PIAA Class 6A State Championship Preview: St. Joseph’s Prep v Central Dauphin @SJPrep_Sports @CDRamsFootball
Written by: Billy Splain on Saturday, December 7th, 2019
The Skinny (strengths, weaknesses, the stars):
Mark Carfagno on SJP:
For SJP: This squad plays with the big boys to prepare for the regular season. Their two losses were to Marietta High School located in Georgia and to IMG Academy in Florida. After that they have run off 10 straight wins. Ranked 21st by USA today the Hawks are loaded with stars with three of them being sons of former NFL players. Wide Receiver Marvin Harrison Jr has caught 45 passes for 987 yards and 14 TD’s. Jerimiah Trotter Jr. has been injured for the last several weeks and is not expected to play but his younger brother Josiah who is just a Freshman has notched 44 tackles at linebacker . Look for linebacker Liam Johnson to make some plays since he leads the team in tackles with 80 including 7 for losses. The Hawks starting QB and Ohio State bound Kyle McCord has some sexy numbers but is questionable for Saturday’s game. He has passed 134-277- 2,399 – 31 TD’s . His back up and most likely starter is Malik Cooper who has numbered 39-53- 450- 4 TD’s. The man who totes the ball the most is running back Kolbe Burrell . Burrell has rushed 169- 1137- 14 TD’s. Kicker Antonio Chadha was successful on 59 of 64 PAT kicks while 41 of his kickoffs were booted into the end zone . The Hawks don’t have much size on the defensive line which seems to be their only weakness.
For Central Dauphin: The Rams like to matriculate the field at a nice pace but if they have to play fast they can. They are led by running back Timmy Smith who exploded for 263 yards in the semi finals against Downingtown West while his Ram squad piled up 65 points and close to 600 yards in total offense. Overall Smith has rushed for 1,256 yards with 16 TD’s. QB Max Mosey has passed for 1,979 yards with 14 TD’s. Nick Chimenti is Mosey’s favorite receiver notching 56- 1,073- 9 TD’s. The biggest strength for this squad is their offensive line. Their blocking scheme is a thing of beauty. If you like to watch an offensive line get your binoculars out and check out CD’s and watch the ball carrier pick and choose his hole. The Rams defense is led by linebacker Paul Clark with 126 tackles , Smith helps out at outside linebacker and has compiled 78 tackles for the Rams. Amir Walton, 66 tackles can cause trouble finessing his way into the backfield at Defensive End. Kicker Ahren Stauffer is very good . Central Dauphin’s defensive backs will have trouble containing the speedy and very talented Prep receivers.
SJP Offense Plan:
Get the ball to the skill players ,which the Hawks have plenty. Their hope is to score early and often and have Central Dauphin play catch up, which is almost impossible against St. Joe’s.
SJP Defensive Plan:
Hope that the Rams runs the ball so their linebackers can cheat up a little and help out the defensive line. Create some havoc by blitzing Mosey who has shown he can run if he has to but it will be a little tougher against a team as talented and quick as St. Joe’s.
Central Dauphin Offensive Plan:
Control the football, eat up as much clock as possible and don’t turn the ball over. Try and get running back Elijah Vargas or Tyrell English some carries which will give Smith a breather or two. Also keep the Hawks honest by throwing some passes and maybe connect on one for a TD early in the contest which may bust up their defensive game plan.
Central Dauphin Defensive Plan:
Create some turnovers if not it could be a long day for the Rams. Also it’s a pick your poison. Try and stop Burrell from running from Hershey to Philly or clamping down on Harrison Jr. and Higgins . Doing both is almost impossible. Prevent big plays and long returns .
How They Got Here:
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