Gateway head coach always hears that he is a Penn State guy, and he should the former Nittany Lion wide receiver was a standout for Joe Paterno. now, as a high profile local coach it's more about helping his kids get the best fit for them. That may include sending them to Pittsburgh, which Smith has done twice this year.
Aaron Smith, has been a standout quarterback for the past two seasons at Gateway. As he begins his college career he will take his talents from throwing passes to catching passes at Pittsburgh. This morning the 6-0, 180 pound, athlete signed his binding national letter of intent.
"It feels good to done with the whole process," Aaron Smith said. "I can't wait to get down the and start working out. I'm very excited, we have a great class coming in."
With the departure of Greg Lee, Smith realizes he has a chance at immediate playing time.
"I compare myself to Antwaan Randle-El of the Steelers. I can do a lot of things," he said. "Pitt plans on using me as the holder for kicks next year."
Aaron will now have the opportunity to continue playing with one of his close friends and teammates.
"It's nice to have someone close to be with," he said. "We've already bonded and we know how to win, so we'll take that experience to pitt with us."
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Smith completed 91 of 185 passes for 1,575 yards and 14 TDs this season, and rushed for 438 yards on 73 attempts. he was named to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette "Fab 22" and All-WPIAL. Smith was selected to the Pennsylvania Big 33 team.
The Panthers also secured the signature of Dan Loheyde, a mainstay on a staunch Gateway defense over the past couple of years.
The 6-2, 220 pound, Loheyde was the first player to give Dave Wannsedt a verbal pledge in this recruiting class.
"I'm a man of my word, even if I was ever unsure I would go to Pitt,' Loheyde said. "I have always been a Pitt fan and i have always wanted to go there, so it wasn't a real hard decision. I plan on doing whatever it takes. I love Pitt and it means the world to be playing for them."
Pitt plans on using Loheyde at outside linebacker in it's 4-3 alignment.
"They have said weakside or stongside is where I'll be," he said.
Both Loheyde and Smith will enroll and begin classes on June 20th.
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