November 4, 2016

To be fair, he did address it, but declared the topic dead to him going forward.

There was a laughable attempt to link Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi to the vacant Purdue job early in the week. It wasn’t by the media. Their only reference to Purdue was that reportedly the powers that be at Purdue were looking to go big on the hire and willing to make a financial commitment.

Basically, boilerplate stuff from the Boilermakers.


December 18, 2014

The Day After

Filed under: Chryst,Coaches,Hire/Fire,Rumors — Justin @ 10:26 am

As the dust settles on one of the most eventful days Pitt Football has had in a long time, reflection feels unnecessary. The removal of Steve Pederson as Athletic Director was just as much about the future of Pitt as it was the past. While the questionable decisions of his tenure will never be fully vetted, the future suddenly looks a little brighter. Pitt Football looks ready to take a step up. The status quo was no longer acceptable to Chancellor Gallagher. The hope Dave Wannstedt brought when he promised a return to prominence doesn’t seem crazy anymore. While the who, how, when, and if are still up in the air, at least the questions feel like there could be an answer soon. (more…)

December 10, 2014

The Wisconsin Thing

Filed under: Chryst,Coaches,Football,Hire/Fire,Rumors — Chas @ 9:03 pm

Last week Nebraska surprised everyone with the hire of Mike Riley from Oregon State to replace Bo Pelini. That was a stunner no one saw coming. That is until late this afternoon when Oregon State hired Dave Andersen from Wisconsin.

Now, Wisconsin has to hire a new coach and Paul Chryst sits right smack dab in the middle of the speculation.

Just as it made sense for speculating on him when Bielema left for Arkansas two years, ago it still holds true today. A native of Wisconsin. Lots of ties to the AD and the school itself. And in much the same way Ohio State fans held Walt Harris in higher esteem than many Pitt fans did after a time, Wisconsin fans still hold Paul Chryst in a semi-revered status for his work as an OC.


December 3, 2014

The Price of Stability

Filed under: Chryst,Coaches,Football,Hire/Fire,Rumors — Chas @ 8:03 pm

You would think with a career coaching record of 19-19; coming off a 6-6 season — again; home losses to Youngstown State and Akron on the resume; and a recruiting style best described as laid back, that Paul Chryst would not be in the annual coaching carousel discussion for December 2014.

And but for one big red N, that would be true. There are plenty of rumors and ruminations all day that Nebraska at the very least has interest in talking to Chryst.


February 11, 2014

Since everyone is working from essentially the same news and reports, here’s what we have

Pitt’s most obvious opening is to replace Bobby Engram at the WR Coach spot. Yet, the first breaking news was that Pitt has made a play to bring Troy Douglas from Iowa State to be the Defensive Backs Coach.

Iowa State secondary coach Troy Douglas has been offered a spot on the Pittsburgh staff, but Douglas has not decided if he’ll take the position yet, according to a source. reported that Douglas will join the Panthers’ staff on Wednesday.

Douglas spent the last three seasons with the Cyclones. He previously worked with ISU defensive coordinator Wally Burnham at South Florida from 2006-08.

But now, Brett McMurphy of is tweeting that as of this morning it is a done deal.

Douglas coached DBs in the ACC for a couple years while at North Carolina. He appears to be a solid recruiter and a good DB coach. Considering the spot was essentially coached last year by a graduate assistant (love you Hank Poteat, but you should not have been put in that position) this looks to be a very good move.


March 28, 2013

Waiting for Shell

Filed under: Football,Recruiting,Rumors,Transfer — Chas @ 3:51 pm

Okay, so it seems Rushel Shell’s transfer is a little more up in the air than it seemed yesterday. Coach Paul Chryst has issued the “back off” statement.

“Like many college freshmen, Rushel is working through some challenges right now. As it is for all members of our team, my most important concern is his personal well-being. Rushel and his family have our full support. We are giving him time away from football to work through this situation but he very much remains a part of our family on a daily basis. We want to be sensitive and respectful of Rushel, and I would ask others to do the same.”

This really says nothing, but that’s the point. Chryst can’t comment, but has to comment.


March 27, 2013

All the Chaos

Filed under: Football,Recruiting,Rumors,Transfer — Chas @ 3:00 pm

Okay. So it looks like there is just a little bit of turmoil at the moment.

Rushel Shell, who would be Pitt’s marquee running back in its inaugural season in the ACC, is considering transferring to another school and is meeting Wednesday with coach Paul Chryst, a source close to the team told the Tribune-Review.

Another source said Shell, a rising sophomore who was one of Pitt’s most prized recruits in many years, has not asked for his transfer papers. Shell and his mother Toni Zuccaro did not return telephone calls to the Tribune-Review. A university spokesman declined comment.

Yeah. It looks like that is going to happen. Not sure what happened to all the desire to be close to his daughters and all that stuff. Maybe it still is a factor. Maybe he changed his mind about that.


Rushel Shell Watch

Filed under: Football,Recruiting,Rumors,Transfer — Chas @ 6:53 am

Wwhhhhyyyyy???????!!!!!!!! Wwwhhhhhyyyyy??????????!!!!!!!!!! Why can’t we have nice things?

Okay, got the whining angst out of the system.

So, the spring practice reports noted that Rushel Shell was not at practice. He had hurt his leg last week, but…

Running back Rushel Shell, who injured his upper leg Friday in practice, was excused Tuesday, although coach Paul Chryst refused to confirm that his absence was injury-related. “Couple things here,” Chryst said. “We’ll kind of work through it and then we’ll see (about Shell returning Thursday). “Not positive on it.”

Okay. I’ve gotten used to vague statements from Coach Chryst. Could be classes. Could be personal. Could be related to the injury.


March 13, 2013

I’ve tried to ignore it since midseason, because it is rather silly. Still, the storyline is getting a little more play so I guess it’s time to write a bit about the idea that Coach Jamie Dixon would take the USC job.

Is it possible?

Well, sure, most things are possible. But it isn’t very probable.

Last week. Last week — mind you — Jeff Goodman at CBS Sports wrote about USC talking to Syracuse’s coach-in-waiting Mike Hopkins. In writing up the potential of Hopkins, Goodman noted who the guy USC AD Pat Haden had at the top of his list.

The hip pick is Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon returning to the West Coast (that’s where he’s from). The 47-year-old Dixon is set to go to his ninth NCAA tournament in 10 seasons since taking over for Howland. It could happen, but Dixon has had other opportunities to leave — including one before Kevin O’Neill took the USC job three years ago — and has spurned them all. The USC program is in a better place now, and Pittsburgh is headed into a stacked ACC, so it makes more sense for him to head west now than it did a few years back. However, the question becomes his buyout and whether he’d actually pull the trigger when the time comes to make a decision.

Dixon, from what I’m told, sits atop Haden’s list.

The themes are all hit. Heading to a new conference. The ACC is stacked. He’s from the west coast. USC isn’t quite the dumpster fire it was three years ago. The one thing it doesn’t try to claim: that Dixon wants to take the USC job.


February 2, 2012

Take this one with some incredibly huge grains of salt. After all, it comes from a high school recruit being told something by a coach.

Mountain Ridge’s Jarrod Harper, who inked his letter-of-intent to join the Mountaineers on Wednesday afternoon, said that WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen told him during the recruiting process that the Backyard Brawl would continue.

“It’s going to happen every other year, I’m pretty sure. Coach Holgorsen said that we’re going to switch, playing Maryland and Pitt,” said Harper. “I come from Maryland, so a lot of my friends are Terps fans. They always talk about West Virginia playing Maryland, whenever I’d get up there [to join the team]. Now we’re going to be playing them, I guess, every other year, I’m not sure yet.”

“At this time, we don’t have any information on future schedules,” said West Virginia football sports information director Mike Montoro via e-mail.

Not surprisingly neither did the SIDs at Maryland or Pitt. Maryland and WVU have a deal to meet every year through 2017.

Considering the unknown conference status of WVU for 2012 and Pitt for 2013, I have a hard time believing this is anything more than a coach blowing smoke up a recruit. Something that at worst Holgorsen can claim he merely speculated was a possibility, while talking to a recruit who asked about the Backyard Brawl.

January 4, 2012

Or… something.

Last week, Wisconsin linebackers coach Dave Huxtable publicly declined the offer to go with Paul Chryst and be the defensive coordinator at Pitt. This on the heels of TE Coach Joe Rudolph apparently going to be promoted (and get a bump in pay) to stay at Wisconsin.

Close the book on those guys and move on to other speculation and crazy rumors.



December 15, 2011

So the Pitt basketball players started tweeting ominous news this afternoon. Finally — just as I’m supposed to be doing family time at my daughter’s holiday concert — the secret leaks that Khem Birch is at a minimum contemplating a transfer from Pitt.


No one is sure the exact reason. Is it playing time? Is it playing center? Is it having to earn his playing time?

I am trying not overreact. Or react at all. It could just be some frustration. It could be real. It just seems ridiculous. Napalming the kid when there isn’t enough to go on, seems a bit much.

A mid-season transfer is a dumb move for any player. It still means sitting out a full year. It means trying to get into a rotation mid-way through the following year.

So, as if there wasn’t enough to angst about with Pitt. Two straight Decembers to forget.

UPDATE: And it now appears the crisis has passed (for now). Please return to being pissed of at AD Pederson and angsting over the next football head coach and saving the recruiting class.

May 11, 2011

No Bell Tolling at Pitt

Filed under: Football,Rumors — Chas @ 11:49 am

Lots that needs to be touched on — expansion, Graham puffer, and the Century of Change — but I’ll hit this first.

The minor stir caused yesterday by reports that Dorian Bell would be transferring to Pitt has quickly fizzled out. All last evening, Chris Peak of PantherLair had tweeted that any reports of Dorian Bell transferring to Pitt were foolish. That it wasn’t happening.

Paul Zeise also backs that up.

Former Gateway standout Dorian Bell may indeed leave Ohio State, but there is absolutely zero chance he will end up at Pitt. I was told tonight by several sources that Pitt coach Todd Graham will not even consider taking Bell, who is suspended for next season for unspecified rules violations, or any player who has been in trouble elsewhere.

The three transfers to Pitt so far have been clean players. Not suspended or kicked off the team. Bell is on his third violation for what is believed to be drugs/alcohol violations. Even if Graham wanted to take the guy (which he apparently doesn’t), you have to believe that the Pitt AD and President would not sign off on this.

I can’t blame Pitt for saying no thanks. As much potential as he may still possess, it doesn’t seem worth it.

January 13, 2011

A QB Coach? How Novel

Filed under: Assistants,Coaches,Hire/Fire,Rumors — Chas @ 1:33 pm

I don’t know the last time Pitt actually had a designated QB Coach (ever?). Walt Harris didn’t want/need one since that was sort of his thing. The OCs under Dave Wannstedt also served as a QB coach, and well, the results were mixed.

Coach Todd Graham appears to want a guy specifically teaching the QBs according to rumors/reports. The guy to do it is reportedly another Todd. In this case, Todd Dodge.

Dodge, for those unfamiliar with him, was considered one of the best high school coaches in the state of Texas. He ran an open offense (are we allowed to say “spread” with Graham — because that was what Dodge ran) called the “Air-Raid Offense.” Among Dodge’s QBs were Chase Daniel (Mizzou) and Greg McElroy (Alabama). In his last five years as a HS coach, his teams went 79-1.


January 10, 2011

Building to Conclusion With Graham

Filed under: Coaches,Football,Rumors — Chas @ 12:17 pm

The buzz on Twitter is growing that Todd Graham is going to leave Tulsa for Pitt. At least from Tulsa media people. Naturally the caveat is that he is reportedly giving Tulsa a chance to offer him  a new deal. Whether that means matching or coming close to Pitt’s offer, or something else is unknown.

For those of you looking to get back to your life, this means at least the Graham side of this could end by today.


UPDATE (1:02): This article summarizes all that has been floating to this point.


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