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Kittanning junior Bowers makes commitment to Pitt

Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Kittanning's Nick Bowers (83) runs the ball past Valley defenders during their game at Kittanning High School on Friday, October 18, 2013.

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Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, 5:30 p.m.

Pitt received its second commitment from the Class of 2015 — both from the WPIAL — when Kittanning junior Nick Bowers said Monday he plans to enroll next year. Canon-McMillan junior offensive lineman Alex Paulina committed to Pitt on Jan. 18.

Bowers, 6-foot-4, 235 pounds, played wide receiver and wildcat quarterback at Kittanning last season, but is projected as a collegiate tight end.

Bowers was responsible for touchdowns four different ways last season — receiving (eight), rushing (seven), interception (96-yard return) and a pass. Overall, he caught 54 passes for 856 yards — both school records — and rushed for 407 yards.

He was selected as the Leader Times Player of the Year in 2013, shortly after receiving his first college scholarship offer from Pitt in December when he visited during one of the Panthers' bowl game practices.

Kittanning coach Frank Fabian said he believes Bowers will remain committed to Pitt throughout his senior season.

“He's a quiet kid. He's never going to be the type to go on TV with a bunch of hats in front of him when he makes his decision,” Fabian said. “I think it's important for him to stay close to home and play in front (of his family). Plus, the way coach (Paul) Chryst uses his tight ends (fits Bowers). You put all those pieces together and it seems like a no-brainer to him.”

Fabian said Bowers played last season at 220 pounds and added 15 during off-season workouts.

“He's looking like a different kid. He's always worked hard, but this is the first year he's really hit the weight room,” Fabian said.

During the past season, Bowers was named Class AA Allegheny Conference offensive player of the year and first-team all-conference as a wide receiver and inside linebacker. Kittanning (9-1) won its first conference championship since 1976.

Pitt is the only school to offer Bowers a scholarship, but he has drawn interest from Temple, Boston College, Cincinnati and Purdue.

Staff writer Matt Grubba contributed to this report.

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