The Pitt News

The NCAA and its member schools have fought fair compensation for the players for years. In the wake of evolved NIL rules, senior staff writer Stephen Thompson doesn’t want to forget who held the athletes back. Pictured is NCAA President Mark Emmert.

Column | Don’t forget who kept NIL off the table for college athletes

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer July 14, 2021
The same institutions and people that actively campaigned against the mildest of player compensation solutions — releasing name, image and likeness rights to the athletes — are now attempting to pull an ambitious 180 and jump on the bandwagon long after it has left.
Pitt men’s basketball will face the Minnesota Golden Gophers at the Petersen Events Center on November 30, as part of the 2021 ACC-Big 10 Challenge.

Men’s basketball draws Minnesota in ACC-Big 10 Challenge

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer June 30, 2021
Dates and matchups for the ACC-Big Ten Challenge were unveiled on Monday afternoon. Pitt men’s basketball will square off against Minnesota at the Petersen Events Center on November 30.
Legislation passed by the Pennsylvania General Assembly allows for college athletes to profit off of endorsements.

Pa. General Assembly passes NIL changes in state budget package

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer June 30, 2021
The Pennsylvania General Assembly passed legislation last week which would allow college athletes to profit off of their own name, image and likeness. Included as part of the annual state budget package, the changes would go into effect as soon as it is signed by Gov. Tom Wolf, which could happen as soon as this week.
Kamalani Akeo joined middling Pitt volleyball as a walk-on and left it as a two-time conference champion with three wins in the NCAA Tournament. In her post-playing days, she looks to push program limits even further.

In post-playing days, Akeo bridges two generations of Pitt volleyball excellence

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer June 24, 2021
After Kamalani Akeo finished kickstarting the most successful era in Panthers volleyball history, she returned to Oakland this January as a volunteer assistant coach. Alongside head coach Dan Fisher, Akeo pushed program limits even further — helping the Panthers reach the Elite Eight this spring.
The upgrades to the Petersen Sports Complex and Vartabedian Field have led the ACC to choose Pitt as the host of the 2022 ACC Softball Tournament.

Pitt’s Vartabedian Field to Host 2022 ACC Softball Championship

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer June 23, 2021
Pitt’s Vartabedian Field, the home of Panthers softball, will host the 2022 ACC Softball Championship, the program announced last Wednesday. It will be the first time Pitt has ever hosted the annual championship tournament.
The reinstatement of Hugley — announced just last week — is the latest in a string of roster additions that have tempered the anxiety produced by a tumultuous offseason.

After offseason from hell, Capel and men’s basketball begin reloading

By Stephen Thompson, Senior Staff Writer May 18, 2021
The reinstatement of Hugley — announced just last week — is the latest in a string of roster additions that have tempered the anxiety produced by a tumultuous offseason.
Xavier Johnson, pictured here against Virginia Tech on Feb. 3, contributed 10 of Pitt’s 66 points against Virginia on Saturday.

Panthers doomed by short Cavalier burst, lose to UVA 73-66

By Stephen Thompson, Assistant Sports Editor February 8, 2021
Pitt men’s basketball was in control for most of the game, but a short run early in the second half cemented UVA’s 73-66 win over the Panthers on Saturday afternoon.
Shifted starting lineup provides spark in 83-72 upset of No. 16 Hokies

Shifted starting lineup provides spark in 83-72 upset of No. 16 Hokies

By Stephen Thompson, Assistant Sports Editor February 3, 2021
Xavier Johnson’s career-best 32 points was supported by a suffocating defensive effort as Pitt topped No. 16 Virginia Tech, 83-72, for their first win over a ranked opponent in more than two years.
Pitt embarrassed at home by Notre Dame, 84-56

Pitt embarrassed at home by Notre Dame, 84-56

By Stephen Thompson, Assistant Sports Editor January 31, 2021
Pitt (8-5 overall, 4-4 ACC) put forth a performance that head coach Jeff Capel called “deplorable” and “embarrassing” in an 84-58 beat down at the hands of Notre Dame (6-9 overall, 3-6 ACC). The Panthers were unable to keep the Irish’s dribble penetration contained and were buried by their blistering 54% shooting mark on 3-point shots.
Sophomore forward Justin Champagnie scored 23 of Pitt’s 65 points against UNC Tuesday night. Pitt lost 75-65.

Pitt outmuscled by UNC, drops second straight game, 75-65

By Stephen Thompson, Assistant Sports Editor January 27, 2021
On Tuesday night, just one week removed from the Duke win, the mood had completely flipped. Pitt (8-4 overall, 4-3 ACC) was maddeningly sloppy against North Carolina (11-5 overall, 6-3 ACC) and lost 75-65 in deflating fashion at the Pete.
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