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Pitt FB Recruiting

Recapping the Pitt Class of 2025 – Post-OV Weekends



Pitt football locker room upgrade.

Pitt is fresh off its second five-commit weekend of the month, securing 12 commitments throughout June (with one still to be announced), and there are now 17 commitments in the class.

Here are the five commitments from this weekend:

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Pitt doesn’t have one of the top-ranked recruiting classes in the country. Elijah Dotson is the only four-star recruit in the class, and the lack of top-end talent hurts overall rankings. 247Sports ranks the class at 38th, Rivals ranks the class at 31st and On3 ranks the the class at 54th.

It’s not really a concern that the class rankings aren’t very high, they’re never going to be. And there are some very intriguing recruits in the class.

Here’s where the Pitt class of 2025 stands following the final weekend of official visits.

Elijah Dotson — cornerback

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 175 pounds

Location: Belleville High in Detroit, Mich.

Offers: Akron, Bowling Green, Central Michigan, llinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kansas State, Kent State, Louisville, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, Pitt, Purdue, Tennessee, Toledo and Wisconsin.

Quote: “I’d say (Collins) played the biggest role in me committing there. They put DBs in the league, you wanna look at it as more than just football, but at the end of the day, you have to look at the coach and coach Collins produces, he develops, and he really cares about his players. I talked to a lot of people — I went to the combine and talked to all the Pitt players there just trying to figure out if it was really the place for me, and coach Collins is real. I’ve heard it from everybody.”

Bryce Yates — wide receiver

Height: 6-foot

Weight: 160 pounds

Location: Matoaca High in Chesterfield, Va.

Offers: Appalachian State, Buffalo, Charlotte, Duke, East Carolina, JMU, Marshall, Maryland, Pitt, UMass, Old Dominion, Pitt, Temple and Yale.

Quote: “Their coaching staff was just amazing off the rip. When (Pat Narduzzi) made those changes with the new receiver coach, new offensive coordinator, they stepped in and did a pretty good job making me feel wanted.

“When I went up there for practice, they made me feel at home and I know I can trust them. And I know that if I go in and work hard my freshman year, I’ll have a chance to make an impact on the team.”

DaMarion Fowlkes — wide receiver

Height: 5-foot-10

Weight: 170 pounds

Location: Good Counsel High in Olney, Md.

Offers: Boston College, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Charlotte, ECU, Indiana, JMU, Kent State, Liberty, Memphis, Old Dominion, Pitt, Temple, UNLV, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and West Virginia.

Quote: “It means a lot, the whole community really accepted me, even the commits who committed before this official visit. They really welcomed me with open arms and I’m just excited to be the next.”

Tony Kinsler — wide receiver

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 165 pounds

Location: Spruce Creek High in Port Orange, Fla.

Offers: Buffalo, Coastal Carolina, FAU, Georgia Southern, Indiana, Marshall, UMass, Tulane, USF, Vanderbilt, West Virginia and Western Michigan.

Quote: “Ever since coach Kade came to see me in the middle of track season, we just always kept a good connection. I met the receivers coach, and we kept a good connection. We just kept communicating, and I feel like Pitt is the right place to go.”

Ja’Kyrian Turner — running back

Height: 5-foot-9

Weight: 160 pounds

Location: South Sumter High in Bushnell, Fla.

Offers: Delaware, Eastern Michigan, FAU, Nebraska, Pitt, Texas State, USF, Wake Forest and West Virginia.

Quote: “Everything I saw, the whole environment, the coaches, the experiences and the facilities, it was just cool. It just blew me away.

“When I got there, it just felt like home. The environment was good, the coaching staff, I’d built a bond with them, and it felt like home. They welcomed me with open arms.”

Mason Heintschel — quarterback

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 200 pounds

Location: Clay High in Oregon, Ohio

Offers: Akron, Bowling Green, Coastal Carolina, Kent State, Liberty, Ohio, Pitt and Toledo.

Quote: “I just knew as soon as I stepped foot on campus that this was the place for me. It was home. Getting to meet all the coaches and build relationships with them over the past few months and even on that visit, it was just a no-brainer for me.”

Justin Thompson — linebacker

Height: 6-foot-3

Weight: 225 pounds

Location: Good Counsel High in Olney, Md.

Offers: Baylor, Bowling Green, Cal, Charlotte, Duke, Florida, Kent State, Marshall, UMass, Memphis, North Carolina, Pitt, South Carolina, Temple and Towson.

Quote: “It just felt like the spot for me. It felt like home. Real genuine, real kind and it just felt like a great family atmosphere — school and all. It was just a brotherhood over there that could develop me to the next level.

“It wasn’t the plan, but going there, being there for three days, it changed my decision to just I want to commit. Everything they did was great, I loved the three days. Everything that they were telling me led me to the decision.”

Trevor Sommers — defensive lineman

Height: 6-foot-3

Weight: 250 pounds

Location: St. Thomas Aquinas in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Offers: Colorado, FIU, Illinois, Indiana, JMU, Pitt, Syracuse, UAB, UCF, USF, West Virginia, Western Kentucky and Western Michigan.

Quote: “(The visit) went great. Going up to Pitt, it was great weather, had a great experience and I’m excited to go back up in the near future.”

Shep Turk — offensive lineman

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 280 pounds

Location: Thomas Jefferson High in Jefferson Hills, Pa.

Offers: Army, Bowling Green, Bucknell, Buffalo, Central Michigan, Duquesne, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Lehigh, Navy, Maine, Monmouth, Pitt, Stony Brook, Temple and UMass.

Quote: “I’m someone that wants to help a lot in the community and do good things off the field. But as a player, it’s a different mode when I get on the field. It’s not the nice guy anymore; it’s smash-mouth football, that’s what I play at my high school and want to bring to Pitt.

“I want to win a championship. I want to bring one back. I’m excited to be on the team, and I just want to do something special there.”

Max Hunt — tight end

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 210 pounds

Location: Plant High in Tampa, Fla.

Offers: Arkansas State, Bowling Green, Buffalo, ECU, Georgia Tech, Indiana, JMU, Memphis, Middle Tennessee State, Pitt, Toledo, UAB, West Virginia and Western Kentucky.

Quote: “Really just my relationship with the coaching staff, with coach Bronowski and coach Narduzzi, and just feeling comfortable around them. I’ve been thinking that Pitt is the place I want to be for a while now, I was just making it official up here talking to coach Narduzzi.”

Julian Anderson — defensive end

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 215 pounds

Location: Blair Academy in Blair, N.J.

Offers: Appalachian State, Boston College, Bryant, Central Michigan, Duke, Lafayette, Pitt, Syracuse, UConn, West Virginia and Western Kentucky.

Quote: “Ever since I got up to Pitt, I just felt a genuine love. The energy, the family atmosphere that they bring, that was really important to me and my family in making a decision.

“I wouldn’t say it was the plan, but I’d definitely say that it was God’s plan. It was a gut feeling, one the feeling comes, you just gotta go with it, and I decided that this is where I want to be.”

Akram Elnagmi — offensive tackle

Height: 6-foot-6

Weight: 300 pounds

Location: NFL Academy in Loughborough, England

Offers: Campbell, Eastern Michigan, Florida A&M, Pitt and Virginia

Quote: “It means a lot. It’s definitely a testament to my hard work because I’ve always had the size, but the work ethic has been high since day one. It was just about doing the right things at the right times to get me in that position.

“Obviously, I was blessed with an offer from Eastern Michigan, and that’s something I’ll remember because that was my first offer ever from any school. So, I still hold it very close to my heart, but to get the opportunity to play at an even bigger level is definitely something special to me, and I will not take it for granted.”

Shawn Lee — cornerback

Height: 5-foot-10

Weight: 170 pounds

Location: Harrisburg High in Harrisburg, Pa.

Offers: Akron, Buffalo, UConn, Howard, Iowa State, JMU, Kent State, North Carolina State and Pitt

Quote: N/A

Emmanuel Taylor — linebacker

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 195 pounds

Location: Green Run High in Virginia Beach, Va.

Offers: Charlotte, Coastal Carolina, Duke, East Carolina, Liberty, Marshall, Pitt and Virginia Tech

Quote: “Just the hospitality I got when I first got here, not only from the coaches but the players as well, they showed a lot of love when I first got there. And after, when it was just me and the players, no coaches, they showed the same and have been genuine from the start.”

Kha’leal Sterling — wide receiver

Height: 5-foot-10

Weight: 170 pounds

Location: Miami Central High in Miami, Fla.

Offers: Arizona State, Arkansas, Bowling Green, FAU, FIU, Indiana, Liberty, Oregon, Pitt, SMU, Temple, Tulane, UAB and West Virginia

Quote: N/A

Torian Chester — offensive lineman

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 315 pounds

Location: Westover High in Albany, Ga.

Offers: Buffalo, Colorado State, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, Liberty, Pitt, South Alabama, Tulane and Wofford

Quote: “Coach Darveau kept a buck with me. He was like, ‘Hey, we like your family and me and the offensive coordinator want to offer you, we’re just waiting on the head coach.’ And one thing I can say about that is I like how after being recruited so many times, I like how the offensive line coach kept it a buck with me and made sure he communicated with me on where things sit with me and the head coach.”

Synkwan Smith — athlete

Height: 5-foot-9

Weight: 170 pounds

Location: Roswell High in Roswell, Ga.

Offers: Arkansas State, UConn, Georgia State, Georgia Tech, Kansas, Kansas State, Kent State, Marshall, UMass, Miami (Oh.), Pitt, Toledo. Western Kentucky and Wofford

Quote: N/A


Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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Rusty Shackleford
Rusty Shackleford
18 days ago

🤮🤮🤮 what a terrible class.

17 days ago

What a rusty thought Rusty! 😂

18 days ago

I think I went to high school with Mason Heintschel, back in ’78

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