The Pitt News

Fans too quick to go haywire over Heyward

Fans too quick to go haywire over Heyward

By Chris Puzia / Contributing Editor

April 20, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns, Top Stories

Jason Heyward might now have a $184 million contract in his pocket, but on Monday, that money also earned him nearly 44,000 Cardinals fans who want him to fail. After Heyward chose Chicago over his one-time home in St. Louis last offseason, the new Cubs outfielder heard nothing but boos on Monday nigh...

Stallings winning fans over with strong string of moves

Stallings winning fans over with strong string of moves

By Jeremy Tepper / Senior Staff Writer

April 18, 2016


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

Kevin Stallings might not be who I thought he was. I thought he had peaked and certainly wasn’t fit to replace Jamie Dixon as the new Pitt men’s basketball head coach. Plus, with his seemingly testy personality, I thought he’d lose players to transfers. The first month of the Stallings era, though...

Five early MLB exaggerations

Five early MLB exaggerations

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

April 11, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

In April, hyperbole and overreaction in the baseball season are as common as a rain shower. But, a week in, I feel confident enough in asserting these five takes as absolutely, 100 percent correct. One week’s worth of games is more than a sufficient sample. There is no way any of them will ever pro...

Slide rules a necessary addition to MLB

By Chris Puzia / Contributing Editor

April 7, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Some things in Major League Baseball are inevitable, despite the adage that “you can’t predict baseball.” For example, the San Francisco Giants — winners of even-year World Series in 2010, 2012 and 2014 — began their undeniable slog to another championship run with a 12-3 rout over the Mi...

Pirates fans have no reason to lessen expectations

Pirates fans have no reason to lessen expectations

By Chad Cameron / Staff Writer

April 4, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports / Other Varsity Sports, Sports Columns

Snow isn’t typically associated with Major League Baseball’s Opening Day. But as a sellout crowd of 39,500 people prepared to pack PNC Park on Sunday, crews on the inside rushed to shovel away the last traces of a blizzard that hit Pittsburgh late Saturday night. Baseball season was here, and no matte...

Point/Counterpoint: Kevin Stallings

Point/Counterpoint: Kevin Stallings

By Chris Puzia and Jeremy Tepper / The Pitt News Staff

March 30, 2016


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

The Pitt fanbase had a loud, pointed — and mostly unanimous — reaction when Athletic Director Scott Barnes announced the hiring of Kevin Stallings as Pitt’s men’s basketball head coach. With rumors and reports of potential candidates flying around in the days leading up to the hiring of Stallin...

Five first round matchups to watch

By Chad Cameron / For The Pitt News

March 16, 2016


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

In the first round of the NCAA Tournament, there’s enough March Madness to induce vertigo. To help sort through the 32 games on Thursday and Friday, we’ve selected some games that should more than warrant your viewership – aside from Pitt’s date with No. 7 Wisconsin: No. 8 Colorado (22-11) vs. No. 9 Conne...

Selection Committee could tweak rules to curb surprises

By Chris Puzia / Contributing Editor

March 15, 2016


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

Every Selection Sunday, some teams and fan bases will inevitably call foul on why their squad misses its shot to, well, take more shots. Part of this frustration likely comes from the NCAA Selection Committee’s explicit, yet complicated, method for selecting teams. While the committee has spruced...

Girls’ game: Women making advances in coaching field

By Jessie Wallace / Staff Writer

February 12, 2016


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

I’ve been an athlete my entire life. As “one of the boys” in grade school, I worked out as often as I attended classes. As a track athlete in college, I’ve been more apt to hurl a shotput than brandish a mascara wand. Every meet, I fall more in love with the “art of competition.” This “art,...

Players and politicians: Dynamic duos in the stretch

Players and politicians: Dynamic duos in the stretch

By Chris Puzia / Contributing Editor

February 10, 2016


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns, Top Stories

While basketball teams are jockeying for positions in the NBA playoffs, an entirely different race to knock off competition is unfolding across the country. Few have ventured to link the two competitions, but there’s enough big personalities — and certainly equal national attention — in both are...

Super Bowl 50 a disappointing product from start to finish

Super Bowl 50 a disappointing product from start to finish

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

February 8, 2016


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

As I sat sprawled in a chair, watching Cam Newton get slaughtered by a vicious Denver defense and a lifeless Peyton Manning loft the ball in the air with less velocity than a granny-style free throw, one thought constantly pervaded my mind. Man, this is so boring. The 2016 Super Bowl was an old-fashioned defens...

Narduzzi providing results in first full recruiting offseason

Narduzzi providing results in first full recruiting offseason

By Chad Cameron / For The Pitt News

February 2, 2016


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

In the final stretch of the courting process, Pitt head football coach Pat Narduzzi fed his recruits to the Zoo. Pitt invited a group of football recruits to watch the Virginia Tech game Sunday as members of the Oakland Zoo. With National Signing Day on Wednesday, the new Panthers head coach showed ...

Expand College Football Playoff to eight teams

Expand College Football Playoff to eight teams

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

January 13, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

I can’t be the only one sick of Alabama’s football dynasty after the Crimson Tide won their fourth national championship in seven years on Monday. For myself and everyone else wanting more diversity in finalists, what if there was a way for more teams to have a crack at the title each season? The ...

Burfict problematic, not the problem in NFL’s roughness epidemic

Burfict problematic, not the problem in NFL’s roughness epidemic

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

January 11, 2016


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

Vontaze Burfict and Adam “Pacman” Jones signed, sealed and delivered a playoff victory to the Pittsburgh Steelers Saturday. Thanks to the two Cincinnati Bengals’ defenders’ personal foul calls against them on an incomplete pass that saw Burfict drill star Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown in ...

NFL coaches not given enough of a chance to succeed

NFL coaches not given enough of a chance to succeed

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

January 7, 2016


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

With a resumé that included “firewood cutter” and “doormat salesman” and peaked at “NFL defensive line coach,” Jim Tomsula didn’t seem like your prototypical head coaching candidate. Following the departure of Jim Harbaugh, the 49ers hired and fired Tomsula after he led the talent-depr...

With Dupuis retirement decision, Penguins lose solid teammate, player

By Jeff Carpenter / Staff Writer

December 11, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

After receiving a diagnosis of a blood clot in his lung last November, causing him to miss the final 66 games of the regular season and five playoff games, Pascal Dupuis vowed that he would return to the game that he has played all his life. “I’m 35. I know I don’t have much time left. I will get he...

Pirates need to make big splash for continued success

Pirates need to make big splash for continued success

By Jeremy Tepper / Senior Staff Writer

December 9, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Small-market teams like the Pirates acquire prospects or undervalued players through strong drafts and savvy trades. But sustaining their place at the top isn’t always a home run. A core of young, cheap and talented players fuel the Pittsburgh Pirates and have turned the Bucs into a serious contender...

Military Bowl matchup features plenty of intrigue

Military Bowl matchup features plenty of intrigue

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

December 8, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

When Pitt learned it’s bowl destination on Sunday afternoon, many Pitt fans were frustrated that the team earned a trip to one of the two lowest tier ACC-affiliated bowls. The Panthers finished with a better record than all four ACC teams who received higher tier bowls than them, but geographic and f...

It’s only December: Early season rankings are far from absolute

It’s only December: Early season rankings are far from absolute

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

December 2, 2015


Filed under 2. Featured, Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

When Pitt lost to Purdue — the No. 11 team in the country — they lost to a team that was seemingly one of the best in the nation. But the Boilermakers’ ranking doesn’t really say much, at least not yet. The NCAA Tournament selection committee won’t care what Purdue was ranked on Dec. 1, come ...

Criticism of Ronda Rousey an unfair double standard

Criticism of Ronda Rousey an unfair double standard

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

November 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

With one swift kick to the neck Saturday night, Ronda Rousey went from renowned role model to the Internet’s punching bag. A hailstorm of backlash and social media mudslinging hit UFC superstar Ronda Rousey this weekend following her UFC 193 loss to Holly Holm, one of the most shocking upsets in recen...

Heed history in response to Missouri protests

Heed history in response to Missouri protests

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

November 11, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns, Top Stories

In the face of racial adversity, a football team stood up for justice. The players stood as one, risking missing a game in order to ensure a safe environment for all people. This scenario casts the 2015 Missouri football team, where players ceased football activities until the school’s president, Ti...

Change-up: five positional switches for Pitt to consider

Change-up: five positional switches for Pitt to consider

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

November 10, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

On Saturday, the Pitt football team couldn’t pull off a monumental upset, falling to the loaded No. 5 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 42-30 at Heinz Field. But even with the loss, the Panthers stumbled upon an interesting offensive development. Head coach Pat Narduzzi occasionally used freshman safety ...

Crucial game Thursday a rare opportunity for Pitt students

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

October 28, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

For the first marquee home matchup in six years, Pitt football is the team with a bullseye on their back. The Panthers have suffered through mediocre season after mediocre season this decade. They sport a new look now, ranking No. 23 in the AP Top 25 Poll and No. 24 in the Amway Coaches Poll. They ...

Finding a team: Reasons to root for the remaining playoff rosters

Finding a team: Reasons to root for the remaining playoff rosters

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

October 20, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

It will probably be difficult for any Pirates fan to stay invested in the MLB playoffs now that the Buccos lost the Wild Card game for the second straight year — but before you change the channel on current games, note some similarities these teams have with Pittsburgh. Each of the four teams left in their...

AP ranking a sign of things to come for Pitt football

AP ranking a sign of things to come for Pitt football

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

October 19, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

The Chicago Cubs are in the playoffs. Donald Trump is running for president. And Pitt football is ranked in the AP poll. What a time to be alive. Following a win on Saturday at Georgia Tech, head coach Pat Narduzzi and his Pitt Panthers garnered recognition in the Associated Press’ national poll,...

Pirates’ season ends, optimism should endure

Pirates’ season ends, optimism should endure

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

October 8, 2015


Filed under 3. Breaking, Sports, Sports Columns, Top Stories

Before you look at the Pittsburgh Pirates’ season-ending loss to the Cubs Wednesday night, you have to look at who they lost first. Put the early playoff exit aside — before losing 4-0 at home in the NL Wild Card game, the Bucs had mountains upon mountains of obstacles to overcome. And they did just ...

Following ‘Monday Night’ fiasco, rule changes in NFL necessary

Following ‘Monday Night’ fiasco, rule changes in NFL necessary

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

October 8, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Not many people like Bill Belichick — even Sports Illustrated said so. But there’s one thing Belichick has been pining for — and no, it’s not advanced spy equipment or discrete ball-deflation tools. During the 2014 NFL winter meetings, the longtime New England Patriots head coach pitched a rule ch...

Fan impact overblown in MLB playoffs

Fan impact overblown in MLB playoffs

By Chris Puzia / Assistant Sports Editor

October 5, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

As if Pirates fans didn’t already have enough reason to despise Cubs ace Jake Arrieta, his Twitter feed might provide more fodder. “Whatever helps keep your hope alive, just know, it doesn’t matter,” Arrieta responded Sunday to a tweet suggesting PNC Park’s blackout crowd will rattle him ...

Dixon, Pitt basketball need to up recruiting game to compete in ACC

Dixon, Pitt basketball need to up recruiting game to compete in ACC

By Jeremy Tepper / Senior Staff Writer

September 30, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

There was a time when Pitt basketball could compile northeastern-focused recruiting classes. Unfortunately for Jamie Dixon and the Panthers, that time has passed. For the majority of Dixon’s tenure as Pitt’s head basketball coach, becoming a regular season force and faltering in the postseason w...

Guilty or not guilty, do not hold star athletes above reproach

Guilty or not guilty, do not hold star athletes above reproach

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 25, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

One year ago, ex-NFL running back Ray Rice was all over the news. Now, another league’s star is embroiled in an equally ugly case, with little to no media backlash. Rice was a star athlete in the NFL, but Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks is the absolute star of the NHL. Kane was the first overal...

Berra leaves off-field legacy of words

Berra leaves off-field legacy of words

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 23, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

As a Yankees fan, I’m not going to miss the departed Lawrence “Yogi” Berra most for his baseball career. His No. 8 will hang forever in Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park — no player will wear it again. But as much as I love shutting down other baseball fans with “27 rings,” I was alive for...

Narduzzi bringing defensive swagger to Pitt football

Narduzzi bringing defensive swagger to Pitt football

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

September 23, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

All honeymoons end. The moment newly hired Pitt football head coach Pat Narduzzi began to speak at his introductory press conference on Dec. 26, the signal caller’s enthusiasm and vigor enthralled Panther fans. It was a stark contrast to former head coach Paul Chryst, who has a more reserved demeano...

On playoff seeding issue, Major League Baseball lacks behind

On playoff seeding issue, Major League Baseball lacks behind

By Jeremy Tepper / Senior Staff Writer

September 21, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Imagine you’re the commissioner of the MLB. You, in theory, want what’s best for the sport, including increased viewership — especially considering the low ratings in last year’s World Series, while Sunday Night Football nearly doubled in viewership. Good, competitive games, for certain, will increase vie...

Scheduling rivals could provide boon to football attendance

Scheduling rivals could provide boon to football attendance

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 15, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns, Sports Features

Two weeks ago, I wrote a column calling for Pitt and West Virginia to renew the Backyard Brawl. Last Thursday, by pure happenstance, fate intervened — in the form of Pitt and WVU AD’s Scott Barnes and Shane Lyons, respectively — and made my dream come true. The Panthers will now play the Moun...

College athletes require a union

College athletes require a union

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

September 11, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

You don’t have to scour the landscape of collegiate athletics to find examples of malpractice and mistreatment. Recently, the Virginia Tech Hokies football team’s fine implementation system became a peak point of the college athletic terrain, as defensive coordinator Bud Foster revealed in an...

Infusion of youth key to upstart MLB teams

Infusion of youth key to upstart MLB teams

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 8, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

There aren’t many ways to escape a losing past. However, one way is to field players who don’t remember it. At least that’s what the Houston Astros and Chicago Cubs are doing this year. With recent histories of futility — including four 100-loss seasons between them since 2009 — it seemed 2015 would ...

Time to shine: James Conner has the makings of a program great — now he has to win

Time to shine: James Conner has the makings of a program great — now he has to win

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 4, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

Whenever a young football player starts making an impact, the hyperbole emerges just as fast as the knock-off jerseys. From the most serious journalist to the biggest homer, everyone jumps to proclaim “He’s the next Dan Marino” or “the next Larry Fitzgerald.” But to be contrary, in junior runni...

Play Brawl: Why Pitt and West Virginia Must Renew Their Rivalry

Play Brawl: Why Pitt and West Virginia Must Renew Their Rivalry

By Stephen Caruso / Assistant Sports Editor

September 3, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

As a junior, I’ve engaged in countless Panther rites of passage — having the Cathedral’s victory lights guide me home, eating at Primanti’s, singing “Sweet Caroline” at football games and promptly leaving after the last verse. Yet one item on my checklist remains unmarked — attending the...

2015 marks monumental year for Pitt athletics

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

August 30, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Change comes in waves, particularly in college athletics. The University of Pittsburgh is not immune to those shifting tides. One year ago, Pitt’s athletic program boasted a third-year head football coach for the first time since 2010 and a men’s basketball team coming off of an appearance in the R...

With Boyd response, Narduzzi will set tone for tenure at Pitt

With Boyd response, Narduzzi will set tone for tenure at Pitt

By Stephen Caruso / Contributing Editor

June 23, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Upon his appointment as Pitt’s head football coach in December, it appeared that Pat Narduzzi’s first challenge would come Sept. 5 on the gridiron. Now, it appears his first test will stem from his own locker room.Following a June 12 incident, the Jefferson Hill Police Department arrested Pitt s...

Finding faults in LeBron James an irritatingly off-base excercise

Finding faults in LeBron James an irritatingly off-base excercise

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

June 19, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

In the choose-your-own-adventure book that has been LeBron James’ basketball career, it appears that the final page is inevitable — polarization.The greatest basketball player in the world — a title that only the most out-of-touch and hard-headed fans would even consider disputing — has inexp...

Royal pain: Kansas City fans abuse of All-Star voting an abomination

Royal pain: Kansas City fans abuse of All-Star voting an abomination

By Stephen Caruso / Contributing Editor

June 16, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns, Sports Features

America has always styled itself as a nation of equality — if you have the skills, you will be rewarded.Of course, this has always been counterbalanced by people’s love of rewarding those they know, that great enemy of democracy and equality — nepotism.Yes, from Tammany Hall to getting that intern...

Five key obstacles to tackle for new AD Barnes

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

May 28, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

When Pitt introduced Scott Barnes as Pitt’s athletic director in late April, he assumed the face of an entire athletic department fielding numerous questions — especially following the dismissal of former director Steve Pederson.As Barnes prepares to begin his tenure at Pitt on June 15, here are the ...

Play ’til the end

Play ’til the end

By Heather Tennant / Staff Photographer

May 28, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

Pitt football is hoping to improve their fourth quarter play; the Pitt student section should look to do so as well.

On football Saturdays, throw worries to wayside and stay four quarters

On football Saturdays, throw worries to wayside and stay four quarters

By Stephen Caruso / Contributing Editor

May 28, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

It’s a tradition as old as the sport itself.I encountered it at my first Pitt football game, a 41-13 drubbing at the hands of Florida State University and one young quarterback by the name of Jameis Winston.At the end of the third quarter, the score was 34-13 in favor of the visitors, the subdued crow...

Trio of new bigs will be key for a Pitt basketball turnaround year

Trio of new bigs will be key for a Pitt basketball turnaround year

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

May 26, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

After a 2014-2015 season in which the Pitt men’s basketball team struggled to establish a strong presence in the paint, head coach Jamie Dixon is making a big gamble heading into the upcoming season.With former Richmond forward Alonzo Nelson-Ododa announcing his transfer to Pitt this past weekend, t...

Be Realistic

Be Realistic

By Jeff Ahearn / Assistant Visual Editor

May 19, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Pat Narduzzi isn't a miracle worker– fans need to give him time to bring success to Pittsburgh.

Curb early expectations, not enthusiasm, for Pat Narduzzi

Curb early expectations, not enthusiasm, for Pat Narduzzi

By Dan Sostek / Sports Editor

May 19, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Hope springs eternal, but unbridled optimism springs sparingly.There is a palpable excitement in Pittsburgh regarding the Pitt football program and the direction in which it is headed.Thanks to the enthusiasm and vigor of new head coach Pat Narduzzi, hired in December following the shocking departure of fo...

Marijuana punishments inconsistent across professional sports

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

April 20, 2015


Filed under Specials / Springfinals2015, Sports, Sports Columns

Professional athletes smoke pot. We know this. It’s not a big secret, nor should it be.But even as state after state legalizes marijuana, major league sports officials continue to classify the drug in the same category as cocaine, Ecstasy and other legitimately dangerous substances.To understand why...

Gap year: NBA should let high school players jump to pros

Gap year: NBA should let high school players jump to pros

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

April 16, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Duke already has a lot of haters, and as the shakiest No. 1 seed, they also had a lot of doubters. All year, Duke was the Jekyll-and-Hyde team of the NCAA, but they were dominant when it counted — the NCAA Tournament. Now, Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski has the arduous task of keeping ...

Beer of utmost importance to the gameday experience

Beer of utmost importance to the gameday experience

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

April 9, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

In America, we like sports. Sports are fun. Sports are gripping. Sports are heartbreaking. Most importantly, sports are the ultimate excuse to drink beer. But some beers are more fitted for watching sports than others. Here’s your guide to drinking beer like a sports-loving American.As a general stateme...

Keep an eye on Tiger in this weekend’s Masters

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

April 9, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

The slow torture begins in February — 10-second clips of the lushest green grass you’ll ever see, accompanied by the soothing sounds of chirping birds and soft running water as a yellow flag waves in the wind.Now, the anticipation is over. The Masters is here.Golf’s most visually appealing tourna...

Lightning [A]-rod

Lightning [A]-rod

By TNS

April 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Alex Rodriguez returns to baseball this year after a year-long suspension.

Hope springs eternal: Bold predictions for a big season

Hope springs eternal: Bold predictions for a big season

By Stephen Caruso / Contributing Editor

April 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

My fridge is full of hot dogs, and I’m listening to “Centerfield” on repeat, so you know baseball season is here. As the old adage says, you can’t predict baseball, but that doesn’t stop anyone from trying. Let me give it my best attempt and present you with some bold predictions for the coming ...

Recent success has Pirates poised for playoff push

Recent success has Pirates poised for playoff push

By Jeremy Tepper / Staff Writer

April 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

For what felt like an endless time, it seemed that the Pirates would never find their buried treasure.But after 20 years of losing, Pittsburgh’s local ball club has compiled consecutive winning seasons. After making the playoffs two years straight, the Pirates have turned themselves into a World Seri...

Duke

Duke

By Jeff Siner / TNS

April 1, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Duke's Justise Winslow (12) drives between San Diego State defenders in the third round of the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

Destroyed bracket falls to intriguing Final Four

Destroyed bracket falls to intriguing Final Four

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

April 1, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

And then there were four.Kentucky, Wisconsin, Duke and Michigan State have advanced to the Final Four in what has been one of the most exciting NCAA tournaments in recent memory.Looking back on the last few weeks, we’ve seen upsets, heat checks, tight finishes, walk-ons dancing, coaches falling off of s...

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer

By CHARLES TRAINOR JR / TNS

March 25, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer in the third quarter against Clemson in the Discover Orange Bowl.

An open letter to Urban Meyer: Stop complaining

An open letter to Urban Meyer: Stop complaining

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

March 25, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

There’s an old adage in sports that having depth is a “good problem.” If that’s true, then Ohio State University head football coach Urban Meyer has more than just a problem on his hands.Dear Mr. Meyer, You have a good crisis: too many talented quarterbacks.Just for fun, we’ll have this exc...

World’s worst soccer team finally scores shot at World Cup

By Chris Puzia / Sports Editor

March 24, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Exciting things are happening in Bhutan.Its national soccer team won a game.This may not typically be world news, as countless international and club soccer teams play and win games every day, but Bhutan’s national soccer team — ranked No. 209, out of 209, in the world — beat Sri Lanka on March 1...

Temple Owls

Temple Owls

By Yong Kim / TNS

March 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Temple's Josh Brown claps on his way to the bench during a timeout during the second half against Houston.

Deserving mid-major teams left out of NCAA field

Deserving mid-major teams left out of NCAA field

By Brandon Duerr / Staff Writer

March 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

As the NCAA Tournament approaches each year, some teams are nervously tapping their feet as they hope to break into the Big Dance. They heard analysts debate for weeks about whether their team would make the tournament or not, yet they were stuck sweating it out until Selection Sunday when they saw if t...

Top seed

Top seed

By Pablo Alcala / TNS

March 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Arkansas' Rashad Madden (00) fouls Kentucky's Trey Lyles (41) during the second half of the SEC tournament championship.

Top-seeded Kentucky faces strongest region in NCAA Tournament

Top-seeded Kentucky faces strongest region in NCAA Tournament

By Jeremy Tepper / Staff Writer

March 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Usually, the top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament is rewarded for its success in the regular season and given the easiest path to the final four. In this year’s case, however, the selection committee gave Kentucky the top seed after going undefeated, though it is tasked with the toughest region....

Jamie Dixon

Jamie Dixon

By Jeff Ahearn / Assistant Visual Editor

March 17, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Jamie Dixon has missed the NCAA Tournament only twice in his 12-year tenure.

Dixon’s extended tenure should not go unappreciated

Dixon’s extended tenure should not go unappreciated

By Dan Sostek / Assistant Sports Editor

March 17, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Jamie Dixon could have gotten out of dodge, if the slew of reports two springs ago gained any credence.The then-48-year-old Pitt men’s basketball head coach could have escaped the frigid winters of western Pennsylvania for the warm coastline of the University of Southern California, a short drive from his birthplace in Nort...

Questionable defense

Questionable defense

By George Bridges / TNS

March 5, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Several NBA stars, including Rockets guard James Harden, cause some fans to call their defense into question.

Fans cannot defend NBA’s lack of defense

Fans cannot defend NBA’s lack of defense

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

March 5, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

I do not like the NBA — at all.I’d rather watch paint dry or grass grow or any other clichéd, boring thing you can think of than watch professional basketball. Basketball’s competitive nature makes it one of the most popular sports, as it highlights individual performance and one-on-one dominance.Ho...

Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker

By Nuccio DiNuzzo / TNS

March 3, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Derrick Rose suffered his third major leg injury last week.

Rose’s latest injury does not mean end of career

Rose’s latest injury does not mean end of career

By Jessica Boddy / Staff Writer

March 3, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Derrick Rose’s knee problem on Feb. 24 spurred a range of reactions as varied as it has been the past two times that one of his knees failed him.Some thought the doctors had perfectly sutured the Chicago Bulls’ star point guard, sending him back on the path to reclaim MVP. These people are filled...

Young guns

Young guns

By Heather Tennant / Staff Photographer

February 26, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

Center Michael Young will be a huge key for Pitt down the stretch.

Five factors are key to Pitt’s finishing season strong

Five factors are key to Pitt’s finishing season strong

By Dan Sostek / Assistant Sports Editor

February 26, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

As Pitt (19-10, 8-7 ACC) enters the homestretch of the regular season, the team is hoping to avoid any blemishes on its resumé before traveling to Greensboro for the ACC tournament. With a manageable remaining three games – at Wake Forest (12-16, 4-11 ACC), against Miami (18-10, 8-7 ACC) at home ...

Storm surge

Storm surge

By Bo Rader / TNS

February 25, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Kansas State fans and players celebrate after the team upsets No. 8 Kansas.

Kansas State’s court storm raises issues

Kansas State’s court storm raises issues

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

February 25, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Storming the court is obnoxious. Storming the court is harmless. Storming the court is dangerous. Storming the court is fun. Storming the court is unsportsmanlike. Storming the court is exciting.Pick an opinion, any opinion.After unranked Kansas State University’s home win over No. 8 University of Kansas ...

Hanging in there

Hanging in there

By Meghan Sunners / Staff Photographer

February 23, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

Pitt cannot afford a misstep if they want to keep their tournament hopes alive.

Strong RPI gives Pitt basketball reason for March optimism

Strong RPI gives Pitt basketball reason for March optimism

By Chris Puzia / Sports Editor

February 23, 2015


Filed under Men's Basketball, Sports, Sports Columns

Turn on ESPN in March, and one thing is sure: there will be more talk of “bubbles” than in an episode of SpongeBob SquarePants.“The bubble”refers to teams that are either just inside or just outside of the NCAA Tournament, and it drives some fans crazy hearing whether their team is or is not “on...

Seton Hall brawl

Seton Hall brawl

By Charles Fox / TNS

February 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Villanova's Ryan Arcidiacono gets struck with a fist and forearm by Seton Hall's Sterling Gibbs, top, after a scramble for a loose ball.

Gibbs learned his lesson in face of two-game suspension

Gibbs learned his lesson in face of two-game suspension

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

February 18, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Everybody knows how it feels to be frustrated. We all handle that frustration in different ways, and it often doesn’t represent who we actually are. Some curse. Some give up.Seton Hall junior guard Sterling Gibbs, younger brother of former Pitt guard Ashton Gibbs, handled it with violence.With less ...

Dunk champion

Dunk champion

By Jeff Wheeler / TNS

February 17, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine won the 2015 Slam Dunk Contest.

NBA trade deadline still provides entertainment for fans

NBA trade deadline still provides entertainment for fans

By Imaz Athar / Staff Writer

February 17, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Slam dunks and long shots brought Madison Square Garden to its feet over the weekend, but that is the last NBA action it will see until Thursday.NBA All-Star festivities wrapped up on Sunday night, and it was a memorable event in New York City. NBA fans rejoiced while panicked New York Knicks fans briefly...

Oakland Zoo

Oakland Zoo

By Jeff Ahearn / Assistant Visual Editor

February 12, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Oakland Zoo leaders cheer on the Pitt crowd during a game.

Oakland Zoo should add new exclusive tradition to arsenal

Oakland Zoo should add new exclusive tradition to arsenal

By Logan Hitchcock / Staff Writer

February 12, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Let me start by saying I do not condone throwing thousands of rolls of toilet paper onto the court of the Petersen Events Center.But one university’s student section does just that, and it tells me that Pitt’s Oakland Zoo could use a new and exclusive tradition of its own.John Brown University, loc...

Building up resume a challenge for student-athletes

By Jessica Boddy / For the Pitt News

February 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Time is a precious commodity when it comes to building up a résumé. College students need to make time for internships, part-time jobs and other work experiences. This time is much harder to find as a student athlete.Student-athletes are worked hard perpetually throughout their college careers. Between ...

Dust in Pitt, PSU recruiting battle settles on National Signing Day

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

February 4, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Another year, another National Signing Day in which Pennsylvania received little national attention. Maybe it’s the media’s way of punishing us non-Ohio State-loving northerners for our crazy notion that life exists outside of football.Locally, however, the brewing recruiting rivalry between Pitt a...

Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard

By Jose Carlos Fajardo / TNS

February 3, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Damian Lillard was one notable name excluded from the 2015 All-Star Game.

NBA should revamp All-Star selection process, remove fan vote

NBA should revamp All-Star selection process, remove fan vote

By Imaz Athar / Staff Writer

February 3, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

The NBA All-Star selection process is exciting. The ultimate unveiling of which collection of superstars will showcase their talents always entertains. And, most of the time, the most deserving players are selected.Sure, there are a couple of snubs every year, and “NBA on TNT” analysts Charles Barkley, Kenny Smi...

‘I’m just playing so I won’t get fined:’ Super Bowl predictions

‘I’m just playing so I won’t get fined:’ Super Bowl predictions

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

January 28, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

I’ve never been good at traditional predictions — you know, the probable winner and the score and all that basic stuff. But I did predict before the World Cup that Luis Suarez would bite somebody, which gives me the credibility and the confidence to make some more bold guesses as to what will happ...

Marshawn Lynch

Marshawn Lynch

By TNS

January 21, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Marshawn Lynch has made headlines for avoiding the media after games.

Lynch’s postgame ‘answers’ receive media criticism

Lynch’s postgame ‘answers’ receive media criticism

By Imaz Athar / Staff Writer

January 21, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

You may have seen one of the postgame interviews with the eloquent Marshawn Lynch. If you didn’t, don’t worry. It was over before it even started.“Yeah,” said Lynch, a running back, regarding the performance of the Seattle Seahawks’ offensive line after a win against the Arizona Cardinals. “Yeah,” Lynch said again when ano...

National Champions

National Champions

By TNS

January 13, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Ohio State beat Oregon in the first College Football Playoff championship game.

Looking back on the college football championship

Looking back on the college football championship

By Alex Wise / Staff Writer

January 13, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

The experts picked Oregon to win.But, by beinga little noncommittal, they left themselves just enough room for error.“It’s tough for me to say this, and it’ll be close,” they said. One regretful skipping of “The Bachelor” and four quarters of football later, the Ohio State Buckeyes are nationa...

Award Season

Award Season

By TNS

January 12, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

Aaron Donald is a leading candidate for the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year award.

Should Aaron Donald be the NFL’s Defensive Rookie of the Year?

By Alex Fischbein and Brandon Duerr / The Pitt News Staff

January 12, 2015


Filed under Football, Sports, Sports Columns

Former Pitt defensive tackle Aaron Donald entered the 2014 NFL Draft to a litany of questions about whether his 6-foot-1-inch, 285-pound frame could make the adjustment from college to the NFL. The skepticism soon vanished as Donald thrived for the St. Louis Rams, compiling nine sacks and earning a trip to the Pro Bowl as a ...

Close calls

Close calls

By Nicole Gye / Staff Photographer

January 12, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Jamie Dixon's Panthers have suffered some draining losses over the years.

Heartbreak a perpetual constant of late for Pitt basketball

Heartbreak a perpetual constant of late for Pitt basketball

By Imaz Athar / Staff Writer

January 12, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Academics, party life, location and tuition are just a few factors that teenagers consider when choosing a college or university. Although I took all of these into account, Panther basketball was also a major reason I chose Pitt. As a freshman, I couldn’t wait to rep blue and gold, heckle opposing tea...

Joe Flacco

Joe Flacco

By TNS

January 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco made headlines when he called himself an elite quarterback.

An analysis of what makes a quarterback ‘elite’

An analysis of what makes a quarterback ‘elite’

By Imaz Athar / Staff Writer

January 6, 2015


Filed under Sports, Sports Columns

Turn on ESPN, or any similar sports channel, and you’ll hear an NFL analyst say it: “You need an elite quarterback to succeed in the National Football League.”Upon hearing it, you’ll nod your head, and you’ll say to yourself, “Yeah, that makes sense. You do need an elite quarterback to win games...

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