Blue-Chip LB to visit Pitt in July

Blue-Chip LB to visit Pitt in July

The University of Pittsburgh will lose three key linebackers after the 2006 season: H.B. Blades, Clint Session and Brian Bennett. It appears the Panthers will be hosting one of the top linebackers in the Midwest in late July. Where does Pitt stand with this hard-hitting LB? Read on.

"I have scholarship offers from Pitt, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas, Ole Miss, North Carolina State, Minnesota, Northwestern and Wisconsin," said rugged middle linebacker Kevin Rouse (6-foot-1 inches, 225 pounds) from Joliet Catholic Academy in Joliet, IL. "I'm still pretty wide open at this point. I'm far from breaking things down."

Rouse registered 90 tackles and 25 tackles for a loss as a junior. He is capable of bench pressing 300 pounds, squatting 550 pounds and running a 4.58 forty-yard dash.

"I only have one set visit this summer. I plan on visiting Pittsburgh on July 28th and 29th. I'm really looking forward to seeing what the Panthers are about."

Scout.com ranks Rouse the 25the best linebacker in the nation. He projects as an inside linebacker prospect and an adequate replacement for All-American middle linebacker H.B. Blades.

"I know that the Panthers lose all three starters after the season. Playing time is important to me. I don't want to go to a school and sit the bench. Pittsburgh is one of my top considerations and I look forward to the visit. Coach (Dave) Wannstedt seems like a very nice guy. I look forward to meeting him."

Rouse was named all-conference and honorable-mention all-area as a junior. He is a solid student with a 3.0 grade point average.

"My main asset is my speed. I can break open a play with my speed and I'm a hard hitter. I know the Panthers are trying to increase their team speed."

"Right now I would like to make a decision before the start of the season. I'm thinking sometime in late August. I'll probably visit a few other schools but the Pittsburgh visit is the only one set in stone.

Harry G. Psaros can be contacted at harrypsaros@msn.com.

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