Carozzoni Makes It 14 Pitt Commits

Pitt's return to recruiting in Ohio has paid off with a second verbal commitment from the state this week, as tight end Brendan Carozzoni from St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland gave his pledge to the Panthers Wednesday.

Brendan Carozzoni joins fellow Buckeye State product Matt Rotheram, an offensive lineman from North Olmstead, Ohio HS, to give Pittsburgh 14 verbal commitments to its 2010 recruiting class.

"I really felt comfortable with the coaching staff every time I talked to them and especially when I was there on a visit,'' Carozzoni said. "I also liked all the facilities, and it's pretty close to home. So, it's just a short trip for my family to get there. And it was just the right choice for me.''

Carozzoni and his family were at Pitt's practice facility on a visit two weeks ago, and he watched film with Panthers' tight ends coach Brian Angelichio.

"He went over a bunch of sets with me, and I was really impressed,'' Carozzoni said. "I really like the pro-style offense that they run, and it seems like I would be a real good fit in it. I have good ball skills, and I run pretty well. So, they really liked that about me. And I've worked real hard on my blocking.''

Pitt running backs coach David Walker spearheaded Carozzoni's recruitment, and the two have developed a strong relationship the past couple months as the Panthers picked up the pace to secure a commitment. Angelichio has put in some time with him as well, and Carozzoni also talked to some players.

"I spent some time with Kevin Harper, Pitt's kicker, because he's from around the same area as me,'' Carozzoni said. "Mentor (Ohio) is maybe an hour away.''

The Panthers have four verbals already in July and 12 since safety Jeff Knox from Dematha Catholic HS in Hyattsville, Md. committed to Pitt on June 14.

The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Carozzoni had 22 receptions for 390 yards and two touchdowns, as the Wildcats won Ohio's Division I title. St. Ignatius plays an independent regular-season schedule that involves extensive traveling to Cincinnati, Dayton and Buffalo, among other cities.

Carozzoni picked Pitt ahead of West Virginia and Indiana.

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