It wouldn't be totally out of the norm to see Oklahoma recruiting in western Pennsylvania. The Sooners carry a national name, and have the ability to pluck prospects out of other team's backyards.
To shift up that momentum, Pitt is turning to Norman, Oklahoma—home of the Sooners—and running back Donovan Roberts. Roberts was informed last Thursday that he had a Pitt offer. Roberts previously held offers from Michigan, Arizona, Arkansas, Indiana, Tulsa, Kansas State and Iowa State.
It turns out Pitt head coach Todd Graham has a connection with Norman head coach Greg Nation.
"They really weren't into a lot of contact, they were talking to my coaches," Roberts said of Pitt. "The head coach came from Pittsburgh, he's real familiar with us to come in and look at me. My head coach, Greg Nation, used to coach at Tulsa. He knows (Graham) real well, so that was the automatic connection. I got my D-I offer to Pittsburgh."
Roberts says that in the midst of his track season, where he runs the 100-, 200- and 4x100-meter relay, it's tough for him to get out and visit a lot of these schools. Pittsburgh is now at the top of his list, in terms of schools he would like to visit.
"Right now, Pittsburgh is my number one for trying to visit," Roberts said. "I'm definitely taking an official visit there. I'd like to get up there for an unofficial prior to the (official) visit. I'm working on doing that, hopefully as soon as possible."
Even when it comes to camps, Roberts doesn't have a priority set on any other schools he might camp at, or try to take an unofficial visit to.
"I did a lot of that stuff in my sophomore year, and earlier in my junior season," Roberts said. "I'm talking to my parents right now, with where to go with the recruiting, wherever they're able to go to. Right now, I don't have any plans to go to any camps except for just Pittsburgh and the other stuff we're trying to set up."
Distance from home may be a factor with some of the schools on his list. When he looks at some of the positives of Pitt, there's some things he likes about Pitt that help ease the thought of playing far away from home.
"I know Pittsburgh is really, really big, and a long way from Oklahoma," Roberts said. "Me and my parents are looking into distance, and I have no problem with it. Pittsburgh has always been a school I've loved. I love the way they run the football. They've had two really, really good running backs that I like a lot. One of them (Ray Graham) is still there. Those are big positives for me."
As a junior at Norman last year, Roberts had 308 carries for 2,002 yards, an average of 6.5 yards a carry. He also finished with 32 touchdowns. He was also selected as a member of the Old Spice All-America team and invited to the U.S. Army All-American Combine in January. Roberts was a member of the all-state team and an all-conference selection as well.