Pitt football notebook: Maurice Ffrench hopes steel plate in his jaw will get him back on the field
If Pitt wide receiver Maurice Ffrench plays Saturday at Virginia Tech, he’ll do it with a steel plate stabilizing his broken jaw.
Ffrench had the plate inserted after he injured his jaw in the Georgia Tech game. He did not play against North Carolina, and coach Pat Narduzzi said his availability will be a game-time decision.
“He’s practiced this week (without contact),” the coach said. “His jaw is better than it was before.”
Narduzzi said Ffrench lost some weight because of chewing difficulties, but he’s getting it back.
The procedure on Ffrench’s jaw was done to give him an opportunity to return to the field this season, Narduzzi said.
“If you don’t put a plate in, you’re done for the year. You don’t want to see his jaw sitting on the right side of his face.”
Narduzzi said the decision Saturday will be based on “how (Ffrench) feels.”
“We’ll see where he is. He’s way ahead of schedule.”
Freshman shows toughness
Davis Beville may not appear in a game this season, but Narduzzi said the freshman quarterback has made his mark in practice.
“He’s tough. I liken him to a Kirk Cousins (Minnesota Vikings quarterback), his freshman year (at Michigan State),” Narduzzi said. “The hits he took, the effort he gives. He plays with passion every single day. He’s going to be really good.
“It isn’t easy being the scout team quarterback. He’s been getting whacked.”
So much so Narduzzi ordered the red, don’t-touch-me jersey for Beville while he was running Virginia Tech’s offense.
Beville could take credit for some of Pitt’s sack production (45 sacks to lead the FBS).
“Unfortunately, he’s had to take the punishment there and it’s really helped our sack guys because they’re able to go get him,” Narduzzi said.
Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .