North Allegheny hosting Western Pa. Football Recruiting Day to connect with college coaches

Saturday, April 29, 2023 | 11:01 AM

There are dozens of small-college football coaches who recruit Western Pennsylvania, but sometimes a talented WPIAL player can go overlooked in the process.

That’s why North Allegheny football coach Art Walker hosts a couple of Western Pa. Football Recruiting Days each year. The event lets high school coaches meet and share player information with their small-college counterparts.

The next is May 15.

“When you think about where we’re at, it’s not that bad of a ride for Division II and III schools from Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and even some in New York and Maryland,” Walker said. “They can shoot over.”

Walker started hosting the get-togethers about 15 years ago after attending similar events elsewhere. There are now two each year at North Allegheny, one in the winter focused on the senior class and another in the spring for underclassmen.

The coaches gather in North Allegheny’s Baierl Center next to Newman Stadium.

“We were really rolling before covid hit, having between 40 and 50 colleges and universities come through,” Walker said. “A low number would be in the mid-30s.”

He’s hopeful attendance numbers climb again. High school coaches, two per school, can attend for free. Colleges are charged $40, a donation to the NA booster club.

Players do not attend.

Along with a couple of dozen WPIAL coaches, previous events drew representatives from City League, and are open to District 10 teams.

Coaches seeking information or wanting to register can contact Walker via email at

The event runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“Every high school has a table, and it’s one-stop shopping to promote WPIAL and City League players,” Walker said. “It’s really beneficial for Division III and Division II schools on a tight budget. You can come to one place and hit anywhere from 24 to 30 high schools.”

This event isn’t for promoting major-college prospects, said Walker, himself a former Clarion wide receiver. NCAA rules prohibit Division I coaches from attending, he said.

“The big athletes stand out and people already know who they are,” he said. “This is for promoting the players who make up most of your team. Most are D3 and D2 players, if they’re going to play at the next level.”

Walker pointed to players such as North Allegheny quarterback Logan Kushner, defensive back Evan Lyon and defensive end Aidan Buggey as guys who recruiters should look at more closely.

“They might be overshadowed by the Chmuras and Alualus, but they’re really great players,” Walker said, “and they’re going to be college football players.”

Walker said college coaches interested in recruiting his players leave with collated information that includes height and weight, on-field position, grade-point average, home address, phone number and social media contacts. They’ll also receive links to online highlight videos and an unofficial transcript.

They will follow up with the recruits they’re interested in, often inviting them on campus visits or summer camps.

“We want to do everything we can to promote our guys to the next level,” Walker said. “It’s something we take seriously.”

Chris Harlan is a TribLive reporter covering sports. He joined the Trib in 2009 after seven years as a reporter at the Beaver County Times. He can be reached at


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