It's been a very good weekend for Pat Narduzzi and his staff. On Saturday, New York linebacker Elias Reynolds chose the Panthers. The previous Rutgers commit is solidly built at 6'3" and 230 pounds. Known as a tough, strong run defender, I expect that Reynolds will eventually end up in the mix at middle linebacker. He is the third Rutgers commit to flip to Pitt, joining giant offensive lineman Justin Morgan and hard-hitting safety Phil Campbell.
On Sunday night things got dramatically better when former Western Michigan commit Amir Watts committed. The 6'3" 260 pound Chicago native exploded in the past six months and was courted by the likes of Penn State, Nebraska, Rutgers, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Iowa State, and Kentucky. He became a 4-star prospect after wowing at the Semper Fidelis All-American Game practices. Watts can play at defensive end or defensive tackle. I think he will end up at tackle where he can use his brute strength and catlike quickness.
Watts was on of two prospects that officially visited the Panthers over the weekend. The other was 4-star defensive tackle Keyshon Camp, 6'3" 275 pounds, of Lakeland, FL. The former USC commit de-commited while on his visit to Pittsburgh. He is still considering Michigan, Missouri, and possibly Ohio State. He already visited Michigan and is considering visiting Missouri next weekend. His defensive line coach at USC is now the defensive line coach at Missouri, but Camp enjoyed his visit to Pittsburgh very much. He's expected to announce on Signing Day, Feb. 3rd.
Wide receiver target K'von Wallace dropped Virginia Tech as a suitor, which was looking good for the Panthers since Wallace is a Virginia native, but he just picked up a Clemson offer on Sunday and that is making things more iffy.
Darnell Salomon, the much discussed 4-star wide receiver from Florida, visited Temple this past weekend. The city got covered in snow, and it was the first time Salomon ever saw snow in person. He is visiting Pitt next weekend, along with many others (including Damar Hamlin), and there isn't expected to be snow. With it basically a two school race between Pitt and Temple, you have to like Pitt's chances.
On the downside, McKeesport HS star Khaleke Hudson has announced that Michigan and Penn State lead over Pitt and UCLA. His mother was quoted as saying that she felt at home at Michigan, and it was clear that she loved it there. Hudson left there without committing, and did the same at Penn State this weekend, but it's not looking good for the Panthers. He's scheduled to visit Pitt next weekend, but we'll have to see if he still makes it.
Also possibly troubling is that New Jersey speedster Maurice Ffrench is now being wooed heavily by Penn State. You can't really blame him considering the talent the Panthers are bringing in at wide receiver and cornerback, the two positions he could play at Pitt, but he's a fast and exciting player that will be tough to lose, especially to the evil ones.
As of now, Pitt has EIGHT prospects that were ranked 4-stars by one of the recruiting services, and I'm including transfer Chris Clark in that. The other seven are Thomas MacVittie, Ruben Flowers, Juwann Winfree, Amir Watts, Chase Pine, George Hill, and Kaezon Pugh. The Panthers have a legitimate chance of landing three more in Salomon, Camp, and Damar Hamlin. That would give the Panthers at least a top 25 recruiting class.