ACCSports.com recently released its top 100 players for the upcoming ACC football season. I’m always fascinated with these sorts of rankings so like to keep tabs on them. Pitt managed to get only four players onto the list, which, when you think about it, is pretty meager. Here’s their Top 50 players list and then their list of players from 51-100.
Offensive lineman Alex Bookser leads the way and you don’t even find him until No. 31. Bookser is the only Panther in the top 50. Linebacker Oluwaseun Idowu jumps into the mix at No. 53. He’s followed by defensive end Rashad Weaver (No. 66) and Darrin Hall (No. 95). The four players Pitt had was tied for worst (with Syracuse and North Carolina) in the ACC.
The Panthers have a lack of household names heading into this year and that’s leading to a lack of preseason hype around the team. Hurt by some key graduating seniors and early NFL Draft entrants, this is the biggest team of unknowns that Pat Narduzzi has had here from a ‘brand name’ standpoint.
I don’t think the list is indicative of how the season will necessarily play out, though. I expect that Pitt does indeed have good players we’ve not yet heard much about - particularly on defense where I expect the team to improve. Blue chip freshman Paris Ford, for example, is a guy that will have a chance to be a standout, even though he’s yet to play hi first game. So, too, could quarterback Kenny Pickett, who didn’t really emerge until the final games of the season. Others could be cited.
By season’s end, I’m convinced Pitt will have more household names. What those names are, though, is still up in the air.