The word first turned out to be important in the relationship between Pitt and Aveon Grose.
Back in April, Pitt became the first program to offer the Class of 2022 safety from Mansfield, Ohio. Six months later, Grose decided he wanted to end his recruitment early and became Pitt’s first commitment for their class.
Grose (5-foot-11, 170 pounds) has started at Mansfield High School since his freshman season and posses tremendous ball skills and is a very physical player when stepping up to play the run.
“I’ve been in contact with the Pitt coaches ever since they offered me and I’ve felt that I’ve built a really good relationship with Coach Pat and Coach Collins,” Grose told Pittsburgh Sports Now. “My high school coach called the Pitt staff a week ago and told them about me wanted to commit and they said that they’d take it. I set up a call with Coach Collins first before I called and told Coach Pat. When I called Coach Narduzzi today, he seemed very excited and how they really wanted me.”
Aside from Pitt, Grose held offers from Cincinnati, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, Akron, Toledo and will no doubt receive more over the next couple of seasons. Why now was the right time for him to end his recruitment and commit to Pitt?
“I’ve just had that feeling and feel like there’s no better place for me than Pitt. Pitt is a program on the rise, they develop great defensive backs and have great defensive coaches. They also are #1 in what I want to major in, physical therapy, so that’s a big plus.”
Two other reasons for Grose wanting to make this major decision was Pitt being the first program to recruit him and also the relationship he’s developed over the past six months with Collins.
“Coach Collins played a huge role in this and constantly stayed in contact with me,” said Grose. “He’s sent me a lot of videos of the Pitt campus, where the players live and stuff like that. Also, Pitt wasn’t just my first Power Five offer, they were my first offer period. I remember when I was on the phone with Coach Collins when he first offered me, he told me always remember who came first. That made a big impact on me.”
— Aveon Grose (@AveonGrose) September 7, 2020
In terms of the player that Pitt just added to their program, Grose gave me this description of himself.
“A player that flies around, a player that’s not afraid to come down and make a tackle and also that can cover. I’m also a versatile player that can play anywhere really.”