If you've been following Pitt's recent recruiting even at all, you'd recognize that the Panthers are on a bit of a hot streak right now. It happens every June, as high school players start to go to prospect camps and get a feel for what offers they're going to get, and this is the time when Pitt usually fills out the bulk of its recruiting class (even though most of the elite guys will hold off for a while).
Here's a link to my story in today's PG about Pitt's recent run of commitment.
I spoke to Rivals.com analyst Adam Friedman for his thoughts, some of which are in the article, but here are a few more notes that didn't fit.
- Friedman was very bullish on Pitt's offensive line over the next few years and, given the way they've recruited recently, I would tend to agree with him. The unit certainly struggled at times last year (and cynics would argue has nowhere to go but up), but guys like Dorian Johnson, Adam Bisnowaty, Alex Bookser and Mike Grimm are talented young players that will build an outstanding nucleus moving forward.
"Offensive line is going to be one of the best in the conference," Friedman said. "It may not happen early in the year, but down the line I have hard time not seeing that offensive line as one of the best in the conference."
- Friedman also had some thoughts on specific guys in Pitt's current class.
On WR Tre Tipton: "Tre Tipton is a guy that really came on lately here in the recruiting process. He picked up that Michigan State offer and really is a guy that people see a lot of potential in. Six-foot, 160 pounds, he could blow away in a strong breeze at this point, but once he gets in that weight room and gets his body ready to be able to take that beating at the college level."
On WR Quadree Henderson: "He's a very impressive offensive weapon and someone that is really going to complement Tyler Boyd on the outside and Adonis Jennings on the outside. If you think about it, any quarterback worth his weight is going to be able to find an open guy when you consider the three of those players, against any defense."
On DB Dane Jackson: "You just see that he fits more at safety than he would at cornerback because of where he is technically."
- One note he made which I thought was interesting is that as Pitt builds up the offensive line and, now, the skill positions, that should help quarterback recruiting as well. Pitt has had some issues with quarterback recruiting in recent years (and some bad luck with Tra'von Chapman's arrest and subsequent dismissal), but when quarterbacks see skill guys like Boyd, Jennings, Henderson, etc., as well as, ideally, an offensive line that can protect, that should make Pitt a much more appealing option.
- I mentioned in the story that Central Valley CB Jordan Whitehead is the top remaining target left on Pitt's board. Friedman compared his situation to that of Dravon Henry's last year, in that they're both defensive backs with similar schools interested in them. Like Henry, it could come down to old Backyard Brawl rivals Pitt and West Virginia.
"Whitehead is more of a pure cornerback than Dravon is," Friedman said.
- As far as guys beyond Whitehead, the one name Friedman brought up was Hempfield OL Tony Pilato. Pilato has visited Pitt several times and seems like a good bet to become a Panther eventually.
"It's more or less of a 'when' not 'if' with Tony Pilato at this point," Friedman said.