August 2, 2014

Now that a severe suspension has been issued by PITT for whatever reason it may be a good time to review the NCAA’s and the School’s responsibilities in one aspect of discipline – the drug policies.

We don’t know what happened with Howard but we’ve seen the academic suspensions resolve themselves after one semester or a certain period of time.  We have also seen other disciplinary actions resulting from drinking, fights, arrests, issued by a number of games also.  If you remember Anthony Gonzalez was suspended two games by Graham basically for possession of pot, but there was no failed test involved.  However, any disciplinary action can be gived a year suspension if the university deems it necessary.

So, just to remind our readers;  there are two types of drug tests in D1 football.  One is the NCAA mandatory test that is unannounced and the other is the school’s tests issued according to its formal policy.  Here is a link to the NCAA’s drug policy.  Also, the following is from the NCAA’s Q&A about their policies.

“Who is responsible for testing student-athletes?

The NCAA and its member schools share the responsibility of not only testing, but also educating student-athletes to prevent drug usage. The NCAA conducts testing at its championships and programs in Divisions I and II through its year-round testing program. In addition, the majority of institutions conduct their own institutional testing programs independent of NCAA drug testing. The NCAA spends more than $5 million annually on drug testing and education in an effort to deter the use of banned and harmful substances.

What is the penalty for a positive drug test?

The penalty for positive tests of both performance-enhancing and street drugs is strict and automatic. Student-athletes lose one full year of eligibility for the first offense (25 percent of their total eligibility) and are withheld from competition for a full season. A second positive test for street drugs results in another lost year of eligibility and year withheld from competition. A second positive result for PED usage will render the student-athlete permanently ineligible.

What is the penalty for failing a school-issued drug test?

Each NCAA member is responsible for determining whether to establish an institutional drug-testing program, at which time the school would be responsible for determining applicable penalties. If a testing program is established, though, the school is obligated to enforce the penalties. Failure to do so can lead to NCAA sanctions.

I know that PITT has had strict penalties mirroring the NCAA’s one year suspension (but using it as a redshirt year) in the past.  I can’t say with 100% that is still in effect but I’d bet it is.  One important note with this; if the player fails a NCAA test the suspension  can’t be considered a “redshirt year” as it is an automatic loss of 25% of eligibility.  In essence they have only a total of three other years to play college football instead of four out of five as it is with a redshirt season.  An individual school can apply a redshirt… as long as that is the school formal written drug program policy.

Now, along with that the PITT staff has the authority to impose suspensions “for cause” which would fall under the umbrella of disciplinary issues.  Sometimes those are the individual games suspensions as was the case with Gonzalez, Gunn, the six kids before the Bowling Green game in 2013,  etc..

Jon Baldwin released by 49ers. What a waste.
Jason Pinkston’s contract was bought out & then released by Browns after battling blood clots in his lungs. His football career is likely over.
Scott McKillop & Mike Shanahan have joined the Panthers as volunteer assistant coaches.
Incoming freshman LB Jamal Davis has not passed clearinghouse yet, but they expect him to shortly.

Comment by Nick 08.04.14 @ 3:31 pm

Avonte Maddox – good stuff:

link to

Comment by 1618mt 08.04.14 @ 3:59 pm

Unfortunately Jonathon Baldwin was (is) one of those head case wide receivers. One thing he did have right though was when they asked him why he left Pitt a year early he said because our QB can’t get the ball to me! (the QB was “you know who”)

Comment by pittman4ever 08.04.14 @ 4:05 pm

JR – the article was written because any time there is a suspension of any sort at PITT there is always tons of discussions about it generated on all the blogs and boards. I posted it to remind, or to educate, PITT fans about the intricacies of drug testing and penalties by the NCAA and by the member institution… that’s all. Most fans don’t know how all that goes down.

WBB – the PITT SID office stated that “Howard will be able to practice and participate in team activities but cannot play in any games this season.” when it happened three days ago.

Tedsptman – That SI article was actually listing the preseason Top 25 college teams’ arrests records and PITT was #1… it wasn’t all of the Div 1 football teams.

PITTMan – the NCAA wouldn’t get involved with any suspension of Chapman due to his bad behavior. Anyway that decision to expel Chapman was above HCPC & SP’s heads.

Comment by Reed 08.04.14 @ 4:23 pm

@Old Pitt Grad, sorry, I don’t need to be a football factory with police blotter stories every other week.

I don’t need to be Ohio State, Miami, USC who have scandals every other year.

I’m good with where we are at, at this time.

Comment by Dan 08.04.14 @ 4:32 pm

Here’s the PITT Livewire website and associated Training Camp Day 1 info…

link to

Comment by Reed 08.04.14 @ 4:33 pm

Right, my post was more philosophical.

I don’t know Scott McKillop personally, but I have heard great things.

I sure wish guys like this could be hired to juice our recruiting and bring some energy to our existing players. When you look at the backgrounds of some of our defensive staff it is mystery to me why we still have them on board. I think we can pretty much expect more of the same from these guys no matter what names may change.

Comment by PittMan 08.04.14 @ 4:35 pm

McKillop is the reason for 13-9, watch the replay if you question my conclusion. My man Shanahan, back with the Panthers? That’s ALL GOOD!

Two great former Panther players now in the fold once again! As McDonald’s like to say, “I’m lovin it”!

Hail to Pitt!

Comment by Dr. Tom 08.04.14 @ 5:20 pm

The Steelers should take a ‘flyer’ on Jon Baldwin.

Perhaps coming back home will make a difference with the young man.

And having Big Ben throwing passes to him, couldn’t hurt either.

Sign him !

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 5:22 pm

Firsthand Account Day One Camp…

— It is interesting to watch freshman quarterback, Adam Bertke, because he is completely different than Voytik, Anderson, and even walk-on Joey Repischak. Bertke is every part of 6’6″ and definitely has a different game than the other three. He delivered the ball with accuracy and had impressive velocity on some throws.

— Isaac Bennett seemed limited in what he could do with an injury, but Conner looked like a beast. He is still the same big back as he was last year, but with added speed and bigger muscles.

— A young corner started to make a name for himself already, and that is Avonte Maddox. In the most notable play of the scrimmage portion, Maddox jumped a pass for a pick six and had a lot of the players and coaches buzzing especially DB coach Troy Douglas.

(Credit Jim Hammett

link to

Comment by PittofDreams 08.04.14 @ 5:24 pm

Lost out on this one.

8/3/2014 – 2015 PF Jarred Reuter (6-8, 235, 2.7 *) | Position Rank: 38, committed to Virginia.

Have noticed we are offering lots more players for 2015 & 2016 than we have in recent years.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 5:48 pm

Excuse my ignorance what is a PF, a kicker?

Comment by Dr. Tom 08.04.14 @ 5:52 pm

Hopefully Avonte will be allowed to play for PITT’s baseball team as well.

As it appears he could be a major contributor to that team as well. Hit close to .450.

Might see some time at DB this year with the situation there. I believe Pitts started as a true freshman.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 5:54 pm

Power Forward Doc.

Hitting the Nitrous today ?

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 5:56 pm

Vote for Tony Dorsett

link to

Comment by gc 08.04.14 @ 6:38 pm

power foot, good one Doc

Comment by steve1 08.04.14 @ 6:47 pm

pittman4ever, so what was Baldwin’s excuses for the Chiefs and 49ers? Wasn’t he the guy that got punched his 1st week in the NFL in KC by a veteran who said he is every bit the prima donna he is repute to be?

Comment by wbb 08.04.14 @ 6:58 pm

Baldwin was claimed by the Lions. He broke his hand in KC punching RB Thomas Jones in the face during an altercation.

Comment by Nick 08.04.14 @ 7:15 pm

From Werner’s PG piece:

link to

“Boyd excelled at the end of last year when Street went down with an injury, but now opposing defenses have had a whole offseason to prepare for him. He has said this offseason that one of the focuses for Pitt was moving him around in the offense to make him harder to cover.”

Very glad to hear that PC is going to move Tyler around on offense, rather than just lining up as a traditional static WR.

He’s much too talented for that, I have suggested some offensive sets with Tyler lining up in the backfield and then you can have him run pass routes out of the backfield to either side of the field or up the middle, trying to get LB coverage on him. These would all be shorter pass routes for Voytik to complete and provide Tyler with lots of YAC opportunities on slower opposing players.

Or you can motion him out of the backfield, again to either side of the field on pass routes. The purpose of this is to confuse the defense as in how to defend this motion and also limit the double team coverage on Tyler.

And of course you can also let Tyler carry the ball a few times just to keep the defense honest.
And run reverses with Tyler handing off to say Jennings or someone with blazing speed like Jester Weah. Former state sprint champion.

Wow this could be a lot of fun this year !!

Would love to be the OC with a player like Tyler on my offense.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 7:58 pm

Don’t agree with this suggestion that somehow RT Clemmings was responsible for the 43 sacks last year.

“Chryst has praised the improvement of right tackle T.J. Clemmings in the offseason, and was optimistic that the unit — which gave up 43 sacks last year — will improve. ”

Most of the problems came from the opposite side of the line……LT.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 8:06 pm

ESPN’s little synopsis on TD failed to note that he was the FIRST collegiate rusher to exceed 6000 yards in a career. And that he is arguably the greatest college rusher ever, as they did for Herschel Walker’s brief bio.

Pitt was also unbeaten in 1976.

If you note, TD has the LEAST amount of words written about him than ALL the other 15 players.

The visible bias never ceases.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 8:17 pm

And had we played Georgia in 1980, they would have NOT won the NC, we would have !!! Hugh, Rickey and the boys would have torn them up.

Bowls screwed us that year, again.

Comment by Emel 08.04.14 @ 8:19 pm

agree Emel

BTW, Maverick Rowan playing on ESPN3 right now

Comment by wbb 08.04.14 @ 8:32 pm

meant ESPNU

Comment by wbb 08.04.14 @ 8:33 pm

RT Clemmings came out of Paterson Catholic, in Paterson, NJ. The school shutdown, I believe, right after he graduated.

I don’t think he has had any academic problems at Pitt nor for that matter any problems at all.

Conversely, the Don Bosco kids at Pitt have had problem making grades. I’m shaking my head on this one. Clemmings didn’t have the enviromental advantages of the Bosco players.

The Northwest Bergen County, NJ area (including a part of the next county over) is affluent with highly rated schools. Brian Cushing, the Olson brothers, Pitt’s DB K. Williams, and the Sims brothers all graduated from area schools.

We were staring to do some positive recruiting in this area under Wannstadt.

Comment by Old Pitt Grad 08.05.14 @ 12:39 am

According to an article in 247Sports about yesterday’s practice, FR WR Adonis Jennings looks to be the real deal even just in his first day, and Trenton Coles had a good day … both very good signs in critical positions … but the note that surprised me was that FB Jaymar Parrish was up to 270 lbs.

Comment by wbb 08.05.14 @ 6:22 am

Helmets only fellas. Let’s at least wait until they put the pads on and hit each other around just a little bit. Balls are easier to catch if you know you aren’t getting drilled immediately thereafter. It’s an exciting start for sure, but it is just that. Looking forward to day 2.

Comment by dhuffdaddy 08.05.14 @ 6:56 am

You are correct, dhuffdaddy … but I only took a few short notes from a long article of observations that I thought were the most pertinent

Comment by wbb 08.05.14 @ 7:07 am

James Conner definitely playing some end. Team so thin at the position that Rori Blair is already being talked about, and as was said, just helmets.

Wonder if any of the fifteen offensive linemen will be looked at for a position change. One more injury and it is panic time.

Comment by gc 08.05.14 @ 7:22 am

From that Cardiac Hill link:

“I did not spend much time watching the linebackers, but everything seemed to play out as expected with Gonzalez and Thomas manning the outside, while Matt Galambos played the middle. Bam Bradley was out there, and what appeared to be him getting a look at middle linebacker.”

That’s why I mentioned Bradley would probably be getting MLB2 reps in practice in my ‘Defense” article posted last week – I had heard that would happen. Who knows if that holds. Grigsby at DE is interesting if only for the fact that the staff wants more speed at that position, but at 6’1″ and 220 he’ll be getting pushed around a lot by the OTs.

Comment by Reed 08.05.14 @ 8:01 am

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