Pitt made a late addition to its 2021 class on Friday, as Pat Narduzzi and his staff landed a commitment from Melquise Stovall, a graduate transfer wide receiver from Hawaii. Stovall was close with Pitt wide receivers coach Brennan Marion during his time at Hawaii and chose to follow him across the country shortly after he received a scholarship offer on March 11.
I’d like to thank @CoachDuzzPittFB @BrennanMarion4 @CoachWhipPitt @graham_wilbert for believing & taking a chance on me ! I will be furthering my academic & athletic career at the University of Pittsburgh! HAIL TO PITT pic.twitter.com/6vD8v59b6w— Melquise Stovall (@MelquiseS) March 26, 2021
The 5’9”, 190-pound was a star at Paraclete High School in Lancaster, California, where he amassed 7,650 all-purpose yards and 88 touchdowns between 2012 and 2015. That earned him status as a consensus four-star recruit and a scholarship at California, where he started as a freshman in 2016. He remained in Berkeley for two more years but sat out due to injury issues before transferring.
In 2018, Stovall ended up at Riverside City College in his home state, where he played in five games and racked up 289 yards and two touchdowns on 17 receptions. The next season, he joined Hawaii and had 248 yards and four touchdowns on eight catches. However, he was dismissed from the team by then-Hawaii head coach Nick Rolovich before being invited to rejoin the team by Rolovich's successor at Hawaii, Todd Graham.
In 2020, the pass-catcher came up with 232 yards but zero touchdowns on a team-high 31 receptions. And were it not for the additional year of eligibility extended to all student-athletes impacted by COVID-19 by the NCAA, his 415-yard, three-touchdown season as a freshman at California would have gone down as his athletic peak. But at Pitt, he will get a chance to top that in a pass-heavy offense with Panthers quarterback Kenny Pickett.
Last season, Pitt receivers Jordan Addison and D.J. Turner both topped 600 yards in the Panthers offense, and they combined for seven touchdowns. But with Turner no longer on the roster, Stovall figures to slide into his role opposite Addison as the team’s No. 2 receiver, provided he secures a starting job. And given the performances of Pitt’s top two receivers in all three of Pickett’s seasons as a regular starter for the Panthers, Stovall’s final college season may well be his best to date.