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Monday December 5 2016
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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 - 10:22
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 - 17:08
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 - 16:13
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 - 17:50
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 - 11:20
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 - 22:55
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 - 21:09
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 - 10:37
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 - 15:29
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 - 14:06
Walter Villa
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Bob Prince was best known as the voice of the PIttsburgh Pirates for 28 years, but it was not the only job he had over his Hall of Fame career. “The Gunner” also called Steelers and Penguins games at different times during his career and was part of the NBC broadcast team for the 1965 All-Star Game.
Feature OneNorth Shore Notes
When the Penguins hired Jim Rutherford as their general manager in 2014, it seemed like a temporary move. The former Carolina Hurricanes GM would spend his two years in Pittsburgh, and then hand the keys to Jason Botterill; the man whom several people thought deserved the job in the first place.
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Aaron Gray is a familiar name for most Pittsburgh basketball fans. The 7’0”, 270-pound center led the '07 Panthers to an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance and was one of the most prolific big men to play for coach Jamie Dixon.
Feature ThreePitt BasketballSports Bites
Jeanne Marie Laskas is the New York Times best-selling author of Concussion and the 2009 GQ article “Game Brain,” which inspired the Golden Globe-nominated movie, Concussion, starring Will Smith and Alec Baldwin.
Feature FourPure SteelSports Bites
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The college basketball season is underway as local teams finish their non-conference games this month. Will Kevin Stallings re-ignite the Pitt program? Can Jim Ferry recover from losing three seniors at Duquesne? Will Penn State's freshmen class finally produce competitive basketball in State College?
Custom 1DuquesnePenn StatePitt BasketballRobert MorrisWVU
Exactly four months after the Pittsburgh Penguins raised the Stanley Cup in San Jose, the new NHL season got underway. While the Penguins will look to become the first team in nearly 20 years to repeat as champions, the season will be sure to deliver plenty of twists and surprises during the regular season.
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As much as 80 percent of the Pirates starting rotation could be different next season. Only Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon are locks to return from the 2015 crew. With three spots potentially open, the Pirates could look to add veterans through waivers, free agency and trades. Here are some potential in-house solutions.
Custom 3North Shore Notes
For years, the accomplishments of the Penn State men’s basketball team have been few and far between. Head coach Patrick Chambers has posted a 23-67 overall conference record in his five seasons, one of the worst marks among Power 5 schools. Only TCU, Boston College, Texas Tech and Virginia Tech have a lower in-conference winning percentage than Penn State's .256 mark during that span.
Custom 4Penn State