Connect with us

Pitt FB Recruiting

A Historic Month of March Has Pitt’s Recruiting Chase Way Ahead of Schedule



I think a lot of people have found it interesting that Pitt has really been racking up so many commitments so early.

It’s March 28, and Pitt has already secured nine commitments — with one more still to come as there’s an active Pat Signal — but it’s been especially active the last few days.

So, let’s break down just the last few days.

Photo courtesy of Jiavani Cooley’s Twitter account.

Saturday, 1:29 p.m. 

Narduzzi tweeted out the Pat Signal. A few hours later, 2024 three-star offensive lineman Jiavani Cooley officially announced his commitment.

The 6-foot-6, 265-pound offensive tackle became the first offensive lineman to pledge himself to Pitt’s class of 2024, adding yet another in-state commit out of Erie Cathedral Prep.

A large yet slim tackle who mauled defenders at Cathedral Prep, giving Pitt basically a blank canvas to mold into a stud tackle.

Case closed.

Photo courtesy of Tayshawn Banks’ Twitter account.

Sunday, 1:00 p.m.

Narduzzi tweeted out the second Pat Signal in 24 hours, but this one took a little longer to be revealed as 2024 three-star safety Tayshawn Banks announced his commitment early Monday morning.

The 6-foot, 170-pound defensive back is a legitimate ballhawk as a junior at Taft High in Cincinnati, picking off nine passes (returning three for touchdowns). He became the first defensive back in Pitt’s class.

Case closed.

Photo courtesy of Zachary Crothers’ Twitter account.

Monday, 10:06 a.m. 

A third Pat Signal in as many days. What? What’s going on? It didn’t take long for this one though.

Zachary Crothers, a 6-foot-4, 240-pound defensive end from powerhouse Chaminade Madonna in Florida, announced his commitment less than an hour after the Pat Signal.

And as the leader of Chaminade Madonna’s defense, leading the way with 24 tackles for loss and 15 sacks, Crothers certainly made an impact on the way to a state title.

Another case closed.

Monday, 5:55 p.m. 

Okay, wow. Another Pat Signal, second of the day and the fourth in three days. That’s gotta be uncommon, right? We’ll get there.

This one is still unannounced, but that’s going to change soon. So, that’s 10 commitments before the end of March. How uncommon is that? Let’s take a look.

But first, let’s look at the class as it stands:

  • DayDay Farmer — four-star wide receiver from Cocoa, Florida
  • Jahsear Whittington — four-star defensive tackle from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Julez Goff — three-star running back from York, Pennsylvania
  • Jiavani Cooley — three-star offensive tackle from Erie, Pennsylvania
  • Francis Brewu — three-star defensive tackle from Columbus, Ohio
  • Tayshawn Banks — three-star safety from Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Ty Yuhas — three-star defensive end from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Eric Ingwerson — three-star tight end from Papillion, Nebraska
  • Zachary Crothers — three-star defensive end from Hollywood, Florida

That’s a running back, a wide receiver, a tight end, an offensive lineman, four defensive linemen and a safety. All before the calendar turns to April. That’s kind of incredible.

Over the last 10 recruiting cycles, only two have featured classes with at least two recruits committed by the end of March.

In the class of 2016, Pitt landed three-star offensive lineman Brandon Ford on March 22 and three-star quarterback Thomas MacVittie on March 26. That’s two commitments before the end of March.

In the class of 2021, Pitt landed two — key — recruits before the turn of the year. Nahki Johnson committed on June 25, a year and a half before his signing date, and Rodney Hammond Jr. committed on Nov. 2 — about a year before he signed.

Javon McIntyre was the earliest recruit to sign in 2020, pledging himself on Jan. 20. And it’s safe to say that all three will be key starters on Pitt’s squad next season.

However, that’s five commits who were officially committed before March in their recruitment years. And if you go back to the 2014 recruiting class, 10 years ago, there are just seven verbal commits who pledged themselves before the end of March.

That list is:

  • Alex Paulina — 2015 three-star offensive lineman from Canonsburg, Pennsylvania
  • Brandon Ford — 2016 three-star offensive lineman from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Thomas MacVittie — 2016 three-star quarterback from Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Paris Ford — 2017 four-star defensive back from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Nahki Johnson — 2021 four-star defensive end from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Rodney Hammond Jr. — 2021 three-star running back from Norfolk, Virginia
  • Javon McIntyre — 2021 three-star defensive back from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

That’s seven commitments before the end of March, in their respective classes, over the last decade. Pitt has nine — 10 if you count the unnamed announcement — commitments in the class of 2024 before the end of this March.

That’s significant. Pitt’s coaching staff has had the most impactful month in years — considering the historical significance of March in a normal cycle — and it’s perhaps just the beginning.

As of very early Tuesday morning, with nine commitments, without even counting the 10th unnamed commit, Pitt is ranked highly nationally.

247Sports ranks Pitt’s class eighth, Rivals ranks it 13th and On3 ranks it 25th.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
1 Comment
Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Burton Tee
Burton Tee
2 months ago

This now a great start and stacks up really well. But it’s not where you start, it’s where you finish. How many times has Pitt “landed” a player, only to have him bolt at the last second?

I live these updates, but let’s be patient and see who actually gets ends up on campus.

Get PSN in your inbox!

Enter your email and get all of our posts delivered straight to your inbox.

Like Pittsburgh Sports Now on Facebook!
Send this to a friend