| Sports

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Bishop Canevin senior Mike Dunn finishes career as school's all-time leading tackler

Signal Item
Mike Dunn is the all-time leading tackler in Bishop Canevin history. File art.

TribLIVE Sports Videos

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.
Top high school sports

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, 8:55 p.m.

Bishop Canevin's Mike Dunn has been a presence on the fields of the WPIAL for the past four seasons.

His success contributed to the reason he loves the linebacker position.

“I just like flying to the ball and hitting people,” Dunn said.

The senior leaves Bishop Canevin as the all-time leading tackler in program history with more than 350 stops and is an easy choice for the Signal Item football player of the year.

“I take pride in the fact I'm the school's leading tackler,” Dunn said. “But this isn't a one-man sport. We had a whole team out there and I wouldn't have had that many without them.”

As a freshman in 2009, Dunn recorded 12 tackles. But from there he took off.

In 2010, Dunn had 87 tackles, an interception and a sack. As a junior in 2011, he registered 148 tackles, four interceptions and four sacks.

In 2012, Dunn had 101 tackles in the regular season with four sacks and an interception.

“He has a really good sense of where the ball is going,” Bishop Canevin coach Bob Jacoby said.

“He gets good deep drops in pass coverage and reads offensive plays very well. He covers from sideline to sideline and plays an aggressive style.”

Jacoby said that with the change in the way the game is played at the high school level — more teams are embracing the passing game — the linebacker position had to be adjusted.

“You only play with one middle linebacker when you used to play with two,” Jacoby said. “You have to face offenses now that have a strong passing game and good receivers. That led to him becoming a major force in the middle to shut down the tackle-to-tackle running game.”

Not only has Dunn been a presence on defense, he has been solid on the Crusaders' offensive line.

As a sophomore, he began as a tight end but was moved to tackle. He then was moved to guard at the end of the 2012 regular season due to injuries.

“It is a team sport,” Dunn said. “I will play wherever they need me.”

Dunn said he has being receiving interest from several FCS schools such as Bucknell, Duquesne, William and Mary and Youngstown State.

“I have been working on it since I was in seventh or eighth grade,” Dunn said. “It is always exciting to hear from schools. But I think my mom and sisters get a little more excited when we get the phone calls.”

No matter where Dunn ends up, his high school coach feels he will continue his success.

“He brings an intensity to the game that whatever level he plays at, he will be a contributor to that team,” Jacoby said. “He still understands that he has a lot to learn. It's just not the physical part of the game but also the mental part. He will benefit from only have to play one way in the future.”

Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at or 412-388-5813.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.




Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. United Airlines hack coincided with incursion into government employee data
  2. Pirates acquire pitcher Blanton from Royals for cash
  3. Starkey: Garoppolo baffles Steelers
  4. Inside the Steelers: Williams’ quickness out of backfield evident in drills
  5. Peduto blasts Wolf’s plan to borrow $3B to shore up pensions
  6. McCutchen, Pirates cruise to interleague victory over Twins
  7. Steelers notebook: LB Dupree sits out backs-on–backers drill
  8. Pirates notebook: Melancon bails out Watson with extended outing
  9. Tight ends’ role in Steelers passing game continues to lessen but players remain selfless
  10. Area coaches prefer staying put for camp
  11. Gameday: Pirates at Reds, July 30, 2015