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BTSC 2016 Writer Profile: Christopher Carter

This lifelong Steelers fan is excited to cover his fourth NFL season with BTSC. If you were ever interested in learning more about the head of the BTSC Film Room, here is your chance.

My father and I like to catch as many baseball games as we can at PNC Park every summer.
My father and I like to catch as many baseball games as we can at PNC Park every summer.

Born and raised in the great city of Pittsburgh, I have always been a fan of our Steelers. But there is a lot more to this writer than just twirling his Terrible Towel on Sundays (and Mondays, and now Thursdays, and apparently sometimes Saturdays), so let's get into it.

Growing up in my family meant you were most likely going to be a football fan in some way. My father and both of his older brothers played football for Peabody High School, my grandfather played for Schenley high school and my father coached for Peabody's football team throughout my childhood. But even without all the involvement in football at the high school level, my family was all about the Pittsburgh Steelers.

While I grew up to naturally be a fan of the team, it was the years I spent on Sunday's hanging out with my grandfather and my father to watch the games that cemented my fandom of the team. Learning about the history of the league was always fun and I enjoyed just spending time with family without much to care about other than whether or not the Steelers could win (unless I did not finish my homework, then I was hoping my parents just didn't know it wasn't finished). I longed for the day that I could see the Steelers win a Super Bowl with my family, and was glad to see Super Bowl XL. However that win was a little bittersweet, as we had just lost my grandfather to cancer that January. It would have meant even more for me had we been able to share that moment before he passed.

On school nights, one of the easiest ways I could cheat my bedtime as a kid was sitting up with my father as he studied film for his players or developed their highlight tapes to send to colleges. Many times I could get him to either forget about my curfew, or at least make him not care as much, by asking questions about play schematics and fundamentals from each position. These were other ways football played into how I came to be such a fan of the game.

Once I got to high school at Taylor Allderdice I began playing football. By the time I was a senior, I was a captain on the team as the starting right guard. I was not particularly fast or quick, but I relied on my knowledge of technique, practice of discipline and my strength to be a valuable part of our offensive line. While we did not make the playoffs that year, I had a great time applying all I had learned for four years and channeling all that hard work into pancaking defensive players. Playing against Peabody while my father was still a coach there was definitely my favorite game. I was so pumped up to play that week that I played my strongest game and earned a lot more respect from both my teammates and my father's players.

But life has not always been about the game; I have always been involved in several different activities learning and experiencing new things. From my childhood all the way through college I played the trumpet. It started because I read a book about Wynton Marsalis in the third grade and listened to two albums of his that I liked. It developed into me playing lots of musicals in middle school and then eventually at Allderdice High School. I played in all-city jazz bands, orchestras and the like, but musicals were my favorite to play for because I could work with an entire orchestra and the cast for weeks to pull together a fun show.

While I consider Pittsburgh my favorite place in the world, a close second is Cheyney University, where I attended for undergrad. I went there on scholarship to study political science and I got a full experience that changed my life from the nation's first Historically Black College/University. I met many great friends and inspirational people in my time there. I got up close with intellects like Dr. Cornel West, poets like Maya Angelou, leaders like President Bill Clinton and more. I would be the trumpet section leader for the marching band, president of the NAACP chapter on campus and eventually student government president for the university. I learned a lot about grassroots organizing in many trips to Washington, DC and Harrisburg to either lobby on behalf of student interests or bring organized concerned students to rally for important issues.

Much of my activities have always revolved around trying to help build the community around me and advocate for those who needed assistance. This is why I felt it was natural to return home to study law at the University of Pittsburgh. I learned a great deal there and currently work downtown Pittsburgh where I learn more about the law each and every day.

However, it was right before my final year in law school that I stumbled upon the opportunity to write for BTSC. Neal Coolong responded to my application via craigslist and brought me onto the team. It took me a while to find my place as there are always bright writers on the BTSC team that do a great job covering the important topics for Steelers' nation. Eventually I found my niche when BTSC's film room series stopped and Jeff talked to me about picking it back up. Now I can finally put to use all those hours of cheating my bed time when I was 10 years old and listening to my father explain to me various football fundamentals.

I had to learn how to use the right software to make professional looking GIFs and that took some time, but by the beginning of last season, I got the hang of it and we have kept it rolling. Now we are building more writers have expressed their interest into working in the film room to help me produce more content every week during the season. Nate Bodnar has done a great job so far and looks to be a person that BTSC readers could enjoy for years. If you are interested in contributing, please do not hesitate to contact me as I have information linked to my account on BTSC.

In my spare time, I love to have fun with friends and family. I am always looking for new things to do, places to try out for food and drinks, and games to play. My girlfriend and I can often be caught at different restaurants trying out new spots or different food, breweries who have new beers we like to try and checking out the many local events that Pittsburgh brings for the public.

I still spend a lot of time with my father, and we almost always keep in touch with each other about the latest sports developments. While we have always bonded over the Steelers, we generally enjoy most Pittsburgh sports teams and the NBA as well. The picture for this article is of the two of us at PNC Park enjoying a Pirates game last year.

I am always trying to see new movies as they come out as I also have always been a big movie-goer, or at least someone who looks for new things to watch at home. My favorite movie of all time is Glory, the story of the 54th Massachusetts and their plight to earn respect for African-American soldiers in the United States Army. As far as music, I am a huge fan of R&B, hip-hop and jazz, but my many years of studying music have allowed me to appreciate pieces from all genres. My favorite artist of all time is Stevie Wonder, while my favorite band is Earth, Wind & Fire, but my favorite new artist is definitely Kendrick Lamar.

Today I am still loving my time in Pittsburgh and both appreciate how the city is improving, while also keeping involved to see where I can be of some help to the always developing communities of the city. Pittsburgh is changing rapidly and the many neighborhood lines and generally understood spaces continue to change with it. If you are a Steelers fan who has never been to the city before, or just has not had the chance to ever visit, my suggestion would be to come into town and see what all Pittsburgh has to offer.