Veteran Pitt cornerback Marquis Williams has never been hesitant to express what’s on his mind. On Friday morning, Panther fans gained a look at just how the graduate student feels about his team’s former quarterback.
Jim Nagy, the executive director of the Senior Bowl who boasts 18 years of NFL scouting experience, tweeted a long analysis Friday morning of former Pitt signal caller Kedon Slovis, who transferred to BYU this offseason after a disappointing season with the Panthers last fall.
Nagy broke down Slovis’ game, saying he was surprised the quarterback not only returned to college for a fifth season, but transferred out of Pitt to do so. Nagy defended Slovis’ less-than-desirable stat line from 2022 — 184 completions on 315 attempts for 2,397 yards, 10 touchdowns and nine interceptions — by claiming the figures were misleading.
“People who claim “stats don’t lie” have no clue because they do in many cases when it comes to projecting college players to NFL,” Nagy said. “Statistically, Slovis’ numbers on paper have declined in many areas (yards, comp %, TDs) since his breakout true frosh season at USC but his NFL talent tape is obvious when you put on tape.”
Williams, however, had a different perspective on Slovis’ 2022 campaign.
“Lol,” the cornerback typed in a quote retweet. “I wish he was on our schedule so we could make him quit like he did on us!”
Friday afternoon wasn’t the first time Williams voiced his displeasure about Slovis’ departure from Pitt. Slovis entered the transfer portal on Dec. 5, just 25 days prior to Pitt’s matchup against UCLA in the Sun Bowl. While most of the members of Pat Narduzzi’s squad kept their comments off social media, Williams was one of the few to chime in.
“As a team captain, you suppose to talk to your boys first before anything,” Williams tweeted the morning the news of Slovis’ transfer became public, “wasn’t no love at all!”
Williams’ tweet from Friday morning was liked by both former defensive end Habakkuk Baldonado and Dayon Hayes. As his tweet continued to gain traction throughout the afternoon, Williams backed his actions by saying, “Thread lightly cause I tell it how it is!”
By Friday evening, Williams deleted both tweets and posted an apology that included an emoji of a grinning face with sweat. “I wasn’t attacking anyone, I’m A Football Player, I’m sure many other players around the country want to play some of their former teammates as well! I was always taught finish what you started! But whoever took it wrong, I Apologize,” his tweet read.
While his voice is certainly present online, Williams has also been a reliable force on the field throughout his time in Pittsburgh. In four seasons at Pitt, the Pompano Beach, Fla., native has made 34 career starts. Williams delivered his best season last fall, tallying 24 tackles and a pair of interceptions — both of which he returned for touchdowns — earning him honorable mention All-ACC recognition.
Coach Prime responds
A few weeks after receiving criticism by Narduzzi for the way he is constructing his roster in his inaugural season as head coach at Colorado, Deion Sanders finally responded in a story that was published Thursday by 247Sports, the same outlet that published Narduzzi’s original comments.
In late May at the ACC spring meetings, Narduzzi spoke on the heavy roster turnover that had been taking place within the Colorado football program since Sanders was hired in December, where over 70 players — most of whom were on scholarship — departed from Boulder, with some doing so against their own will.
“We’ll see how it works out but that, to me, looks bad on college football coaches across the country,” Narduzzi said. “The reflection is on one guy right now but when you look at it overall — those kids that have moms and dads and brothers and sisters and goals in life — I don’t know how many of those 70 that left really wanted to leave or they were kicked in the butt to get out.”
While the Pitt head coach had many thoughts about Sanders, the same couldn’t be said once the tables were turned.
“What was his situation when he came to Pitt?” Sanders asked when Narduzzi’s comments were brought up in a one-on-one interview. “He had a different situation than me. He is not mad at me, he is mad at the situation in football now that allowed his best player to leave a year ago. He’s not mad at me, he’s using me to shoot bullets at another coach who he has an issue with. I don’t know who he is; if he walked in here right now, I wouldn’t know him.”