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Pitt Has Stood Out Early for Fast-Rising 2024 3-Star QB Miles O’Neill



Miles O’Neill knew that Frank Cignetti Jr. was testing him, and when it comes to being tested by a guy who has coached Aaron Rodgers and Eli Manning, he knew he couldn’t mess up.

And as Cignetti watched O’Neill out on the field, he certainly saw a tall, very strong-armed quarterback who did everything that asked was asked of him — and more. So, instead of waiting to go back and watch the film, he extended an offer right then and there.

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O’Neill — a 6-foot-6, 220-pound three-star quarterback from the Hun School in Princeton, New Jersey — hadn’t met Cignetti before the throwing session, but after the in-person session led to a brand-new offer, he felt good. Very good.

“It was awesome. It was unreal,” O’Neil told PSN. “He was testing my IQ, making sure I could make the right reads and all that kind of stuff, so it was awesome.”

Pitt joined the likes of Boston College, Columbia, Connecticut, Maryland, Michigan State, Pennsylvania, Princeton, Temple and Virginia in extending offers, and he’s picked up additional offers from Memphis and Vanderbilt since.

Wednesday’s throwing session was the first time that O’Neill met a Pitt coach in person, and Cignetti definitely left a strong impression upon him when it comes to Pitt, but it’s been Jon DiBiaso who has been that main point of contact so far.

“Just hopped on a FaceTime with him yesterday actually after the throwing session,” O’Neill said. “I’ve been talking with coach DiBiaso for probably a couple of weeks, so not too long but starting to pick up talking with him more.”

DiBiaso, who spearheads Pitt’s recruiting efforts in the northeast, has begun to build a “great” relationship with O’Neill. He’s been a teacher so far, infirming O’Neill about Pitt, its rich culture and how Pitt could help get O’Neill where he wants to go. “And I love what I hear, so I’m just really excited,” O’Neill said. 

But O’Neill already had somewhat of a Pitt connection even before he started talking to Cignetti and DiBiaso. His quarterback coaches — and new offensive coordinator at the Hun School — is Tony Racioppi, Kenny Pickett’s quarterback coach.

“My quarterback coach coaches Kenny Pickett, so he’s told me a lot about Pitt, so I know that it’s legit football, it has a great business school, which is what I want to major in, and it seems like a great opportunity,” O’Neill said. 

O’Neill has thrown with Racioppi about six times now, and he’s left every session feeling better and better. He was a big draw in transferring to the Hun School from Massachusetts. It’s their relationship, and his desire to improve at every aspect of the position, that has left him confident he’ll be able to dominate teams in his senior season.

Racioppi is certainly excited to work with O’Neill this fall, too.

“Of all the kids I’ve had over the years, we’re talking over 20 years of high school and college coaching and obviously training the quarterback, he might be the most physically gifted high school kid I’ve ever had,” Racioppi said.

During a recent session, O’Neill dropped back and unleashed a 70-yard bomb on a left post route. He’s the full package: big arm, accurate, good feet and a good athlete at 6-foot-6, 220 pounds.

O’Neill labeled himself a dual-threat out of the backfield, and while Racioppi said that he might not run and 4.4 40-yard dash and take a zone read 80 yards to the house, he’s the kind of athlete who will pick up 10 yards on a 3rd-and-7. His ability to extend plays and make plays when things break down stand out.

He’s a strong-armed kid, but he’s not just a strong arm. He can throw it harder and further with touch. Racioppi already sees the NFL-ready arm.

O’Neill spent his junior season at Marblehead High in Massachusetts, leading the Magicians to an 8-2 record, and he’ll play at the Hun School for his senior season. In three games recorded on MaxPreps, he completed 51-of-77 pass attempts (66%) for 653 yards with nine touchdowns and three interceptions.

He’s a big-bodied quarterback with a very strong arm — and plenty of room to improve as he’s working with Racioppi this offseason. And he’s also a very capable athlete who has played safety on the defensive side of the ball.

The major recruiting services haven’t ranked O’Neill yet, although he holds a 5.6 Rivals Rating, but that will be changing as his recruiting process heats up this summer.

In addition to all the new offers he’s picked up over the last few weeks, Racioppi said that Texas A&M and Penn State have been poking around, and he can only imagine how the next few weeks will go.

Pitt may have jumped in just early enough. O’Neill said he’s likely going to head down to Pittsburgh for an unofficial visit very soon, and he’s already working with the coaching staff to set up an official visit in June when the Steelers OTAs begin.

“Pitt has stood out a lot,” O’Neill said. “Coach Cig, he’s worked with all those Hall of Famers, so that stands out a lot. Kenny Pickett was obviously the first quarterback taken. A great business school.”

There isn’t a timeline when it comes to O’Neill narrowing down his process, he still needs to head out to the schools that are showing him interest, but that process will being in the near future. Pitt has a great standing with him right now though.

“Stands above a lot,” O’Neill said. “I just gotta go down and visit and see how I like it.”

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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