The Pitt football program reeled in the second member of its 2019 recruiting class on Friday, as junior college tight end Travis Koontz announced his commitment in a message posted on Twitter.
I would like to thank everyone one who took time to recruit me and @CoachMoose I'm coming back closer home, I would like to say I am committing to the University of Pittsburgh #HailtoPitt pic.twitter.com/KF2pk67XFQ— iceman koontz (@koontz101) June 15, 2018
“I would like to thank everyone who took time to recruit me,” Koontz said in the tweet. “I’m coming back closer to home. I would like to say I am committing to the University of Pittsburgh.”
Pat Narduzzi and the Pitt coaching staff beat out Louisville, LSU, Maryland and UCLA for Koontz’s commitment, and the addition will help bolster a tight end position that saw some turnover this offseason with the graduations of Nathan Bossory, Devon Edwards and Matt Flanagan in addition to the sudden departure of former five-star tight end Chris Clark in March.
That left the team with Grant Carrigan, Charles Reeves Jr. and Tyler Sear at the position, all of whom are largely inexperienced underclassmen, prior to the addition of Arkansas graduate transfer Will Gragg. Narduzzi described Gragg as “an immediate infusion of veteran talent” upon his commitment to the team, and he seems likely to see significant playing time right away.
With that said, Koontz could find himself in a similar situation in 2019.
“The coaching staff believes that I can come in and make an impact immediately because they have a need at tight end,” he told Mike Vukovcan of Pittsburgh Sports Now.
Koontz was originally a three-star recruit in the 2017 class, but he ended up spending his freshman season at Los Angeles Pierce College after decommitting from Toledo and Bowling Green. During his time there, the Youngstown, Ohio, native took part in eight games, caught 11 passes for 106 yards and a touchdown, and won first-team all-conference honors.
The 6’5”, 250-pound tight end has since transferred to Ventura College in Ventura, California, where he will remain for the 2018 season.