Player News

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NFL Media ranks Pittsburgh junior RB James Conner as the No. 14 Heisman candidate.

The 6-foot-2, 250-pound Conner rushed for 1,765 yards and scored 26 touchdowns last season to earn All-American honors. "He did it all rather quietly, too, because Pitt finished 6-7," wrote College Football 24/7 writer Mike Huguenin. "If he puts up those kinds of numbers again, everyone is going to notice. He and Panthers junior WR Tyler Boyd are one of the best RB-WR duos in the nation."
Source: NFL.com
May 25 - 7:17 PM

NFL Media ranks Pittsburgh junior RB James Conner as the No. 10 offensive player in the land.

"Conner is a big, powerful rusher, but slips through holes and runs with defensive backs like a much smaller running back," wrote College Football 24/7 writer Chase Goodbread. The 6-foot-2, 250-pound Conner rushed for 1,765 yards and scored 26 touchdowns last season and was named an All-American. He jumped over 200 yards on multiple occasions and will do so again in 2015.
Source: NFL.com
May 23 - 7:18 PM

Pittsburgh junior WR Tyler Boyd is the No. 1 receiver in the country, according to Walter Football.

Most rank Laquan Treadwell No. 1 at the moment. "Boyd has enough speed to get separation with a burst to rip off yards after the catch," reads his scouting report. "He runs good routes, is very physical, has reliable hands, tracks the bell extremely well, makes acrobatic catches and out-fights defensive backs for 50-50 balls." In his true freshman season in 2013, Boyd hauled in 85 passes for 1,174 yards and seven touchdowns. Last year, he hauled in 78 receptions for 1,261 yards and eight scores. Walter Football calls him a surefire first-rounder.
May 23 - 3:44 PM

Pittsburgh junior RB James Conner "moves much better than you would ever imagine," wrote Scout.com's Jamie Newberg.

The 6-foot-2, 250-pound Conner rushed for 1,765 yards and scored 26 touchdowns last season, becoming the first Pitt All-American RB since Craig Heyward. "Conner uses his size and can be a physical runner who shows balance and the ability to stay on his feet," wrote Newberg. Scout.com ranks Conner as the No. 2 RB in the class behind Ohio State's Ezekiel Elliot. The site likes Conner slightly more than Alabama's Derrick Henry.
Source: Scout.com
May 19 - 1:02 AM

Former Tennessee redshirt freshman DE Dewayne Hendrix transferred to Pittsburgh.

Hendrix, a former four-star recruit, must sit out the 2015 season and will have three years of eligibility remaining beginning in 2016. Coming out of high school, he was graded as the No. 78 recruit overall by Rivals.com. "Dewayne is an explosive player with big-play capability," head coach Pat Narduzzi said. "We are looking to strengthen our numbers and production at defensive end and Dewayne is a key addition in that regard. In addition to his athleticism, he will also bring great maturity to the position."
May 17 - 8:24 PM

Former Michigan State graduate DT Mark Scarpinato transferred to Pittsburgh.

Scarpinato is eligible to play immediately. "I obviously know Mark very well from our time together at Michigan State," new head coach Pat Narduzzi said. "He is a very athletic player for a defensive tackle. Mark has great knowledge of the game. He has the mental and physical abilities to play both tackle and end for us." Scarpinato retired from the sport to focus on medical school after the 2013 season. He sat out last year but will now exhaust his eligibility under a former coach.
May 17 - 5:39 PM

Fox Sports' Lauren Brownlow notes that Pittsburgh junior RB James Conner will "likely leave school as long as his stock is high enough after next year" because of the "pounding his body has already taken."

"This past draft showed that teams aren't afraid to take running backs high, but you never know how trends will change," she wrote. "Conner is strong, powerful and fast, an ideal combination for any back." The 6-foot-2, 250-pound Conner won ACC Player of the Year honors last year over reigning Heisman winner Jameis Winston. He rushed for 1,765 yards and 26 touchdowns on the year.
Source: Fox Sports
May 17 - 3:39 PM

Pittsburgh junior WR Tyler Boyd "can make the spectacular look easy," wrote Scout.com's Jamie Newberg.

"He has a wide catch radius, terrific body control and hand-eye coordination," Newberg wrote. The analyst ranks Boyd as the No. 16 draft prospect in the nation. Boyd has been dominating since he stepped foot on campus. As a true freshman in 2013, he put up 85 catches for 1,174 yards and seven touchdowns. Last year, he hauled in 78 receptions for 1,261 yards and eight scores.
Source: Scout.com
May 17 - 3:23 PM

JUCO WR Rafael Araujo-Lopes has committed to play for the Pittsburgh Panthers, according to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Sam Werner.

The 5-foot-9, 192-pound Araujo-Lopes played at Reedley (Calif.) College in 2014, hauling in 74 catches for 1,229 yards and 17 touchdowns. The Pittsburgh prospect will come in and compete at the slot position and could help out on special teams, as a kick-returner. Araujo-Lopes will have three years of eligibility remaining and will be able to play immediately for Pitt.
May 11 - 4:01 PM

Packers signed Pitt G/T Matt Rotheram.

Rotheram (6'5/325) made 40 career starts for the Panthers, seeing action at both right tackle and right guard. He was a second-team All-ACC pick by the conference's coaches as a senior. Rotheram curiously didn't run a forty before the draft, and managed an 8-foot-8 broad jump and 28-inch vertical with 22 reps on the bench. A sub-par athlete, Rotheram is best suited to play guard in the pros. His ceiling is likely a low-end starter in a power-blocking scheme.
May 3 - 6:33 PM

Despite having slipped to the Vikings in the fourth round, NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock maintains that Pittsburgh OT T.J. Clemmings "is a starting right tackle in this league Day 1."

It's high praise, and a non-subtle hint to Matt Kalil and Phil Loadholt that they better get ready for competition, but Mayock did add that Clemmings has "a lot of work to do, especially in technique." Clemmings has a stress fracture in his foot, probably the primary reason that he fell from potential Round 1 pick into Day 2. "He played extremely well as an offensive tackle at Pitt in games," Mayock said. "Went to the Senior Bowl and got undressed. Why? Because he's only been an offensive player for two years. He's very raw from a technique perspective." NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah added that Clemmings is "a right tackle who can really help you in the run game. That's going to take a lot of pressure off their young quarterback (Teddy Bridgewater)."
Source: NFL.com
May 3 - 2:25 PM

Vikings selected Pittsburgh OT T.J. Clemmings with the No. 110 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Clemmings was viewed by many as a fringe first-round prospect, but fell because of reports of concerns with his foot. On top of the injury, he's a project as a pass blocker. Clemmings (6'5/309) was a decorated high school basketball recruit and began his college career at defensive end before converting to right tackle as a junior. He made 26 starts there for Pitt, earning first-team All ACC as a senior. Clemmings has huge hands (10 3/8") vines for arms (35 1/8"), and is an elite athlete for the position with 5.14 speed, a 32 1/2-inch vertical, and a 9-foot-3 broad jump. NFL.com's Lance Zierlein -- the media's premier O-Line evaluator -- believes Clemmings "has the physical traits to become a Pro Bowl left tackle" and likened him to stud Texans LT Duane Brown.
May 2 - 12:40 PM

ESPN's Todd McShay ranks Pitt T T.J. Clemmings as the No. 8 available player heading into Day 2.

"He only played two years at offensive tackle after moving over from the defensive side of the ball, and that lack of experience showed up in his play at college, particularly in pass protection," McShay wrote. "But he has the raw tools to develop into a very good tackle or guard, and he could be an overpowering run blocker early on." Rotoworld's Josh Norris isn't quite as high on the Panther, ranking him as the No. 21 player available and No. 46 overall. "Is it inexperience or rawness that is causing him to not trust his feet or not utilize an inside armbar to prevent lateral moves?" Norris wonders.
May 1 - 6:15 PM

Pitt T T.J. Clemmings "has power in his hands and a frame that most offensive tackles would kill for," writes NFL Media draft analyst Lance Zierlein.

Zierlein documented how he was sky high on Clemmings until seeing him at the Senior Bowl. "Clemmings was beaten time and time again in pass protection, and his technique flaws and waning confidence during the week grabbed everyone's attention," the analyst wrote. "On the high side, Clemmings could be a Pro Bowl tackle and the next Duane Brown. Like Brown out of Virginia Tech, Clemmings is still a work in progress after playing just two years of playing offensive tackle. His physical tools might be the best in this draft. On the bust side, Clemmings could be like former first-round bust Jason Smith, who disappointed badly during his time with the St. Louis Rams." Clemmings has a stress fracture in his foot, but we still think he's headed for Round 1.
Source: NFL.com
Apr 27 - 11:08 PM

An anonymous NFL scout told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he has "got no negatives at all" to say about Pitt T T.J. Clemmings.

"He's really powerful," the scout said. "He's got excellent strength, power, aggressiveness, tenacity. Good pass-block technician." Clemmings came into the draft process with a ton of momentum, but had a poor week at the Senior Bowl and failed at least one team's physical because of a bum knee. "Has the fire in him that you like," said another scout. "Needs some technique work. Great kid. His learning is good enough. He'll pick it up and work at it. But it'd be a mistake to think he could play left tackle."
Apr 25 - 7:01 PM


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