The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


November 2, 2012

Assault charges filed against key Pitt players

PITTSBURGH — On the eve of today’s game at Notre Dame, allegations have surfaced that three Pitt football players have been accused of simple assault and conspiracy for an incident that occurred last month.

Running back Ray Graham, wide receiver Devin Street and defensive back LaFayette Pitts were not arrested but were mailed summonses by the Pittsburgh Municipal Court. They were asked to attend a Jan. 9 preliminary hearing.

The University of Pittsburgh released a statement Friday, saying that Street, Graham and Pitts have denied any involvement in the situation and agreed to speak to authorities.

Karl Olsheski, Diana Olsheski and Samantha Mitchell reported the alleged confrontation near Pitt’s campus on Oct. 21.

In that report, the students said Graham approached Karl Olsheski saying, “What’s up?” accompanied with a racial slur. Olsheski said he tried to walk away from the situation, but the three players kept him from leaving.

Shortly after, Olsheski said Street struck him on the left side of his head.

In the university’s statement, officials said they take player discipline seriously and they would continue to cooperate with the investigation. Officials also said they would not rush to judgment on the misdemeanor allegations.

That means that Street, Graham and Pitts will play against No. 3 Notre Dame (8-0).

And Pitt (4-4) will need all three in hopes of scoring an upset.

The bad publicity comes on the heels of Pitt’s 41-17 win against Temple.

Although the current allegations could be a distraction, the Panthers can’t let it get to them.

Pitt’s passing game continues to shine and could pose a challenge to the Irish’s defense. Quarterback Tino Sunseri threw for 321 yards and three touchdowns against Temple. On the season, Sunseri has 2,199 yards for 13 touchdowns and just two interceptions.

And Sunseri will be happy that Street is playing. Street is Pitt’s leading receiver, with 50 catches on the season for 695 yards and four touchdowns. The Panthers’ second-most productive receiver, Mike Shanahan, who has 631 yards and three touchdowns this season, also could be very involved in the offense.

Sunseri will face Notre Dame’s second-ranked scoring defense. Opponents have only averaged 9.9 points per game against the Irish.

The Panthers, and Sunseri especially, need to be aware of where Notre Dame’s defensive players are on the field. Notre Dame linebacker and Heisman hopeful Manti Te’o is a pro at capitalizing on these opportunities. He seems to find himself at the right place at the right time.

He leads his team in interceptions with five on the

season, a pretty special feat for a player in the linebacker position.

On the ground, the Irish’s front seven have only allowed one rushing touchdown this season. That was during last week’s 30-13 win against eighth-ranked Oklahoma.

Graham hopes to change those numbers. Last week, he rushed for 109 yards and two touchdowns against Temple and continues to show improvement after last season’s knee injury.

Perhaps overshadowed by Notre Dame’s defense, the Irish offense also brings a lot to the table. This unit is led by redshirt freshman Everett Golson. Although the offense only averages 26.4 points per game, it has found a way to get points on the board and, more importantly, get the win each week.

And when it comes down to it, winning is the most important thing.


Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Pirates cut down by Reds’ Cueto

    April 23, 2014

  • Penguins 0422 Blown leads are troubling trend in series

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sunnehanna makes changes to tourney week

    April 22, 2014

  • Penguins 0421 Penguins finish hot to grab 2-1 series lead

    Brandon Sutter, Lee Stempniak and Jussi Jokinen scored in a span of 2:13 of the third period to revive the Penguins from yet another two-goal deficit in a 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates 0421 Pirates walk off against Reds to halt home skid

    Ike Davis became the first player to hit grand slams for different teams in the same April, and Neil Walker had a winning run single with two outs in the ninth inning as the Pittsburgh Pirates twice overcame deficits to beat the Reds 6-5 Monday night.
    Pittsburgh trailed 2-0 before Davis’ fourth-inning homer off Mike Leake.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sitting Bulls bring home national sled hockey title

    The Johnstown Sitting Bulls disabled sled hockey team recently won a national championship.
    The team, comprised of disabled athletes from Cambria, Somerset, Indiana, Bedford and Blair counties, finished first in the Youth B Division at the USA Hockey National Disabled Hockey Festival held April 11-13 in Marlborough, Mass.

    April 21, 2014

  • Local Sports Briefs

    April 21, 2014

  • APTOPIX Boston Marathon.jpg Marathon men’s winner has names of victims on bib

    The winner of the Boston Marathon men’s race had the names of last year’s victims written in marker on the corners of his race bib.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates Brawl 0420 Brewers top Pirates in game highlighted by dustup

    Ryan Braun homered in the ninth inning to tie it, then Khris Davis hit a home run in the 14th that put Milwaukee ahead for good.
    Yet those were hardly the big blows that attracted all the attention Sunday in the Brewers’ 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Football team ends boycott of embattled coach

    Minnesota State University-Mankato’s football team has ended its boycott of reinstated head coach Todd Hoffner, who successfully fought child pornography charges and other misconduct accusations that removed him from the job for 20 months.
    Hoffner said he assured the players, who refused to take the practice field Wednesday, that interim coach Aaron Keen, who led the team in Hoffner’s absence, will continue in a major role with the team.

    April 20, 2014