Preview of the Pitt Spring Game this Saturday at Heinz Field. Interview with Pitt Linebackers Coach Rob Harley.
Bill Hillgrove, the longtime “Voice of the Panthers,” will have a new, yet familiar, partner in the Pitt football radio booth this fall.
Bill Osborn, who previously worked Pitt radio broadcasts for nine seasons, will return as color analyst in 2016. The former Pitt wide receiver originally served alongside Hillgrove from 1995-2003. Osborn replaces Pat Bostick, who is stepping away from broadcasting to focus on his duties as the Panther Club Director of Development.
Hillgrove and Osborn will be joined by Larry Richert, who will continue to lead the pregame show and provide sideline reporting.
“It was obvious from my first conversation with Billy Osborn that he has a great passion for Pitt and impressive knowledge of the game,” Barnes said. “With Pat Bostick advancing on in his career, we prioritized getting a former Panther to fill this important role. Bringing Billy back checks all the boxes—he is an enthusiastic Pitt Man, talented broadcaster and will be a great complement to Bill Hillgrove and Larry Richert.”
“I’m thrilled to be rejoining the Pitt football radio team,” Osborn said. “Bill Hillgrove is not only a legendary play-by-play man but also a great friend. I feel blessed to be able to sit alongside him once again and call Pitt football. And I’m excited to begin working with Larry Richert, an incredibly talented professional who I’ve known and admired for many years. I want to thank Scott Barnes and my great friend E.J. Borghetti for the opportunity to get back involved with my alma mater. Although I left the Panther broadcast team after the birth of my second child and ultimately became a year-round part-time coach for my two boys, Billy and Trent, I continued to follow Pitt Athletics passionately.
“I also want to give my very best to Pat Bostick, who did such a great job in the booth and was kind enough to call me this week and welcome me back. He and I have been friends since he started broadcasting and I’m excited for him and his endeavors in the athletic department. Even though it’s only April, I can’t wait for the season to start. Coach Pat Narduzzi is building something special at Pitt—you can already feel it—and with our exciting schedule this season, it’s going to be a really fun and memorable year.”
Osborn has been highly active in broadcasting over the past dozen years. He called college football games for the Comcast Network and also did color for the Arena Football League’s Philadelphia Soul. Osborn is co-host of the “OZZIE and KRAUSEY SHOW,” which can be heard on ESPN 610 AM Sports Radio in the Philadelphia/South Jersey area.
A four-year football letterman at Pitt (1985-88), Osborn was a quarterback and defensive back before settling in as a three-year starting wide receiver. He finished his collegiate career with 77 receptions for 1,104 yards (14.3 avg.) and nine touchdowns. In addition to football, he also lettered in baseball and basketball, becoming the first Pitt student-athlete to letter in three varsity sports since Mike Ditka.
Osborn played professionally for the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles and Arena League’s Pittsburgh Gladiators. He also scouted for the Kansas City Chiefs. Osborn now serves as Vice President of Business Development for VICIS, a Seattle-based company that is on the cutting-edge of safer football helmet technology and is about to release their new helmet, the ZERO1.
Bostick, the former Pitt quarterback, served as color analyst the past five seasons. He joined the Panther Club staff in 2011 and has continued to assume elevated roles for Pitt’s official athletics fundraising office.
“It has been an honor to call Pitt football games alongside the legendary Bill Hillgrove,” Bostick said. “I will forever owe a debt a gratitude to Bill for his friendship, professionalism and introducing me to broadcasting. While I’ll miss being in the booth, I’m very excited about taking the next step in my professional journey. I want to welcome Billy Osborn back to the broadcast team and thank our athletic director Scott Barnes and the entire Pitt family for giving me the opportunity to continue serving the great University of Pittsburgh.”
The 2016 season will mark Hillgrove’s 43rd consecutive season calling the play-by-play for Pitt football.
“Pat Bostick is a gem of an analyst and knows the game so well,” Hillgrove said. “Most importantly, Pat bleeds Blue and Gold. His talents will serve him exceptionally well in his expanded role with the Panther Club. I’m ecstatic that Billy Osborn is able to rejoin our broadcast team. He returns with the same passionate knowledge Pitt fans loved so much during his first tenure as my partner. Ozzie’s return will be seamless for us on and off the air.”
Richert, one of Pittsburgh’s most recognized voices and faces, enters his fourth season serving as reporter for Pitt football broadcasts.
“Pat’s enthusiasm is infectious and his knowledge of Pitt football as a former quarterback with the Panthers made him a great partner on our broadcasts,” Richert said. “I’ve enjoyed every game, every play and every minute working with Pat. It’s nice to know his expanded role with the university will keep him close by.
“In Pat’s place we welcome back Pitt’s last three-sport letterman since Mike Ditka, Billy Osborn. I remember watching him play when I produced the broadcasts and then listening to him do the games with Bill Hillgrove. I interviewed him several times since and I’m really excited to have him back in the booth adding his unique perspective.”