Watch CBS News

Bethel Park Football Coach Cancels Weightlifting, Tells Players To Shovel Neighbors' Driveways Instead

By: Mike Darnay/KDKA-TV

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- The elderly, disabled, and working single parents are just some of the people on the receiving end of generosity Monday in the South Hills of Pittsburgh.

The mantra remained the same for Bethel Park High School football coach Brian DeLallo as his players traded dumbells for shovels: use your legs and keep your back tight.

"We would have been in the weight room doing squats, and bench press and power cleans," said DeLallo.

But with one simple tweet, DeLallo changed the plan, finding the snowfall as an opportunity to allow his players to give back.

More than 6 inches of snow blanketed western Pennsylvania overnight from Sunday evening through Monday morning. Before the snow started to fall, DeLallo relayed a message to his players through social media. On Twitter, DeLallo said that Monday's weightlifting workout was canceled due to the expected severe weather.

He then said to "find an elderly or disabled neighbor and shovel their driveway." DeLallo told his players not to accept any money, allowing the driveway shoveling to serve as Monday's workout.

"I actually was sitting on the couch drinking a coffee getting ready for the Steeler game and sent it out and this is something that predates me," he said.

From sidewalks to long driveways all along the streets of Bethel Park, the team took the weightlifting practice to Mother Nature.

"They're surprised that we're not taking money, we're not doing anything for it. They're refusing us because we're not taking money for it sometimes," said junior and team captain Gavin Moul.

Not everyone refused. At 83 years old, Danny Varhola's now-grown son played Bethel Park football in the 80s.

"I've been here for 50 years, and these guys are great," said Varhola.

Moul knows it's not really about the shoveling.

"I feel great about it and think we all feel great about it," said Moul. "It's not only helping them, but it's helping us to become a better team."

The connection between the community and team makes Coach DeLallo proud.

"You get a lot more out of this than 'did you bench press 300 pounds today?' This is really cool. It's a chance to connect with the community and you don't get many of those, so this is nice," said DeLallo.

And the appreciation can be summed up pretty simple: "Go Hawks!" shouted Varhola. "Hey, thanks guys! I'm freezing!"

The players tell KDKA they tackled dozens of their neighbors' driveways and at least 25 players texted Coach DeLallo to tell them they did it and felt great.

Moul tells KDKA's Meghan Schiller he's looking forward to some hot chocolate and watching a movie with his teammates as they defrost.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.