Jerry Micco asked me to drop a note here and give a little update as to where I've been and when I'll be back so here goes nothing --
In case you haven't heard (if you don't follow me on Twitter or something) I was in an accident (I slipped on ice in my driveway and smashed face first into a cement block retaining wall) and have had to have some surgery to my face and whatnot which is why I have been off work and off of TV for a few weeks (until I got the stitches out of my lips, I looked a lot like Freddie Krueger and now that I had surgery on my nose I have two black eyes) even though this is a very critical time for hiring coaches and recruiting.
But I had a concussion which meant I had to stay away from computer screens and limit how much I watchTV and I also have two broken fingers on my right hand which, until the past few days were extremely painful and that made it tough to type on a keyboard. I did little updates on Twitter here and there but that's about it.
I'm happy to report that I am clearly on the mend - Thursday I passed a concussion test and yesterday I had a surgery and that hopefully will be my last so now it is just a matter of healing and so I hope to be back shortly after my follow up appointment which is next Wednesday (signing day).
But I want to thank all of you who have sent me well wishes and asked about my status and whatnot and it let you know it won't be long before I'll be back up and running and reporting on the Panthers. It really means a lot to get e-mails from many of you wishing me well.
There were two significant news items this week:
I'll say this about both developments - Pitt fans should be very happy with them.
I know that recruiting hasn't gone very well so far for the new staff in terms of bringing in some splash names or even any names for that matter, but (a) they have done a great job of retaining the top players who were already committed to the last staff and (b) they didn't have many scholarships to fill.
But Holtz should fit in very well as a blocking tight end and a pass catching option in Chryst's offense. I've seen him play basketball a number of times and football a number of times (my kids go to North Allegheny so I see a lot of Shaler) and I'm impressed with his strength and his size but more importantly, he has really good feet, he is quick and he is agile for a big guy. He will be a nice player for Pitt.
And Engram really is a class act and a good guy and a clear upgrade over the receivers coaches that Pitt has had in recent years. I think he should be able to be an asset in recruiting and his background as an NFL standout should really do well to earn him instant respect from his players.
There is also a report here that Chryst has finalized his staff by hiring UCLA defensive line coach Inoke Breckterfield to coach the Panthers defensive line but nobody has confirmed that for me yet. If true, however, it means the staff is done and with signing day coming up Wednesday, it won't be long til we start talking about football again.
I won't officially be back until at least Thursday assuming all goes well at the doctors office Wednesday but now that my fingers are feeling better and I have my concussion cleared up I'll be checking in here more as recruiting developments happen and whatnot.
Again, thanks for all your support and I look forward to getting back into things here shortly.