Pitt now only has three spots remaining for the Class of 2013 as Oconomowoc (Wis.) LB Zach Poker verbally committed to the Panthers today. That gives Pitt a total of 26 commits for this season.
While the class has been mainly about gathering quality players to build depth along the offensive and defensive lines, the linebacking unit previously only had one prior commitment in Matt Galambos. After an in-home visit from Paul Chryst, Poker decided to commit to Pitt rather than walk on at Wisconsin or accept an offer from a non-AQ program. Other than the Panthers and Syracuse, Poker had offers from Air Force, Army, Central Michigan, and Western Michigan.
Make no mistake - this is a project. Poker will start on defense at strongside linebacker, and at 6'4, 220 lbs, he has the height to be a player on defense. With a few seasons in the weight room, he can bulk up enough to be a factor.
Here are some highlights from his junior and senior seasons. It also should be noted that Poker did see time at tight end as well throughout high school and we know how much Chryst values tight ends in his offensive system. So it definitely is a possibility that Poker finds his way on to the offensive side of the ball at some point.