Then, Pittsburgh lost its whole coaching staff, Hafley was hired by Rutgers, Nova de-committed from the Panthers and now he is back to the early stages of his recruitment with slightly more than a month until signing day.
It means Nova has a lot of thinking, and research, to do, and not much time to accomplish it.
"There are a few others, but I'd rather not say. But those three, those are some of the schools," Nova said. "I'm talking to a couple of schools and all my options are open."
Nova added he expects to visit Rutgers officially the weekend of Jan. 21-23, but as of Sunday had not yet spoken to Scarlet Knights coach Greg Schiano. He also is thinking about trip to North Carolina and Miami.
"I think I'm going (to Rutgers) on a visit. I know my dad and coach Schiano talked about it," Nova said. "I've been in touch with (offensive line) coach (Kyle) Flood a lot, and coach Flood and coach Schiano have been in touch with my dad."
Interestingly, when Nova committed to Pittsburgh in May, Rutgers was also in heavy consideration.
But, has anything changed with the way the 6-foot-2, 210-pounder views the Scarlet Knights since then?
"I think it's a little better now with the situation that they have, and with a lot of the recruits they're going to be getting," Nova said. "I'm texting with (Rutgers commit) Miles (Shuler) right now. Miles and I played in a seven-on-seven before the season and we were all talking about going to play at the same school and stuff like that.
"It's kind of funny it's turned out the way it's turned out."
Nova's recruiting coach at Pittsburgh was Hafley, who could now work in unison with Flood and Schiano to lure him to Piscataway.
And while his relationship with Hafley is tremendous, Nova said that won't play much in his recruitment.
"It's more of the offensive coordinator, and stuff like that, but he's been a great help to my recruiting process," Nova said. "What he tells me, I'll take with a lot of respect."
When Hafley visited Nova last week, it was strictly in a Pitt capacity.
"He was talking to me about staying at Pitt," Nova said. "He was still going to be at Pitt. He didn't know if he was going to get fired or not. He didn't know he was going to Rutgers until the last minute."