Trevor Szymanski couldn’t believe it. He read the message over and over before it finally hit him. Pitt offered.
It was a random Thursday night in January when he received a DM from Pitt running backs coach Andre Powell. He didn’t even realize coaches could offer through the DMs.
He didn’t know it was possible, but it certainly was. ‘Are you serious?’ He thought to himself. He asked Powell if they could talk right away, and of course, they did. It was a good call, too.
“I was just happy the whole time because I knew I had the offer, but he said if I went to the camp (in the summer), they would’ve offered me earlier, but I couldn’t go because they sent me out late,” Szymanski told Pittsburgh Sports Now.
Pitt offered Szymanski — a 6-foot-5, 270-pound offensive lineman from Loyola Blakefield High in Towson, Maryland — Thursday, joining a queue of offers that includes Akron, Connecticut, James Madison, Maryland, Pitt and West Virginia.
— Trevor Szymanski (@TrevSzymanski) January 13, 2023
Szymanski has been in contact with the Pitt coaching staff on a regular basis since Sept. 1 — when contact was permitted to begin between coaching staffs and then-juniors — and while Powell has been the main point of contact, offensive line coach Dave Borbely has been in frequent contact.
The contact with Borbely has mainly been through texts and DMs, but he’s gotten to know Powell — a funny dude — through frequent phone calls.
And when it comes to Pitt as a program, the recent success stands out. Szymanski wants to go to a program that’s either on the rise or already a consistently solid program, and he saw Pitt put together back-to-back seasons of success.
A really good coaching staff helps, too.
Szymanski was able to watch the Backyard Brawl win against West Virginia in September, the same day the initial interest picked up, and the Sun Bowl win over then-No. 18 UCLA last month. The Sun Bowl win afforded him a chance to watch how the Pitt offensive line worked.
“When I watch games, I always watch the O-line and the D-line,” Szymanski said. “(Pitt’s offensive line is) a good unit this year. I always watch left tackle because that’s what I play.”
He was able to watch Branson Taylor play left tackle against UCLA in the Sun Bowl, and as he watched the newly-installed left tackle, he saw some similarities.
He wasn’t fat, first of all. He was nice and agile. And that’s how Szymanski describes himself, too. He uses his athleticism to his advantage — and to get out in front to block in the second level. Those are the traits that Pitt likes from him, along with the typical technique and footwork.
While he holds down the left tackle spot at Loyola Blakefield, he’s not exclusive. He filled in at center as a freshman, and he feels like he’s versatile enough to fit into any spot along the line.
Szymanski had planning on going to Pitt’s Jan. 21 Junior Day, but because of outside circumstances, it’s no longer in the cards. However, he’s heard he isn’t out of luck.
“They said there’s more days in March, so I’m definitely getting up there,” he said.
And Pittsburgh as a whole isn’t that unfamiliar to him. He’s been in the area to see his grandma more than a few times, so he’s very familiar. So, while he won’t be camping at Pitt — or anywhere else — this summer, he’s well versed with the area. And he’s planning a visit.
The plan going forward is to commit on his birthday in June, so that leaves the spring for figuring out where he will spend — hopefully — the next three-to-five years of his life. And Pitt is certainly in consideration.
Pitt was his second Power Five offer, and he wants to play at the Power Five level, so the Panthers currently stand in a pretty good position.
247Sports rates Szymanski as the 44th-ranked interior lineman and the 22nd-ranked recruit from Maryland in the class. Rivals has given him a 5.5 Rivals Rating.