Mark Madden

Mark Madden

The Super Genius of Pittsburgh Sports.Full Bio



This is video of Pat Narduzzi speaking at a coaching clinic in 2019.

In this video, Pitt’s football coach rips Matt Canada to shreds. Canada was Pitt’s offensive coordinator in 2016. He left for a big bump in pay and prestige after just one season, taking the same position at LSU. But Canada failed there and has since bounced around. He’s now the Steelers quarterbacks coach, so he and Narduzzi will see each other at the South Side football complex.

When that happens, here’s betting Narduzzi says something spineless like, “Oh, I didn’t mean it the way it sounded.” In the video, Narduzzi doesn’t have the stones to mention Canada by name.

Narduzzi’s rant is wrong on so many levels:

*Narduzzi says Canada “wasn’t even that good,” but brags about getting him paid $1 million. If Canada “wasn’t even that good,” why did Narduzzi get him paid $1m?

*If Canada “wasn’t even that good,” how did Pitt’s offense average 40.9 points per game in 2016, setting a school record? How did it convert 76.3 percent of the time in the red zone, ranking fourth in the country? How was it third in the ACC for third-down success rate at 45.4 percent?

*Why would Narduzzi begrudge an assistant getting a 50 percent hike in pay? Would Narduzzi turn that down?

*Between 1999 and 2004, Narduzzi worked for four different schools, and five schools between 1999 and 2007. None of those jobs were head coaching positions. Where was his patience?

*”You stay one more year, I’ll send you out of here a head coach.” To quote Adam Crowley (Pittsburgh sports talk’s next big thing), “Does Narduzzi think he’s Nick Saban?”

*If you work for Narduzzi now, or consider doing so in the future, how can you trust him to not skewer you?

Narduzzi’s diatribe was just low-rent. No class. Not a good look for him, or for Pitt.

But it’s a typical look for him, and for Pitt. Narduzzi is representative of an athletic (and football) program that is all hat, no cattle. That has arrogance bereft of accomplishment. Narduzzi’s record after five seasons at Pitt is 36-29 and he’s never taken the Panthers to a major bowl. Among Narduzzi’s few highlights are upsets of Penn State and No. 3 Clemson in 2016. The Panthers scored 42 points on Penn State, and 43 vs. Clemson.

Who do you think was more responsible for those upsets: Narduzzi or Matt Canada, Pitt’s offensive coordinator that season?

Canada was a better coach in his one season at Pitt than Narduzzi has been in his five.

Narduzzi was exceedingly blunt in his criticism of Canada. I’ve tried to return the favor when discussing Narduzzi is this piece, and let me now go the extra mile:

Narduzzi is a total jerk. He’s the reason I stopped going to Pitt football, and talking about it much on my show. He has an inflated sense of self-importance that is indigenous to too many college football coaches, but even more absurd in a pro sports town that doesn’t care much about college sports. He hasn’t taken Pitt to the next level, not in terms of record or home attendance. Given that, he should be a better ambassador for the program. He isn’t.

To repeat what I’ve often said: If Narduzzi and I were in the same sports bar, a lot more people would recognize me. Narduzzi just doesn’t matter, let alone as much as he thinks he does.

Thumbnail via Getty Images

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