Walt Harris Football Camp: Defensive Backs

The defensive backfield at Pittsburgh is very talented, young, and deep. The leaders are safeties Tez Morris and Ty Gilliard. Both are extremely aggressive run-stuffing safeties. Morris has been at or near the top of the tackle chart for the bulk of his career at Pittsburgh. Sam Bryant saw some duty at safety last fall and could see even more this year. Also in the mix is promising red-shirt freshmen Jameel Brady. Incoming freshmen Adam Gunn could see some early time if needed.

The corners are not nearly as set as the safeties. Bernard "Josh" Lay is the likely candidate to man one of the corner spots. Lay must be more consistent to be truly effective. Red-shirt freshmen Mike Phillips could start opposite of Lay because had a sensational spring. Who doesn't love a cover corner who likes to bust heads? Another red-shirt freshmen who played well this spring is Kennard Cox, who also can play WR if need be. If Phillips or Cox doesn't seize the moment, Allen Richardson, Reggie Carter, or Eric Thatcher may step up. Richardson has hit the weights hard and has added some serious muscle mass. Carter could very well end up as the starter. He has the talent. Thatcher is a very solid player who has recovered from a life threatening accident.

The Panthers will bring in two very talented corners from the freshmen class. Darrelle Revis and Steve Walker give Pittsburgh even more depth. Revis, who was one of if not the best player in the state at Aliquippa last year, may end up as a Champ Bailey-type of two-way player. Revis may be the best corner to come out of the WPIAL since Ty Law. Walker is a very athletic player who played QB in high school.

To add even more depth, the Panthers have already received verbal commitments from Brookhaven HS (Ohio) CB Dominic Jones and CB Bryan Williams from Buchtel HS (Ohio). Jones had over 20 offers. He and Williams will give the Panthers two shut down corners with 4.3 speed.

Now, on to the defensive backs whom we saw at camp. This will be the final positional piece on the summer camps. We hope you enjoyed them as we brought you the real inside scoop.

Defensive backs

Brad Jones (6-2, 190, Canton McKinley HS, OH): Jones is as physically gifted as a DB can get. One knock on Brad has been his aggressiveness when going after the ball. He is a great kid who's very gifted.

Bryan Williams (6-0, 185, Buchtel HS, OH): One of the first to receive an offer from the Panthers last fall. Bryan runs a legit 4.3 forty. He is a shutdown corner who loves to hit. Williams is still young at 16 years of age.

Zaire Kitchen (6-1, 190, Hightstown HS, NJ): A relative unknown coming into camp. He is a very good high school RB and DB with four offers.

Jeremy Bruce (5-9, 190, Blackhawk HS, PA): Jeremy measured in at a little over 5-8, which was very different than the 5-10 he was at the Nike Combine at Penn State. Bruce has great measurables; he hustles; and is dedicated. Bruce is a very athletic kid with a tremendous work ethic and an All-State RB.

Danny Sadler (5-11, 175, Maple Heights HS, OH): Danny loves Pitt and was looking forward to showcasing his skills. Sadler, however, pulled a quadriceps muscle and just came to camp to watch.

Bruce Hampton (5-10, 180, Cleveland Heights HS, OH): Hampton lit up the Nike Iowa camp recently and was in Pittsburgh to visit and camp one more time.

Marcus Council (5-11, 190, Garfield HS, OH): Council is a very solid S/FB at Garfield. He is a very good player, just a matter of finding out where he fits best.

DeAndre Levy (6-2, 200, Milwaukee-Vincent, WI): The ultimate "tweener", small for a backer and big for a safety.

Joe Copeland (6-0, 185, Akron-North, OH): If one were to hold a Mikell Simpson look-a-like contest, Joe would win hands down. Copeland performed well and loves Pitt, but he may get caught up in the numbers game.

Mike Washington (5-7, 165, Aliquippa HS, OH): Is there is a faster football player in the state? We want to see them race. Needs to work on his hand, to become a top-level prospect.

Dominic Jones (5-9, 185, Brookhaven HS, OH): This kid has great speed, attitude, and, best of all, he plays like old Jack Tatum. The kid loves to dish out the hits. Very aggressive and fast 4.33, this one will be special.

Brandon Jackson (6-0, 185, Plantation HS, FL): Under the radar type of kid who Pitt likes and they offered.

Idris Lawrence (5-10, 175, Brookhaven HS, OH): Is a very nice looking athlete who loves the Panthers.

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