For the first time in a while, Pitt had success recruiting in Philadelphia when three-star safety Javon McIntyre from Imhotep Charter School verbally committed to the Panthers back in January.
Cory Sanders has continued to recruit that area and is pursuing a highly skilled linebacker/defensive end that’s teammates with McIntyre.
Class of 2022 three-star recruit Keon Wylie (6-foot-2, 210 pounds) already holds over 20 offers from major Power Five programs and has started the process of narrowing down his list by releasing a Top 11, which included Pitt.
Included in that Top 11 are Pitt, Penn State, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Michigan, Arizona State, Texas A&M, Maryland and Rutgers. Wylie also received offers from Minnesota, Nebraska, NC State, Syracuse, Tennessee, Boston College and Virginia Tech.
Pittsburgh Sports Now caught up with Wylie on Wednesday to find out his early impressions of Pitt and Pat Narduzzi and why they made his first cut.
“I really like the attention that the head coach Coach Pat has given me,” said Wylie. “He’s texted me often and when the head coach does that, I believe that says a lot about how they feel about me. The head coach is the busiest coach but he’s taking the time to text me a lot so that tells me that they really want me. Coach Cory also texts me a lot and he’s the one that initially offered me back in January when he came to our school.
“Back on September 1, Coach Pat started texting me and really started introducing himself to me. After that, he started texting me about the games, who they played and asked me if I was watching or going to watch. He’s also been sending me different defensive stats that they hold, stuff they lead in and tells me they want a guy like me on their defense.”
Pitt is trying to sell Wylie on being the next great pass rusher on the Panthers defense and he believes his skillset would allow him to do so.
“I can stop the run but my real strength is that I believe that I’m a great pass rusher,” said Wylie. “I do both well but my pass rushing skills are a little bit better. Pitt has a good defensive line coach that puts in real good schemes the defensive lineman to the quarterback, which is good.”
In terms of his recruitment and playing this season, everything is in a holding pattern for Wylie. His Imhotep football team’s season won’t be starting until March because of COVID-19 and he’s not able to get out and make any visits because of the national freeze on recruiting visits.
When visits are once again permitted, Wylie plans to be active so that he can really learn more about each individual program, including Pitt.
“I’d like to be out visiting schools to see what they’re like and their campuses but I can’t,” he said. “I’m not frustrated because I know I’ll eventually get to do it.”