Player Speak: Joe Trebitz, Manny Williams

It's a long way off from determing a starting lineup for the September 1 opener with Youngstown State, but Joe Trebitz and Manny Williams are making the most of their opportunity.

Pitt head coach Paul Chryst summed it up best, when asked about Joe Trebitz and Manny Williams working with the first-team at linebacker this last week.

"To me, they're what a senior should be," Chryst said. "They know their assignments, they know the importance of knowing what to do, and I think they know who they are as players and try to play within themselves. They've been getting a lot of work, and I think they're getting better because of it."

Granted, a lot has to do with injuries--mainly Shane Gordon and Todd Thomas being out. Still, Trebitz and Williams have worked with the first-group for the batter part of the last week.

Trebitz is a three-year letterwinner. He played in all 13 games last year, though mostly on special teams. It was the most significant playing time of his career, though it was mostly on special teams.

Williams came to Pitt out of Clairton in the same 2008 recruiting class. In addition to waiting his turn, Williams has also had to battle through some injuries; through his true freshman season where he redshirted. He played in the 2010 opener at Utah, then suffered another knee injury, missing the remainder of that season. In 2011, he played in six games--like Trebitz--on special teams.

Both players know nothing is settled yet in terms of starters, but are both examples of how preseverance can eventually pay off to at least be in contention for a spot.

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