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Pitt makes top seven of top in-state tight end C.J. Dippre

NCAA Football: Miami at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

C.J. Dippre, a tight end and athlete out of Jermyn, Pennsylvania, has been on Pitt’s radar for more than a year, and over the weekend, Dippre placed Pitt in his top seven. His other six finalists are Boston College, Kentucky, Maryland, Rutgers, Syracuse and Virginia.

The 6’5”, 250-pound recruit has seen action at quarterback, tight end and defensive end at Lakeland High School, and on the offensive side of the ball, he has accrued 38 total touchdowns in his three-year career, including 19 on passes, 15 on runs and four on receptions. Dippre holds a three-star rating from Rivals based on his work as a tight end, and he is considered the No. 1 tight end available in the state in the 2021 class.

During his recruitment, Dippre has drawn more than a dozen scholarship offers, and some of the programs cut from contention on Saturday include Akron, Army, Bowling Green, Georgia Tech, Kent State, Liberty, UConn and UMass. Of the remaining seven, Pitt is at a geographic disadvantage despite its status as an in-state school, as it is actually farther away from Jermyn than all but Kentucky and Virginia. The two closest schools are Rutgers and Syracuse, as both are about 120 miles away.

With that said, Pitt holds some advantages over the other six schools, as Dippre has visited Pittsburgh on three occasions. The only other school he has paid a visit to thus far is Rutgers. However, the tight end is also a fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and he noted that the visits to the city and the allure of Heinz Field have had an influence on his recruitment.

”Having the chance to be able to visit Pitt before all this happened was a great influence, and that I’ve been there a couple of times and love the city and being a Steelers fan definitely had a strong pull,” Dippre told Mike Vukovcan of Pittsburgh Sports Now. “[Pitt tight ends coach Tim Salem] texts me a lot, and they see me as a tight end and athlete.”

Pitt has been thin at the tight end position since 2018, so adding Dippre would represent a major pickup for the team. And with Pitt offensive coordinator Mark Whipple rolling out a pass-heavy offense last season, it seems likely the position will play an increasingly important role in the coming years.

It is unclear if Dippre will trim his list further in the coming weeks, and he has not set an official decision date. However, Dippre noted that he plans to enroll early.