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Pitt in the mix for four-star running back Sam Brown

The Philadelphia-area recruit was a star at La Salle College High School in 2019

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 02 Pitt at Georgia Tech Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Pitt addressed a position of need by landing a tight end on Monday night, and on Tuesday, the Panthers coaches made headway on another position that has been lackluster of late, as a Pennsylvania running back mentioned Pitt as one of the top schools in his recruitment.

The prospect in question is Sam Brown, a four-star athlete out of La Salle College High School in Wyndmoor, and he noted that Pitt was one of four schools that have his attention right now. He also expressed an interest in schools that are relatively close to his hometown.

“Right now Rutgers, Nebraska, Pittsburgh, and West Virginia are doing well with me,” Brown told Adam Friedman of Rivals during an interview on Tuesday. “I have a good relationship with the coaching staffs.”

Brown noted that he visited Rutgers before the coronavirus shutdown and “had a really good time there.” At this point, it is the only visit the 6’1”, 195-pound prospect has taken, but he has plans to stop by some of the schools on his list close to Philadelphia soon. Those plans include a trip to Pitt, but they also include another stop in nearby Piscataway.

“I’d like to visit the schools that are close to home like West Virginia, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, and a few other schools,” Brown said. “Michigan State and Wisconsin have offered me. I talked to Wisconsin not too long ago, and I talked to Michigan State a while ago. But that was always a dream school of mine.”

Brown holds a four-star rating from Rivals and a three-star mark from 247Sports, and the latter ranks him among the top 10 Keystone State prospects in the 2022 class. So far in his recruitment, he has received 18 scholarship offers, including 14 from Power Five programs. And despite his interest in programs close to home, it doesn’t seem as if hometown Temple, one of the four Group of Five schools to offer, has made much of an impression on Brown, leaving Pitt as his top in-state option.

As a freshman at La Salle, Brown rushed for 438 yards and five touchdowns on 43 rushes, bringing his average to a healthy 10.2 yards per carry. He also had two scores and 164 yards on two catches that season. While that was a great start, Brown took a leap forward as a sophomore, as he caught eight passes for 164 yards and three touchdowns in La Salle’s second game of the 2019 season. He added 65 yards and two scores on the ground in that game, a 42-6 win over North Penn.

Currently, Pitt has a handful of promising but unproven talents waiting in the wings behind likely 2020 starter A.J. Davis. The list includes former four-star recruits Israel Abanikanda and Daniel Carter, but Vincent Davis is the top running back behind the presumed starter, as he led the team with five rushing touchdowns and ranked second in rushing yards with 314. Given all that, it’s not hard to see what a player like Brown has to offer a program like Pitt.