Q&A: Is Todd Graham smart or arrogant?

Pitt football Q&A with Paul Zeise

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Q: Todd Graham had some high expectations coming into the season. I think it would be fair to say that he fell short of his goals. Do you think this is attributable to underestimating his opponents, overestimating the current talent, or coaching staff shortcomings?

Chris Will, Harrisburg

ZEISE: No, I think it was a coach trying to sell a program and how do you do that without selling high expectations? I think the defensive coaching staff has done a great job, the offensive coaching staff has been saddled with a lot of injuries and inconsistency at quarterback and in the long run, this group will deliver on some of the things it has promised. I think early in the season he got caught up trying to force feed his system on an offensive unit that wasn't close to being capable of doing what he was asking and it cost him. The quarterback play has been a factor and I think he's admitted he's made some mistakes. But I don't think it is fair to criticize the guy for trying to raise expectations because he was trying to generate excitement.




Q: Do you think Todd Graham is smart enough to realize his mistakes, or too arrogant to make the proper adjustments for next year?

Frank Stosic, Munhall

ZEISE: I think if you look at what they've done with the offense and the defense -- he has already admitted he made some mistakes and is making some changes and tailoring things more to his talent. I think that is the mark of a good coach -- he had one idea about the way things would go and once it didn't work he changed. He has simplified things, he has taken some routes out of the arsenal that the receivers can't run and Tino can't throw -- he has definitely shown a willingness to adjust.




Q: Should Pitt have Tino Sunseri roll out more since he has happy feet in the pocket? It also appears he has no pocket presence and can't find his check down receivers.

Paul Vento, New Baden, Ill.

ZEISE: I don't think that would help as I've seen little evidence that he is a good passer on the run. In fact, he is at his best when he just sets his feet but he doesn't always do that and he runs into trouble as a result. He just needs to be more consistent with his mechanics and fundamentals and if he is, he has shown he is capable of making plays.



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