy to watch.

    I like Paul Chryst. He's the kind of guy you really want to see succeed.

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  43. Anonymous to John:
    Surely Pederson has his spies working these boards. Disclaimer: I despise Steve Pederson, but spying on what the public writes and using pseudonyms, or requiring those who work for you to do so, is just par for the course these days.

    Chris has written about how difficult it is to get information out of Pitt, and no one in Pittsburgh is doing real investigative reporting of Pitt, at least not any work resulting in investigations run by the two local papers.

    Even with the ongoing UPMC scandals, the Trib and Post stay away from Pitt, don't appear to ask any questions about Nordenberg's involvement, and accept whatever UPMC says as God's gospel truth. Disclaimer: I think the fact the UPMC is trying to avoid paying taxes is a direct affront to the citizens of Pittsburgh who have to pick up the bill.

    Massaging the message is the name of the game. I dropped my Rivals membership after Pitt lost to UCONN at Heinz in 2007 because the panther lair, or whatever the subscription only discussion group is called, was a waste of time. There were posters refuting any negative comments about the Stache, and if you remember that game, he deserved a lot of criticism.

    Kudos to panthersprey (and Chris' Big East Report before) along with Pittblather for allowing open discussions.

    It's obvious than neither Chris nor Chas can let the discussion become too offensive to the Pitt Bots, and they have sometimes needed to reign in comments. That is to be expected.

    Cardiac Hill has also come along way in allowing pretty free discussions. It took courage for CH to allow a piece comparing JD's non-conference basketball scheduling to Joe Paterno's, especially when JD was making excuses for not scheduling the Nitters on the hardwood in coming years.

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  44. I think it's debatable is PC has passed Walt or Wanny. Walt won some big games against top teams. Wanny was a much better recruiter. I contend PC trails both. The other 2 I'll give you. That said, PC may get there. Not yet, though.

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    1. He said that Chryst has passed all four in his first two years (as compared to their first two years). I assume this means in the number of wins, in which case he is right.

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  45. I like PC as a person quite a lot and if I had son who wanted to play for him, I would be overjoyed. However, to say that he has already surpassed Walt and Wanny at this point is a bit absurd.

    I sure hope he surpasses Walt and Wanny (both I believe were better than their reputation) but it will take another year or two before you can make a real meaningful assessment.

    bill

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  46. I'm a broken record on this subject, Walt had a bigger mess than PC or Wanny had coming in as the new head football man. The Johny Majors II era left some at Pitt to consider dropping D1 football. Now I dont blame Coach Majors cause Paul "I' The Same as the NCAA Death Penalty" Hackett left him less than nothing. I mean the Pitt Football team was light years from respectable. I remember being at Pitt Stadium when OSU came into town and smacked the crap out of us, and the OSU fans sitting by me feeling sorry for us and telling me "I can not believe how far your program has fallen." PC record maybe better but he didn't have as tough of situation to take over as Walt. PC took over a team that had been to two straight bowl games.

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  47. No doubt Walt inherited a mess and built the program up but was tailing off in his last 2 years (even with a BCS team that was won solely due to a week BE.) On the other hand, Wanny finished 27 and 12 over his last 3 years.

    PC certainly has a chance be better than both, but you can't accurately judge him or any coach on two years' work. (Chizik won a national title in his 1st year at Auburn and then fired 2 yeas later)

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  48. Ugly game. If Dixon beats the drum that Pitt lost due to lacking defense and rebounds, then Dixon needs his head examined.
    Pitt lost because they couldn't/didn't make baskets!!
    Its the offense stupid.

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    Replies
    1. Agreed....they only gave up 48 points but scored just 1 point in the final 6:52, yet it's the defense. Unbelievable....The same thing happened in the Cuse game.

      22 points at home in the 2nd half....ridiculous.

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    2. The Durand Johnson injury was a killer. Pitt needed his scoring off the bench. It's going to be a struggle the rest of the season. Pitt can win these next two, but Syracuse, NC, Notre Dame are likely going to be losses. Getting to the tourney makes it a success.

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    3. Agree. Last year UVA was 11-7 in ACC (23-12 overall) and didn't make NCAA. Pitt has no big wins to date so NCAA is not a given.

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    4. Pitt will make it easily. Virginia was 21-11 before the tournament last year. Pitt is going to do far better than that. They lost to four ranked teams. It's not like the wheels are falling off.

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    5. Pitt will make NCAA but don't expect a good seed.
      Depending upon the matchup, it wouldn't surprise me of a 1 and done.
      However, Pitt has exceeded expectations this year.

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    6. I know our bench outscored their bench by a large margin. I think Pitt's problem yesterday was not the bench but Lamar & Zanna not putting up their averages. We cant blame the bench in this game.

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    7. I just hope Pitt can avoid the 8 v. 9 game. I think Pitt is 0-3 in those games (Utah, Pacific, Witchita State).

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    8. I would like to see Pitt as a 9 seed....it might be the only chance Pitt gets to finally beat a higher seeded team under Dixon (or any other Pitt coach for that matter)

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  49. If Lamar is not creating then the team is in trouble since both starting guards have their limitations. It appears to me that some of the frosh are better against the better defenses, they are certainly quicker.

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    1. The problem is, the players are afraid to shoot.
      Seems players are told to feed Lamar instead of taking a shot.
      Last night reminded me of the last 2 years. Pass, pass, pass, pass then frantic shot. Seems Dixon is resorting to his old ways and being a control freak. If that continues, expect some transfers after the season.
      Dixon needs to start practicing shooting skills instead of just defense and rebounding. The game was unwatchable yesterday.

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  50. some interesting changes in recruiting. A couple of Pitt recruits have been bumped from 2 star to 3 stars, and a couple of others have been bumped from 0 stars to 2 stars. Some of the 0 stars to 2 stars is simply because they committed to Pitt which raises the value of the player a little bit. However there is one player that has made a huge jump. Our last recruit Hez Trahan was basically not rated and was under recruited. He got a bump to 2 stars on rivals.com which doesn't mean a whole lot. However he got bumped to 3 stars and a rating of 78(the same as Mike Grimm) on ESPN. That means ESPN rates him as the highest defensive recruit coming in. 78 isn't an amazing rating for ESPN but it also is nothing to sniff at... Chapman, Holtz, Grigsby, Clemmings, Shane Gordon, Brock Deciccio were all rated a 78 and for the most part were considered pretty good gets by Pitt. Ratings aren't what makes a football player, and at the end of the day it is exciting to look at but can mean very little. However it is a nice little surprise when a basically unknown recruit commits and then starts to get some recognition. We will find out on Wednesday and ultimately later down the road, but this class has turned out to have some optimism to it. Arguably better than last years class that has produced some decent talent already.

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    1. Pitt Admin post! Smell it a mile away.

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  51. To put Trahan in the same class as Grimm tells you all you need know about ESPN, they have no clue.

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    Replies
    1. I'm afraid I have to agree. They aren't on the same level. And ESPN is a joke.

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  52. Pitt basketball coach Jamie Dixon is the nineteenth highest paid college basketball coach in the country. The fact that he can't, or won't, recruit shooters should be unacceptable to the Pitt administration. It certainly makes Pitt basketball difficult to watch. And he did blame yesterdays lose on defense and rebouding.

    Pittsburgh media, including all the blogs, give Dixon a pass every time. Ask him why he has such a hard time with elite talent and shooters.

    This team is headed for an early exit from the NCAAs, if they make the tournament. They are one more injury away from disaster.

    By the way, why doesn't Dixon let his team just play? Why does he have to control them like little marionettes, with them constantly looking to him for approval.

    Sorry, but Khem Birch was right. Pitt's offense is just plain unattractive to high ranked talent.

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    Replies
    1. So if he can't recruit elite talent, then you would say he does not have elite talent on the team correct? So if we just go ahead and let them play and not worry about being a fundamentally sound team, then we are a poorly coached team with lack of talent??? That sounds worse to me. Future recruits seem to be filling the void of shooters, and lets not forget that we flipped this team around completely. One of our best shooters went down with an injury and we have 4 freshman getting quality min. When is the last time you remember 4 freshman seeing the court all year long?

      I was at the game, and it was sloppy on both ends. Both teams are well coached and have strong defenses. Add to that that both teams seemed to be flat on an afternoon game during superbowl Sunday and it made for a pretty awful game. When you talk about shooters though, there were not many open shots for Pitt. They missed countless off balance dinks and refused to take the 12 foot shot off of a banana screen, they would continue to drive to the hoop or dish back out and work the ball back around. While there was poor shot selection, I think that VA did a great job of taking away anything near the basket and not giving up any open 3s.

      It is amazing that Pitt opens against a soft schedule and people bitch about how they still can't be ranked and then they lose to 4 good teams and people bitch about the team itself. Other than Michael Young who is a freshman that has had his confidence shaken, which player on the current roster has not played above expectations for this year? Lamar, Talib, James, Cam, Artis, Newkirk, and even Johnson before he went down, have played up to expectations or exceeded them. If you don't like "Pitt basketball" which has led to some pretty exciting times during the Howland and Dixon era, go root for another team. I for one love the fact that a team which was predicted to be like a 12 seed to start the season can still go to Cuse and play them tough until the end. That they rarely get upset, they don't usually lay eggs and get blown out, they compete hard and have a chance to win every single game.

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    2. Ryan Luther and Damon Wilson sure as heck can't shoot. To think we have to deal with Maverick Rowan and Mustapha Heron chucking up bricks game after game at the Pete. You are so right Tony!

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    3. Maverick Rowan is a 18 year old Senior, playing as an 18 year old Sophomore

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    4. Lol, Terry Swanson won't be 18 until August, Kason Harrell of Hempfield is 16 & a Junior, Ricky Rogers - 18 already at WVU, If you put them behind two years, they'll all be nationally ranked recruits. Put this into perspective. Maverick Rowan, as a Sophomore, is Lincoln Park's oldest player.

      Delete
    5. John Wright, Rowan will be 18 in July.
      He will be 19 in July, which is legit per PIAA, before his senior year which allows him to play BB as a 19 year old senior.
      Rowan's Dad screwed up. He held him back in elementary school so that is 1 year. When Rowan dad was coach at Hopewell, Maverick played on the 9th grade team as an 8th grader. So, Maverick repeated 8th grade as homeschool to start the 4 yr clock again.

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    6. I'm not sure why Rowan's age is such a big deal. He's not 30. He's just 18. It's even better for Pitt if he's 20 when he arrives. It will mean he's more physically ready to play.

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    7. Maverick was home schooled for 8th grade for two straight years, not one. Why cheat the system. He will be 20 once he's enrolled at Pitt. He played summer league with Rushel Shell for a few games until he got the warning from the WPIAL the he wouldn't be eligible to play his sr year if he kept playing.

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    8. Well Doke,
      If all of Pitt's current class of football recruits were held back One or two years, they may not be coming to Pitt because they'd have an additional year or two to get better, which means they'll have better offers and may renege. With that said, this should be his Sr year, in which he earned a scholarship to Pitt. Because his father is cheating the system, he gets two additional years of high school basketball, which will probably come with more attractive offers. When was the last time a local high school Fr committed to Pitt and stuck to the commitment. Ron Rowan is using Pitt as a crutch to get more offers from more attractive schools. Once those offers come, see ya later...

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    9. I hate to tell you this, but getting an offer from a program the level of Pitt is what players strive for. You make it sound like it's St. Bonaventure. He's a local kid who committed to the elite local program. I'm not sure why you're so paranoid about him changing his mind.

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    10. Terrelle Pryor did it, Herb Pope did it. Im not saying Pitt isn't a great place to play, but Pitt isn't a 5* magnet either. Duke, Syracuse, UConn, Arizona, Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina are all top tier programs and have all won National Championships over the years. Pitt is probably most comparable to Michigan State, MSU has a rep for playing anyone, anywhere, Pitt doesn't, but again MUS has won multiple National Championships. For attractiveness and recruiting purposes, Pitt has to get over that hump

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    11. You do realize that Pryor was the top football prospect in the country, right? Or that Pitt stopped recruiting Pope because he was too much trouble?

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    12. Hey Mr. Glass is Half Empty, he has top 20 players coming in the near future that are lights out shooters! What more do you want? Have you ever seen a basketball game before. JD bashers amaze me. If Pitt football achieved that kind of success every year (Top-25 Finish every year) people would be dancing in the streets.

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    13. When Pryor committed to Pitt basketball as a Sophomore, he still couldn't decide which sport he wanted to play. Herb Pope didn't get shot until after he finished playing high school basketball. The kid that shot him lived on the Hill district; which led to Pope not choosing Pitt.

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    14. No offense, but you have no idea what you're talking about. You clearly have an agenda here for whatever reason. But you don't even have the facts.

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  53. Doke , can you tell me what exactly goes on at the Pitt JR. day that leaves the kids just gushing. To bad the NCAA wont move to an early signing period so they could get these kids while there still in the ether !

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    1. They just show them around and give them a lot of attention. But this is the first Jr Day for a lot of these kids so they're not used to the wooing yet. They're easily impressed.

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  54. C.D. - Why no Virginia blog post?

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    1. I've been busy with football articles. If I don't have time to write one I still tweet a lot about it during the game.

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  55. This does not sound promising re: Freeback

    http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2014-01-31/sports/fl-recruiting-late-flip-0201-20140131_1_brandon-powell-coral-gables-south-florida

    My feeling is Freebeck is Gonzo to Vandy. Hope I am wrong. Would really be bad from Pitt's perspective to lose someone to a school who only recruited him for 2 weeks

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    Replies
    1. If you look at it from Freebeck's point of view, Vandy is the better choice.
      Bertke would be stiff competition. Bertke will probably backup Voytik as true frosh and Freebeck will RS as Freebeck needs to add weight and muscle. Freebeck may never be starter at Pitt with Bertke.
      Freebeck to Vandy, he would have a good shot at starter in 2 years.

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    2. I must have missed where Bertke is Otto Graham. You make him sound like an elite QB prospect. He's not. And neither is Freebeck.

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    3. I didn't say Bertke is elite.
      But Bertke is ready "physically" to play as true frosh. Freebeck isn't. That may make it more difficult for Freebeck to become a starter if he picks Pitt.

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    4. Bertke is no closer to playing than Freebeck. They both have a few years in the program before they are capable of doing anything.

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    5. I agree with Doke on this. Hasn't Bertke grown to like 6'7" this year? I could certainly see Bertke moving to TE before leaving Pitt.

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    6. I read somewhere that Bertke is 6'7" and 225#. Whereas Freebeck is 6'5" and 185ish and injury prone. skinny.

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    7. Bertke is very skinny and injury prone too.

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    8. Calm down people, why wouldn't a recruit take a visit to another school? They pay for your trip, they wine and dine you, and they do it at their expense. If I was a recruit, I would visit every school in the country that I could! Why not take advantage of it and enjoy the experience. Look at how many school Tyler Boyd visited after committing to Pitt! I don't blame them.

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    9. BAM - And Freebeck is GONE - just like I suspected above.

      Does not speak well of this staff when you lose someone another team just started recruiting 2 weeks ago

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  56. With whom will Wade Freebeck sign, Vanderbilt or Pitt?

    Chris, what say you?

    PittofDreams

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    Replies
    1. Well I've been writing an article on Pitt's recruiting and Freebeck is in it, so I guess that means I think he'll end up at Pitt.

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    2. Don't look now, but all of Pitt beat media is saying Freebeck is signing with Vandy.
      Don't blame Freebeck when you put yourself in his shoes.

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  57. FWIW, Rivals reversed Freebeck's commitment from Soft to Solid after his visit here. While he may well flip to Vandy, he gave the impression while he was here over the weekend with his parents that he was staying with Pitt

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  58. Good news doke, getting a foot in the door at Aquinas is HUGE. Freebeck's teammate Chris Hart a 6'3" 230 lb. OLB who Pitt offered is really good.

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  59. Saw Bertke play the Ohio HS championship game and he looked like a good prospect with a live arm. But he played in the smallest school division and was probably the biggest guy on the field, including the linemen. I wouldn't call him skinny but may be injury prone .. he did miss about a month this season.

    I would think he would have a chance down the road to start, but can't see him (or Freebeck who I saw on film) starting in the very near future. From my very small sampling of both, I would slighly rate Bertke ahead of Freebeck but he also played against easier competition.
    bill

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    Replies
    1. I actually think Bertke is better than Freebeck at the moment. I don't know why so many Pitt fans just assume that Freebeck is the QB of the future.

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  60. Freebeck is gone. Article in the Trib saying he will sign with Vandy. We need a graduate transfer QB. Go after Wittek from USC.

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  61. Chris, I would assume that HCPC has factored leakage into the commits. In other words, if Freebeck goes to Vandy, I would assume he has a short list of kids without a firm offer from Pitt - a waiting list for lack of a better term.

    On the flip-side, if a kid they had recruited hard but committed elsewhere literally changes his mind at the 12th hour and wants to come to Pitt, does HCPC bump a kid to make room or does he honor all of his commits and tell the kid who flipped, :sorry, there's no room at the Inn"?

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    1. Any JC QB's available?

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  62. One more thing about Bertke .. he played part of the time on defense and was pretty physical. He seemed to be really athletic for his size.

    bill

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  63. For being a QB guru, the earliest now Chryst will be healthy at the position is 2016. By healthy I mean having three kids at his disposal and none of who are redshirting. That will be year five for Paul, too.

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    1. I'm not sure why you are citing the moniker, "QB guru", even if only sarcastically. HCPC is regarded as an offensive guru from a program with a power running game. He has earned that recognition and we see that he is able to get OLs and RBs.

      The fact is that Russell Wilson dropped in his lap and he was able to take advantage of that. But Wilson was already pretty well developed by the time he got to Madison.

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  64. Maybe I'm in the minority, but I like Chad Voytik as a future quarterback. You wish he had more experience, but as the O-line continues to improve and the running game gets better, I believe Chad will be more than good enough. Maybe Freebeck read the report on Voytik when he was recruited.
    (From ESPN)
    There is so much to like about this guy, but you just wish he were taller. He is a Kyle Parker/Drew Brees type and we would argue you will not find a quicker release on a QB in the 2012 class than the one Voytik has. The ball absolutely jumps out of his hand with pop and velocity and he can fit the ball into tight spots because of his anticipation and release that most can't. In fact, his delivery gives the impression that he has a stronger arm than he actually does. He stands at right about six feet. Works mostly from the shotgun and is very impressive on timing routes and routes that require him to throw to a spot. He is balanced, has great feet and shows presence and awareness in the pocket. Displays good command of the scheme and knows where to go with the football. He is also a good athlete that is used o designated runs. Can buy time, scramble and keep a play alive and is a highly competitive player when things break down. Throws on the move with accuracy and makes good decisions under duress. As with most shorter QB's, it helps him to be in the shotgun so he can see the field and get the ball out. If his view gets obstructed and he is not able to get into rhythm he is not as effective. Moving the launch point with him enhances his productivity. He lacks bulk and strength at this stage and while he is a good runner he is not a guy you want handling the ball on the ground a whole lot. His release and accuracy as a passer is what sets him apart. He can get very hot and be very authoritative with his throws. In our opinion if he were two or three inches taller he would be a national recruit for this class. Good prospect with some things you can't coach--like a lightning quick release.

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  65. Well this sucks so much for getting kids out of Aquinas.

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  66. Sun Sentinel hasn't reported anything yet on Freebeck .. still listed as Pitt.

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  67. According to rivals, the day before LOI day.
    Pitt class is ranked 41st and 9th in ACC. Not good by any measure.

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  68. Dieter Kurtenback, Sun Sentinel journalist has tweeted that Freeback has flipped to Vandy. We'll see.

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    1. Scout.com has him as a Vandy verbal.

      http://pittsburgh.scout.com/a.z?s=141&p=8&c=1&nid=6312199

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    2. He's definitely going to Vanderbilt.

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  69. John Wright, you can't post an article on here. There are copywriter laws. Yet another thing you don't seem to understand.

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