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Dejan Kovacevic's Blog

Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Wakeup Call: Those noisy Panthers

Some sporting thoughts before sunrise …

>> Spent much of my Monday on the South Side with the Pitt football team and … well, you want to talk about a wakeup call. It was around 8:45 a.m. that I stepped onto the grass for the “high-octane” practice, and there can’t be much louder within city limits than the relentless, senses-shattering screaming of the Panthers’ coaches from drill to drill, through each play, each maneuver. These guys are sprinting even from station to station.

I don’t know what this will mean toward play in the Big East, but I’d have to assume at the moment that the games will look like a break by comparison.

I’ll have much more on this later in the week.

>> Is Jeff Karstens shaping up as the Pirates’ MVP for 2011?

Don’t laugh it off.

>> If Terrelle Pryor’s best chance to get a longer look at quarterback is in Oakland, then yesterday was a good day for him, so long as he doesn’t expect to win at any point.

>> With Trai Essex back in the Steelers’ fold, that would appear to douse some of the internal excitement about Tony Hills at right guard. I wouldn’t assume that. I’d look more at Chris Kemoeatu’s highly uncertain health and a broader lack of depth. Hills has an unusual, interesting pedigree, and if he works out, it could add something to the interior. This coaching staff loves those athletic guys who can stunt.

>> Another day, another Sidney Crosby news cycle. If you’re unfamiliar, this is the formula:

1. A Canadian reporter (or radio producer) with  no connection to Crosby or anyone in his camp produces a definitive statement about his status for camp and/or the season, even though concussion victims have nothing definitive about their status from minute to minute.

2. The hockey world, including the more educated fan base in Pittsburgh, largely reacts with gasps and horror.

3. Crosby’s agent and/or the Penguins reiterate there’s nothing new with Crosby.

4. Rinse, repeat.

Sometime very soon, Crosby will speak about his condition, agent Pat Brisson said last night. How about we wait just a little longer until he does?

>> Speaking of unsubstantiated rumor, there was word going around late last night about the Pirates scoring seven runs in one inning and beating a Cy Young candidate with a rookie recall to finally take down the Brewers.



  1. JAL says:

    JAL’s Fly Like an Eagle Morning Links


    1- MLB Transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    3-Pirates Prospects

    Draft Picks Signing Tracker

  2. JAL says:

    7 Rumbunter

    The Official Pirates Beat the Brewers Shirt

    8 Ohio Valley Athletics

    Karstens Solid but Brewers Get to ‘Pen Late

    9 WHY GAVS

    Games 126 and 127: Brewers 8 Pirates 1, Pirates 9 Brewers 2

    10 Bucs Dugout

    Is There Some Higher Force At Work Here?

  3. JAL says:


    14 Altoona Mirror

    Injuries cause rotation havoc

    15 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

    Monday game report: Brewers at Pirates

    Weird innings can happen

    16 Kansas City Star

    Baseball could put cap on Royals’ draft spending

    17 Indianapolis Star

    Burres shines in Tribe win over IronPigs

    18 Beaver County Times

    Perrotto: Pirates still need to spend more

  4. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    1-Behind the Steel Curtain

    NFL Schedule Promises to be Full of Surprises and Intrigue Leading Up to Start of 2011 Regular Season

    2-Steeler Depot

    Offensive Line Musical Chairs

    Pitt Blogs

    Pitt Blather

    New Logo, Non-Con, etc

    Cardiac Hill

    Pitt Football: Offensive Line “Starters” Are Set

  5. Bizrow says:

    Looks like after the win last night, the lunatics are speechless in here ;-)

  6. PhillyJake says:


  7. JMB says:

    Yeah Biz, there isn’t much to say.

    I’m just waiting for the NH ext to be announced. The drive to not lose 90 will not be resolved until the end of Sept, but, with PM & KC going down, I dont think 90 losses will lead to NH’s termination.


    13-22 gets it done.

  8. Bizrow says:

    JMB – are we sure that they WILL announce it? There is a history about that…..

    22-13 gets it done too ;-)

  9. leefoo says:

    Well, I know *I* expected Lincoln to beat Grienke (and don’t anyone copy my post from btwn games as proof otherwise….) :)

  10. Chuck Snow says:

    The rumor is Correct:) If the Pirates can squeeze one more win in the next two days the the last ten games will be 5-5, considering how August has gone…not bad

  11. leefoo says:

    I just saw something that said Aaron Thompson was recalled.

    Can anyone confirm or deny? If so, who was released or demoted?

  12. Bizrow says:

    Don’t they still have to make a move to bring up Ohlendorf>

    One would think that maybe they would not activate tomorrows starter till tomorrow.

    Haven’t seen anything on this yet

  13. meglasdad says:

    Dejan, what you experienced yesterday was WVU approximately 10 years ago. Todd Graham was part of Rich Rods original staff at WVU and apparently wants to be Rich Rod. Rich even said to anyone who would listen that they “we’re gonna play like our hair is on fire”. Screaming, hollering, cursing, that was all part of the package. He runs the same offense and defense. Before you get overly excited, South Florida and , ironically, Pitt, showed the world how to shut that offense down. Maybe he will be more able than Rich Rod to adjust the offense. Pitt better hope so. Oh,and Lets Go Mountaineers!

  14. PhillyJake says:


    Nothing in the twitterverse about it.

    If he comes up, I’d expect it to be tomorrow, not today.

  15. JAL says:

    Ohlendorf up, Beimel DFA

  16. Radio wave says:

    Beimel has been a big disapointment this year.

  17. Dejan Kovacevic says:

    @JAL: Great stuff today, man. Many thanks, as always!

  18. PhillyJake says:

    What’s most amazing about this move is how early in the day we are hearing about it. Usually, it’s a few minutes before game time.

  19. JAL says:


    Most welcome

  20. LuckyNKentucky says:

    So it’s Ohlendorf up, Beimel DFA’d and Aaron Thompson or not Thompson? Or does he replace Lincoln?

  21. Ohlendorf tonight——expect a lon-on-ong game! He takes SO MUCH TIME between pitches. I really hope he has it back together.

    Who starts tomorrow? Bullpen so beat up, it doesn’t seem like a good idea to make it a “let the bullpen do the whole game” situation.

    How ’bout Jeff (dang, air bubble in brain . . can’t remember his last name . . lefty who came in Nate McLouth trade). He is at Indy and on the 40-man.

    Who will start Wednesday?!?

  22. PhillyJake says:


  23. Thanks, Jake from cheesesteak land.

    Bubble now gone.

  24. leefoo says:

    BEIMEL is GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Oh Happy Day!!!!!!!

    Joe Foo

  25. CWalton_67 says:

    I really appreciated the column and thoughts on the Crosby situation, but the idea that the team doesn’t know if he is skating or not does less to lend to their intended impression that they aren’t concerned, than it does to make really smart guys look really dumb. It makes no sense to me that the owner, GM, and HC would not know the exact status of the most important person in the franchise. I am sure they must be tired of hearing/responding to the rumors, but it’s time for Sid/Pat Brisson to step up and make a definitive statement. Recurring symptoms 8 months after a concussion are a concern, and the wishy-washy language being used by those closest to Sid are doing nothing to end all the speculation.

  26. CWalton_67 says:

    RE: Karstens. I think he absolutely deserves consideration, along with Cutch and Hanrahan. I wouldn’t leave Neil Walker out of the equation either. Numbers aren’t huge, but he’s been a model of consistency all year.

  27. Bizrow says:

    Earthquake in VA, or so is being reported, Dejan

  28. Bizrow says:

    5.9, supposedly close to DC, JAL, what are you doing down there??

  29. JAL says:

    I was out walking when it hit, very short and didn’t see any damage. 87 miles south of here was epicenter

  30. tmp444 says:

    Was it an earthquake, or “the relentless, senses-shattering screaming of the Panthers’ coaches from drill to drill, through each play, each maneuver.” I’m going with the latter.

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