Pitt will be facing an FCS foe in Youngstown State in the team's opener on Saturday. But the Panthers still could see quite a bit of FBS talent in that game.
New head coach Bo Pelini brought in several transfers to bolster this year's roster in the offseason. And unlike transfers going from one FBS program to another, when they move to FCS teams, they are eligible to play immediately. We don't know much about Youngstown State's depth chart but one has to think that many, if not all, will be suiting up this weekend.
The group of newcomers is led, perhaps, by defensive end Avery Moss. Moss came from Pelini's old school, Nebraska, and was banned from the campus there due to some public indecency issues. He couldn't play last year, but in 2013, he made the Big Ten Network's All-Freshman Team, playing in all of the team's games while recording 4 1/2 sacks, an interception, and eight tackles for losses.
Youngstown State also added Nebraska safety LeRoy Alexander to the mix. Alexander was unable to play last season due to a suspension, but also starred in 2013. He was an Honorable Mention on the Big Ten Network's All-Freshman Team and had 34 tackles while appearing in all 13 of the team's games.
Another addition is a player Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi will be familiar with - Jalyn Powell, a safety from Michigan State. Powell played in nine games for the Spartans last year, recording five tackles.
Youngstown State also nearly had another big transfer come through. Auburn defensive lineman Elijah Daniel was expected to join the Penguins (several outlets, such as NBC Sports, even stated he was joining the team), but those plans reportedly fell through, and he ended up at Murray State. Daniel played in all of Auburn's 14 games and even made a couple of starts last season as a true sophomore.
As I said, we won't know how much these guys will play until Saturday, but as former FBS players, one would think the chances they get on the field would be pretty high.