By Colin Dunlap

PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – I like a success story as much as the next guy.

I like a Pittsburgh story probably more than the next guy.

And, man, do I ever love a Pittsburgh success story — that’s just about the pinnacle for me.

But I don’t know what to think about these Hays Eagles.

Certainly they should be respected. After all, they are emblematic of our county and have been hard at it in a couple regards — rebuilding a nest that was sent tumbling when the tree it was assembled in blew down and also allegedly involved in incubating a new egg that could hatch around the end of March.

Good for them.

Good job, good effort, way to go Hays Eagles!


As of late, they have definitely received more publicity than their compadres who live over in Harmar, who have become all but forgotten about in this hullabaloo and ruckus going on in Hays.


But I can’t go so far as to use the term resilient. I can’t call the Hays Eagles hardy. I don’t know if I can call them tough and strong and blue-collar like some others around town have.

To me — and at the risk of royally hacking off people glued to their EagleCams everywhere — I just think (gulp!) they are acting like eagles act.

We are kind of making these Hays Eagles out to be a mix of Jack Lambert, Mel Blount, General John Forbes (circa 1758) a team of guys who pulled a hard eight hours (plus overtime) down at J&L, François Leroux, Harry Greb, Joey Diven, Mayor Sophie, and some guy named “Heavy” who collects for a bookie from Bloomfield.

I don’t know, it just seems to be a bit much.

Next thing you know you will see the Hays Eagles’ logo on some heavily discounted shirts, party hats and noisemakers down at Mike Feinberg’s in the Strip.

Aren’t they just, well, being eagles? Aren’t they just doing what eagles do in rebuilding their nest and taking care of another egg?

Just a thought — I could be wrong. Maybe the Hays Eagles really do have Pittsburgh Yinzerpowers and I’m all wrong here.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I kind of like the romanticism of the story of these eagles as much as anyone, but they have taken on a really big “no one gave us a chance” quotient. Perhaps some grandma should crochet them little Hines Ward No. 86 jerseys because, you know, no one gave them a chance.

I’m only half-kidding.

Come to think of it, I am incredibly surprised no Pittsburgh grandma has knitted these Hays Eagles a blanket yet. Or, maybe, that will come when the egg hatches and there will be a crocheted blanket — black and gold, of course — left for the little hatchling near the nest site. Because when a baby a born, isn’t that what Pittsburgh grandmas do? Crochet a blanket for them?

Again, I’m only half-kidding. This is Pittsburgh; good chance that happens.

And tailgating. How hasn’t there been more robust tailgating for this Hays Eagles nest-building endeavor? We tailgate everything here in Pittsburgh, how hasn’t there been enormous tailgates to stand around, drink beer, listen to Renegade and watch that nest get constructed over in Hays?

These Hays Eagles, I guess they are some kind of success story; cult heroes if nothing else. Good for them — kudos to them for surviving the tumbling of that tree they formerly called their home. That had to be scary stuff.

I don’t think I can go so far as to call them resilient, strong or irrepressible though. I don’t want to ruin the story —- I love them and all —- but I think they’re just being eagles.

Damn it, though, they are our eagles!

Colin Dunlap is a featured columnist at He can also be heard weekdays from 5:40 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Sports Radio 93-7 “The Fan.” You can e-mail him at Check out his bio here.

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