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High school notebook: Quaker Valley's Jackson picks Pitt for football

Chris Harlan
| Tuesday, June 24, 2014, 1:42 p.m.
Quaker Valley's Dane Jackson runs downfield against Steel Valley on Friday, Sept. 27, 2013, at Steel Valley.
Ronald Vezzani Jr. | For the Tribune-Review
Quaker Valley's Dane Jackson runs downfield against Steel Valley on Friday, Sept. 27, 2013, at Steel Valley.
Quaker Valley quarterback Dane Jackson is a member of the 2013 Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Terrific 25.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Quaker Valley quarterback Dane Jackson is a member of the 2013 Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Terrific 25.

After a morning tour of campus, Cornell senior Dane Jackson committed Tuesday to play football at Pitt.

Yet, his decision had been made awhile ago.

“I always knew Pitt was the school I wanted,” said Jackson, a 6-foot-1, 170-pound cornerback recruit who became the fifth WPIAL athlete to join in the school's 2015 recruiting class.

Two days after Pitt offered a scholarship, he accepted.

“It's my hometown school,” said Jackson, who held offers from Bowling Green, Eastern Michigan, Indiana State, Albany and Duquesne. “I'll get to stay close to my family, and my family will get to see me play.”

Jackson attends Cornell but starred for Quaker Valley's football team through a cooperative agreement between the schools. As a junior, the quarterback had more than 2,000 combined yards rushing and passing last season. He was a member of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Terrific 25 and led the Quakers to their first WPIAL playoff victory.

Pitt offered a scholarship Sunday after watching him practice at cornerback.

“I'm fine with (defense),” he said. “I'll play anywhere I'm needed.”

After visiting Pitt's practice facility, the Cathedral of Learning and Petersen Events Center, Jackson told coach Paul Chryst that he was ready to commit.

“He was happy,” Jackson said. “He got up, he smiled real wide and gave me a hug. It was a big relief (for me) too.”

• Pitt also landed its 11th recruit for the Class of 2015 on Tuesday, when Davon Hamilton (6-3, 283), a 3-star defensive tackle from Pickerington, Ohio, made a verbal commitment.

He is the second defensive tackle in the class, joining Kraig Howe of Kettering, Ohio.

Fulmore picks Duquesne

Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic running back P.J. Fulmore, who rushed for 1,146 yards as a junior last season, verbally committed Tuesday to Duquesne. Fulmore was a member of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Terrific 25 when the Trojans won the PIAA Class A title.

Vulcano out at CV

The Chartiers Valley School Board accepted the retirement of athletic director Frank Vulcano on Tuesday. Vulcano, who was named the 2012-13 WPIAL Athletic Director of the Year, spent eight years at Chartiers Valley and oversaw teams that won 29 section titles.

Vulcano said he was forced to submit a letter of retirement because the district wanted new leadership.

“I had eight great years there with a lot of success,” Vulcano said. “I thought we had the overall program headed in the right direction.”

Also Tuesday, Chartiers Valley hired Angie Potthoff as its new athletic director. Potthoff is a former Penn State basketball All-American who spent the past four years as the associate director of women's basketball operations and technology at Notre Dame. She also was an assistant coach at Beaver High School and Robert Morris.

• Burrell hired Kiski Area and St. Vincent graduate Aaron Frech, 22, as its new athletic director. He replaces Brian Ferra, who resigned to spend more time with his family.

West A hires Wells

The West Allegheny School Board last week hired Reggie Wells as its new girls basketball coach. Wells won two WPIAL titles and one PIAA title and compiled a record of 176-62 while coaching the South Park girls the past nine years. He resigned after this past season.

Aloi hearing update

The PIAA will hear an appeal by Lincoln Park's Nick Aloi, a rising junior basketball player who transferred from Ellwood City in January, on July 23.

Aloi was denied eligibility by the WPIAL, which deemed he transferred in part for athletic intent. The 6-foot guard averaged 15 points as a freshman. He missed his sophomore season after ACL surgery.

If the PIAA upholds the WPIAL's decision, Aloi would be ineligible until Jan. 21, 2015.

Chris Harlan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.

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