Brennan Marion has been with Pitt long but he’s already making quite an early impression.
A week after extending an offer to 2022 five-star Virginia offensive tackle Zach Rice, Marion is going after another national, elite talent.
Monday night, Marion extended an offer to four-star wide receiver CJ Williams (6-foot-2, 195 pounds) from Santa Ana, California. Rivals ranks Williams as the No. 2 junior wide receiver in the country and one of the Top 20 overall players. Williams likely would’ve been a five-star recruit but had his junior season wiped out because of COVID-19.
When listing his offers, it’s easier to name the major Power Five programs that haven’t offered him. Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon, USC, Florida, Michigan, Penn State, Texas, Texas A&M and West Virginia are just some of the programs trying to land this elite talent.
Pittsburgh Sports Now caught up with Williams on Tuesday afternoon to ask him about Pitt and the relationship he already has built with Marion, that started when he was at Hawaii.
“I’ve had a relationship with Coach Marion since he was at the University of Hawaii and I was one of his first wide receiver offers,” Williams told PSN. “He wanted to carry that on now that he’s at Pitt and wanted to make the West Coast his priority. He told Coach Narduzzi that we needed to get on me early and he watched my film, believed in me and extended an offer.”
”Coach Marion is definitely a players coach and definitely a person you want to play for. He takes care of his players no matter what and has a really strong know of football. I feel that he can make me a better player and more importantly a better person and better young man. He’ll be on me about my academics and all the little things, which is really important to me.”
During their conversation following the offer, Marion explained to Williams the type of impact he could have at Pitt and said something that got his attention.
”He made sure I knew about the type of education I’d receive there and the importance of it,” said Williams. “He told me about how big a football city Pittsburgh is and said it’s a lively city and one of the best outside of LA. He talked to me about how we’ll be right next to the Pittsburgh Steelers and how I’d have real opportunity to make plays, earn a great degree and at the same time, be around a lot of great people.”
”He also stressed about being the second coming of Larry Fitzgerald, which was music to my ears because that’s one of the players I watched growing up and idolized. Just hearing that as we start to build this relationship was top notch to me.”
Williams already holds over 50 offers with Pitt being the most recent. I asked Williams is it going to be difficult for Pitt and did they get in too late?
”They’re getting in late but I can’t blame them for that because Coach Marion just got there. I’m the first wide receiver he offered since getting to Pitt which is nice and shows a lot.”
”For me, the school that I eventually decide to go to will be after the feel I get when I arrive on campus. I need to get on different campuses and my parents need to feel comfortable passing me off to a coaching staff and a group of people that are going to take care of me and a place that will be my next home.”