PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – Pitt football head coach Paul Chryst and Athletic Director Steve Pederson joined the Fan Morning Show in-studio on Thursday to offer an update on the program’s preparation for the 2013 season.
Chryst said that it’s important for players to step up and be disciplined during the summer, because NCAA rules limit a team’s ability to hold practices between spring camp and training camp in the fall.
“This is truly where players have to take ownership of their team,” Chryst said. “Now, they’ve got to go do it.”
Chryst feels that his players are in a great place, and that a good summer can go a long way.
“Each time you have a new season, a new group of leaders can emerge. This is when all the talk doesn’t mean anything. They’ve got to do it. If you look back over the years, and you’re in this, the teams that have a good summer, they can get better. There’s a lot of time. You’ve got a chance to have a good team. And teams that waste opportunities in the summer, pay for that in the fall.”
As Chryst looks forward to the season, the ticket office does as well, and Pederson said they’ve been swamped with season ticket orders.
“We’re actually ahead of a pace we’ve ever been on in our history,” Pederson said. “We have less than 13,000 season tickets left. And really, to be at this point in mid-April, at that juncture, is really exciting.
“People say ‘Oh, well I’d like to go to the Florida State game or the Notre Dame game.’ And I say you’re going to have to buy season-tickets, because we’re going to get this thing sold out, and then that’s going to be your route in.”
Panther fans are clearly excited for Pitt to jump to the ACC, and Pederson has found that the current ACC schools share that sentiment.
“The response we’ve had from everybody has been great,” Pederson said. “The Pitt football brand and the history and tradition is a big deal to all these other ACC schools.”
Pederson is proud of Pitt’s current look, but feels that this should be a secondary focus.
“We’ve had so many logo changes over the years, and everybody recognizes what we have right now,” Pederson said. “I know there’s going to be people that like one thing, or like another, and so forth, but what we’ve said is we’ve got to focus on making sure our program is great. If you’re successful, nobody really cares what you wear.”
Pederson’s focus on success wasn’t limited to Pitt teams, though, as he also offered a rousing endorsement of The Fan.
“You guys have done such a great job here, and it has just continued to elevate the greatest sports city in the world to a whole other level,” Pederson said.
The full interview can be heard here: