The Pitt coaching staff hosted a small cookout this weekend for mostly committed prospects. William Park came in, as did recent commit Dakota Conwell. Chris Davis and Demitrious Davis were there, a day before making their decision public. Will Mahone was also there.
Another local prospect who was there was Jaylen Coleman. Coleman said after he was on campus in June, he came close to committing to the Panthers. After this weekend, he feels that he's even closer to making a commitment to Pitt.
"I'm close to making a decision, real close," Coleman said.
In recent weeks, both Coleman and Conwell have expressed an interest in playing at the same college. Conwell even said on the day he committed to the Panthers that Coleman was one of the first people he wanted to get to join him at Pitt.
"I definitely talked to (Gateway linebacker) Jaylen Coleman, and we've both talked about playing together at Pitt," Conwell said, on the day of his commitment. "I'd like to see him come here."
Listening to Coleman talk about his weekend hanging out with Conwell it Pitt, it sounds like the two have talked about it even more.
"We were in a room with the position coaches," Coleman said. "It was me, Dakota and Will (Parks). We were in a room with (defensive coordinator Keith) Patterson. We watched film, and he told us how (he and Conwell) will be working and everything. After that, he told us we have a good chance to start, to come in and compete as freshmen.
"We know the plays. That's the reason they're recruiting us. They want me and Dakota to come in and do what we do. I had a ball down there; it was the best time ever. It will go down in the books."
Coleman talked about his friendship with Conwell a little more. He explained that both players were close friends with Gateway teammate Darrell Turner, who died tragically during a 7-on-7 trip to Florida last month.
"It started with the same (7-on-7) team we were on," Coleman said. "We started talking right then, we linked up. Me, him and my brother Darrell were always linked. We'd always talk in the room. Me and Dakota talk almost every day."
Aside from the football part of it, Coleman talked about the social aspect—visiting with the other prospects at the cookout, and seeing a few current Pitt players who he has known for awhile.
"The whole weekend, it was just the best time of my life," Coleman said. "We had to go back early at 7:15 (Saturday) morning, talk to all the coaches and all that. They ordered pizza for all of us. I saw Ejuan (Price) and Lafayette (Pitts), and it was fun just playing around with everybody."
One other note on Coleman—he received interest from another school. Arizona State recently expressed an interest. The Sun Devils could come through with an offer, if they like Coleman's highlight film. That would also give him a double-digit offer sheet.
"The coach, he said he loved my highlight tape," Coleman added. "He said they liked how I move. All the coaches come back (from vacation) tomorrow. He's going to see the defensive coordinator, and when he sees my video—if they like it, they'll send me an offer."