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Sunday March 29 2015
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Columnist Walter Villa

When 6-foot-5 former Penn State volleyball star Blair Brown went club-hopping a while back with 6-4 Nebraska All-American Brooke Delano and three other very tall young women, they weren’t exactly shy about their height.

All five wore three-inch heels.


“We would have worn six-inch heels if we had them,” Delano said with a laugh. “We got some comments about our long legs, and we loved it.”

07/27/2012 - 11:22
Walter Villa
After a 15-year NFL career, one of the things Jason Taylor did was thank his former high school football coach at Woodland Hills, George Novak. Taylor continues to give back to the community that started him on the path to greatness.

MIAMI - After his 15-year NFL career was over, after he had terrorized his last offensive lineman and after his Dolphins had beaten the New York Jets for the final time, Jason Taylor thanked his fo

06/15/2012 - 18:08
Walter Villa
Paulina Prieto-Cerame said she felt like The Bachelorette. But instead of two dozen handsome bachelors pursuing her, there were at least that many college coaches looking for a commitment from the 6-2 outside hitter from Miami’s Palmer Trinity High School.

Who got the final rose?

Russ Rose, naturally.

The Penn State coach landed the Class of 2012 star by using a simple approach.

“He said, ‘Here’s my resume, here’s my program and

01/30/2012 - 17:13
Walter Villa
The dream for many young, budding athletes is to someday become a pro, but the more realistic first goal should be earning a college scholarship.

Getting your education paid for will save young athletes from years of loan debt or ease the burden on their parents.

01/16/2012 - 18:50
Walter Villa
I’m in the eye of a scandalous storm in which a sawed-off thief, loser and convicted felon is threatening to take down a Hurricanes football program that has more players in the NFL than any other and had a glorious two-decade run in which they won five national titles.

MIAMI – Could a similar scandal hit Pitt, Penn State or West Virginia?

Of course it could.

08/23/2011 - 12:20
Walter Villa
Trailing the Miami Hurricanes 79-76 with less than five seconds to play last season, West Virginia's Jonnie West had the ball in the right corner of the court with a chance to send the game to overtime.

He declined the shot, his pass became a turnover, and WVU lost.

07/25/2011 - 23:55
Walter Villa
While it’s too soon to know if the Pirates’ 2011 draft can be judged a success, we know one word that cannot be used to describe it – safe. The Pirates took somewhat of a gamble with the draft’s first overall pick, right-handed pitcher Gerrit Cole of UCLA, and then went all-out Las Vegas with their next choice, high school right fielder Josh Bell.

Both players are represented by agent Scott Boras, which makes signing them by the August 15 deadline far from a certainty.

07/06/2011 - 22:09
Walter Villa
A skilled 6-6 center is a rare commodity in women's basketball, which explains why Shawnice "Pepper" Wilson received over 100 scholarship offers out of Pittsburgh's Westinghouse High School a couple of years ago.

Wilson, a two-time City League Player of the Year at Westinghouse, visited just two universities – Pitt and Miami-Florida.

06/21/2011 - 11:37
Walter Villa
Rice University third baseman Anthony Rendon, favored to become the Pirates’ next millionaire as the first overall pick in June’s 2011 MLB Draft, has plans for his signing bonus.

Considering that MLB’s past two No.

06/03/2011 - 16:29
Walter Villa
Pitt catcher Kevan Smith often wonders what would have happened had his athletic career not taken a three-year detour away from baseball. Baseball had always been his first love at Seneca Valley High School, but when then-Pitt coach Dave Wannstedt offered the 6-4, 240-pounder a scholarship to play quarterback, everything changed.

“Colleges knew they couldn’t compete (financially) with a football scholarship,” Smith said.

05/25/2011 - 15:06
Walter Villa
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The Steelers need cornerbacks, and the upcoming NFL Draft has some. The team may have to be willing to think outside the box a bit, however.
Editor's DeskFeature OnePure Steel
It’s finally baseball season and Pirates fans have plenty to be excited about. Coming off consecutive playoff appearances, the Pirates are poised to field what general manager Neal Huntington called the “deepest and most talented” team he has assembled.
Feature TwoNorth Shore NotesTop Story
As the primary location for much of Major League Baseball’s spring training, Florida is a familiar spot for most professional baseball players. For new Pirates infielder Jung-Ho Kang, it’s the beginning of a transition period.
Feature ThreeNorth Shore Notes
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Blue LineFeature Four
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Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 1 Steelers TV Channel
Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 2Xfinity HS FootballHigh School TV Channel
Full size video and summary... Misc YouTube Player 3College Sports TV Channel
The Pirates division opponents have changed quite a bit over the offseason, as the Cardinals and Cubs made major changes, while the Brewers and Reds are not the playoff contenders they once were.
Custom 1North Shore Notes
The All-Star Game is a distant memory. The last leg of the NBA regular season is upon us. It’s time to start looking at which teams have the right stuff to hold the Larry O’Brien trophy in June.
Custom 2Sports Bites
With the NBA playoffs on the horizon, the race to the finish line is intensifying – as is the competition for the association’s Most Valuable Player. The discussion has become a lot more exciting than in previous years as the two frontrunners are not named James or Durant.
Custom 3Sports BitesTop Story
The Nationals spent the money to put together what is probably the best pitching staff in Major League Baseball. The Dodgers may only be getting better, and the Mariners have what could be the most feared lineup in the league.
Custom 4North Shore NotesTop Story