October 16, 2007

For this, I don’t actually blame Coach Wannstedt. No really. This issue actually coming up now, seems more in response to being asked by reporters since there will be two years on his contract after this season, and it’s the common time for extensions to happen or “lame-duck” arguments to begin.

He is in the third year of a five-year contract and, although he has talked with the chancellor about a contract extension, he said it is not his current top priority. Instead, that top priority is getting the Panthers on the winning track.

“I’m going to be here, I have had very good conversations with the chancellor,” an upbeat Wannstedt said yesterday.

“We’ve spoken about the direction of the program and what we are trying to accomplish, and he’s been very supportive. We are doing things the right way, but ultimately, we have to start winning some games, and nobody understands that better than I do. I know if we can get a few more good recruiting classes here, we’ll get to where we need to be.”

It is all informal at this point. I don’t think an extension is going to happen at this point. Again, that whole lack of an AD thing.
Then there’s the obligatory article on how a lack of an extension could be a drag on recruiting from a recruiting analyst. Of course a lack of winning is also a drag on recruiting so…
Ron Cook decides that Wannstedt should get an extension. In a very tepid way.

This is going to sound insane, but this is the time Nordenberg should be thinking about an extension for Wannstedt. Not a five- or 10-year deal, but one year. If Nordenberg believes Wannstedt still is his man, he has to do it. That would carry more weight than a vote of confidence. That wouldn’t just help Pitt’s recruiting. It would let Pittsburgh know the Pitt administration is prepared to ride out the storm with Wannstedt.

That’s not easy to do — public sentiment has turned dramatically against Wannstedt since the horrible home losses to Connecticut and Navy the past three weeks — but that kind of strength has been known to pay off. I’m thinking of Greg Schiano at Rutgers. His first four teams went 2-9, 1-11, 5-7 and 4-7, but Rutgers stuck with him. I’m also thinking of Frank Beamer at Virginia Tech. His first six teams went 2-9, 3-8, 6-4-1, 6-5, 5-6 and 2-8-1.

It’s nice to think Wannstedt also will reward that same kind of patience.

Oh, please. Times are different, and the programs he is comparing them to were in completely different places. Not to mention that there was still some improvement on those records, with at worst a minor step back. Not this.

A one year extension seems almost like a reasonable compromise, I will concede, but I just don’t see the point or necessity. It still screams out, “coach on the hot seat,” only it has the subtext of concern for recruiting. Yippee.

Really, the most surprising thing is that Cook is now ready to give up the ghost on Rhoads.

I’m always hesitant to put too much blame on coordinators because the head coach is the boss and has responsibility for the product. There’s no excuse for Pitt’s defense to play so poorly when Wannstedt has such a strong defensive background. But defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads always has said he should be blamed if his defense doesn’t respond to him. Well, it’s not responding and hasn’t for a few years.

Wannstedt wouldn’t comment about Rhoads or any of his coaches yesterday, including offensive coordinator Matt Cavanaugh, who took big-time heat for his play calling at the end of the Navy game, or offensive line coach Paul Dunn, who has his critics. But, after saying he has “all the confidence in the world” in his staff, Wannstedt acknowledged, “I’ll sit down after the season and make the decisions that are in the best interests of the Pitt program, not in the best interests of Dave Wannstedt. I’m not 35 years old trying to make a name for myself. I’m going to do what’s right for Pitt.”

Cook wants to blame Wannstedt for this defense, but has just argued that Wanny needs more time. That only leaves Rhoads. Tick-tock. Tick-tock.

Interesting sidenote. Pitt has never comeback from a halftime deficit under Wannstedt. Guess who else has not?

And his 0-15 mark when trailing at halftime is hilarious. One day soon, we’ll look back on this 2007 season and study just how poorly Callahan handled these Huskers in practice and on gameday.


One more Wanny-Callahan comparison, courtesy of Orson Swindle at EDSBS.

Neither coach did what Pete Carroll openly admits he had to do in what he believed to be his last shot at coaching success: change. Both are now in deep danger of losing their jobs. Species that don’t change, disappear–this rule applies to NFL coaches heading to the college ranks as much as it applies to college coaches heading to the NFL. When Merrill Hoge sneers at the next college coach to fail in the “man’s league” that is the NFL, let that 7-6 nightmare and the reigns of Gailey/Callahan/Wannstedt stand as testimony that failure is a two-way street.

Disturbingly true on so many levels. Wannstedt hasn’t tried to change anything in his approach. He remains wedded to his system, his way and his losses.  The belief/hope that when Wannstedt was hired he’d be a lot like Pete Carroll because they were both “rah-rah, players coaches” whose schtick just didn’t work in the NFL, but college would be different. It ignores that Carroll has changed things in his approach and style. Not being a player’s coach and semi-cheerleader, rather the substance of the practices and preparing the players.

When Carroll says the best player starts regardless of class status — it’s true. Not so with Wannstedt who still overvalues experience and upperclassmen despite what he says.

Please fire Wanny. Pretty please, with a mustache on top…

Comment by Carmen 10.16.07 @ 10:28 am

If DW gets a contract extension, the program will be D2 within a decade.

Comment by Rex 10.16.07 @ 10:41 am

I’m with you Rex, they are not going to win another game this year, next year has all the shapings of another disaster.

Beamer and Schiano were in different situations, Wanny walked into a decent established program.

Say it afer me, Wanny is dense, Wanny is dense..

Comment by chuck knoll 10.16.07 @ 12:26 pm

Sorry guys for the spelling error, old age really screws with you.


Comment by chuck knoll 10.16.07 @ 12:27 pm

As it was pointed out above, a lack of an extension could make recruiting harder on Wannstedt, but can it be much worse for him than the lack of on-field success has already made things?

I don’t entirely trust Wannstedt to turn this ship around next year with the return of injured vets and the younger kids earning some experience. Then again, I don’t entirely trust the administration to bring in the right coach if wholesale changes are made (something about the fact that the last time we did this, the other finalists for the job were Cavanaugh and Rhoads).

We’re not getting Bo Pelini, who seems to be this year’s “Urban Meyer”. He’s going to have his choice of jobs at the end of this year, including LSU if Miles leaves to take over Michigan.

Wanna pull a Cincy and get an up-and-coming MAC coach? OK. Who’s out there?

The first name that leaps off the page is J.D. Brookhart from Akron, for obvious reasons. Not sure what kind of thoughts that conjures up among the Pitt faithful. I remember a lot of Pitt fans being disappointed when he left.

Would Solich leave Ohio? Would we want Solich?

I don’t see Tom Amstutz leaving Toledo…ditto for Joe Novak at Northern Illinois.

Al Golden from Temple? Turner Gill from Buffalo? Shane Montgomery from Miami-Ohio?

Comment by Stoosh 10.16.07 @ 12:57 pm

Wanny gets one more year. No excuses next year though.

Comment by Chris 10.16.07 @ 1:43 pm

How about the Head Coach from Navy? Seems he is doing more with less!

Comment by Jason 10.16.07 @ 2:22 pm

contract extension???? no way! I would have a hard time giving Wanny the time of day. He had best have this team in a bowl game next year or it’s out the door and since we all know that he is here for another years lets consider who might be a good replacement at that time.

Comment by Tony In Harrisburg 10.16.07 @ 2:46 pm

I know this is crazy but,

What I’m hearing is that Wanny is asking for an extension to allow him to appear stable in his job because his rival coaches are using it as a negative recruiting tool.

It’s a catch 22 situation, extend the contract and extend the buy-out or a smart businessman would extend his contract with little or no buy out clause at termination.

It is really going to fall on the administration on how they approach the contract extension situation.

I expect the administration to do something totally insane and extend his contract but his contract can be structured to minimize a buyout when he is fired or asked to leave.

He will be here at least one more season.

Comment by vito 10.16.07 @ 2:55 pm

Interesting comment from Len Pasquarelli…

There are a few NFL assistant coaches — Jacksonville defensive coordinator Mike Smith and Arizona secondary coach Teryl Austin among them — who might have an interest in the job at the University of Pittsburgh if Dave Wannstedt isn’t back in 2008. The consensus seems to be that Wannstedt will get one more year to get the struggling Panthers turned around. But the school is getting a new athletic director, and the incoming AD might want to make a change.

Comment by Panther Fan 10.16.07 @ 5:42 pm

Fans need to support the program, players, school and DW. HE should get a THREE year extension. This will secure top recruits in the coming class and also get the monkey off his back. Pitt is in a postion to do some very nice things in the coming seasons. The injury bug hurts us worst than we could have imagined (i.e qb, lead recevier, linemen o & d, fields not getting his act together, PB leaving camp, KS not being able to excute etc). What did you guys expect with all this happening?

Yes, there should be some changes but not at the headcoaching spot. DW is getting depth on this team so when people go down or dont perform on the field or in the classroom it wont hurt as bad losing them on field becuase we will talent.

Support Pitt and DW… It will get better.

Comment by cdmoore25 10.16.07 @ 6:41 pm

agree with cdmoore. we all knew going into this season that we would be lucky to make a bowl. That was before Derek Kinder went down, before we had to resort to our 3rd string true freshman QB…granted a very talented one…but still a true freshman not expected to play this early. Throw in all the injuries on the lines and any decent program would have a losing season under these circumstances. Lets not lose site of the fact that Bostick has improved immensely in just the few games he has started. Shady has better numbers than Heisman hopeful Steve Slaton! Oderick Turner and Nate Byham are emerging into weapons. Our are of focus needs to be on defense. Paul Rhoads HAS TO GO. Year in and year out his defense has been horrible. Every running back has had career days against Pitt. His bend but don’t break mentality is mind boggling. Wanny needs to take over as D-coordinator or we need to find a new one.
PS- Bring back the script Pitt and classic uniforms. We need our identity back!!!

Comment by Bruce 10.16.07 @ 7:13 pm

Anyone know who is on the non-con schedule for 2008? Maybe there’s a chance of beating Temple or Buffalo before they pass us by.

And no one tell me they already have. Let me hold on to that fairy tale as long as I can.

Comment by Brian of Brooklyn 10.16.07 @ 8:15 pm

I think ND is on the schedule for 08…schould be an interesting game…imagine all the talk there will be….

I say give him a 3 year extension – but don’t put some huge buyout in it. He has to agree to that, right? We’re giving him an extension with a most-likely 2 or 3 win team, which is a gift – now give up your right to screw us if this doesn’t work out in 2 or 3 years. That way he can tell recruits he’ll be around for a while, and still bring in good recruits – so even if we do make a change, someone won’t have to come in to a bare cupboard. I still definitely think you give him at least 1 if not 2 more years to do something. Look at ND – how does Weiss come in and win over 10 games, and then a couple years later, tank? Would Ty have won cause he players matured? Its obviously not “just coaching” – otherwise they wouldn’t have a worse record than us based on the coaches ability from 2 years ago. I think i today’s “win now” atmosphere people are too fast to get rid of someone instead of giving them a realistic trial period to show what they can do. If he can’t win with all his players as juniors and seniors in 2 and 3 years, then I will agree there is something definitely wrong here. But he won’t have his juniors and seniors until 09 and 10.

On the other hand Wanny needs to live by the gun and die by the gun. Get rid of that DC – take the job over yourself. If you’re going to get fired because your D is killing you, go down as the captain of that ship. Don’t let some retard drag you down.

And i’m not sure why Pitt wants to play the coaching carousel game – when has that ever worked? Why do we want to follow in the footsteps of programs that fail? What are we really going to accomplish changing coaches every three years? What if we get a new coach who doesn’t recruit well, but wins with Wanny’s juniors and seniors, we give them a 10 year extension, and then it turns out they really suck, and only won with Wanny’s recruits? Then we’re back to square one. I think Wannstedt deserves a full 5 or 6 years (cause his first class was a lame duck class and guys have 5 years of eligibility) before we run him out of town.

Comment by Stuart 10.16.07 @ 8:37 pm

Bruce, I would love to agree with you, but did you watch the Navy game? Tell me why any head coach would not have made one single adjustment on defense. It falls on Wanny’s shoulders, not Rhoads’. It was completely inexplicable why they ran the same defense, same alignment and wtched Navy march up and down the field all game long. Wanny wonders why they don’t cause turnovers. Because the defense puts no pressure on the opposing offense! I think Wanny has got to go.

Comment by Crackbaldo 10.16.07 @ 8:37 pm

A contract extension, this must be some kind of joke. He took a team that under the previous coach went to 5 straight bowl games and was 8 – 4 in its last season pre-Wanny, and he has made the program into a joke (unfortunately). He inherited a good team. What has he done in his tenure (5 – 6, 6 – 6, 3 – 9 this year probably)? With this track record, do you really think the reason why a top recruit will not come here is because the coach does not have a contract extension? Our players deserve better than this. I like the coach and love him passion for Pitt, but how can one really justify a contract extension?

Comment by David 10.16.07 @ 9:25 pm

To Brian and all those who care:

Pitt’s non-con for next year:

9-13 UCF
9-20 Iowa
10-18 @ Navy
11-1 @ Notre Dame
TBA Bowling Green

Also, for conferenece play, presumably on the road against Cincinnati, South Florida,
Connecticut, and Syracuse, with home games against West Virginia, Louisville, and Rutgers.

Comment by Nick in State College 10.16.07 @ 9:57 pm

Wanny will go after next year because he is too stubborn or stupid to see that next year will be as bad as this year. The only way I would consider giving him an extension would be if he would ADAPT his style of play to the college level on BOTH sides of the ball. He had a decent team his first two years that was built to PASS and he decided that he wanted a power running game with those teams and we sucked on O and did not get to a bowl game.

He has let Rhoades run this shitty defense that everyone who has watched over the last 6 years knows will get blow off the field over and over again and Wanny is OK with that because he thinks it should work.

He needs to look in mirror and understand what he thinks is going to work just isn’t and that if he thinks it’s a good idea then he should do the exact opposite.

In other words only the “George Constanza rule” will work when it comes to Wanny and game day or game plan decisions.

Either that or he needs to STEP AWAY from decisions and surround himself with people to do just that for him. People who can get things done and not just blame the player’s level of talent or their execution. (If I hear that excuse again I am going to puke)

Wanny needs people who are accountable for the team they put on the field and how well or how poorly they are prepared and he needs to let these people take some chances on defense and on offense. No more bend don’t break! No more run, run, 4 yard pass! Show that you actually put thought into a game plan and that you looked at who was on the schedule before you got out on the field.

Ok now I am pissed off just thinking about Wanny getting an extension. He could bring the number 1 ranked class 3 years in row and still find a way to lose games.

Please someone throw tons of cash at Bill Cowher to take this job. Please!

Comment by Tony In Harrisburg 10.16.07 @ 10:00 pm

I dont think any extension talks need to be even considered until the new athletic director is around. Let him decide what needs to be done with Dave Wannstadt.

Comment by adam 10.16.07 @ 10:42 pm

Hey – the games will be on at noon two weeks in a row! Amazing!

Comment by Stuart 10.16.07 @ 10:56 pm

I’ve been calling for Wanny’s head since his first loss. As someone who’s lived through him ruining the Bears and Dolphins, it is horribly apparent that he is not a good head coach. He needs to be DC and be satisfied with that role – not everyone is HC material.

Comment by Jason 10.17.07 @ 12:06 am

Just saw – Wanny tore his achilles and had to have surgery. Might not be on the sidelines Saturday, may be in the box…

Comment by Stuart 10.17.07 @ 3:38 am

“Bear” Mangino, coach at Kansas, check him out, think he would leave kansas? He is a western PA native, New Castle. Also, his team is undefeated, he was offensive coordinator for a national championship team, and, was an offensive line coach. The students and community love him, have you seen any of their games? they have paper cut-outs of his face they wear. ” the fighting Mangino’s”. Just a thought, saw yins were mentioning coaching options. I personally think, give Wanny a couple more years, but, dump the whole coachin staff, except Gattuso, and, Partridge.

Comment by Sputch 10.17.07 @ 8:06 am

Hey, I don’t want him to get an extension but I’m telling you they are going to give him one.

Comment by vito 10.17.07 @ 9:23 am

The bottom line is Wannstat has never been successful as a player or a coach. Hiring him was reminescent of giving away the National Championhip when Pitt promoted Foge Fazio to coach one of the most talented teams in college football history. With six pre-season All-Americans and numerous eventual Hall of Fame Pros the team went 33 and 3 during the previous three years stumbled to 9 and 3 in Dan Marino’s senior year, with Fazio’s, the alumni coach, at the helm. Pitt has never recovered and apparently never learned from that catastrophic experience. It is time to abandon the fruitless alumni concept and hire the best coach. The Kansas coach, mentioned by a reader, would be a good candidate. My recommendation is the coach from South Florida. He is young, enthusiastic, innovative, and has connections in the Florida, the state with most division I-A college atheletes. Despite the success of South Florida and the current debacle at Pitt, there is still no comparison in the caliber of the programs nor the institutions. If Pitt does not act quickly and make a commitment, as it did in 1973, it will continue to flounder and lose significant revenue that a winning football program can provide. Also, Pitt basketball can not, in my opinion, live off Howlands momentum if the school does not improve its football program. The bottom line is Pittsburgh is a football town, compete and they will come.

Comment by dennis wagner 10.17.07 @ 9:29 am

Agree with crackbaldo. Leaving Wanny as head coach – which I agree is likely going to happen – makes no sense, because he CANNOT coach. He makes dumb decision after dumb decision – or, at the very least, he watches as his OC and DC do and doesn’t appear to do anything about it. Yes, this team has injuries, but its inexplicable coaching decisions have led to some of these losses, not the lack of effort or talent on the field. THAT is inexcusable and grounds for termination.

Comment by Carmen 10.17.07 @ 9:31 am

The Pete Carroll reference is telling only half the story. Pete Carroll has been a successful college coach because he has brought great players to USC. I don’t imagine it is all that hard to get great players to go to USC because of the history of the program and the fact that it is sunny and warm in Southern California almost all year. I bet a lot of blue chip recruits don’t want to play before 90,000 in Los Angeles each home game in nice weather…. A trained seal on the sideline could get USC 8-9 wins a year based on the sheer talent of players alone.

Comment by Joey D 10.17.07 @ 9:37 am

I was completely wrong about Pat Bostick by the way. After watching him play the last few weeks and get better each snap, I have to admit that I had no idea what I was talking about early in the year. He is going to be a solid player for Pitt.

Comment by Omar 10.17.07 @ 10:06 am

What about getting Major Applewhite out of Alabama? He has Big East experience (albeit at Syracuse) and he seems destined to be the next big thing…

Comment by Greg in Columbia 10.17.07 @ 10:11 am

Leavitt will never leave south florida for pitt… The kansas coach might be okay. He is a western PA guy. I think he went to Geneva College over there in Beaver Falls if i remember right. Not sure he has the recruiting ability and influence of someone else we could get. Someone mentioned something Len Pasquerelli saying the Jaguars D coordinator would be interested. His name is Mike Smith and he has had some pretty good success with the jags. Smith was the Linebackers coach for the Ravens when they won their superbowl. Smith with Tennessee tech and they were in the top 10 for defense every year. This is a guy that has success following him. THE BEST PART! he is from daytona. ( Florida connection for recruiting) If pitt could get Mike Smith you have to think he might be able to bring some wins. Bo Pelini will most likely become head coach at either LSU or Nebraska… Thats out the window…

PS. ive been hearing stuff about Ditka as AD??? anyone hear this or is it just alum having wishful thinking… Not so sure if Ditka would make a good AD.

I am still standing by my post that the administration needs to find an ad asap and let him decide what to do with Wanny. He can say if he gets an extension or not.

Comment by adam 10.17.07 @ 10:25 am

Dennis, very well said!

Comment by vito 10.17.07 @ 10:35 am

panther fan,
where did you find the len pasquarelli article?

Comment by adam 10.17.07 @ 10:37 am

I hate to say it but DW is just a bad head coach. Pissing a few more years away to try and prove otherwise will lead to disaster. I understand injuries hurt the team this year but in DWs third year there is no reason for the team to be this bad. The defense is a total nightmare, the play calling is bad to say the least, and there seems to be no marked improvement. We need a young guy with some fire. Remember Cowher when he first came in, he changed the whole attitude and mentality of that team. thats what we need right now.

Comment by Rex 10.17.07 @ 11:03 am

Next game you guys go to just watch Wanny wonder the sidelines.. he looks absolutely clueless…

Comment by adam 10.17.07 @ 11:22 am


Leavitt won’t leave USF. That’s his baby…he’s been with the program since its inception and he’s already turned down numerous requests – even before USF emerged as a legitimate threat – to move up to what would be regarded as more prestigious levels (I think he’s turned down overtures from Miami twice, and also a number of SEC schools as well).

I wouldn’t mind seeing Mangino but I want to make sure his coaching credentials outweigh his Western PA ties. I don’t give a rat’s ass if the next coach is from Siberia and he’s never heard of Pittsburgh…if a change is made, this school needs to make sure it brings someone in who is in touch with what can and what won’t work in college football today and in the future – not what worked ten or twenty years ago. I don’t want to discount the value in keeping local kids here. I just don’t want it to outweigh the actual understanding of the college football landscape.

Comment by Stoosh 10.17.07 @ 11:28 am

Dennis, Leavitt has publicly stated that he wants to be the Bobby Bowden of South Fla football…as Stoosh said, it really is his baby. As for Pittsburgh being a “football town”, I chuckle every time I hear that, because it is NOT. Pittsburgh is a “Steelers Town” for sure. If Pittsburgh was a true football town, there would be at least 40,000 people in the stands for every Pitt game, no matter what Pitt’s record was, or who they were playing. If we were good, they would show up to cheer, and if we stink, they would show up to boo, but they would be there. We all know, this is not the case.

Comment by HbgFrank 10.17.07 @ 12:23 pm

Frank, the burgh is a football town, the Steelers are obviously huge and so is High School football. The problem with Pitt is that it typically only appeals to the hard core fans and alumni. In other words people love football when they have a rooting interest. For example, I live in Washington DC and love football but never go to redskins games because I dont give a damn – doesnt mean I dont love football. And Pittsburgh has shown that when Pitts winning people do show up – its the same everywhere (for the most part). I mean really who wants to pay money to sit there and watch this on field circus? Its disgusting. The real fans care so much that it actually makes us sick to sit there and watch our team get embarrassed week after week. That doesnt mean I dont watch every game, read every article and still root for the team.

Comment by Rex 10.17.07 @ 12:32 pm

I agree Bostick looks promising….he needs alot of work on his footwork, moving in the pocket and his release needs work….but he seems pretty tough, throws accurately, and for a true freshman thrown into the crap sandwich Wanny’s made of the QB situation…done OK..tougher tests ahead….
Wanny I say waits until we get an AD….then gets a 1 year extension….much reduced buyout clause and a mandate to change his staff to improve the performance of the DC , O line….ah heck OC too

Comment by deter 10.17.07 @ 2:18 pm

The Pasquarelli blurb was from the Sunday NFL wrap-up column on
link to

Good to know there’s at least still interest in our Head Coaching job…

Comment by Panther Fan 10.17.07 @ 2:49 pm

Not to be argumentitive here…but you all may be right in this debate. Wanny may get his extension, but he also may get the 1 year ultimatum. They are not mutually exclusive.

You can argue that Pitt doesn’t have the money to give him a 1-2 year extension and then fire him if he doesn’t turn it around in 2008 and that may have some merit.

But since neither you nor I have insight to the University’s budget I am not sure any of us can state whether they can or cannot afford to give him the extension to help recruiting but tell him either win 7 to 8 games next year or you are gone (privately of course).

All I am saying is that it is possible that he gets the extension and still has to put up a winner next year or be gone.

Another topic I wanted to ask…is being hired as an AD a promotion for DW or is it possible that he could finally find the position he is skilled enough at doing?

The reason I ask is this guy seems to know how to hit the mark with recruiting. He seems to have a knack at communicating and selling the message to not just recruits, but adults (parents and coaches) as well.

Now I don’t pretend to know everything about the AD’s role, but perhaps this shouldn’t be seen as a promotion from head coach. But maybe DW’s skills lie elsewhere than the field.

Just a thought…wanted to see what you guys thought


Comment by DaveD 10.17.07 @ 5:19 pm

He should be forced to be the DC for the next 2 years – that’s what he supposedly excelled at – and that is our biggest problem. We shouldn’t have to argue about some “dumb” play call that didn’t get us to FIFTY ONE POINTS, so we lose. Last year we could have been 10-2 if we had a defense that could hold someone to less than 4 scores a game.

Picksburgh is a professional sports town – not to offend people here, but, well, lets face it. Pitt is a University. The gross majority of people here didn’t attend college, and don’t have any interest in college games. I’ve had to go into Damons before and FIGHT to get a Pitt game put on one single TV…its ridiculous. The Stillers do well in attendance, and the Pens do well in attendance…and if it was just about “wins and losses” NO ONE would go to Bucco’s games – but they do, because it is a pro sport here.

Right now, i see no canidate that both A) we want and B) wants to come here. No reason to make some dumb change…like i’ve said before, let him have his recruits until they are all the juniors and seniors, then we can put this argument to rest once and for all.

And no one responds about Weiss: Did he win because of Ty’s players? Someone explain to me what happened at ND – how do you win the majority of your games with “crappy players” but in 2 years can’t do it with “your recruits.” Seriously, we both made changes at the same time – and they only difference is he won for a couple years with what was left in the cupboard – and now they have a worse record than us. So he can coach, but he can’t, he can recruit but he can’t? Someone…help….

Comment by Stuart 10.17.07 @ 6:07 pm

Is Len Passquarelli a pitt central catholic grad?

Comment by alcofan 10.17.07 @ 7:56 pm

I like Wannstedt as a figurehead for the program but he is either too loyal and trustworthy of his coordinators OR he simply has all the wrong philosophy for college football. If it’s the former, RHOADS IS THE PROBLEM AND MUST GO, JUST LIKE FOR THE LAST 6 YEARS NOW. If it’s the latter, Rhoads still stinks and should go (cuz he clearly stunk under Harris as well and never should have been retained) but Wannstedt simply has to go too.

Comment by geeman2001 10.17.07 @ 9:04 pm


Weiss beat the shit out of us in DW’s first game here. He has had ND in the BCS series. They just beat UCLA and their schedule (as always) is murder compared to our walk in the park.

I would have much prefered the ride the ND fans have had over the last three years then what we have had to deal with.

Also ND will once again have a better record the us this year when it’s all over.

Comment by Tony In Harrisburg 10.17.07 @ 9:53 pm

DW will be here for at least 3 more years and that’s a good thing.

Comment by TMGPanther 10.17.07 @ 10:05 pm

TMGPanther how are you related to DW?

Comment by Tony In Harrisburg 10.17.07 @ 10:12 pm

I’ve got a friend who works for the Dolphins. When DW was hired he told me that he would make a great DC, but wasn’t smart enough to make it as a head coach. I didn’t believe him. Obviously they knew what we are all finding out now. In hindsight, I think the final three HC candidates were Wanny, Rhoads and Cavanaugh. No matter which way we went we were going to be screwed.

I think he needs the benefit of the doubt and another year or maybe two with some improvement in 08. With Bostick and Shady as Juniors we should contend for the Big East title. A coaching change after next season would probably be devastating. Rhoads should have been fired years ago. He needs to go.

Comment by Joe 10.18.07 @ 12:59 am

DAVE WANNSTADT PUT 3 and 4 STAR RECRUITS UP AGAINST NAVY’S MAYBE ONE STAR RECRUITS AND THE TEAM LOST…. AKA BAD COACHING… Poor playcalling on the offense… the lets just break so we can get the ball on offense, defense was out there.. TMG Panther you meant to go to the Carolina Panthers website i think. 3 years??? this guy has never been a good head coach. He needs to take the AD job and get out of the coaching ranks while he still has a job. He is a NICE guy, but he doesnt know how to win.

Comment by adam 10.18.07 @ 3:43 am

To hbg Frank and others who think Leavitt would never leave South Florida (the Bowden of Florida State). I agree Pittsburgh was and currently remains a “Steelers” town. Being a Pitt a 1973 Pitt graduate I had the pleasure of watching two teams ranked among the top twenty all time college football teams, 1976 and 1980 teams, and experienced the disappoint of sitting in rarely full Pitt stadium for two teams that were 23w and 1l. However, in my opinion, the city has changed drastically in the last thirty years. Pittsburgh is no longer a “blue collar” town, and in my opinion with the increase in the education level and cultural refinments in the past two decades it is clamoring to embrace a successful college sports enviornment, as it has with the Pitt basketball team. In 1974 when Pitt went 22-1 in basketball the Field House was rarely filled.
As for Leavitt, Bowden was a fixture at West Virginia until Florida State made him a financial commitment he could not turn down. At that time Florida State was a football doormat. Further, you obviously have never been on the South Florida campus, which is not unusual, because it it is urban campus with no campus, just school buildings scattered around a crime ridden area of Tampa. It is strictly a commuter campus, with little or no support from the academic facilty and no traditional wealthy alumni. Finally, how many coaches have used the declaration they will never leave an institution, as a method to push up their value. I was unaware of the his other offers, but those you argue Pitt does not have the finacial circumstance to attract top talent, I respectfully disagree. The University is one of the wealthiest endowed schools in this country. It is simply whether the university power brokers believe athletics is worth the cost to the university.
My argument is that regretably I no longer live in the city, the character of the city and the national reputation of the university are dramatically different then they were in the 70’s and 80’s.

Comment by dennis wagner 10.21.07 @ 2:51 pm

[…] Ron Cook, after finally giving up on Rhoads, is back on board. Give Rhoads credit for keeping his guys together. We are quick to barbecue him when things go bad. It’s only right to applaud him after a performance like this. […]

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