Secondary, Line Steal Spotlight From Linebackers
The names require no further identification. Last names will suffice.
Russell. Ham. Lambert. Lloyd. Greene.
They are some of the players who made
linebacker one of the most important positions in Steelers' history
through the decades of the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and the start of
the new millennium.
Those players went to 36 Pro Bowls, totaled
14 Super Bowl appearances, sacked quarterbacks like kids trampling
on ants in a playground, generated fear and earned respect throughout
the National Football League. more.....
Up Close with Rick Pitino
In 18 seasons as a collegiate head coach at four different schools,
Pitino has compiled a 416-154 record, a .732 winning percentage
that ranked him ninth among active coaches and 25th all-time entering
the 2004-05 season. Perhaps Pitino's greatest coaching was done
at Kentucky between 1989 and 1997, when he led the Wildcats to two
Elite Eights, two Final Fours, and a National Championship in 1996.
He gained his 400th career coaching victory last season. PSR's George
Von Benko recently got up close with Pitino. more.....
Just Like Everywhere Else
This headline says all we need to know about Notre Dame's firing
of Tyrone Willingham.
Forget the 'holier than thou' stuff.
Forget the 'higher purpose' mantra. Forget the notion that there
is a larger mission at work in South Bend. It's all about winning
- just like everywhere else.
At least now that's clear.
Take it from Notre Dame Athletic Director
Kevin White more.....
hear him say it as if it were yesterday. 'We didn't come here to
eat.' That was my father at Forbes Field. He wasn't mean, just a
guy raising a family on a tight budget. I wonder what he would think
today about sitting in a luxury box that costs well into six figures
to lease? Where wine is served alongside carving stations for roast
beef. Welcome to the amenities available for 21st century sports
The luxury suites incorporated into all
modern sports facilities are more than a means more.....
Faces To Watch In 2005
'African Assassin' Okine is off to a good start. Okine, 14-0, is
currently IBCA America's World Heavy-weight Champion.
The 6-foot-2, 235-pounder from Ghana,
Africa is already 32-years-old. Still, trainer Al McCauley says
Okine is in great shape and possesses the natural ability so coveted
in fighters: speed and power.
'His work ethic is so good; he's a real
joy to work with,' said McCauley. more.....
Wish You Were Here
of these four would have
given Pittsburgh more reasons to cheer
The image most of us remember is Zavackas
pouting on the bench during the Panthers' three-point loss to Marquette
in the 2002-03 season. But the 6-8 forward's shooting ability was
a key to the Panthers' first-ever Big East Tournament Championship
team. He averaged 10.1 points per game on the season, and
Not Sorry You're Gone
we overreacted. Pittsburgh didn't miss these guys as much as initially
Vilified by Pirates' fans because he
was mean to Jack Wilson and apparently didn't get along with Kris
Benson, Giles' history with the Pirates has been somewhat rewritten
by fans and media lately. The guy averaged 37 HR, 109 RBI, 108 runs
and a .309 average over his four full seasons as a Pirate - and
his effort between the lines was nothing but exemplary. It appeared
there was no way the team would be able to replace him in the batting
order. And for the first five weeks of the season, that's exactly
how it looked. more.....
Salary Cap Or Dunce Cap
If there's one thing we can all agree on, it's this:
Other people make too much money. Just
pick your favorite example: Teachers. Elected officials. Port Authority
drivers. Turnpike toll-takers. Professional athletes.
You can probably just jump ahead to the
last entry because everyone believes athletes make too much. After
all, "they play a kid's game." Actually, they're part of a multi-billion
entertainment industry and are "playing a kid's game" like Bruce
Springsteen is "fooling around with a guitar." But if reason entered
into these debates, the Dire Straits hit "Money For Nothing" wouldn't
have been so deliciously dead on. more.....
The Economic Gap in Division I Athletics
If the common notion that six wins punches your bowl ticket holds
true, then local college football fans should stock up on snacks.
Because all three Pittsburgh-area Division I football teams have
reached the magic number. We're going Burgh Bowling, everybody!
Not exactly. Although Pitt will be headed
to a major bowl, televised and sponsored by a corporation you've
probably heard of, Duquesne - with seven wins and a Metro Atlantic
Athletic Conference championship - will focus on final exams instead
of football this month. more.....
experience with 'it' happened in Ireland back in 1997. Steelers'
linebacker Greg Lloyd - never fond of the media - broke his silence
when I approached him and asked a simple question. The Steelers
were playing an exhibition game overseas with the Chicago Bears,
and I asked Lloyd, 'How's your stay in Ireland going?'
He ripped the Irish people, Irish hospitality,
and Irish food. Not the way you treat your hosts, and considering
this was Dan Rooney's pet project, his comments didn't play well
in the halls of power. The interview soon became front page news
- not only in Ireland but here in Pittsburgh. Once we returned to
the states - Lloyd confronted me about the interview. more.....
PSR Showdown: Pittsburgh Sports Story Of The Year 2004
Big Ben On The Scene:
For more than two decades, the fans of
the Pittsburgh Steelers have searched for that elusive holy grail:
a worthy successor to Terry Bradshaw's throne. Cliff Stoudt, Mark
Malone, David Woodley, Bubby Brister, Neil O'Donnell, Kordell Stewart,
Tommy Maddox - did I forget anybody? Ah yes, Scott Campbell, thanks.
. . . more.....
Rookie Of The Year: Jason Bay:
The year was filled with local sports stories
involving team excellence. Some obvious, like Pitt's third-straight
Sweet 16 appearance. Some less so, such as the Lady Vulcans of California
University capturing the Division II National Championship. Individual
performances were abundant as well: Olympics hero Lauryn Williams
of Rochester, Pirates' lefty Oliver Perez, Pitt's classy Heisman
runner-up Larry Fitzgerald, the Steelers' unflappable Ben . . .