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Larry Fitzgerald to have number retired at Pitt


Pitt capped off a day of celebration in joining the ACC with a big announcement that former wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald will have his jersey number retired. The iconic No. 1 that Fitz wore will hang in the rafters alongside greats like Tony Dorsett, Mike Ditka, Dan Marino, Hugh Green, and Marshall Goldberg.

I've always personally gone back and forth a little on the topic of Fitzgerald having his jersey number retired? The 'con' argument is pretty easy in that you can argue that no two-year player should receive the honor. I'll listen to that argument and I might even lean that way if you forced me to.

But ...

It's also hard to deny Fitz here. For one, he was the best wide receiver in the history of the school - easily, in fact. And in his sophomore season, most of us are pretty sure he was the best player in the nation when he lost out on the Heisman to Jason White. And while he may not have the career stats among the all-time greats since he played only two seasons, he had one of the best two-year stretches in the history of the sport.

There's also the fact that he's been a model representative for the university since leaving. That's not the sole reason you retire a jersey, obviously, but it definitely should count for something.

I've always leaned a little towards needing to do something absolutely special if you didn't stick around for three years. Carmelo Anthony is getting his jersey retired at Syracuse after only one season, but he also won a National Championship. I get that argument a bit more, but as I said earlier on Twitter, it's not something I'll ever argue strongly against. Fact is that Fitzgerald was one of the best wide receivers in the history of college football and at the end of the day, I'm just not going to kick and scream about him getting an honor like that. If the goal is to retire the numbers of the best players of all time at a school, then he certainly deserves it.

The best thing to do is congratulate him.

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