Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi has made contact with former Aliquippa and West Virginia safety Kwantel Raines, but he didn’t deliver the message Raines was hoping for.
Narduzzi informed the former four-star recruit that the Panthers aren’t interested in adding him as a transfer at this time.
Raines told Pittsburgh Sports Now that Narduzzi didn’t give a specific reason for the decision. When Raines first announced that he was transferring from West Virginia, he made it clear that Pitt was his top target. Instead, Raines has turned his attention to Syracuse, UCLA and possibly other ACC programs, who have also expressed interest in his services.
The 6-foot-3, 198-pound safety will have to sit out in the 2020 season, unless he can qualify for an NCAA waiver, and then will have two seasons of eligibility remaining.
Raines finished his West Virginia career with 10 tackles and one forced fumble in seven games.
He told PSN last month that he wants to enroll at his new school at the semester break to get a head start on for 2020.
“Whichever school reaches out to me and that I feel would be the best fit and that I want to go to, I’m going straight there,” Raines said. “When I say straight there, I mean be there in January, be there start of the semester, get to work outs and get ready to work.”
As a prospect out of Aliquippa High School, Raines had offers from Florida, Indiana, Iowa State, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Maryland, Michigan State, NC State, Ole Miss, Penn State, Rutgers, South Carolina, TCU, Virginia Tech and Wisconsin, in addition to Pitt and West Virginia.
Pitt is losing starting free safety Damar Hamlin to graduation, and could also lose starting strong safety Paris Ford, if the latter choses to declare early for the NFL Draft.
The Panthers have one safety commit in the Class of 2020, three-star Jahvante Royal from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.