Graham hopes to bounce back from a torn knee ligament that prematurely ended his 2011 season. At the time, Graham ranked second in the FBS in rushing yards.
“I felt good. As the days go on, I'm going to get better and better. I felt stronger than I thought I would be,” Graham said. “This is just the first day so I have to be smart and I want to participate every day. As of now, I plan on playing September 1 against Youngstown State.”
Graham is the only player in the Big East to be nominated for the Walter Camp Award, given annually to the nation's top player. If Graham is unable to recover fully, Pitt has additional help in the backfield. Freshman RB Rushel Shell, who set a Pennsylvania High School state record for career rushing yards, is excited to learn under Graham, as well as veteran running backs Isaac Bennett and Corey Davis.
“Today was a great experience and mostly a learning experience for me,” Shell said. “I want to take their knowledge of the game and combine it with my knowledge of the game and make it work.”
Departure of Myers could benefit Voytik
Coach Paul Chryst is pleased with the Panthers' depth at quarterback despite an announcement on Friday that former quarterback Mark Myers is transferring from the program. Myers' transfer could definitely help freshman quarterback Chad Voytik.
“I'm still learning but as the day went on I felt more comfortable with the plays and my reads,” Voytik said. “It's a challenge that I look forward to.”
Chryst concerned about depth at offensive tackle
While the Panthers are experienced on the interior line with Ryan Turnley, Chris Jacobson and Ryan Schlieper, Chryst is hoping for better play from the Panthers' offensive tackles. Chryst has high expectations for junior Cory King.
King credits offensive line coach Jim Hueber for his continued improvement.
“He's getting us into shape. He has been a great motivator and it's very easy to play for him,” I've had some experience playing this position and he is helping me prepare every day.”
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