PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — At St. Vincent College in Latrobe, this year’s Steelers training camp has served as a homecoming of sorts for one assistant coach.
Carnell Lake played 10 seasons with the Steelers, and now he’s back with the team as the defensive backs coach.
It’s been a long road traveled, but Lake has finally returned home.
“It’s like St. Vincent College has grown up,” he says.
Lake hasn’t been there since 1997, his last year as a player with the Steelers.
“I’ve always kept an eye on them,” he said of the black and gold.
So, when a familiar voice appeared on the other end of the line, Lake had little choice but to follow.
“Well, Dick called me,” said Lake. “He just said, ‘Hey you still want to coach; you feel like coaching?’”
That would be defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau, and it turns out this was the second time the Hall of Fame coach requested Lake’s help.
“To be honest with you, he called me maybe not too long after I retired and asked me the same question and I turned him down,” said Lake. “I said, ‘You know what, if I’m going to do it, better do it with him now because I probably won’t get another chance to coach with Dick. It’s really been a pleasure.”
“As you go through life, there are certain people who you remember and want to stay in touch with and he’s definitely one of them,” said LeBeau. “I’m very glad to have him back in Pittsburgh.”
Lake seems to have fit right in to his new surroundings.
“It’s been exciting. We have players here who we’ve just met for the first time at camp or we’ve just talked to for the first time at camp; so, it’s been a challenge, but it’s also been very fun,” said Lake. “I was a kid when I came here, very young adult and it’s the same with these guys. Big guys and a lot of ambition and eventually they been seasoned players and hopefully a lot of them can help us.”