PITTSBURGH – Several marquee names attended Pitt’s prospect camp on Sunday and one name in particular drew attention for reasons other than football.
Georgia native De’Nylon Morrissette just wrapped up eighth grade but received an invitation from Pat Narduzzi and his staff. Morrissette, who is set to attend Peachtree Ridge High School outside of Atlanta next fall, has quickly emerged as one of the top wideouts in the Class of 2022.
Although Pitt has yet to extend a scholarship offer, Morrissette’s attendance at the invite-only camp speaks to the coaching staff’s genuine interest in the youngster. As expected, his age drew reactions from other participants.
“The other players are like, ‘Wow!’” Morrissette said. “They wouldn’t expect that I would be in the eighth grade, and they’ll try to call me out just because I’m in eighth grade.”
— Denylon Morrissette (@DenylonM) June 4, 2018
Despite lining up against players who are older and more physically developed, Morrissette says his approach remained the same.
“My mindset is to dominate,” Morrissette said. “It doesn’t matter who I’m going against.”
Already 6-foot-1, Morrissette possess the physicality and speed to separate from defensive backs. He is a technical route runner and lists his ability to attack the football at the point of catch as one of his biggest strengths.
“My strength is going to get the ball at the highest point,” Morrissette said. “Being able to use my size to block the cornerback out from reaching out over me and running good routes.”
The young recruit worked closely with Pitt wide receiver coach Kevin Sherman on different routes, including digs, comebacks and slants.
“The coaching staff was amazing,” Morrissette said of the Pitt staff. “Coach Sherman is a great wide receiver coach. He taught me a lot of stuff about running comebacks right, running digs, getting ducks on my route, staying low, breaking down when I get into the routes, and don’t run up with my chest so the defensive break can break on it.”
Morrissette was pleased with his performance but also acknowledged there’s room for improvement.
“It was good competition, and I got a lot of reps,” Morrissette said. “I thought I could have done better on some routes I ran. I caught almost every pass except one ball the whole day, but I thought I could do better on some of the routes.”
— Denylon Morrissette (@DenylonM) June 3, 2018
Although he has visited Pittsburgh before, this was Morrissette’s first chance to tour the university. He called the experience “amazing” and said he loved everything about the campus.
Morrissette recognizes opportunities like Sunday will raise his recruiting profile nationally, and he relished the chance to perform in front of coaches outside of the Peach State.
“I felt like I needed to get in front of a lot of coaches to get my name out there,” Morrissette said. “I want to get my name out around the country more than just staying in Georgia.”