College notes: EMU’s Lyke reportedly a candidate at Pittsburgh

Tony Paul
The Detroit News
Heather Lyke faced challenges in Ypsilanti, especially last summer, when national news reports took aim at the long-awful Eastern Michigan football program and its ugly balance sheet, heavily subsidized by student tuition dollars.

Don't be surprised if Central Michigan isn't the only state school looking for an athletic director this spring.

A report from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has Eastern Michigan athletic director Heather Lyke as a candidate for the Pittsburgh opening.

Lyke has been at Eastern Michigan since 2013, after spending 15 years at Ohio State.

Central Michigan already is seeking a new athletic director, with long-time department head Dave Heeke taking the job at Arizona.

Central Michigan announced last week it will not hire a search firm, but rather have a 16-person panel -- led by football coach John Bonamego, women's basketball coach Sue Guevara and NFL star Antonio Brown -- sort out the candidates and select Heeke's replacement.

Don't be surprised if Jeff Konya, who has done wonders in marketing Oakland on a shoe-string budget, is someone Central Michigan takes a look at, and Eastern, too, if Lyke moves on.

Three Wolverines are All-Americans

Three Michigan wrestlers -- all freshmen -- earned All-America honors at this week's NCAA championships in St. Louis.

St. Johns' Logan Massa (165 pounds) placed third, while Brighton's Myles Amine (174) and Steve Micic (133) each played fourth in their respective weight class.

As a team, Michigan finished in 10th place in a 69-team field. Eight Big Ten teams finished in the top 12, with Penn State claiming the national championship.

This marks the third consecutive year Michigan has had at least three All-Americans, and the trio gives coach Joe McFarland 55 for his 18-year career.

Michigan State was shut out, with freshman Drew Hughes coming the closest, finishing a win shy of All-America status at 165 pounds. He was 32-9 for the season.

No-hitter, 17 K’s for Betsa

Michigan pitcher Megan Betsa dealt with some back issues in the offseason. Well, she's back, and she's spectacular.

The senior right-hander fired a 17-strikeout no-hitter in Saturday's 2-0 victory over Kent State in the Wolverines’ home opener.

Betsa had at least two strikeouts every inning in firing the fourth no-hitter of her esteemed collegiate career. Walks in the fifth and seventh innings kept her from the perfect game.

The Wolverines (15-7-1) have dipped in the rankings to No. 19 nationally, after suffering some early-season losses in tournaments in Florida, North Carolina and California.

Conference play begins later this week for softball and baseball teams.

Top billing for UM’s Artz

Michigan gymnastics earned the four-peat at the Big Ten championships over the weekend at Rutgers, with Holland senior Nicole Artz earning conference gymnast of the year.

The Wolverines now have won 22 of the last 26 Big Ten titles, and 23 in school history.

Artz won the all-round, Clarkston sophomore Emma McLean the vault, senior Talia Chiarelli the balance beam and sophomore Olivia Karas the floor exercise.

Michigan State, meanwhile, tied its best team score in program history for the floor event, with seniors Elena Lagoski, Kira Frederick and Nicola Davis tying for the Big Ten title.

The NCAA will announce regional locations and times at 4 p.m. Monday, with the championships getting under way Saturday, April 1.