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February 7, 2018

National Signing Day, 2018: Part 2

Filed under: Football,Recruiting — Chas @ 8:20 am

Not quite the same excitement, but some likely good news today.

I’ve been sick since Sunday. I watched the Eagles win the Superbowl in a non-alcohol induced haze. My wife thought I was just being very restrained during the game. I didn’t tell her until sometime in the 4th quarter. Anytime a member of the family starts to run a fever, my wife immediately starts acting like the black plague is about to descend on the house. Especially this time of the year, as the stories of “worse flu season, ever” hit. I’m better now, thanks for asking.

It’s telling about how low-key today is, as Head Coach Pat Narduzzi will talk to the media about this part of signing day at the relatively early time of 1pm.

There’s actually some drama, but seems to be trending towards Pitt with two undecideds making the call around 10:30 am.

[Mychale] Salahuddin is the No. 5 all-purpose back in the nation, the No. 1 prospect in Washington, D.C., and a top-150 recruit in the class of 2018. He committed to USC over the summer but always kept the door open for official visits, and Pitt was on that list.

Eventually, he backed off the USC commitment and reopened his recruitment, and when that happened, Pat Narduzzi, Andre Powell and the rest of the Pitt staff were ready for him. They had maintained a relationship throughout the recruiting process, and, as has happened in the past, that relationship paid off with an official visit.

Today, Salahuddin will announce a commitment from a final three of Pitt, Syracuse and USC. The expectation is that he will pick the Panthers and bring some more playmaking ability to Pitt’s backfield.

The other Signing Day decision to watch today is [Habakkuk] Baldonado. His story has been told often, but it’s worth retelling:

A native of Italy, Baldonado wanted to play American football at the Division I level, so he moved to Florida last summer and set out in pursuit of that goal. Naturally, a prospect with no film to speak of is going to have to put on a show in his one-year audition for colleges, and that’s what Baldonado did, recording 30.5 sacks in 2017 for Clearwater International Academy.

Initially, his recruitment was slow to get off the ground, but as his film circulated, more schools getting interested, and January saw him get offers from Pitt, Michigan State, UCF, Nebraska and more.

Pitt, Michigan State and UCF got his final three official visits over the last three weekends, and those schools made up his top three. Ultimately, it is shaping up as a Pitt-Michigan State battle, and he is expected to sign with the Panthers today.

Assuming Pitt adds both, there is going to be a little more attrition on the roster as Pitt will go over the 85-scholarship player limit as there are two other names on the list for today.

Erick Hallet from Cypress, Texas verbaled to Pitt over the weekend. He had been a Washington State commit, but decommitted and Pitt got him through new DC Randy Bates. Additionally there is the grad transfer from Kent State in Stefano Millin, and Kaymar Mimes from New Jersey.





22 comments

Heres hoping gor a good day.

Comment by Steve 02.07.18 @ 8:59 am

Nice to see the Florida kid committed.

Comment by ck 02.07.18 @ 11:17 am

Salahuddin is on the bubble?

Comment by 2$Chuck 02.07.18 @ 12:04 pm

He’s in! Begin Darrin Hall transfer rumors in 3 ..2..1 ..

Comment by 2$Chuck 02.07.18 @ 12:19 pm

Great news on the RB from DC.

The good depth we have just got much better.

H2P!

Comment by Erie Express 02.07.18 @ 12:24 pm

This is a decent class…While only one four star, it looks like we have about 10 high three stars by Rivals rating system. The four star is a 5.9, but we have a bunch of 5.7 three stars. Seems pretty good to me.

Comment by HbgFrank 02.07.18 @ 1:02 pm

I will not discredit a class of all 3-stars (Rivals) especially when 10 of them are 0.1 from being 4 stars. Most of them have a 4-star offer mix.

Comment by wbb 02.07.18 @ 2:46 pm

Do either of these players have a nickname? Bill Hillgrove is not getting any younger

Comment by fred filopek 02.07.18 @ 5:40 pm

@FredF, that is hilarious ?

Comment by HbgFrank 02.07.18 @ 6:48 pm

The “?” Was supposed to be a smiley face!

Comment by HbgFrank 02.07.18 @ 6:49 pm

link to espn.com

Renaldo Hill is moving on to the NFL for a job w/ the Dolphins.. It obvious now Collins is taking Hill’s stop as the secondary coach.. Also all signs are pointing to HCPN promoting Patton to the Oline coach.. Once again this is Pitt’s chance to add a proven recruiter to this coaching staff.. And not some MAC level guy or some guy from an average Big Ten school.. But somebody w/ ties to either the DC/Maryland areas,NJ,Virginia or Georgia.. I don’t care what position he coaches.. As long as he has strong ties to anyone one of those areas.. And can bring in more high level recruits to Pitt…

Comment by NickC 02.08.18 @ 11:23 am

Don’t hold your breath Nick – I’m ok if Patton is the 10th coach but not ok with him being the Oline coach. We need a proven Oline coach with experience and one that will drive this unit to success.

H2P!

Comment by Erie Express 02.08.18 @ 12:41 pm

Agree EE Patton does not have the experience needed to be an FBS line coach period!

Comment by kiskiminetas 02.08.18 @ 1:16 pm

kiski – agreed. But he comes at a good price that the Pitt admin cannot look away from…

This from FootballScoop –

Pittsburgh Steelers: Former UCLA and Penn State defensive coordinator Tom Bradley will be the Steelers’ secondary coach the team has announced.

Comment by Erie Express 02.08.18 @ 7:49 pm

Bradley knew.

Comment by alcofan 02.08.18 @ 8:40 pm

Brownlee gives pity to stallings, clemson 72 Pitt 48

Comment by alcofan 02.08.18 @ 8:49 pm

Look out, we are on our way to a national championship. LOL.

Comment by Pitt Dreamer 02.09.18 @ 2:30 am

Pitt with (7) players invited to the NFL Combine.

In comparison –

wvcc – 3
Wisconsin – 6
psux – 8

H2P!

Comment by Erie Express 02.09.18 @ 5:25 am

I read somewhere yesterday that Pitt was looking at a MD assistant as their new Oline Coach.

First, this guy was the Oline coach at the start of 2017. By the time MD played psux at season’s end, they were starting the 5th string QB. Does that mean the MD Oline was bad and enabled numerous QB’s to go down with injuries.

Someone should ask these questions.

Also, this assistant was re-assigned from Oline Coach to another assistant position at MD.

Again, someone should ask the question, why before he is hired at Pitt.

I also heard this MD assistant has a connection to OC Watson.

I have not read nor heard one news outlet mention Pitt alum and current Albany Oline coach Jim Sweeney for this vacant position.

=====

With regards to replacing DB coach Hill – Pitt should consider these two alums –

Hank Poteat – DB coach at MAC champions Toledo in 2017. Former Pitt grad assistant under Duzz.

Tim Lewis – last coached DB’s for the NFL 49’ers.

H2P!

Comment by Erie Express 02.09.18 @ 6:27 am

EE we don’t know who it will be but it will be a “duzzi”.

Comment by kiskiminetas 02.10.18 @ 10:57 am

Lol – good one!

I’m told by someone close to the program that Patton helped turn the 2017 Oline into a productive unit around mid-season and will be rewarded with the promotion to Oline coach.

That same person tells me Collins will fill the DB coaching vacancy left by Hill’s departure.

The 10th coaching position may or may not get filled, but if it does it will be by someone already at Pitt.

Upgrades, you talking upgrades to our coaching staff. Are you kidding, that costs money.
The BB program is costing Pitt plenty. The spending has been restrained if not halted altogether.

Comment by Erie Express 02.10.18 @ 12:13 pm

Another candidate to consider for replacing DB coach Hill –

Former Pitt safety Jarred Holley who is DB coach at Albany but was on Fraud Graham’s staff at Arizona St in prior years.

Comment by Erie Express 02.11.18 @ 7:53 am

[never shared]

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