About Vito

In six decades working for a wire service (UPI) in Detroit and New York and papers in Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Jacksonville, Vito Stellino spent the majority of his career covering the NFL. He attended 40 consecutive Super Bowls at one point and covered all four of the Steelers’ four Super Bowl teams in the 1970s. He also covered two of Joe Gibbs’ Super Bowl-winning teams in Washington. And he covered many other NFL events, including seeing the trucks taking the Colts away from Baltimore on a snowy night in 1984, Alex Karras’ suspension in Detroit in 1963 and Pete Rozelle’s press conferences announcing the start of Monday Night Football in 1970, the expansion of the schedule to 16 games in 1978 and Rozelle’s retirement in 1989. He also covered the strikes of 1982 and 1987, and his idea of ending the strike-shortened 1982 season with a tournament was ultimately adopted by the league. He interviewed most of the movers and shakers in the league over the years, including George Halas, who played a major role in founding of the league. He also covered the expansion to 30 teams in 1993. In 1989, he was given the Dick McCann Award at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton for long and distinguished reporting in the field of pro football. Before the NFL became a year-round beat, he also covered six World Series, the first Ali-Frazier fight, NBA and NHL games (including Gordie Howe’s record-breaking goal in 1963), PGA tournaments and tennis when it was still played at Forest Hills. He also covered the famed 1966 Texas Western-Kentucky NCAA final when Texas Western became the first all-black team to win the tournament.
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