Panther Profile: Antwuan Reed

Over the next few weeks as the Panthers continue spring practice, the Pantherdigest will be profiling the members of the class of 2008 that will land in Oakland this year. You will read several interesting stories about the future Panthers including Johnstown's Antwuan Reed.

There has been a lengthy list of Pittsburgh football notables from Johnstown High School; current running back LaRod Stephens-Howling, star 1970-71 tight end Joel Klimek, and even late ‘60's head coach David A. Hart.

The latest Trojan to make the move will be future defensive back Antwuan Reed, an early commitment that recorded 46 tackles on defense last season and accounted for more than 2,000 total yards offense as a running back for Johnstown's (7-3) 2007 gridiron squad.

Why the early commitment? Perhaps it is because although the Panthers' geographic fan base is not as broad as, say, a state university, the base does include Reed's hometown.

"Johnstown is definitely a Pitt town," he said. "Everyone in Johnstown likes the Steelers and everyone likes Pitt."

And Reed is a homebody. He hasn't done much traveling in his youth save for some trips to see his father, who lives in the D.C. suburb of Ft. Washington, Maryland.

In fact, Reed never even traveled to Pittsburgh until he was in high school.

As such, the idea of staying home to play college football was very appealing to Reed.

"I really wanted to play D-I," he said. "The [primary factors for my early decision was] the support from my hometown. I feel better to play for a team in Pennsylvania."

It also didn't hurt to have a former teammate like Stephens-Howling currently on the Panthers.

"Rod and I are kind of close. When I first was on the varsity he helped me get through it and guided me through it to the varsity from eighth grade. We were going through plays and steps and running back reads.

"We also had a couple of classes together with computers. We even went to a few parties, but I'm not a big party guy!"

Reed also has a friend in the 2008 Pitt football recruiting class; Bishop McCort tight end Mike Cruz.

"I knew Cruz a little bit," Reed says. "We've played each other for four years. Our schools are rivals.

"I see him at the ‘Y' and every time we have a conversation," Reed continued. "You try to keep a good relation with linemen."

Spoken like a true running back, but as mentioned above, Reed is slated to play in the secondary at Pitt.

Thankfully, he doesn't have a problem with the position switch.

"Of course I like offense, but defense is fine. I just want to get on the field."

Such a sacrifice might be an indication of leadership, and Reed feels he will become a leader at Pitt.

"I don't just push myself. I push everyone. I give pep talks, push [teammates] a bit harder, and go through workouts with them."

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