Max Browne has generated plenty of hype as a big-time grad transfer for Pitt football this year, widely regarded as one of the nation’s top transfers for the coming season..
But not so fast, Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi said recently, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. The third-year Panthers coach said that while Browne is leading the way — the depth chart, put out by Pitt and sports information director E.J. Borghetti says the same, sophomore Ben DiNucci is right there in the mix.
“It’s a tight race, and there’s not a lot of separation,” Narduzzi said, according to the Post-Gazette. “At the end, E.J. came to my office and said, ‘Hey, we need somebody,’ so I said, ‘Here’s what it looks like to us right now.’ We talk about it every day. But Ben DiNucci has done a great job of developing.”
Browne was a starter at USC last year for the first three games of the season, going on to play in nine total games. He threw for 507 yards and a pair of touchdowns and two interceptions on 58 of 93 passing.
DiNucci played in two games last season, with lengthy playing time coming against Northwestern in the Pinstripe Bowl in relief of injured starter Nathan Peterman. DiNucci went 3 of 9 for 16 yards with a touchdown and a pair of interceptions in the game.
“He’s very, very smart, which obviously gives him the ability to pick up an offense and pick up a defense. … He’s shown he’s a good decision-maker, and I think tool-wise, he’s a 6-foot-5 guy that can see over the line,” Narduzzi said of DiNucci. “He’s got an arm and he’s got a lot of ability.”