It’s no secret that Pat Narduzzi is a players coach. Since he’s arrived at Pitt, player after player has talked about how much they enjoy playing for him.
His personality is a big reason why he’s proven to be an effective recruiter. He has the ability to relate to today’s athlete and gets them to want to play for him.
Another example of that is St. Edward (Lakewood, Ohio) 2018 safety Darnell Shields, who has an offer to go to the Michigan/Ohio State game but instead is coming to town for Pitt’s finale with Syracuse.
“In the middle of my season, my defensive coordinator (Coach Pappas) informed me that he told Coach Narduzzi about me and the way I’ve been playing,” said Shields.
“Then on Saturday my last game, Coach Narduzzi followed me on a Twitter and messaged me and told me good luck and that he wanted me to come down for a visit. So, for the last week or so, we’ve been going back and forth messaging each other.”
Despite having a short relationship with him, Shields can get why Narduzzi has the relationship of being a players coach.
“Oh man, yeah. He’s so cool! He even knows so much about emojis, he’s good at it, I was kind of surprised. He’s so down to earth. When I talk to him, he’s just like a dad or an older brother. He’s so cool,” said Shields.
As I mentioned, Shields has an invite to the big game with Ohio State and Michigan but instead wants to try to further develop his relationship with the Pitt football program.
“I already visited Ohio State for the Nebraska game and also for the Indiana game, it was back to back weeks. So as I’m starting my relationship with Coach Narduzzi, I want to further it by going down there and see what Pitt’s is all about.”
He’s also hoping to land his first Power 5 offer. He’s not sure when it’s coming but when it does, it will be a special day.
“That first offer will be amazing. It will show that hard work truly pays off. Just to get an offer from a Power 5 school, it will be motivation and will make me work harder,” said Shields.
“Man, I’m definitely going to keep that first offer in my mind because it will be special and will hold a special place in my heart. If Pitt is that first offer, they’ll always be up there. They’ll always be in the conversation and at the top of my list.”