Football: McKeesport standout decides on Michigan

Written by Mike White on .

Mike White reports that McKeesport standout Khaleke Hudson committed to Michigan on Wednesday.

"In the summer before his senior season at McKeesport High School, Khaleke Hudson did not have a favorite among the colleges that were recruiting him. The season came and went, the calendar turned to 2016, and Hudson still didn't have a No. 1 school.

That all changed after a trip to Ann Arbor, Mich.

Hudson made an official visit to the University of Michigan Jan. 15-17. He was suddenly convinced he had turned into a Wolverine man.

Less than two weeks after the visit, Hudson made a verbal commitment to Michigan. Hudson, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Player of the Year and one of the top players in the state, announced Wednesday on Twitter he would attend Michigan. He was a standout running back-defensive back who was recruited to play safety."



Football: Longtime McKeesport coach retires

Written by Mike White on .

Mike White profiles recently retired McKeesport football coach George Smith.

"It began in the 1970s when he was a graduate assistant at North Carolina State under Lou Holtz, earning a masters degree in health and physical education teaching. George Smith's coaching career went on to last more than four decades across five states.

It ended last week when Smith handed in a letter to the McKeesport School District, saying he was retiring. He walked away after earning success to the nth degree.

Smith, 66, had two stints as McKeesport's head coach that lasted 31 seasons. He won 226 games, 2 WPIAL titles and 2 PIAA championships. When he walked away the first time after the 2009 season, he left disgruntled, unhappy with some unnamed things going on with the program. When he left this time, he had a smile on his face and peace in his heart.

"It's different retiring than resigning," said Smith with a laugh. "It was bad the last time I left. This time, it all worked out and the program is moving in the right direction. My goal coming back to coach in 2013 was to bring back the powerhouse standing that McKeesport once held. I feel we accomplished that.""


Girls Basketball: New Cash making noise for McKeesport

Written by Keith Barnes on .

Keith Barnes profiles McKeesport basketball player Johnasia Cash.

"Considering she's from McKeesport Area and also plays basketball, Johnasia Cash knew there would be a little bit of pressure to live up to her last name and be something of a carbon copy of her cousin Swin.

"I don't think it's hard," Cash said. "I think it makes things a little bit easier because everybody's already looking at me because of her."

Swin Cash was an outstanding player for the Tigers who went on to win two national championships in college as a player at Connecticut and has played 13 years in the WNBA, winning three championships and being selected to four all-star games.

This season, Johnasia is putting up numbers similar to her cousin's when she played for the Tigers. In her first nine games, Johnasia helped McKeesport jump out to a 6-3 start by averaging 20.1 points, 12.2 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 2.7 blocks per game."


Football: 2015 South Player of the Year - McKeesport's Khaleke Hudson

Written by Brad Everett on .

Brad Everett profiles the South Xtra player of the year, McKeesport's Khaleke Hudson.

2015 1224 McKeesport Football2(Photo: Khaleke Hudson led Class AAAA with 25 touchdowns offensively, but he also made his mark on the defensive side of the ball this season. Justin K. Aller/For the Post-Gazette)

"Khaleke Hudson is not human, one of his McKeesport teammates said.

Hudson's athleticism and speed are off the charts, but the physical way he plays even further sets him apart from most other high school football players.

Known as a vicious runner and tackler, Hudson picked up the nickname "Hit Man" some time ago. Punisher would be appropriate, too.

For Hudson, that superior strength, mean streak and what some might call superhuman traits aren't all God-given and haven't all been achieved through lifting weights and speed training."


Football: 2015 P-G Player of the Year - McKeesport's Khaleke Hudson

Written by Mike White on .

Mike White profiles the 2015 Post-Gazette Player of the Year, McKeesport's Khaleke Hudson.

2015 1224 McKeesport Football(Photo: Running back Khaleke Hudson of McKeesport rushes against Seneca Valley on Nov. 6. Justin K. Aller/For the Post-Gazette)

"For the best indication of Khaleke Hudson's talent and versatility, simply look at Hudson's recruiting situation. Just let Hudson explain about his college finalists.

"UCLA wants me as a safety, and they'll have a package for me as a running back," said Hudson. "Penn State wants me as a safety and to return kicks. Pitt wants me as a safety and also to play some running back. Michigan wants me as a safety and running back."

So, there is a possibility Hudson could be a two-way player in college. In high school, he played only one way.