Pitt corner Paris Ford

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Paris Island Coming to Pitt

Pitt looking at changes in the secondary

Jeff Hathhorn
March 12, 2018 - 2:18 pm

He was expected to make an immediate impact as a Pitt freshman 5-star safety, instead Paris Ford had to wait through eligibility requirements and was eventually redshirted.  Now Ford is making a position change over to corner.

“I’m needed at corner, so I’m going to go and play whatever the coaches want me to play,” Ford said.  “Anything to help the team win, I’m down to do.”

"Whenever you have the ability to play corner and safety, it details the amount of athleticism you have,” said new Pitt secondary coach Archie Collins.  “With him being such a great athlete, he can play both positions.”

Ford said it’s just great to be out there and as long as he’s on the field, he’s happy.  The Steel Valley grad spent last year trying to learn from senior corner Avonte Maddox and safety Jordan Whitehead, each were at the Panthers practice Monday preparing for next month’s NFL Draft.

“I think I’ve grown a lot,” Ford said.  “Right now I’m looking pretty good at corner.”

“He had about 2-3 picks today, he’s got to continue to work on technique, but he will continue to get better each day,” Collins said of Ford’s first day at corner during practice. 

“It’s kind of a placing, trying to get your best 11 on the field,” head coach Pat Narduzzi said of the decision.  “I don’t think there is anything to it.  Paris could go back to being a safety in a second.  All four of those guys back there, corners and safeties, should know every one of the spots.  Paris is learning both.  It’s just a matter of trying to get our guys where we think best fit right now for us.”

After winning a state championship his senior year of high school, Ford said he’s ready to get back to winning and feels the team is focused to make a major improvement.

“We have a lot of motivation, a lot of fuel.  We feel like we are a 10-11 win team this year,“  Ford said. 

So why does he feel this way?  “Momentum, we didn’t make a bowl game, that’s rare for Pitt, we’re usually always in the big dance.  So I feel like we have a big chip on our shoulder this year.”