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Pat Signal: A.J. Roberts commits to Pitt

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The Staten Island linebacker is Pitt's first 2020 recruit from New York

NCAA Football: North Carolina at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

After hosting 10 recruits for official visits between Thursday and Saturday, Panthers head coach Pat Narduzzi sent out six Pat signals on Saturday morning, indicating the collective visit was a massive success. And on Saturday evening, A.J. Roberts, a linebacker out of Staten Island, New York, became the second recruit of the day to step forward and announce his commitment to the program.

”First off, I would like to thank the man above for blessing me with the amazing opportunities he brought into my life,” Roberts wrote in a message posted on Twitter. “I would also like to thank the Tottenville coaching staff, especially my guy, Coach [Brian] Neville, just giving me the great knowledge that I have of the game and in life. All the blood, sweat and tears I put into this game ever since I was seven on the Hurricanes finally paid off. Grandma, this one is for you. I will be committing to the University of Pittsburgh.”

The 6’1”, 210-pound linebacker holds three-star ratings from both 247Sports and Rivals, and he was the recipient of 11 offers over the course of his recruitment. Pitt notably beat out Boston College, Duke, LSU, Purdue, Rutgers, Syracuse and Temple for the New Yorker’s services.

Last season at Tottenville High School, Roberts did a little bit of everything defensively, as he racked up 33 total tackles, one quarterback hurry, one interception, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one blocked field goal. He also made the most of the opportunities he created, as he returned both the pick and the recovered fumble for defensive touchdowns.

At Pitt, Roberts could use his playmaking ability to make an impact, and he arrives at an opportune time, as the team just lost key contributors Seun Idowu, Quintin Wirginis and Elijah Zeise to graduation, depleting a once-formidable corps of linebackers.