In regards to some fan’s angst over HC Paul Chryst losing committed recruits, it is important to understand that Dakota Conwell is the only recruit who PITT has actually ‘lost’ so far. It is apparent that the new coaching staff allowed WR Corey Jones to switch to Toledo without much of a fight to keep him as evidenced by Jones’ own words in this Post Gazette Blog article.
“When coach Graham was there, I would get a lot of phone calls from Pitt,” Jones said. “After he left, that slowed down. I just felt like things fell off or something. I felt like I wasn’t a main priority for them.
“I wasn’t sure of how Pitt was going to handle things, how I was going to fit into their offense and if I was still in their offensive schemes. … [Pitt’s coaches] are cool, but I’m just trying to do what is best for me and I think Toledo’s offense is what’s best for me.”
At 5’9 and 165 pounds you can see that Jones fit the stereotype of WR that Todd Graham was recruiting. That didn’t seem to be a priority for Paul Chryst at this time. I would have liked for PITT to keep Jones though, talent is talent and I feel it’s a good use of a scholarship.
Note also that both Corey Jones and DB Chas Whittaker, who had committed to WVU, are teammates who made this decision together.
From the looks of things, as detailed in this Trib-Review piece, our staff is still in hot pursuit of others who will fit their plans for the type of football players they want to field this season.
“Meanwhile, Chryst offered a scholarship to defensive back Ryan Lewis, of Sammamish, Wash., his father said.
Lewis, who visited the campus over the weekend, is the son of Seattle Seahawks vice president of football operations Will Lewis and the nephew of former Steelers defensive coordinator Tim Lewis, who played cornerback at Pitt.
“Ryan really enjoyed his visit and the coach enjoyed having him there,” said Will Lewis, who is a cousin of Pitt linebacker Tristan Roberts. “(Ryan) is going to think about it for a couple of days and get back to him, sooner rather than later.”
Lewis, 6-0, 185, has offers from Colorado and Utah. He is rated a 3-star recruit by rivals.com.
Pitt welcomed several recruits to Pitt over the weekend, including defensive tackle Willie Henry and defensive back Sean Draper of Glenville (Ohio); defensive tackle Terrell Jackson of Marion Franklin (Ohio); and New London (Wisc.) offensive lineman Gabe Roberts, who also is considering Wisconsin.”
Of course, Chryst & Co. have some other more familiar names that they have been working on to play thier college ball at PITT. J.P. Holtz and J.J. Denman, at TE and OL respectively, are highly sought after recruits who have interest in PITT. Safety Bam Bradley and LB Deaysean Rippy are possibilities also among others the staff has contacted and worked to commit.
On the flip side we may lose Adam Pankey to WVU as he visited the Mountaineers on the 13th, but no solid news on him so far. So it looks like we’ll get some real recruiting news over the next eight days.