Pitt continues to add impressive walk-ons to their roster and the latest one is a local quarterback.
Justin Sliwoski (6-2, 190) from Hempfield High School has decided to accepted Pitt’s offer as a preferred walk-on.
Sliwoski becomes the second walk-on quarterback that Pitt has added this off-season, joining Erie’s Tyler Zelinski.
“My recruiting has been pretty crazy. I started off with some Ivy and Patriot League offers but for financial and other reasons, they didn’t work out. Then in mid-December Pitt stopped in our school and offered me a preferred walk-on spot and I instantly became interested. Since then, I’ve been in contact with Coach Partridge, Coach Narduzzi,” Sliwoski said.
“Then about three weeks ago, they invited me down for a visit and I had a great time and just loved it. I feel Pitt is entering a special time and I want to be apart of it and go there and compete.”
Sliwoski is joining a quarterback depth chart that filled with a lot of young players so I asked him about what opportunity the Pitt coaches are telling him is there for him.
“I’m going to get every opportunity that any other kid is going to get. Coach is telling me that the best players are going to play. To me, this whole opportunity is up to me. I need to go down there and prove myself just as any player needs to do. This is obviously going to be a huge step up for me because I’m now going to be playing against the player athletes in the country. They told me that everything I get is going to be earned, nothing will be handed and nothing will be given to me,” said Sliwoski.
Not only is Sliwoski going to get a chance to play for his hometown college, he’ll also get a chance to once again to football with his brother, Ryan, who is also a walk-on at Pitt.
“That’s awesome. We never thought we’d have the chance to play football again on the same team. My freshman year in high school, he was a senior. His last catch in high school was actually a touchdown pass from me in my first start as a freshman. He wanted me to make my own decision and didn’t want to influence me too much. It really is going to be so much fun to be able to step onto the same field with him again.”
The other big factor for Justin in his decision is that he truly believes that he’s joining a program that’s in the process of starting something special.
“The last two years, this program has beaten Miami, Clemson and Penn State. I believe they’re on the cusp of becoming a national power. Their recruiting class this year was great. Coach Narduzzi is starting to be able to coach his own recruits and is building this team the way he wants it built and has done a fantastic job of that,” said Sliwoski.
“I’m just honored to say I’m now a part of it and be local kid that’s on the roster. I’m just honored that they expressed interest in me and it was just too good to pass up. I couldn’t be happier.”