QB Gray Loves Pro-Style Pitt Offense

Kolby Gray might be a Houston, Texas native, but it didn't take long for him to become a Pitt guy.

Kolby Gray, the quarterback recruit from Cypress Falls High School in the Houston area, committed to Pittsburgh Sunday morning and quickly settled in. He and his parents enjoyed the Panthers' basketball win against St. John's and also picked up several bags of T-shirts, sweatshirts and other souvenirs.

So, all in all, it was a pretty good weekend for the Grays. And the Pitt football team. The Panthers added to their verbal commitment list for their 2009 recruiting class with Gray and defensive back Jason Hendricks from Jersey City, N.J. and have 17 in the class now.

"The second we arrived here, Kolby had a good feeling about Pittsburgh,'' Mark Gray, Kolby's father, said. "Pitt was the front-runner for Kolby ever since they offered. Sure, they got in late, but they did a great job. All the other offenses run a spread, but Pitt's pro-style was a big selling point for Kolby.

"That's something he wants to do someday, play in the NFL, and playing at Pitt will get him ready for the next level after college. We feel that Pitt is the best environment for him and has the best coaches to get him there. So, all that was very important to us when we made the final decision.''

Teams like Boise State, Utah, Rice and Michigan were recruiting the 6-foot-2, 190-pound Gray, but Pitt was it for the strong-armed quarterback.

"I'm done with recruiting now,'' Gray said. "I'm very happy to be coming to Pitt, and I'm really anxious to get up there and get started.''

Gray was kind of under the radar for a while, but once Pitt's recruiting staff -- i.e. assistant director of football operations Mike Antonoplous -- defensive coordinator Phil Bennett, who has a lot of contacts in Texas from growing there and as the head coach at SMU, got into the mix for Gray.

Once Pitt offered him a scholarship, it didn't take long for the Panthers to sell Gray on moving north for the next four years.

"The city is great, and Coach Wannstedt has been fantastic,'' Mark Gray said. "Kolby really loves Matt Cavanaugh. They hit it off real well, and Coach Phil Bennett, who recruited him, did a great job.

"Phil's a great guy and was very important in this whole recruiting process for both Kolby and myself. Kolby met a lot of people in the city, and he just loved it here. Everything worked out real well for us.''

Gray passed for 1,492 yards and nine touchdowns and ran for another 1,006 yards and 13 more scores.

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