Pitt QB Tino Sunseri has never taken the opportunity to bash former coach Todd Graham, who had no trouble bashing Sunseri last season. But today, for the first time, Sunseri took a shot at Graham, who is now the head coach at Arizona State.
When asked to compare the spread offense Graham used and the pro-style offense Paul Chryst has installed, Sunseri referred to Graham's offense as a "high school offense" that didn't have a lot of plays or structure.
When asked about the team's quuiet approach to the season he said: "[Chryst] is not here to do shows or for signs. He's not here to make peple laugh and giggle. He's here to win football games. I feel like that's our approach, too."
We didn't follow up on what Sunseri meant by "shows and signs" but it could be a reference to the sayings Graham had painted on the walls all over Pitt's facility. Those signs have been replaced by photos of players, present and past.
When he was asked if he feels like he has more support this year, Sunseri said: "I have support from my teammates. That's all that matters."
I'm not sure how to take that one. I asked the question and was looking to get a response that Chryst might have his back more, but Sunseri left it open to interpretation. Maybe he learned a lesson last year. He knows he has to perform well on Saturdays to get the full support of the coacihng staff.
Also on Tuesday, defensive coordinator Dave Huxtable spoke with reporters after practice today. Here is a partial transcript:
On the two safety positions: “We’ve got a lot of depth at the safety position with Ray [Vinopal] and Tags and [Jared] Holley and Jason Hendricks. Right now Tags and Ray will be the guys who will begin the game. It’s a real pleasure to have that kind of depth back there. I’m looking forward to seeing all four of those guys play a lot of football for us.”
On facing spread offenses: “All those guys are older, experienced guys and very bright. They understand adjustments and checks. That’s been a real luxury for us.”
More on the safeties: “To me, they’re all starters. We can only play with so many. For me, throw them up against a wall, see who sticks and let’s go play. I have complete confidence in all of those guys.”
On the development of Nicholas LB Grigsby: “He has worked extremely hard and he has come a long way in learning the defense and understanding his position. He’s a young kid. Every rep is kind a new play for him. He’s gaining some confidence, and I’m very anxious to see how he’ll play his first time out.”
On anticipation of first game: “I’m very excited to see these guys go out and play. We’ve had 15 days of spring practice, three, four weeks of fall camp. Now it’s our first opportunity to go out as a team and go play against an opponent. All of us coaches are anxious to watching these guys play.”
On defensive line depth and rotation: “You’d like to use eight. That’s the position you’ll substitute most because they’re bigger guys. You have to use your depth there and have fresh bodies there.”