November 16, 2012

A Sad End

Filed under: Football — Chas @ 11:42 am

You may have seen the note at the bottom of the article on the O-line on Darius Patton being dead. Patton signed with Pitt in 2011. Patton was a speedy, undersized receiver expected to have a significant role down the line in FraudGraham’s offense. While he did see some action as a freshman, his most notable incident was collapsing in training camp — for reasons never disclosed. He left the team this past spring for –again — undisclosed reasons. The reasonable assumption being that he decided that he wouldn’t fit in the offense Chryst was running. Yet he did not end up at another school.

Sadly, it appears that it was a suicide.

The death was confirmed a suicide by Southwest Regional Police Chief Riley Smoot, who said police were called to the residence at 7:13 a.m.

The official time of death was 8:06 a.m. Mercer County Coroner J. Bradley McGonigle ruled the cause of death asphyxiation by hanging.

Patton was a 2011 graduate of Poland High School where he played football and basketball, and ran track for two years. Considered the Mahoning Valley’s top football prospect for the 2011 class, Patton earned a scholarship to the University of Pittsburgh.

In his mother’s house, which had to be unbelievably tragic if she was the one to find him.

The reasons for his suicide are unknown. Obviously things have been a mess for him if he did not even transfer to a MAC school or YSU.

His father, who was a running back under Jim Tressel at YSU, is awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to conspiracy to distribute a variety of drugs. That wouldn’t help matters.

RIP Darius and my condolences to the family. tragic.

Comment by pittfan92 11.16.12 @ 12:06 pm

RIP Darius. The Pitt fam is here for your fam.

Comment by HLandPitt 11.16.12 @ 12:49 pm

RIP Darius. More and more suicides with our young. so sad.

Comment by Bossdaws 11.16.12 @ 1:15 pm

Think I read where one of his sisters found him.

Really a sad, sad story. Does not PITT follow up with any of these kids that get discarded for whatever reason. (like he doesn’t fit into a particular system or whatever).

The link I posted on the other story about Tennessee and Graham has a video of Darius wearing his PITT hat and navy blue shirt and gold tie. Must have been his letter of intent day.

He was so excited to be coming to PITT.

You would like to think we could have done something, like maybe offer counseling or something. Help him get enrolled in another school. Maybe we did, idk, it’s very sad indeed.

Comment by Emel 11.16.12 @ 1:16 pm

Prayer’s go out to Darius’s family. RIP

Comment by Emel 11.16.12 @ 1:55 pm

Very sad story to hear. RIP

Comment by Kenny Powers 11.16.12 @ 3:06 pm

We’ll pray for Darius’s family.. Let us know if we can do more.

Comment by CompLit 11.16.12 @ 5:04 pm

I had the privilege of being pastor of the Poland Presbyterian Church from 1971-1985. My wife and I raised are children in that lovely, historic town. Our son was starting QB for the Poland Bulldogs in 1977-1978. Of course Darius Patton was not around ar that time. I never had the pleasure of meeting him, but heard wonderful things about his grid skill. My next parish assignments took me away from northeast Ohio. However, I was elated that Darius accepted the scholarship to be a Panther. Many people are devastated by the tragic death of yjis fine young man. We pray for his family and friends. I will be in touch with both Poland and Pitt officials to see if a scholarship in his name could be arranged and I pledge $1OO to the effort. Would some of you Panther Bloggers like to join me? I will have more to report on this next week. Please read this blog for additional data. Thank you. Rev. George Mehaffey from Columbus

Comment by Rev. George Mehaffey 11.16.12 @ 5:15 pm


Comment by apm74 11.16.12 @ 5:56 pm

This is a sad case all the way around. I have known too many people who have taken their lives. The reasons are a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. Please don’t anyone lay this on anyone, including what Pitt, parents, friends etc..could have done. He is in Gods hands now.
Poland is a beautiful town…heaven I trust is happy to have him.

Comment by SFPitt 11.16.12 @ 8:40 pm

Irom Mike Ditka suffers a minor stroke, get well big guy.

Comment by alcofan 11.16.12 @ 9:40 pm

I just heard that about Ditka too. Damn what the heck is going on.

Comment by Kenny Powers 11.16.12 @ 10:09 pm

Very sad to think this young man had not yet achieved his full potential. RIP Darius. My prayers are with you.

Comment by Panthoor 11.16.12 @ 11:44 pm

So much for Pitt hoops

Comment by TonyC 11.17.12 @ 7:47 pm

Half time Oakland 34 Pitt 20

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 7:50 pm

Frosh J Rob leading panthers with 7,Woodall, Adams , Patterson 0 pts.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 7:53 pm

Looking ahead to the Wolverines, possibly?

Comment by Mailman 11.17.12 @ 7:58 pm

Patterson and Woodall 0-13!

Comment by markp 11.17.12 @ 8:17 pm

I’m done with Pitt. Freaking girls basketball team. Horrendous effort. Zero heart. Pathetic losers

Comment by TonyC 11.17.12 @ 8:18 pm

Oakland continues to kick ass second half. No pts for Woodall, yet.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 8:20 pm

Showing life with 2,3’s in a row. Down 12, 10 minutes left. Stay tuned.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 8:24 pm

tough to win win you shoot 36% from the field, less than that from 3 pt and 50% fot FT>

Comment by markp 11.17.12 @ 8:42 pm

Down 7, 3 minutes left.Big greek Petros taking our bigs to school.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 8:42 pm

when you shoot…typing w/one hand

Comment by markp 11.17.12 @ 8:42 pm

I was just discussing with another Pitt alum how nice it was this weekend not to have to get emotionally involved with Pitt Sports. Then I come home from dinner to find our basketball team getting blown off their own floor by the 1-2 Oakland Grizzlies and suddenly fear grips me that this may be another lost basketball season. Pitt has cut it to 7 with 3 minutes to go. Just amazing!

Comment by Dan 72 11.17.12 @ 8:44 pm

Pitt down by 8 with 1 minute to go and about to take an astounding loss to Oakland? Anyone watching this game care to comment? What on earth happened??

Comment by Dan 72 11.17.12 @ 8:50 pm

Pitt 6-23 on 3 pointers. That’s the difference. Too many 3 pointer shots!

Woodall 2-10, Patterson 0-5

Pitt down 2 with the ball 28 seconds left

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 8:56 pm

37% from 2 pt land doesn’t help either – terrible shooting performance.

Comment by markp 11.17.12 @ 8:58 pm

14 seconds left, Robinson with a travel

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 8:58 pm

Robinson with a steal and is fouled, 10 seconds left

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 9:00 pm

Tied. Oakland calls time out with 6 seconds left

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 9:01 pm

As James Robinson shoots 2 free throws to tie it Curtis Aiken on the radio says “That’s balls”

Tie up, Panther ball on alternate possession with 4.8 seconds left

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 9:02 pm

wait really? espn said final 58-56 oakland..

Comment by rhyno527 11.17.12 @ 9:03 pm


Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 9:03 pm

Tie game last shot by Woodall, throws up a behind back shot, misses,going to ot.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 9:04 pm

Just looking at the stats, Woodall’s bad numbers jump off the page. There was a reason he came off the bench in high school. I worry that he just cannot match up night after night in D1 basketball. Great that we made it into OT.
Hope this ends up being a character builder and not a disiaster.

Comment by Dan 72 11.17.12 @ 9:05 pm

Pitt has had a number of things go their way, but they are playing some tenacious ball right now. James Robinson sinks two FTs with 6 seconds left to tie… Pitt playing some great D right now. Get ‘me in OT!

Comment by Lou 11.17.12 @ 9:06 pm

@KeyboardKev I think he said ‘boss’, but this guys have fought hard to get back in this thing. Oakland has helped a lot though.

Comment by Vulcan Rob 11.17.12 @ 9:08 pm

Robinson with a basket and Moore with 2 free throws, Oakland with a layup, PItt up 2

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.17.12 @ 9:08 pm

I am so happy for Dante Taylor tonight-he’s a man possessed!

Comment by Lou 11.17.12 @ 9:13 pm

What a win. H2P

Comment by Vulcan Rob 11.17.12 @ 9:14 pm

So, a character builder it is! Pitt up by 9 with a minute to go in OT. This is a very young team…and these things happen. Teams learn more from close games and losses than all the wins put together! Nice pull out for the Panthers.

Comment by Dan 72 11.17.12 @ 9:14 pm

Dante showed both aggression and finesse tonight-a couple of left-hand layups and jump hooks, being in position to get the dish-outs and dunks…so much to like with this team!

Comment by Lou 11.17.12 @ 9:17 pm

@ToncC, pathetic losers??? LOL

Hey, I’ve been there brother, they came back and won big in OT brother!!! By about 10 in fact!!

Young team, very young team, gonna be some ups and downs. Team will grow and should be a good team in Feb!!!

Comment by Dan 11.17.12 @ 9:17 pm

I should say, a lot of very young, important contributors!!!

Comment by Dan 11.17.12 @ 9:18 pm

That was a game that can realy spark a team. Holy Dante Freakin’ Taylor! Need to make this a building block. Also, James Robinson’s breakout game?

Comment by Bowling Green Panther 11.17.12 @ 9:20 pm

VERY happy for Dante. Great kid who hasn’t lived up to the hype but has NEVER complained. Pitt showed some pride to pull this one out. The team never lacked effort but nothing was going there way yet they find a way to win it … when was the last time we said that about Pitt in any sport? Next up – MSG. Bring on the Wolverines.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.17.12 @ 9:21 pm

Maryland and Rutgers to Big Ten.

Comment by Moe Greene 11.17.12 @ 9:22 pm

K state better get their act together, I can’t suffer watching Notre Dame in the national championship game.

Comment by Kenny Powers 11.17.12 @ 9:27 pm

Shame on anyone that missed that one. Guys stepping up at crunch time.

Comment by alcofan 11.17.12 @ 9:28 pm

I AM A TOOL. Glad I kept watching. All heart.

Comment by TonyC 11.17.12 @ 9:29 pm

TonyC, what no further comments? Dan72, pathetic commentary. How about that “astounding loss” care to comment!!!

Comment by TMG Panther 11.17.12 @ 9:34 pm

As a MD resident I cannot believe that MD can come up with 50 million to leave ACC. They just dropped several sports because of money. How can they compete in B10. B10 must be willing to fork up the 50 million maybe but that is a big mistake. I just attended a MD football game and the crowd (like Pitt) was maybe 20,000.

Comment by Frank MD 11.17.12 @ 9:40 pm

I eat my words. But I’m glad you knew we would win the whole time. I was 100% wrong and I couldn’t be happier

Comment by TonyC 11.17.12 @ 9:46 pm

I never saw the maryland thing comeing that knocks me on my ass.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.17.12 @ 9:58 pm

well the ACC will take u conn they are the only team that fits.
and once agein the big east will take it in the shorts they will be down 2 teams agein.
so were does big east go next

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.17.12 @ 10:08 pm

But does UConn really fit? Would be taking an academic hit, but don’t see another option.

Comment by panther94 11.17.12 @ 10:16 pm

I think the ACC will look at several other teams, not only CT.

Comment by Frank MD 11.17.12 @ 10:24 pm

Interesting tidbit on the Maryland rumors…

link to

In this post dated for this past Tuesday, Kevin Plank – UMD grad and UnderArmour CEO – is selling some 1.3 million shares of UnderArmour stock. As this post mentions, if it was sold at market rate last week, the shares were worth about $65 million.

The timing is interesting, and it’s touched off tons of rumors that Plank may have sold the stock to help foot part of the bill for the conference move. Nothing has been confirmed and even if this was the case, Plank may still draw tons of criticism for it because as Frank MD noted above, University of Maryland just dropped a number of other sports.

Comment by Stoosh 11.17.12 @ 10:25 pm

we will have fun with this who will be the big east next 2 teams who takes maryland place in the ACC
Academics plays a large part in who gets in the ACC that is why L VILLE wont be brought on board.
but U CONN has no major tv market.
i think chas or reed needs to give us a new post for this subject.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.17.12 @ 10:44 pm

Actually CT ranked high by US News but there is also Vandy, Tulane, NW, etc.

Comment by Frank MD 11.17.12 @ 10:56 pm

Heard UConn not an AAU school, which is important to ACC. I agree Frakcan, we need another thread, especially given what this thread was meant for.

Comment by panther94 11.17.12 @ 11:16 pm

panther 94 last year u conn was a aau school and
was rated all most has high as pitt did they lose there standing.
when pitt went to acc u conn and retgurs were the only outher schools ACC would consider.
so when did u conn lose it.

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.17.12 @ 11:30 pm

They say the Maryland chancellor is not on board, he’s an ACC guy. However, I guess the guy with under armour and the money talks.

What a shame. Really, I know it’s about the money these days.

60 years with Duke, NC, NC St Clemson, a lot of fantastic hoops years and rivalries, and some really good football years. (Yes, I know, not the past couple), but, they have had.

Now, Maryland vs. Minnesota, Maryland vs. Iowa????

How’s this move going to get them better???

The guy has allready thrown them all the money they need, hasn’t worked.

They’ll get a couple more million a year. How will that help??? Why doesn’t this guy just give them the 65 million he’s selling his stock for??

This really looks like one guy with money, running a whole sports department.

He allready ruined any sense of tradition with those hideous uniforms, that most Maryland fans don’t even like.

Guess you might as well just burn it all down!!!

That’s the way it is these days???

Ya, maybe, doesn’t mean I have to like it!!!!

Maryland vs Illinois???????

Comment by Dan 11.18.12 @ 12:04 am

MD to big ten.
RU to ACC.
Edge goes to ACC.
MD will be bottom feeder but they bring DC and Blt Tv sets.
ACC should bring both RU and UCONN.
espn did report Pitt loss. Maybe they can’t count.
Lastly…thousands of empty seats in Morganhole to watch the lousiest 50-49 game ever played.

Comment by SFPitt 11.18.12 @ 12:12 am

That last link was to show they weren’t in it in 2010 and the first is to show they’re not in it now.

Comment by panther94 11.18.12 @ 12:21 am

Although, I see now that many current ACC schools are not members.

Comment by panther94 11.18.12 @ 12:44 am

I think the wvu and Oklahoma game was a awesome game to watch that came down to the wire.

Comment by Upittbaseball 11.18.12 @ 1:25 am

I rather have Louisville in ACC over uconn but hope md stays to build a local rivalry .

Comment by KRF 11.18.12 @ 7:07 am

After last night, it looks like we took the #1 football team to overtime. Let’s all show up Saturday and try to create a home field advantage – weather should be good, senior day, ranked team – there’s no excuse!

Comment by KeyboardKev 11.18.12 @ 9:29 am

chas or reed we need a new post to deal with this

Comment by FRANKCAN 11.18.12 @ 9:29 am

If the ACC really wants to play hard ball … let MD go and try for PSU and Navy. PSU has been a Big Tenwelve outsider since they’ve been in the league and even more so now after the reprehensible actions that have come to light. PSU may want a fresh start.

PSU and Navy both fit the academics and together make up the loss of MD’s geographical patch. Basketball would take a hit but football would improve. With the addition of Pitt and ‘Cuse, the basketball in the league will still improve overall. UCONN does not bring much to the table in my opinion in either sport. Football does not have a natural recruiting ground and once the Calhoun ties to the basketball program fade you have to wonder if it will still succeed.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.18.12 @ 9:41 am

Any chance of getting the Pitt basketball team to speak to the football team prior to the Rutgers game on Saturday concerning playing hard until the final buzzer?

On another note, Tavon Austin is wearing the correct number on his jersey. I have not seen such a dazzling combination of speed and juking since the Dorsett days. Austin runs for 344 yards, WHAT?!?!?!? Now the down side of course is that WVU still lose the game in the whaning seconds and then the final slap in the face for Tavon is that Montel Harris, from Temple no less, runs for 351 yards, WHAT, WHAT!?!?!?!?!? AND SEVEN TDs to eclipse his performance. This morning, Austin doesn’t even get any headline press for his efforts in the Washington Post down here in DC because of Harris’s numbers. See it could be worst, we could all be West Virginia football fans. Win the first 5, lose the last 5, UGH.

Comment by Dr. Tom 11.18.12 @ 9:43 am

Anyone know how to access the last minute and overtime of the game? Followed it on my iphone, cried when ESPN claimed Pitt lost.

Comment by Gas 11.18.12 @ 9:50 am shows replays of the games..I watched the last 3 mins last night after I got back from the game….amazing’s a shame it wasn’t on tv because I don’t think people are going to realize how incredible the comeback was. Hillgrove called the most best he’s seen in 40 years of broadcasting.

Tossing Thabeets..PSU to leave Big Ten for ACC?? Only if they want to lose money…payout for Big Ten is 23 million+ per school…ACC is I think about 12 million per school…there is a reason Maryland wants to leave and might pay 50 million to do so.

Comment by milobloom 11.18.12 @ 10:10 am

@Tossing Thabeets….I was at the Penn St game yesterday and funny you mentioned that about grabbing Penn St because a lot of their fans want to move to the ACC. they think it’s a more natural fit and builds better rivalries. Penn St athletics is in a place where a move could be made if there was ever a time it would be now. I say go for it if Maryland leaves

Comment by Wd 11.18.12 @ 10:14 am

Not sure about that last minute, Gas, but well worth watching! Not sure who your Internet provide us, but I have recently discovered ESPN3 on my iPhone. It’s a separate app, and definitely works better over wireless, but what a great find for someone outside the greater Pittsburgh viewing area!

For all intents and purposes, is the Big East conference pretty much dissolved after this season?

Comment by Lou 11.18.12 @ 10:15 am

I don’t think there is a buy out for the Big 10 … the issue is the revenue from the Big 10 network and the connectedness of the academic research shared within the conference. Not saying it’s plausible or feasible but something to look at. I’m not the first to bring it up – it’s been discussed previously with conference expansion.

ACC is $50 million per school – just approved this summer. Md and FSU were the only dissenters.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.18.12 @ 10:15 am

… if the ACC got PSU, the ESPN TV deal would go up just as it increased with the addition of ND. Adding PSU may even convince ND to join full time.

Comment by Tossing Thabeets 11.18.12 @ 10:17 am

9:30 pm Wednesday ESPN2 PITT – MI

Comment by Frank MD 11.18.12 @ 11:59 am

Chris Peak is reporting he spoke directly to Johnson who confirmed his commitment.

Comment by Hoopzebra 11.18.12 @ 7:38 pm

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