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Frank Cignetti returns to Pitt as offensive coordinator

Credit: University of Pittsburgh Athletics (pittsburghpanthers.com)

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Frank Cignetti is ready for a third stint at Pittsburgh.

The Panthers have hired Cignetti as the team’s offensive coordinator more than 30 years after he began his coaching career at the school as a graduate assistant and a decade removed from a brief stint as offensive coordinator under former Pitt coach Dave Wannstedt.

The school made the announcement on Friday. The 56-year-old Cignetti replaces Mark Whipple, who left to take the same position at Nebraska.

The well-traveled Cignetti broke into coaching at Pitt in 1989. He’s spent the last 32 years in coaching at both the college and professional levels. Cignetti has worked for six different NFL teams and six Football Bowl Division programs. He most recently served as the offensive coordinator at Boston College in 2020 and 2021.

Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi called Cignetti’s hire a “tremendous coup” for the Panthers.

““He’s an extremely talented football coach and teacher,” Narduzzi said in a statement. “Frank has worked with some of the greatest quarterbacks in the game. He knows what it takes to build a championship-caliber offense.”

The Panthers will lose quarterback Kenny Pickett, a Heisman Trophy finalist, to the NFL but have several weapons returning from a team that won the program’s first ACC title and set myriad offensive records, including Jordan Addison, who won the Biletnikoff Award to the nation’s best wide receiver in 2021.

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More AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll

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