Pitt fills need on offensive line with grad transfer Stefano Millin
For the next 11 months, Stefano Millin will be a Pitt offensive lineman, the likely replacement for Brian O'Neill at left tackle.
He verbally committed to coach Pat Narduzzi on Wednesday, with plans to join the team this summer as a graduate transfer from Kent State.
But the big man from Massillon, Ohio, has big plans for after football, too, even if that doesn't occur until the next decade.
“I want to join the Navy and be an officer,” he said, “and then I want to go into politics and become a congressman or senator.”
Well, gee, Stefano, why not go all the way to the White House?
Maybe not, he said.
“I see the scrutiny that guy is undergoing now. I don't know anybody who would sign up for that.”
Good answer, but Millin is eager to sign a letter of intent to play for Pitt, where Narduzzi just filled a big hole on his roster, with O'Neill leaving early for the NFL.
While Millin (6-foot-6, 305 pounds) said he will see more competition than he faced at Kent State, Pitt coaches expect him to win the job.
“They told me even (Wednesday) when I committed, ‘You're penciled in as our starter at left tackle.' They said they would be shocked if I wasn't the starter,” he said.
Millin originally planned to attend Cincinnati after he graduates from Kent State in May with a degree in public communications. “I told Pitt I was happy with Cincinnati,” he said.
But, then, Narduzzi got involved.
“If you know him, you know he's relentless,” Millin said. “He said, ‘Just come out and take a visit. You can't say no to something you haven't seen.' He made a really good point of that.”
Not long after the visit, Millin was sold on Pitt.
At Kent State, he started 33 of 36 games at center and both tackle spots. He was mainly a tackle, but in 2015, he was the starting center when Kent State had a need.
“The offensive line coach came to me and said, ‘Do you want to get on the field? We need a guy at center.'
“I said, ‘Shoot, I can snap the ball.' ”
In 2016, he was chosen to wear jersey No. 54, given to a player in honor of former Kent State offensive lineman Jason Bitsko, who died prior to the 2014 season.
“It recognizes a leader on the offensive line and on the team who emulates what Jason was all about,” Millin said.