That Cautious Optimism

Tyler Boyd got left off the  pre-season 1st team All-ACC squad. For what it’s worth, Phil Steele did the same in his annual preview guide. I wonder how much of that is a “disrespecting” of Boyd or a belief that his numbers will drop with increased focus and Chad Voytik at QB. Either way, it isn’t a huge thing beyond additional motivation. As should be the fact that no Pitt...
Via Pitt Blather
17 hours ago  |  Discuss

What Is the Defensive Identity?

This is something I’ve been turning over in my mind for the past week. I know the identity of the offense. It is being built from the line out. A big, bruising line that will pave the way to run and give plenty of choices for the QB. There’s speed among the receivers. It is obvious that Head Coach Paul Chryst and OC Joe Rudolph has a vision for the offense that they are implementing...
Via Pitt Blather
2 days ago  |  Discuss

2014 ACC Football Media Days

I’m not sure why the ACC starts media day on a Sunday. Other than to make it as clear as possible to BYU  that they will never receive an invite. I mean, it doesn’t seem like a bad deal for the media. Prepare the stock “Five things for ACC Media Days” column in advance. Show up on a Saturday to the nice resort hotel. Get one free night to party and have a good time. Nurse...
Via Pitt Blather
3 days ago  |  Discuss

O-Line’s Future Gets Deeper and Bigger

Pitt got a verbal from another big offensive lineman. Tony Pilato — no, not this guy — this guy. In the last few months alone, the big offensive lineman from Hempfield took a pair of spring visits, attended the Panthers’ prospect camp in June and returned for another visit a week later. So when Pilato finally made his commitment Thursday, the decision was a natural one. ...
Via Pitt Blather
8 days ago  |  Discuss

Uchebo Coming Along, Luther Readies for Redshirt

Regardless of the ability to help Pitt, can we at least agree that the best thing in the long-term for Joseph Uchebo was coming to Pitt and getting better medical help for rehabbing his knee. In moments like these, it’s easy to forget Uchebo is still recovering from a devastating knee injury that put his basketball career on hold for almost two years. But then he runs up the court...
Via Pitt Blather
8 days ago  |  Discuss

Stop Me If You’ve Heard This Before: Ejuan Price Is Hurt

I’m sure you all know, but to repeat the news from this afternoon. Defensive End Ejuan Price has suffered a torn pectoral muscle and will require surgery. This will keep him out for the entire 2014 season. To say Price has had some issues with injuries is putting it kindly. 2012: Missed entire season with torn right pectoral muscle. 2013: Missed 7 out of 13 games with back problems...
Via Pitt Blather
9 days ago  |  Discuss

Slow Build

I Year 3 of Chryst, I don’t think there is yet a settled answer on Coach Paul Chryst. Some may have made up their mind about him one way or another, but I am definitely not one of them. There’s plenty I do like about him: the way he runs the program, the actual coaching, the message, the way he is building the team from the lines out. And there’s plenty that — to be kind...
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10 days ago  |  Discuss

Not Letting Go

In my draft folder is a kind of longform piece I’ve been working on regarding the seemingly neverending UNC cheating scandal. The scandal has been fascinating to me because as Carolina has struggled to do everything in its power to minimize the mess. From claiming it was an academic scandal for the entire school, not just the athletic department. To saying it was a rogue professor...
Via Pitt Blather
11 days ago  |  Discuss

Football Notes, 7/11

Hard to believe the work up to football season is coming quickly. Conference media days in less than two weeks. School media days. The flurry of before the beginning of training camp articles. The insane parsing of the meaning of every padless practice. Good times coming soon. At the ACC media days, Pitt will send Tyler Boyd and Ray Vinopal as the player reps. It’s been quite a...
Via Pitt Blather
14 days ago  |  Discuss

Basketball Notes, 7/10

Just going to run through a few things to clear tabs. Arizona big man, Taleb Tarczewski hasn’t been in Arizona taking classes and working with the coaches and teammates there. Instead, he’s been back in Massachusetts working there. Including private sessions with Bobby Martin. What made you choose to work out with Bobby Martin? He was college teammates with my coach [Sean Miller...
Via Pitt Blather
15 days ago  |  Discuss

At Last, The Completed Non-Con

I’m back. A bit of traveling for the holiday week(end). Try to get back into things Monday night and the storm that ripped through our area knocked the power out for a good 12 hours or so. The power outage wasn’t the worst — except to my 12-year old daughter who found her tablet useless without wi-fi. Especially since it happened at night and we were able to sleep through half...
Via Pitt Blather
16 days ago  |  Discuss

New Tab for General PITT Sports Discussion

Last article’s comments are getting unwieldy and as per direct orders from “pmdHTP” (whoever that is – I think an upstart commenter) here is a new tab… Enjoy!
Via Pitt Blather
17 days ago  |  Discuss

End Notes on Expansiopocolypse

The cycle has finally concluded. Yesterday was the official changing of conference affiliations for this year. Louisville entered the ACC. Maryland and Rutgers went to the Big Ten. East Carolina, Tulane and Tulsa go to the American. Conference USA called up some other teams. There will still be moves. Navy is joining the American in another year. Cinci and UConn will continue to...
Via Pitt Blather
23 days ago  |  Discuss

Basketball Notes, 6/28

Mustapha Heron is still a Pitt verbal. “I’m able to focus on my game, working on my game to fit into Pitt’s system,” Heron said at the NBPA Top 100 camp. “I don’t have to worry about who’s watching me, what type of letters are coming in, what type of calls are coming in. I can just play freely.” With that said, the departure of assistant coach and ace recruiter Barry...
Via Pitt Blather
27 days ago  |  Discuss

Patterson Goes to Atlanta

I’m thrilled to be wrong. Lamar Patterson got drafted a bit earlier in the second round than even the few mock drafts that still had him listed. University of Pittsburgh senior forward Lamar Patterson (Lancaster, Pa./St. Benedict’s Prep, N.J.) was selected by the Milwaukee Bucks with the No. 48 pick in Thursday evening’s 2014 NBA Draft. Seconds later, ESPN announced that Milwaukee...
Via Pitt Blather
28 days ago  |  Discuss

Draft Night for Patterson And Zanna

Talib Zanna is not going to hear his name called tonight. He will get a chance in the NBA summer league with the possibility of a free agent signing, but he is likely heading overseas. Lamar Patterson has a shot at the end of the second round. What do the mock drafts say?: For what it’s worth, Patterson’s stock seems to have dropped a bit by this standard. In April, NBAdraft...
Via Pitt Blather
29 days ago  |  Discuss


Isn’t it great that when all else fails we revert right back to discussing the apparently seminal topic of what wins college football games.  Of course it is the recruiting season, and recruiting season means star gazing, so let’s have at it. Back in the spring of 2012 I did a three piece series on here about how recruiting stars equated to peer production – that is how many...
Via Pitt Blather
June 25, 2014  |  Discuss

Recruiting and Ranking

It’s been well established that Coach Paul Chryst does not find recruiting to be one of his favorite things. His approach has annoyed, puzzled and infuriated plenty in just a short time. At times he can be slow to offertalent. Ostensibly based on wanting to see them in a camp or meet with them first. Yet, he’s jumping right on that sophomore QB/punter in Wisconsin. That’s just...
Via Pitt Blather
June 25, 2014  |  Discuss

Three More In the Fold

Over the weekend Pitt pulled a verbal from Florida. Today two more were added. Chryst really likes June. First up, running back Sekai Lindsey verballed over the weekend. [Sekai] Lindsay, who attends Melbourne Palm Bay High School, joins defensive back Malik Henderson of Hallandale Beach, Fla. Lindsay, 5-foot-10, 205, is rated a three-star prospect by He also has offers...
Via Pitt Blather
June 24, 2014  |  Discuss

Unleash the Irrational Optimism

Don’t lie. You read the articles on the pro-am games last night. You try to tell yourself to take it all with a grain of salt. To keep perspective. And yet… Derrick Randall looks different. He’s got a different aura about him this June. Physically, he’s night and day from last summer with a stronger, leaner frame. The rising senior has more energy as he sprints up and down...
Via Pitt Blather
June 24, 2014  |  Discuss

Pro-Am Starts Tonight

The Pittsburgh Summer Pro-Am kicks off tonight. There are seven teams. Only one lacks any Pitt players — past or present. Five of the other squads has at least one key Pitt player who will be scrutinized or have hopes projected on them. Joseph Uchebo is on one squad, and given the way he looked afraid to run in the limited time last year, I have a great deal of curiosity as to...
Via Pitt Blather
June 23, 2014  |  Discuss

Basketball Notes, 6/20

I tweaked my back yesterday. No idea how.  Got out of my car at work and it abruptly hit. About once or twice a year I suddenly find myself moving very gingerly and grimacing when doing anything too sudden. It fades after a few days. A week at worst. My dad has the same problem, and has never gotten a good explanation from doctors as to how or why. Or how to prevent it. Just something...
Via Pitt Blather
June 20, 2014  |  Discuss

Pitt’s New Assistant and Maverick Rowan

Marlon “Smoke” Williamson was introduced as a new Pitt assistant coach yesterday. “We are excited about Marlon becoming a member of the University of Pittsburgh community and I know he is ecstatic to be coming aboard,” Dixon said. “As a former point guard with strong knowledge of the game, Marlon will help us in recruiting, scouting and player development. We are fortunate...
Via Pitt Blather
June 18, 2014  |  Discuss

And The June Commits Continue

A definite position of need. Defensive tackle is a spot Pitt needs to bring in some players. Today, it looks like Pitt got a good one in Kraig Howe. Howe visited Pitt three times in the last year, with two visits in the fall and another unofficial visit this spring. After the spring visit, he spoke very highly of the Panthers. “Pitt has been one of my favorites for a long time...
Via Pitt Blather
June 17, 2014  |  Discuss

Quick Hits, 6/17

Summer camps. The reasonable thing is to find a decent day camp relatively nearby. As long as they don’t get hurt or abused it is all fine.. Dump the kids and run. But not these days. No. My wife has to find camps that enrich them. That offer chances for them to do activities they actually want to do. Obviously it means more money. It also means hauling them even further out of...
Via Pitt Blather
June 17, 2014  |  Discuss
Pitt Blather
Covering Pitt Panther football and basketball with bias and a gimlet eye.
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