By: Brian Fees | Towanda Daily Review | August 22, 2017
Not many football players get the chance to play big time Division I football.
North Penn-Mansfield's Garrett Bickhart knew that trying to walk on to the Pitt football team wouldn't be easy. However, it paid off as he made the team recently.
"I'm extremely excited and thankful to be given the opportunity to play at such an amazing program," Bickhart said.
When it came to looking at schools, Bickhart chose Pitt for academic reasons, and the football worked out for him. Growing up, it was actually Penn State that Bickhart and his family followed, but Pitt just seemed like the right fit for a college.
"I didn't really follow Pitt growing up due to my dad and many of my other family members being big Penn State fans. What drew me to Pitt was the great academics and having such a love for the game of football led to me trying to walk on," Bickhart said. "After e-mailing back and fourth with the wide receiver coach, I was actually fortunate enough to not have to tryout because of an injury and short numbers in the wide receiver position, which opened up a spot for me to take a preferred walk-on spot and come at the beginning of fall camp."
Bickhart knew that picking Pitt would be tougher to make a college team than if he went somewhere smaller, but he felt like going for the challenge was worth it.
"The decision of aiming high to play at a bigger school was hard because I knew there was always a chance that I wouldn't make it," Bickhart said. "But, looking back, I feel it was the best decision I could have made."
One of the biggest things that had Pitt intrigued about Bickhart was the fact that he's a hard-working 6-foot, 5-inch receiver.
"So far, the coaches like my height and my effort," Bickhart said. "Always getting in on every scout team I can, trying to get myself better and elevate my game to the place it needs to be in order for me to earn playing time in the future."
Now that he has made the team at Pitt, the next goal for Bickhart is to try and earn playing time in the future.
"I'm excited to see the opportunities that open up and for the chance to work hard and earn a contributing role on the field on Saturdays."