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Pitt gets commits from QB, local RB

| Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 9:03 p.m.

Pitt received verbal commitments Tuesday from quarterback Adam Bertke, a two-time state champion at Marion Local (Ohio) High School, and Shady Side Academy running back Dennis Briggs, doubling its number of recruits from the Class of 2014.

Bertke, 6-foot-6, 210 pounds, threw for 2,300 yards and 16 touchdowns and ran for 1,000 and 20 scores last season at Marion, which plays in the smallest division in Ohio.

Bertke, who will be a three-year starter this season, visited Pitt on Tuesday and committed. He said he also has offers from Illinois, Kent State, Akron and Toledo.

The 5-foot-11, 195-pound Briggs ran for 473 yards on 82 carries last season at Shady Side. He also has offers from Cornell, Yale, Buffalo and Toledo, but he chose Pitt to have an opportunity to play big-time college football, he said.

“I feel those coaches are genuine about me and honest about me,” he said. “They said they thought I had leadership qualities.” Shady Side coach Dave Havern, a former Pitt quarterback, said Briggs offers qualities that go beyond the football field.

“There are better football players around, but no better kids around (than Briggs) that are good football players,” he said. “And I'd take a polygraph on that. Paul Chryst is getting the kind of kid he needs to get.”

Pitt has promises from four recruits, including offensive lineman Connor Hayes of Traverse City, Mich., and defensive back Jalen Williams of Newburgh, N.Y.

Jerry DiPaola is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at jdipaola@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.

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