Shady Side Academy wide receiver Dino Tomlin has been to the combined Pitt/Steelers practice facility on the South Side once or twice.
After all, that’s where his father goes to work every day. But earlier this week, Tomlin and his mother, Kiya, took a tour of the right side of the building, as he was hosted for a visit of the Pitt football facility, along with the rest of the campus.
What he took away isn’t exactly a surprise to those in the know.
“The Pitt locker room is definitely way better,” Tomlin said in a telephone interview. “We took a tour of that and then we went to the campus, we took a took a tour of the Cathedral of Learning, we went to the Petersen [Events Center], we talked with some people in the program.”
Even though Tomlin has grown up in Pittsburgh — his father is entering his 11th year with the Steelers — he hadn’t gotten a first-hand look at what Pitt’s campus is all about.
“I live essentially down the street, but I wasn’t necessarily familiar with what campus was all about,” he said. “There’s a lot more to campus than I thought it was.”
Tomlin, rated as a three-star prospect by 247 Sports, has an offer to attend Pitt, along with 13 other Division I schools, and he’s spending this summer getting into the recruiting process to try to narrow his field down. His focus is on finding a place where he can pour himself into becoming better athletically and academically.
“I don’t have any hobbies,” he said. “That’s what I find fun. I’ll be happy if I’m able to win and I’m able to train and become a better player and then obviously, academics.”
Tomlin said that he hasn’t narrowed his list down from the 13 offers he’s received.
“I haven’t narrowed anything down yet, I’ve got to talk to my dad a little bit,” he said.
So far, Tomlin said his father hasn’t given him a lot of advice about where to go, but he has talked with him about how to go about the process. He has some experience from the other side of the table, having working as a collegiate coach from 1995 to 2000.
“He used to recruit, so he kind of knows the business, but it’s also changed in the last few years,” Dino Tomlin said. “He hasn’t coached college in like 17 years. The last time he coached college was when I was an infant. He kind of gives me advice along the way. … He’s just telling me not to rush anything and make a decision I’m comfortable with.”
Tomlin said he doesn’t have a time frame to make his decision and going forward, he’s going to be more focused on his senior season at Shady Side Academy. The Indians start the year Aug. 23 at Deer Lakes.
“We’re going to get that ring,” Tomlin said. “We’ve got some good players.”