ROD RUTHERFORD, a two-time All-Big East quarterback during his accomplished Pitt career from 1999-2003, returned to his alma mater this past spring as adefensive assistant.
Rutherford, who spent last year as secondary coach at nearby St. Vincent College, will serve the Panthers as a defensive assistant. His positional focus will be with the linebackers.
Rutherford finished his collegiate career as one of the most prolific signal-callers in Pitt and Big East history. As a senior he was a unanimous first-team All-Big East selection after setting five conference records.
He additionally set or tied seven Pitt marks, matching a pair of longstanding records established by the legendary Dan Marino, including single-season touchdown passes (37) and consecutive games with a TD pass (19).
Rutherford finished his all-star senior year ranked among the country's top 10 in three different statistical categories, including points responsible for (tied for fourth, 18.0 pts./game), passing efficiency (157.4 rating, eighth) and total offense (294.5 avg., 10th).
Following his 2004 graduation from Pitt, Rutherford went on to play two seasons in the NFL. He spent the '04 season with the Carolina Panthers before joining the Pittsburgh Steelers for their '05 Super Bowl championship campaign. In 2007, Rutherford played for the Hamburg SeaDevils of NFL Europe.
Rutherford owns his bachelor's degree in social sciences. A Pittsburgh native, he graduated in 1999 from Perry Traditional Academy, where he was a standout performer for the Commodores in football, basketball and track.
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