With most of the news this week focused on Matt Canada and Scott Barnes, the football program continued to work the recruiting trail and it paid off for Pat Narduzzi. He landed a three-star offensive lineman from Florida in Jerry Drake. As expected, Narduzzi alerted the masses in his usual way.
Jerry Drake confirmed it was him just an hour later on his own Twitter account.
Jerry Drake is a 6’7” 300 pound offensive lineman from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. He is a four-star recruit on ESPN’s rankings, and Rivals, Scout, and 24/7 all give him a three-star grade. He holds an impressive offer sheet that includes Alabama, Auburn, Oklahoma, LSU, Tennessee, South Carolina among many others.
Many expected Drake to be an Oklahoma lean as recently as yesterday. Drake was a surprised visitor last week to Pitt and obviously the experience made quite the impression on the Florida native. Drake is expected to enroll early for next semester and will be able to participate in Spring practice.
Jerry Drake becomes the 17th member of the 2017 recruiting class. He is the fourth offensive linemen, and is the third prospect from the state of Florida in the class.
Pitt’s offensive line haul appears to be a good one. Jerry Drake is a big commitment for this class. Also committed is coveted New Jersey linemen, Carter Warren, who committed back in October. Rounding out the class is local prospect Gabe Houy and Owen Drexel of New Jersey. With Dorian Johnson and Adam Bisnowaty graduating, the depth on the line needed to be restocked.
With 17 commitments, Pitt certainly has some work to do before signing day. Pitt has to address a lot of needs on the defensive side of the ball, and I expect their recruiting efforts will focus there primarily. Also to consider, that we are currently in a “dead period” of recruiting and there is no face to face contact between coaches and prospects. Once the dead period ends on January 11, the wild recruiting really gets under way. But until then, news may be scarce unless a kid is enrolling early, and in that case, those decisions will be made in the next few days.