October 27, 2004: Headlines: COS -Kyrgyzstan: Sports: Football: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Kyrgyzstan RPCV Harold Egelsky inducted into school's hall of fame

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Kyrgyzstan: Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan : The Peace Corps in Kyrgyzstan: October 27, 2004: Headlines: COS -Kyrgyzstan: Sports: Football: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Kyrgyzstan RPCV Harold Egelsky inducted into school's hall of fame

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Kyrgyzstan RPCV Harold Egelsky inducted into school's hall of fame

Kyrgyzstan RPCV Harold Egelsky inducted into school's hall of fame

Kyrgyzstan RPCV Harold Egelsky inducted into school's hall of fame

Arnold native inducted into school's hall of fame


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By Rick Starr
VALLEY NEWS DISPATCH SPORTS EDITOR
Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Hard as it is to believe today, Harold Egelsky never seriously considered the Steelers' tryout offer.

Egelsky, an Arnold native, didn't want to play for the Steelers in the mid-1950s after making a name for himself as an offensive lineman at Lenoir-Rhyne College in Hickory, N.C.

The Steelers offered a tryout, and the Baltimore Colts expressed interest in Egelsky, who could play both ways at tackle.

"The Rooneys were a farm club for the other teams at that time," Egelsky said.


Besides, Egelsky said, pro football teams paid linemen about $6,500 a year during that era.

"There were no bonuses, heck no," he said. "And if you got hurt, they shipped you home real fast."

Egelsky, a two-sport standout before graduating in 1954, was inducted into the Lenoir-Rhyne College Sports Hall of Fame during a banquet Oct. 2 at P.E. Monroe Auditorium.

Now 73, retired, and residing in New Kensington, Egelsky has no regrets about passing up pro football.

A 1950 Arnold graduate, Egelsky said he was happy to earn a college education on a football scholarship.

"My parents couldn't afford college," he said. "Without the football scholarship, I had two choices. Go in the coal mine or go to work at Allegheny Steel. One or the other."

Egelsky went on to earn his master's degree in Russian from Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind., in 1966.

He taught Russian for 10 years at Kiski Area and served as a teacher there for 27 years.

Egelsky also coached baseball at Kiski Area, leading the Cavaliers to the 1964 WPIAL baseball title with a victory over Penn Hills at Forbes Field. He coached Kiski Area's baseball team from 1962 to 1979.

Egelsky took advantage of his background in the Russian language and served with the Peace Corps in Kyrgyzstan, one of the former Soviet Union republics in Asia. He taught English in 1993 about 80 miles from the China border.

"The people were great," Egelsky said. "Kyrgyzstan has a population of four million, and more sheep than people."

Egelsky recalled visiting homes and eating plov, a rice and lamb meal that includes a variety of vegatables.

"They drank a lot of vodka," Egelsky said with a laugh. "They were great for toasting. Over there, your glass in never empty and the table is never empty. And no chasers. When you drink vodka, you drink it like that."

Egelsky lettered four years at Lenoir-Rhyne and was a two-time All-North State Conference honoree in 1952 and 1953. He started at center his sophomore season and played both ways at tackle his junior and senior seasons.

He helped lead Lenior-Rhyne to conference titles in 1951 (10-1) and 1952 (8-1). He played California (Pa.) State in the Pythian Bowl in Salsbury, N.C., after the 1951 season.

Egelsky also played in the Cigar Bowl in Tampa, Fla., against the University of Tampa following the 1952 season.

Egelsky briefly coached football in 1955 and 1956 at Elders Ridge.

Rick Starr can be reached at rstarr@tribweb.com or (724) 226-4691.





When this story was posted in November 2004, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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RPCV Carl Pope says the key to winning this election is not swaying undecided voters, but persuading those already willing to vote for your candidate to actually go to the polls.

Take our poll and tell us what you are doing to support your candidate.

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Story Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS -Kyrgyzstan; Sports; Football

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