Pitt Attendance/Atmosphere continues to hurt recruiting 4/5 star recruits

Discussion in 'Football Board' started by Panther Al, Aug 18, 2018.

  1. Panther Al

    Panther Al Walk-on
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    I saw Heather Lyke's recent comment about selling 50,000 season tickets. Sadly, I've seen this same statement two years ago when Scott Barnes looked like an utter fool "SEASON TICKET RECORD" while Heinz looked like a yellow morgue the rest of the season even after the signature PSU win everyone was looking for. I'm obviously pro on campus vs off campus however then again who is building a new off campus state of the art facilities or moving off campus to a pro stadium these days? The answer is nobody and why Heinz doesn't work. USF and Temple are the latest schools playing in pro stadiums looking to move to an on campus stadium. Regardless of the situation, I want to see improvement with Pitt football and it appears to me that athletics keeps doing the same thing over and over again regardless of the leadership whether its Pederson, Barnes and now Lyke when it comes to Heinz Field.

    The reason Pitt wants to play Penn State so badly is because it helps ticket sales which I get however I have a major problem with how Pitt markets the rest of the schedule. I'm sure the Pitt/PSU atmosphere will be great and they will talk it up, but I'm realist and also a frustrated fan because when I see the same results/marketing plan year after year, I know nothing is being changed to fix the problem. The bottom line is we need a much better atmosphere at Heinz for the rest of the other games to attract 4/5 star recruits. Pitt puts out its marketing/promos a month before the season starts? Hello. Who does that? When MLB announces their schedule, the promo schedule comes with it. Pitt clearly has a ticket/atmosphere problem at Heinz vs other teams excluding PSU/ND/WVU and we saw how embarrassing it was all of last year even against a top 10 team in Oklahoma State. ESPN also exposed Heinz Field last year with Pitt and mocked it on college game day which is terrible for recruiting and you can bet that PSU, UM, ND, OSU (whom we compete with for 4/5 star players) use this to their advantage when it comes to negative recruiting. If I was recruiting a kid to come to my school over Pitt, I would absolutely be using this to my advantage because its legal/clean recruiting.

    Pitt needs to sell all of the uppers for less attractive games or probably most games such as Albany for $1. Some might say this is crazy but isn't it better to have people in the building who are buying food, merchandise, etc. and might hopefully enjoy the experience and come back for another game or two. Everyone likes cheap tickets, food/drink specials so why not try it? I remember Buck night as a Pitt student back in the 90's and I'm not even a Pirates fan but I went. $1 tix and hot dogs was a great deal to me and it got people to go. How do you sell elite 4/5 star recruits when they see Heinz Field half empty and then go to UM/OSU/ND/PSU the week later for another visit packed with a great atmosphere. I'm sorry but its an impossible task for the coaching staff and I feel we aren't giving Duzz the tools he needs to really grow the program. Are you happy being 7-5 every year and playing in a stupid meaningless Tire Bowl? I'm not. If you go through the schedule for this season and what do you think our record will be? Yep, same results year after year. We do get a few top recruits each year whether its Ford, Hamlin, Whitehead, Boyd, etc. but if you want to compete for championships the formula shows you need 8 to 10 4/5 stars per class. OK, there will be a few cases where I'm wrong like a Wisconsin, but for the most part if you want to compete for ACC championships to potentially get a playoff shot, the entire Heinz strategy needs to change to help recruiting. If you don't want to change the plan, move back to campus so you can build your own 55K seat stadium in Panther hollow or on the OC lot where there is room for it so we can have on campus atmosphere like the schools we compete for elite players. I want to be also be VERY clear that there will always be 2 or 3 star players who turn out to be stars whether its Donald, Revis, etc. but the bottom line is the recruiting rankings don't lie. You can't rely on recruiting these high ceiling players who usually don't pan out otherwise Pitt would have a much better record. We need sure things like a Shady, Boyd, Whitehead, etc. who make a clear different in your program. There will be some 4/5 busts but if you recruit 8 to 10 per class you will be fine for the long run and build depth especially when key players get hurt which we don't have in certain positions.

    Lastly, nobody gives a crap about the City of champions, Pitt practicing next to Ben/AB/Bell, playing at the same stadium at the Steelers, etc. We've seen tons of local 4/5 star players who I'm sure grew up diehard Steeler fans (not the Browns) and went elsewhere so that theory clearly doesn't work especially when the Steelers are also a national team. It's beyond frustrating when fans get upset and then strictly want to blame the coaches. Yes, you need good coaching but you need elite players to compete for championships otherwise you get the same results like we are seeing. Unlike the NFL, you can't pay free agents and don't get to draft better players based on having a poor record. That's why recruiting and atmosphere/marketing plays a vital role in Pitt's future success and we've done a terrible job in improving this process. H2P!
     
  2. paulbl99

    paulbl99 Board of Trustee
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    What is this improve the atmosphere bunk constantly thrown out... it’s a Football Field where games are played it’s not Disney World or Dolly Land.
    Improve the atmosphere is the same thing every new AD has said for yrs. it’s just PR blabber.

    Pitt has lost generations of potential fans through its incompetent and bungling Ath Dept. Thirty five yrs of mediocrity takes a toll. Plus for whatever’s reason Pitts fans just don’t support like most other big time programs/schools.

    The only way to get a bump in attendance is win baby.


    But agree 100% , practicing next door to the Stillers is way way overblown.
     
  3. jtownknowitall

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    tarps...
     
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  4. Parkview57

    Parkview57 Freshman
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    Do you think the $5 per ticket you would save would make a difference? I am pretty sure you can purchase a ticket for most games for $6, and I am certain $10 will get you in.
     
  5. Outdoorsman814

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    Go to a game at Clemson. You’ll see the impact of atmosphere 20 minutes prior to kickoff. Going to a college football game should be fun. At Pitt, it’s not fun.
     
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  6. paulbl99

    paulbl99 Board of Trustee
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    Yeah because they have wave after wave of people expecting ANOTHER win.

    Do they have a Ferris Wheel in the lots or what?




    Which btw the City of Pgh does need a Ferris Wheel like some other cities have.

    That might be a good OT if the CENSORS permit it.
     
  7. rmf05

    rmf05 Freshman
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    We had thousands of cheapies and freebies doled out in Fitz's last year. It doesn't really work. If the weather is bad at all, people just throw the tix away. Now that every game can be viewed from your couch this type of ploy doesn't fly.
     
  8. Outdoorsman814

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    I totally agree! Wins matter more than anything. This is the arguement to get rid of Narduzzi if Pitt is 6-6, 7-5 the next 2 seasons.
     
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  9. MajorMajors

    MajorMajors All Conference
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    This post is so true.

    I feel bad for the players when — after so much hard work and preparation — they come running out of the tunnel to way too many yellow seats. And it has to hurt recruiting big-time.

    Visiting recruits can’t be impressed. A better strategy is bringing them to a BB game — well, not last season...

    Very tough job for the coaches trying to recruit difference-makers to play at Heinz. Considering this glaring yellow disadvantage, current staff doing a decent job, IMHO.

    Go Pitt.
     
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  10. Jsr862

    Jsr862 Walk-on
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  11. Jakey_John

    Jakey_John Head Coach
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    I wonder what the constant is when the Steelers and Penguins sell out...Maybe the seats at Heinz are more comfortable on Sundays or fans enjoy the similarly in uniform colors.
     
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  12. recruitsreadtheseboards

    recruitsreadtheseboards Lair Hall of Famer
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    First thing, there are 80,000 Clemson fans. There aren't 80,000 Pitt fans. There aren't 65,000 Pitt fans. Lower tickets, even to free, is not going to solve anything. Everyone knows it is hard to even give away tickets other than games like PSU and ND.

    I think the Penn State home game actually hurts us. A lot of PSU fans buy Pitt season tickets then take delight in just throwing the rest of the tickets in the garbage, so those tickets/seats will never be used the rest of the season no matter what happens. That's a problem. Pitt can be 10-0 and there will be empty seats because PSU fans are giggling, hoarding them throwing them away. Don't think those nutcakes aren't doing this.

    So what has to happen, as mentioned winning solves a lot, but you have to have people interested and invested in coming to see Pitt and not the opponent. That is what happens in the big time programs. Oh sure, tOSU draws and excites PSU fans more than Akron, Oklahoma or Texas draws and excites Hoopie fans more than Kansas, but those fans mostly come to see the home team.

    In Pittsburgh, as someone said because of 35 years of mediocrity AND sharing the city with the winningest franchise over the last almost 50 years, people just aren't in the habit of going to college football games. They just aren't. People here, casual fans just aren't college football fans. It is not even they are PSU fans or WVU fans or ND fans, they are just NOT college football fans for the most part. So that is our challenge, as it is for most Northern cities with NFL teams.

    Then you add that oversized stadium with those blasted yellow seats, not gold, but yellow, like bright yellow, like a highlighter circling every empty seat. That's not going to change overnight. Even with a good season. It is going to take some big winning seasons and a sustained run before you start entrenching this area into paying attention to college football.
     
  13. HailtoPitt

    HailtoPitt Athletic Director
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    First, cheaper tickets aren't the solution. Tarps and MORE EXPENSIVE tickets are the way to go. However, it really doesn't matter as Pitt won't put the work and Heinz sucks no matter what they do.

    As mentioned, the real issue is the decades of poor decision making. Pitt can't recover from that without decades of good decision making. As of now, Pitt is a lower end Power 5 conference program, and that isn't changing any time soon. Accept the reality.

    I gave them a list of concrete things to work towards when applying to Barnes' farce of an application process for the fan experience committee. Barnes came up with "give the students pizza". They just aren't that committed.
     
    13 HailtoPitt, Aug 18, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
  14. DiehardPanther

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    Yup. Pitt needs to reduce the capacity of Heinz to about 50k. If they start winning, then there will be more demand. The problem right now is people know they can always get tickets at the last minute except for PS and ND.
     
  15. pittizit

    pittizit Assistant Coach
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    YeP....bring back the illustrious FAN EXPERIENCE COMMITTEE...PROBLEMS SOLVED.
     
  16. pittizit

    pittizit Assistant Coach
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    By the way if we had BUBBLE BOY entering the south entrance with the team...you’d see fans go crazy and want to be there every week...forget the free pizza and drinks.
     
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  17. ERICCARTMAN

    ERICCARTMAN Freshman
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    Bettis's Grille, Franco's Pizza, and Big Ben's bar certainly makes me want to hang out on the north shore before and after the PITT game.
     
  18. Saboteur

    Saboteur Senior
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    Bullcrap....it may not be as much fun or as entertaining, but it is fun. Winning is fun...there isn't any team in the country or the planet for that matter that has had our extension of mediocre to poor performance who has anything that remotely resembles a festive atmosphere.
    The original post must have taken 8,000 words to make a point.
    Let me summarize reality.
    Winning is fun.
    Winning consistently is more fun.
    Losing sucks.
    Losing consistently sucks worse.
    People don't pay to watch losing...not for long at least.
    It begins and ends with giving people something to support.
     
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  19. Outdoorsman814

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    You’re right. I didn’t mean to imply that Pitt football is boring, but the results have been boring. The combination of Heinz Field being too big, and the results being poor, the atmosphere is bad. When the atmosphere wasn’t bad was in 2009 against Cincinnati when we were a top 10 team.
     
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  20. pittmeister

    pittmeister Junior
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    BINGO!

    START WINNING!

    I remember a few years back a sideline reporter asked Dan Marino how Pitt could become a national power again and he said "just win".... I'm trying to find the video...
     
  21. HailtoPitt

    HailtoPitt Athletic Director
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    Teams that win fewer games and have better attendance (5 year average) than Pitt.

    Baylor
    Cal
    Rutgers
    Utah ( actually not Utah.)
    Minnesota
    Arizona
    Arizona State
    Iowa State
    NC State
    Kentucky
    Old Miss
    Arkansas
    Washington
    UCLA
    Tennessee
    North Carolina
     
    21 HailtoPitt, Aug 18, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
  22. PhPanther2

    PhPanther2 Redshirt
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    I’m curious what it would take to turn PNC Park into a Pitt football stadium if Nutting were to sell the team to another city. I hate the Pirates and really like Pitt football, so this would be a double win for me.
     
  23. Outdoorsman814

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    That would be an amazing setting for Pitt games. I’d love it.
     
  24. DC_Area_Panther

    DC_Area_Panther Heisman Winner
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    Why is anyone concerned about something that cannot and will not change. Why bother discussing it?
    What a total and boring waste of time and energy!
     
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  25. paulbl99

    paulbl99 Board of Trustee
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    All but one have the name of the State on the Front Door, including Ruggers.
    That’s a big deal.
    Pitt is a niche school sports-wise and no way will it ever approach State College University in fan base or loyalty in PA
    NEVER

    And no it’s not a function of on campus stadium.

    It is what it is......
     
  26. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    I have only looked at two teams on your list, but oddly enough neither one of them belongs. Over the last five years Pitt has won 34 games. North Carolina has won 35. Utah has won 40.

    Did you even bother to look at the actual numbers, or did you just make up a list and assume no one would question it?
     
  27. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Washington won 46.
     
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  28. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Baylor won 40.
     
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  29. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Arizona won 35.
     
  30. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Arizona State won 38.
     
  31. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Ole Miss won 39.
     
  32. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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  33. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Tennessee won 34.
     
  34. Joe the Panther Fan

    Joe the Panther Fan Chancellor
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    Seriously, did you just throw down a bunch of names on a list and assume that no one would think, "hey, that doesn't sound right" and actually look it up?
     
  35. sherepower

    sherepower Head Coach
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    Kids don’t pick a school because of how many fans sit in seats. They pick schools based on the coaches recruiting them ( are they comfortable around them, do they have a proven track record, do they get kids into the NFL. Tradition, conference affiliation and education and lastly, is the School local enough for his parents to be able to see him play.
     
  36. Jakey_John

    Jakey_John Head Coach
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    Four and five stars don’t come to Pitt because there’s not enough stability and on the field results. Conversely Pitt has absolutely no problem getting guys to the pros.

    It’s an awful conundrum because you have to win to recruit and in order to do that you have to start somewhere. Walt Harris was an excellent starting point but we know what happened after Pitt tried to get someone over the hump.
     
  37. HailtoPitt

    HailtoPitt Athletic Director
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    I used 10 year winning percentage.
    http://football.stassen.com/cgi-bin...=2007&end=2017&rpct=30&min=5&se=on&by=Win+Pct

    Then I found a 5 year attendance average. Not nearly scientific, but should demonstrate that winning and attendance aren't always strongly correlated
     
  38. pittmeister

    pittmeister Junior
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    I hear what you're saying Jakey and I don't totally disagree, but Trolls (not you) on here that say we can't win because we don't have enough 4 star recruits are the ones making excuses... I don't care how many stars they have, Narduzzi is the guy that recruited these players and he better win with them or he'll be looking for a job in a couple years. It's not my worry. My job is to support the team through thick and thin.... There is enough talent right now to win the coastal division, over the next two years, no excuses...
     
    38 pittmeister, Aug 18, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
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  39. pittmeister

    pittmeister Junior
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  40. recruitsreadtheseboards

    recruitsreadtheseboards Lair Hall of Famer
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    I have to disagree with you here. Big time. This has been noted time and time again. While it may not be the biggest factor, it is definitely a factor for what I would guess the majority of the kids. People always say "winning", but teams that win also have mostly full stadiums.
     
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