Pitt Athletics Addresses Unflattering Distinction

OAKLAND (KDKA) — Pitt’s athletic department is not denying that the CBS News/Sports Illustrated investigation that found that the university’s football team led the nation in crime.

However, the sports department is saying there’s a new emphasis with head coach Todd Graham to field a team that is crime-free.

Pitt’s hopes of winning the Big East last year and heading to a BCS Bowl were dashed when four players were arrested for four separate violent crimes.

“The standard around here is not that you didn’t get arrested,” Graham said.

The report found that Pitt lead with 22 arrests. Penn State tied at fourth-place with 16 arrests.

Athletic Director Steve Pederson said there are new stringent background checks for recruits, but no check of criminal records.

“The discussion of criminal background checks is probably a national discussion to have,” he said. “Conference commissioners and athletic directors getting together to talk about how you do that because there are a lot of things that go into that.”

The report comes out as Fernando Diaz, a former Pitt football player, gets into a confrontation with police and he’s tasered four times. He left the team in August.

“He had re-enrolled this semester and was wanting to work his way back into the program and in light of the latest events that will not be possible,” Graham said.

Sports Illustrated: “College Football and Crime”
CBS News: “‘Striking stats’ on college football and crime”
Big East Releases 2011 Football Schedule
More Pitt News
More Sports News


One Comment

  1. critter says:

    Its Bush”s fault

  2. Dan says:

    Wow! the truth hurts. Glad to see they got a new warden for this year. Do they watch the longest yard before every game?

  3. Smurf says:

    Not that any arrest is a good thing, but shouldnt the severity of the crime be a factor? What’s worse? 22 players arrested for summary offenses, disorderly conduct, underage drinking, stuff like that OR 1 player arrested for say burglary or auto theft?

  4. Perry Mason Jar says:

    The bigger question is was Pitt aware of these records? Did they know and ignore it? Are they even able to get this information legally without asking?

    1. Dan says:

      When you apply for a job are they able to get your Criminal record? Yes! Perry Mason its a pa state police background check. It costs about 20 bucks per person. Its perfectly legal.

  5. Tom hal says:

    Blame the teachers! If these children weren’t so bored they wouldn’t get in trouble

  6. 2059 says:

    That’s how you WIN, get a team of thugs. Football’s a violent game played by violent men, and the FANS love it. If your team isn’t violent you’re gonna get fired, because the most violent team wins.

  7. Roy says:

    Most often 5 star athletes are 1 star human beings. It’s all about your priorities, if you want to win, you do so at all costs. If not, take the BYU route and raise a white flag whenever your players step out of line.

  8. Dr.Manny Golnick says:

    I just read the SI article. I knew that many arrests occurred, but not to the extent reported.I attended Pitt in the 60’s and can personally state that the football and basketball players were also students, many who became engineers,doctors,lawyers,and other well-respected professionals. I do not recall any athletes being arrested. Among this group of athletes were future Pitt notaries–Brian Generolovich,Bob Leavitt,Mike Ditka,Paul Martha,Marty Schottenheimer,Al Griglianous,George Medich,etc. I am hoping that with the coaching change and recent bad publicity for the program—-the university administration will now seek out student athletes and not just outstanding star athlets. We may not attain top rankings–but willl regain some respect.

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