This past year, the Pitt baseball team had another largely disappointing year at 23-30. To be fair to head coach Joe Jordano, the team lost quite a bit of talent in the MLB Draft in 2016 with five players selected, including a first-round pick. But the reality is that 2017 wasn't the first year of struggles for Pitt in the ACC.
The Panthers haven't had a season over .500 since 2013, their final year in the Big East. And even with all of that talent in 2016, the team was still only 25-26 on the season.
Given what the Panthers had that year with a first-round starting pitcher and one of the top shortstops in the nation, I was a little surprised to read this from Jordano in one of his recent interviews on the PItt athletics site.
For the first time in a while, I look at this roster and this coaching staff and know we have the ability to be very good. In addition, the commitments we have already secured for the 2018, 2019 and 2020 classes are the best ever.
I can't speak to the recruits lined up in those future years so I'll trust Jordano's correct there. He's pretty candid in his interviews on the website and I have no reason not to believe that. But the earlier statement about looking at the roster and seeing good enough talent to compete there for the first time in a while is interesting, given the 2016 team, which had some guys that were drafted pretty high.
Before last season I wrote that the team needed to break through last year and get over .500. In hindsight, that probably was a bit unfair given how much they lost. But with four straight losing years in the ACC, you have to wonder at what point will Pitt need to make a coaching change.
Some of that may not even necessarily have to do with Jordano, by the way. The program is at an inherent disadvantage against programs with better year-round weather. And playing in the ACC, one of the top conferences in the country, sort of makes it a double whammy. But if all of the talk about performing better in the Directors' Cup, competing across the board in all sports, etc. is really truth, then I don't know how much losing can continue to happen.