With the strength of Pitt’s wide receivers room entering the 2022 season, despite losing a couple of key names to graduation and the transfer portal, it’s a tough group to crack. And a Pitt receiver has decided to enter the transfer portal.
John Vardzel, a redshirt junior from North Allegheny High School in Wexford, Pa., announced his decision to enter the transfer portal Thursday afternoon via Twitter.
— John Vardzel (@john_vardzel) February 24, 2022
“I would like to thank Coach Narduzzi, my teammates, and the rest of the coaching staff at the University of Pittsburgh,” Vardzel wrote in his statement on Twitter. “After careful consideration and constant prayer, I have decided to enter the transfer portal as a grad-transfer with 2 years of eligibility remaining. I’m so thankful for everything I’ve accomplished at Pitt: Earned Scholarship, 35 career games, 2X Coastal Champion, ACC Champion #H2P”
Vardzel, who originally walked on to the team and redshirted in 2018, earned a scholarship and played in all but two of Pitt’s games over the past three seasons as a special teams ace. He caught five balls for 17 yards and returned five punts for seven yards in his three seasons on the roster.
With two seasons of eligibility left at the college level, Vardzel will look for more playing time and opportunity outside of Pittsburgh in 2022 and beyond. Vardzel’s brother, Peter, is a freshman wide receiver at Pitt who joined as a walk-on and redshirted in 2021.
Vardzel is Pitt’s second wide receiver to enter the portal, joining now-Akron wide receiver Shocky Jacques-Louis, and the fifth overall wide receiver not returning in 2022, joining Jacques-Louis, Taysir Mack, Tre Tipton and Melquise Stovall.
With a big three of Jordan Addison, Jared Wayne and Konata Mumpfield, and young players rising in Jaylon Barden, Jaden Bradley and Myles Alston, the future is bright. Not to mention 2022 signees Addison Copeland and Che Nwabuko.
With Vardzel’s departure, Pitt now has 86 scholarship players on the roster, only one of the 85 scholarship limit for the 2022 season.