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May 18, 2012

Scout.com has come out with their updated recruit star rankings as they do a few times each recruiting cycle and our five committed recruits have all been awarded three stars.  That is a jump for Shakir Soto, Aaron Reese and Jaymar Parrish from having two stars or being unranked.  Parrish has also been designated as the #3 FB in the nation.  Orndoff and Samuelson already had three stars next to their name.  Congrats to them all.

As a result of the update Scout also released their updated team recruiting rankings.  As of today PITT is positioned at #38 overall and tied for #28 in average number of stars. For comparison we were #40 for the 2012 recruiting year, #47 for 2011 and had a great year for 2010 under Wannstedt at #17 (overall).

That’s not too bad considering it is early days and especially considering the crap our football program has gone through over the last 18 months.  It was a mess and we are dragging ourselves out of it one day at a time.

All of which leads us to this article about Paul Chryst’s recruiting approach written by Chris Peak of Panther-Lair.com.  It is interesting in that he reiterates the fact that Paul Chryst has been doing pretty much what he’d said he do in recruiting when he was hired – let the University and the football program sell itself as much as possible.

Chryst and his staff have been very un-forceful in recruiting thus far. More than a few recruits have commented on how “laid-back” the coaches are; that term has been used quite often by the recruits themselves. When Cincinnati offensive line recruit Alex Gall visited Pitt this spring, the interaction with Chryst stuck out for that very reason:

“Coach Chryst told me he wants me to make the best decision for me. He was really laid-back about it. There are a few schools that are like that, but he really didn’t want to push me to make a decision. It was pretty unique how laid-back he was.”

Similarly, when four-star Belle Vernon offensive tackle Dorian Johnson was on campus last week, he had the same impression:

“I liked the fact that we just chilled. There was no pressure and they really didn’t talk about football at all. We just talked about my personal life. That’s different because usually coaches try to talk up the program and talk about football and all of that, and they really didn’t do that at all.”

Peak goes on to say that will be effective up to a point but sooner or later the hard sell has to come into effect.  Chris Dokish over at Panther’s Prey addressed this in part earlier in March with this article (last paragraphs).

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