Pitt Football: Tra'von Chapman, 2 Others to Enroll Early and Improve Game
Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images
The Pitt Panthers have three top football recruits for the 2013 season poised for improvement.
While it is not a highly unusual occurrence for a player to enroll early to get more practice, it is rare to find a group of players in the same class choosing to enroll early.
That is good news for Pitt fans.
Each of these players will have extra time to improve their weaknesses before the start of spring football camp.
This slideshow will highlight the areas each player must improve on to have a successful freshman year at Pitt.
Tra'Von Chapman: QB
Photo courtesy espn.com.
Tra'Von Chapman has all the tools needed to be successful as a dual-threat quarterback.
His size and speed gave him an insurmountable advantage at the high school level, where her threw for nearly 3,000 yards and rushed for another 800 in his junior year. Plus, he only threw eight interceptions compared to his 29 touchdowns.
So what is not to like about Chapman? ESPN scouts say it is his arm:
"He is very accurate in the deep passing game. Needs to be on time to drive the ball vertically as he does not have an elite arm. Drops the ball in over coverage very well. Chapman can be deliberate in his motion and wind-up just a bit which hinders the ability for the ball to just pop off his hand."
If the main issue of concern is Chapman's arm and some of his mechanics, this can be improved in January during early enrollment.
Having access to collegiate coaches, mechanics can be changed if practiced enough before the season.
What Chapman needs to concentrate on is learning the offense and getting comfortable on the team. If he can learn the system before spring football begins, Chapman reduces the advantage Chad Voytik will have in his second season.
It will take a major spring performance for Chapman to influence Pitt coaches not to redshirt him in favor of a second-year quarterback.
Corey Clement: RB
Photo courtesy HSSN Media, New Jersey
Corey Clement's ability to run the ball for 2,510 yards his junior year had coach drooling over him.
That was until Pitt football coach Paul Chryst landed himself another great running back.
Clement is powerful running back with speed. His medium size build (5'11'', 200 lbs) will bulk-up before the season is underway.
His smooth cuts that explode through holes are a stark contrast to the Panthers shifty current running back, Ray Graham.
Football experts at Scouts.com believe Clement is lacking break-away speed.
If that is the case, Clements needs to get training right away and Pitt fans should be glad to see him enrolling early.
A few pounds a muscle added in the weight room and heavy dose of plyometric exercises will have Clement exploding through the line for years to come.
He may never have blinding speed in the open field, but he will eat-up yardage on every single carry.
Shakir Soto: DE
Photo courtesy Citizens Voice.
Shakir Soto was not as highly regarded as others at his position, but there is no doubt he is one gifted athlete.
Standing at 6'4", 230 lbs, Soto not only plays football, but apparently runs the 300-meter hurdles (Pitt Script).
Soto's athleticism and huge wingspan should make for him to be a valuable pass-rusher in the Big East and even the ACC once Pitt jumps conferences.
Like every other player entering their freshman year, Soto needs to hit the weight room to be more explosive in the trenches.
The biggest thing he can gain from early enrollment is learning the defensive end position. Soto also plays on the offensive line in high school and needs to learn the ins-and-outs of defensive end.
The more techniques and skills he gains, the better the defensive line will become. He already possesses enough athleticism.