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Opinion

Psaros: Thoughts On Frank Cignetti Jr. Coming To Pitt

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My initial thoughts on the reported hire of Frank Cignetti as Pitt’s new offensive coordinator.

**First and foremost, Cignetti is familiar with Pitt and the city of Pittsburgh. The Pittsburgh native doesn’t have to familiarize himself with the school or surrounding environment. I believe that he will be pleasantly surprised with how much further the program has progressed since he was an assistant here. With the synergistic leadership of Heather Lyke and Pat Narduzzi, Cignetti will join a program with far better culture and facilities. Cignetti joined Dave Wannstedt’s staff in 2009 and had to deal with Steve Pederson’s oppressive (cheap) leadership style.

**Cignetti reminds me quite a bit of Pat Narduzzi. Both men are intense, fiery coaches that demand excellence. One may initially wonder if this would lead to an incendiary relationship. However, Narduzzi is a defensive minded coach and tends to sit back and allow his coordinator to run the offense. I don’t believe this will be an issue.

**Cignetti, based on his past, is a strong recruiter. Mark Whipple was an outstanding offensive coordinator, but I don’t believe recruiting was his strong suit. You either have a passion for it or you don’t. Cignetti will roll up his sleeves and get far more involved in this process than previous Pitt offensive coordinators.

**Narduzzi covets experience and Cignetti has plenty of it, having served as offensive coordinator at Fresno State, North Carolina, California, Rutgers, Pitt and Boston College. The 56-year old also has valuable time in the NFL on his resume, with the Kansas City Chiefs, New Orlean Saints, San Francisco 49ers (quarterback coach), St. Louis Rams (quarterback coach and offensive coordinator), NY Giants (quarterback coach) and Green Bay Packers (quarterback coach). He’s a versatile coach that works well with his top talent. If he has dynamic playmakers, he’ll get them the ball.

**Cignetti has worked with and developed quarterbacks. He spent six years in the NFL working with quarterbacks. If you look myopically at Pitt, you can’t ignore what he did for Bill Stull his senior year at Pitt. Stull finished his final year as a Panther throwing for 2,633 yards, 21 touchdowns and only 8 interceptions.

This is a solid hire for Pat Narduzzi and Pitt.

 

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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Katura Cassells
Katura Cassells
8 months ago

There is no doubting his qualifications. If he can recruit the south east, it’s probably a good hire. I would like to see younger, less recirculated, guys receive an opportunity. Pitt has never had a minority hire at offensive, or, defensive, coordinator, ever. This would be a great opportunity for them, as a program, to demonstrate some initiative. There certainly are quite a few excellent candidates, like coach Marion, who was not offered the job.

Last edited 8 months ago by Katura Cassells
Chris
Chris
8 months ago

Half of the coaching staff are minorities. Marion wasn’t offered bc they knew they wouldn’t be able to keep him. A wide receiver coach at Texas is still and always will be a better opportunity than the offensive coordinator at Pitt.

Jimbo Grimm
Jimbo Grimm
8 months ago
Reply to  Chris

Complete nonsense.

Rob Radich
Rob Radich
8 months ago

Great hire

Tom DiPasquale
Tom DiPasquale
8 months ago

I Pitt wins 12 games it will be a great hire. If they go 7-5 it will be a disaster.

SRS
SRS
8 months ago
Reply to  Tom DiPasquale

Best comment yet. Now that is some serious analysis from a fair weather PITT fan. Forty years of ‘em’ isolation it would be hard to say we would not regress. A couple plays go different they would have been 7-5 this season (Joe Milton and DJ are inaccurate throwers)

Pittband
Pittband
8 months ago

Beatty would have been my first choice but Narduzzi except for Whipple’s predecessor has a good record with OC’s. He got three years out of Whipple about all anyone can expect.
It’s a step up for Cignetti, BC is a hard place to recruit.

Nonya
Nonya
8 months ago
Reply to  Pittband

Under Beatty the receivers led the acc in drops nor did they block in the run game. Marions impact on that group was obvious in 21 how Beatty got an nfl gig is a huge question mark for me. He was a glorified recruiter much like no game James at Penn state

Giovanni
Giovanni
8 months ago

Great hire! That is as long as they can keep him around for a good while. Cignetti has jumped around an awful lot. Hoping that he’ll be more content then ever since he’s back home and growing older/wiser.

Pittband
Pittband
8 months ago
Reply to  Giovanni

Narduzzi has several staff members, Bates, Partridge, Borbely who appreciate normalcy. Maybe we can another.

Sean Allison
Sean Allison
8 months ago

Feel bad for Jurkevic, as he transferred to BC due to him. Is he allowed to tranfer again?

Dukes

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