Pitt Athletics received a No. 1 ranking in the ACC and No. 13 in the NCAA in the 2022-23 CBS Sports Best in College Sports Rankings.
A school receives a rating in three sports, which are football plus men’s basketball and women’s basketball. There a also two “wild cards” for the school’s most successful spectator sports, that CBS Sports choses from the following programs: soccer, volleyball, wrestling, softball, baseball, hockey, gymnastics and lacrosse.
Pitt had 377 points from its five sports, which included football, men’s and women’s basketball teams, with volleyball and men’ soccer as the wild cards. Football is 2.5x as many points as other sports and men’s basketball is 2.0x as many points as the other sports as well. Pitt football garnered 130 points, men’s basketball 100 points, volleyball 83 points. men’s soccer 64 points and women’s basketball with zero points.
Football didn’t reach their goal of an ACC Championship as they did in 2021, but still finished ranked for the second year in a row, one of only nine programs to do so. After what looked like a lost season, Pitt ended the 2022 season with five straight wins, including a dramatic 37-35 victory over UCLA in the Sun Bowl.
Men’s basketball found a resurgence last season in head coach Jeff Capel’s fifth season as head coach. The use of the transfer portal brought in talented players like forward Blake Hinson (Ole Miss/Iowa State), guards Nelly Cummings (Colgate) and Greg Elliott (Marquette) and JUCO center Federiko Federiko, to bolster the team after a poor 2021-22 season. It also saw unlikely heroes in twin forwards, Guillermo and Jorge Diaz Graham, a healthy season from former transfers in guard Nike Sibande (Miami (Ohio)) and the emergence of Jamarius Burton (Wichita State/Texas Tech) led to a strong veteran core.
Despite the team’s poor 1-4 start, Pitt finished with a 24-12 overall record and 14-6 in the ACC to make their first NCAA Tournament since 2016, the final year of head coach Jamie Dixon’s tenure. They defeated Iowa State in the Round of 64, before falling to Xavier in the Round of 32.
Volleyball once again showed its dominance with head coach Dan Fisher in his 10th year, making its third straight Elite Eight. They defeated No. 1 and reigning National Champions in Wisconsin in five sets on the road in the Elite Eight, to make it to their second straight Final Four appearance. They battled ACC rival No. 1 Louisville in that semifinal, but lost in five sets.
Men’s soccer also proved that it could rebuild and build another solid team under seventh year head coach Jay Vidovich. Despite a winless streak in the middle of the season, Pitt managed to pick up their game in the NCAA Tournament.
They defeated No. 1 Kentucky on the road, 2-1, in dramatic fashion to make it to their third straight Elite Eight appearance and took down Portland in extra time, 1-0, to earn their second trip in three years to the College Cup. Pitt took on Indiana, but lost 2-0,finishing their season in the top four in the country.
Women’s basketball received no points for a 10-20 overall record and 3-15 ACC record, resulting in the dismissal of head coach Lance White after five seasons at the helm. New head coach Tory Verdi arrived in April and has experience rebuilding programs like Eastern Michigan and UMass and will try to do the same with Pitt.