Does Pitt have a silent commitment from Class of 2021 defensive lineman Elliot Donald?
It sure seems that way.
A photograph posted by Pitt walk-on commit Williams King on Saturday clearly showed the Pitt Class of 2021 autograph football in the office of Panthers head coach Pat Narduzzi.
Pitt has three commitments in the Class of 2021: West Mifflin defensive end Nahki Johnson, Virginia running back Rodney Hammond and Philadelphia defensive back Javon McIntyre.
But there are four names on the football that is also inscribed with Pitt’s #Pitt2L1tt hashtag, and the fourth name very clearly reads Elliot Donald.
Donald, a 6-foot-3 defensive end from Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, is the nephew of Pitt legend Aaron Donald. But the younger Donald is a top prospect in his own right.
A consensus four-star prospect, Donald holds offers from LSU, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
Adding another four-star talent to the class and a top local player would be huge for Pitt. Donald is rated as the No. 6 strong-side defensive end in the country and the No. 5 player in the state of Pennsylvania by 247 Sports composite.
The autograph football has been a staple for Pat Narduzzi since he arrived at Pitt. Players have de-committed from the program after signing it, but this may be the first time that the football has figured so largely in a player’s recruitment.
There has been no tweet from Pat Narduzzi that the Panthers have received a commitment and it’s certainly not a sure thing that Donald has committed to Pitt, despite the presence of his name on the football.
Donald did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Stay with Pittsburgh Sports Now for more on this developing story.