The hits keep coming for the Pitt football team.
Just under a week after Charlie Partridge left for a position on the Indianapolis Colts coaching staff, Tiquan Underwood is leaving for a position in the NFL, according to a report from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Noah Hiles. The New England Patriots are hiring Underwood as their assistant receivers coach, according to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer.
It’s another brutal blow for the Panthers, who will now have replaced the entire offensive staff when Week 1 of the 2024 college football season.
Underwood was hired as the new wide receivers coach in February of 2022, and he’s served as a key recruiter on the staff and helped the wide receiving corps flourish over the second half of the 2023 season.
Jared Wayne blossomed into a 1,000-yard wide receiver in 2022, and after a slow start from Bub Means last season, he emerged as one of the better wide receivers in the ACC down the stretch — opting to test his luck in the 2024 NFL Draft.
Pitt features a receiving corps that includes Konata Mumpfield, DaeDae Reynolds, Raphael Williams, Censere Lee and Kenny Johnson set to return in 2024, and a group of young wideouts in Che Nwabuko, Izzy Polk, Lamar Seymore and Zion Fowler-El waiting in the wings.
The 2024 recruiting class featured two wideouts, three-star Cameron Monteiro from Brockton, Mass. and three-star Tyreek Robinson from Shreveport, La., and the class of 2023 wideouts and transfer portal additions pointed toward a new look receiving corps in 2024.
Pitt hired Kade Bell as its new offensive coordinator in December, and he was expected to partner with Underwood to form the backbone of the offensive staff next season — with running backs coach Lindsey Lamar, tight ends coach Jacob Bronowski and offensive line coach Jeremy Darveau arriving last month.
It’s the continuation of college coaches bolting for the NFL, and while it’s been particularly difficult at Pitt, it certainly won’t be the last. Narduzzi now has an open position on offense and defense.