The state of Tennessee hasn’t historically been a hotspot for Pitt football recruiting.
However, of the 13 players that made official visits to Pitt this weekend, two were from Tennessee.
Three-star cornerback Nigel Maynard (Smyrna, Tennessee) verbally committed to Pitt today, and it sounds as though another player from Tennessee was close.
Three-star athlete Cameron Clark (Medina, Tennessee) has been a target of Tim Salem for months and he was able to get his first up-close look at the Panthers program.
Clark (6-foot-5, 225 pounds) attends South Gibson High School and tells PSN that he’s being recruited by Pitt as both a tight end and as a linebacker. Aside from Pitt, Clark holds Power Five offers from Cincinnati, Duke, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Missouri, Notre Dame, Purdue, Vanderbilt and Virginia Tech.
“I’ve always known that Pitt, since I play both ways, Pitt is always one of the top schools on defense,” said Clark. “Since I play defensive line, I like that they are always leaders in sacks, and they put players in the NFL. I’ve had a good relationship with Coach Salem, and he called me up and asked if I wanted to come up to make an official. After that call, I knew that I needed to go. He apologized to me because he wasn’t able to make it up to see me in the Spring to watch me play. So, I definitely wanted to get up there to see him and Pitt.”
Clark was able to do that as this week was the first official visit that he’s made. Since he’s never been to Pittsburgh, Clark admitted that he didn’t know what to expect and luckily for him, his perception of Pittsburgh and Pitt didn’t turn out to be reality.
“Honestly, my expectations of the city were kind of low. I didn’t really know too much about Pittsburgh the city, so I wasn’t really expecting much. Then when I got there and was able to meet all the people and view the city and meet the Pitt team, it was way above my expectations.”
“The thing that made the biggest impression on me was the team chemistry,” said Clark. “The whole team acted like a family. Usually when you see some teams, they have clicks and everything and some players are off in different groups. But I was able to hang out with all the guys and it was like one big family. When I was hanging with them, I really felt like I was a part of the team for years. That played a big part for me. Me and my family really noticed how much everyone liked each other and how the players were in positions to grow both on and off the field.”
Clark tells PSN that in his exit interview, Pat Narduzzi told him that he had the opportunity to play on both sides of the ball. He said that he would be given a chance on either side of the ball to see which side would fit him best.
In terms of where things stand in his recruitment, although things can always change in the business of recruiting, it appears at this time to be a two-team battle for Clark between Pitt and Virginia Tech. Clark will be making an official visit to Blacksburg, Virginia this coming weekend. However, at this time, Pitt is the clear leader.
“Yes, I was definitely thinking about committing to Pitt the whole time I was there, but I knew that I gave my word to Virginia Tech months ago that I would come visit. When I commit somewhere, I don’t want to go visit other places. As far as Pitt goes, I saw everything that I needed to see plus more. Pitt is definitely at the top of my list, and I feel like that’s a place that I need to be.”