It was a big day for high school football in the Philadelphia area. There will be a number of players to watch next year as well as down the road. George Washington High has two seniors, Justin Moody and Marquis Edwards, who were big part of national signing day.
Moody, a 6-foot-3, 270-pound defensive end, has signed with the University of Pittsburgh. Edwards, a 5-foot-8 180-pound running back, will be headed to Division II Shippensburg University.
Moody is a great pass rusher. He can also play the run. Moody led George Washington to the Public League playoffs. He also played in the Semper Fidelis All-America Bowl.
Edwards was selected to play defensive back in the Big 33 game. He picked off two passes and ran for 469 yards as a two-way player this season. He had five rushing and one receiving touchdown.
There were several Public League players signing with Division I schools. Imhotep Charter had three players – David Williams, Eerin Young and Najee Goode heading to Division football programs. Williams, an All-American running back, will play for the University of South Carolina. Young, a running back/wide receiver, will be going to Rhode Island. Goode will be playing for Maine.
David Pulliam, Northeast High’s sensational defensive back, will be going to Eastern Michigan. Andrew Edouard, former Overbrook High star, has inked a letter of intent to Bethune-Cookman. Edouard played two seasons for Lackawanna College, a junior college in Scranton, Pa.
In the Catholic League, there were notable signings. Will Fuller, Roman Catholic’s outstanding wide receiver, will be going to Notre Dame. Fuller played in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl. Jaryd Jones-Smith, West Catholic’s offensive tackle, will play for the University of Pittsburgh. Jones-Smith will be joined by punter Ryan Winslow from La Salle. Sharif Custis, a tight end from Neumann-Goretti, will be going to Massachusetts.
Temple grabbed a big offensive lineman from Haverford School. Sema’j Reed, a 6-foot-6, 275-pounder, will play his college football on North Broad Street. Mike McGlinchey, an offensive lineman from Penn Charter, will play for the University of Pittsburgh. The Panthers have a strong Philadelphia connection.
Delaware State signed Emmett Hunt, a quarterback from Coatesville High, as one of its top recruits. Hunt is one of the top suburban players. He led the Red Raiders to the PIAA state title game. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound senior, will play his college football in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
High School football in the Philadelphia area is right around the corner. In fact, most scholastic football teams in the Public, Catholic, Inter-Ac and suburban leagues will begin on August 31, just a few weeks away.
There are a number of great players throughout the city. If you’re a high school football fan, there’s always somebody to watch on a Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
In the Public League, there are a host of outstanding players to watch. Justin Moody, a brilliant defensive end from George Washington, is one of them. Moody, a 6-foot-3, 265-pound senior, can rush the passer and play the run. He is one of the toughest defensive linemen to block in the league.
The league has two sensational quarterbacks returning from last year. Tim DiGiorgio had a big year at Frankford High. DiGiorgio completed 136 of 237 passes for 2,357 yards and 30 touchdown passes. He led the Pioneers to an 8-3 record.
Eric Lark is a big play signal caller for Boys’ Latin. Lark completed 97 of 243 passes for 1,217 yards and 14 touchdowns. DiGiorgio and Lark are seniors. Both players are capable of making some exciting plays.
Imhotep Charter could have one of the league’s best ground attacks with David Williams and Eerin Young. Williams, who played at West Catholic last year, had 301 carries for 1,938 yards and 18 TDs. Young had 37 rushes for 242 yards while scoring three TDs rushing and three TDs through the air.
Central has a couple of really talented players in running back Hakeem Ellis and defensive lineman Joseph Shepherd. Ellis had 75 carries for 477 yards and scored five TDs last season. Shepherd does a nice job of playing against the run. He has great quickness and can get to the passer.
In the Catholic League, William Fuller, Roman Catholic wide receiver, is one of the best players in the city. He had 46 receptions for 758 yards and 12 TDs. He helped the Cahillites post an 8-3 record last season.
Archbishop Wood, the defending Catholic League and city champion, should be a power again. They return offensive lineman Nick Arcidiacono and placekicker Nick Visco. The league’s other major standouts include: Jaryd Jones-Smith (West Catholic, defensive lineman), Sean Coleman (La Salle, wide receiver), Michael Keir (Roman Catholic, quarterback) and Sharif Custis (Neumann-Goretti, defensive lineman).
In the Inter-Ac League, there’s a good list of football stars like Mike McGlinchey (Penn Charter, offensive lineman), Bobby Keyes (Springside – Chestnut Hill Academy, linebacker), Eric Neefe (Penn Charter, running back), Aron Morgan (Haverford School, placekicker) and Michael Hayes (Springside – Chestnut Hill Academy, quarterback).
Jaryd Jones-Smith, West Catholic’s standout offensive tackle, has given a verbal commitment to play his college football at the University of Pittsburgh. Jones-Smith, a 6-foot-7, 320-pound senior, is one of the city’s top high school football players. He’s looking forward to playing for the Panthers next season.
“It’s the right fit for me,” Jones-Smith said. “I feel it’s the best of both worlds football wise and academically. They have a really family atmosphere. It’s family oriented. The facilities are real nice. The city is real nice. The area is real nice. The coaching staff is great. The players are amazing.”
Pittsburgh will be playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference in the fall. The Panthers will face some great teams in their new conference such as Florida State, Miami, North Carolina and Virginia. Pittsburgh plays its home games at Heinz Field. Paul Chryst is the head coach of the Panthers.
Jones-Smith led the Burrs to a 7-4 record and a trip the Class AA city title game. West Catholic had one of the most explosive offenses in the Catholic League. Jones-Smith, an All-Catholic League player, was a big part of the team’s success with his blocking skills.
Brian Fluck, West Catholic head coach, has watched Jones-Smith gradually develop into a major Division I player over the years. Fluck believes Jones-Smith has a great deal of potential.
“His upside is so great,” Fluck said. “He’s so young and so raw right now. He’s 6-7 and 320. He’s an NFL body already. He just has to grow into that body. He has to get bigger and stronger in the offseason. For a big guy, he moves around. He’s a good pass blocker. He has good pass setting. I just think he’s going to get better and better.”
Jones-Smith will be playing in the Big 33 Football Classic in Hershey, Pa. on June 15. In addition, he will join Justin Moody, George Washington High’s All-Public League star at Pittsburgh. Moody recently gave an oral commitment to play for the Panthers.
Justin Moody is certainly one of the best high school football players in the city. Moody, a 6-foot-3, 270-pound senior from George Washington High School, is now one of the top schoolboy standouts in the nation.
The Eagles’ defensive lineman was officially selected to play in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl, presented by JuniorRank Sports and the United States Marine Corps (USMC). Moody was presented with a game jersey on Friday afternoon during a ceremony at George Washington. The game will be played Jan. 4, 2013 at Home Depot Stadium in Carson, Calif. It will be televised live on the NFL Network.
“I’m really excited about it,” Moody said. “I thought I had a chance to make the team, but I was surprised when I made it. I’m definitely excited and looking forward to the competition. I don’t know what position I’ll play in the game. But wherever they need me, I’ll play.”
One hundred of the country’s best scholastic football players will battle each other in a traditional East vs. West matchup, showcasing players who exemplify the USMC values of honor, courage and commitment. The partnership formed between JuniorRank Sports and the USMC introduces student athletes to the organizations’ shared belief that athletic excellence, high academic performance and character development are crucial elements to becoming well-rounded people.
The selection committee is composed of college recruiting experts and scouts from around the country. Moody believes this is a good opportunity for him.
“I’ve had a lot of people who contacted me about playing college football,” he said. “I’m hoping this game will help me. I watch a lot of college football every Saturday. I keep up with Sharrif Floyd and Deion Barnes. I’ve seen them play. They’ve been playing well.”
Floyd was a big star at GW. He plays defensive tackle for the University of Florida. Barnes was an All-Public League standout at Northeast High and is a defensive end for Penn State. He’s regarded as one of the top freshmen in the Big Ten Conference. These players are doing a good job of representing Philadelphia on the major college football scene. Moody will be carrying the flag for the city in the big game.
There are a number of big games in the Public and Catholic Leagues this weekend. These high school teams have some of the best players in the city. Moreover, the level of play continues to rise each week.
In the Public League on Friday, Oct. 5, George Washington (4-0) will visit Frankford (3-1) in what should be an interesting matchup. The kickoff is at 3 p.m. GW is aiming for its fifth consecutive win. Running back Marquis Edwards is the Eagles leading rusher. Edwards has 191 yards on 38 carries. He’s one of George Washington’s best offensive players. Defensive end Justin Moody has done a nice job of playing against the run and rushing the passer.
Tim DiGiorgio, Frankford High’s senior quarterback, has thrown for more than 3,000 yards in his career. DiGiorgio has completed 43-of-93 passes for 760 yards and 5 touchdowns this season. His key receivers are Denzel Turbeville (18 receptions for 370 yards and 2 TDs) and Wydell Compton (15 catches for 166 yards and 4 TDs).
Simon Gratz (5-0) will go on the road to battle rival Dobbins (2-3) at 3 p.m. Gratz has been playing some great football. Davone Cornish, Bulldogs quarterback, has thrown 10 TD passes. Running back Daqwan Freeman has scooted for 359 yards on 66 attempts while scoring 2 TDs.
Dobbins is coming off two consecutive wins over Martin Luther King and Ben Franklin, respectively. Running back Mike Jones is one of the Mustangs best offensive players. Jones has gained 386 yards on 70 carries. He has scored 5 TDs too.
Central (3-1) will host rival Northeast (3-2) at 3 p.m. The Lancers are capable of moving the football. Quarterback Jonathan Henderson has displayed a solid passing attack. Henderson has thrown for 233 yards and 4 TDs. Walter Pegues, Central’s wide receiver, has four receptions for 62 yards. The running game features Jesse Gillis (44 rushes for 240 yards) and Hakeem Ellis (25 carries for 164 yards).
Boys’ Latin (4-1) will play Overbrook (3-2) under the lights at Marcus Foster Stadium, Germantown and Hunting Park. The kickoff is at 6 p.m. Ben Coulibaly, Boys’ Latin’s leading rusher, has 77 carries for 482 yards. The team’s quarterback is Eric Lark who has completed 49-of-106 passes for 542 yards and 4 TDs. Tahir Perlotte has been a big part of the passing game. Perlotte is the team’s leading receiver with 20 receptions for 306 yards and 3 TDs. Overbrook High’s key player is running back Marice Tillman (67 carries for 356 yards and 4 TDs).
Delaware Valley (3-2) will take on Imhotep Charter (5-0) at 1100 Sedgwick Street, on Saturday night, Oct. 6 at 6 p.m. David Williams, Imhotep Charter’s explosive running back, has rushed for over 3,000 career yards. Williams has picked up 353 yards on the ground to go with 5 TDs this season.
In the Catholic League, La Salle (5-0) will face Father Judge (2-2) at Lincoln High School on Saturday. The kickoff is at 2:45 p.m. La Salle has a great passing combination with quarterback Chris Kane (67-of-103 passes for 1,103 yards and 12 TDs) and wide receiver Sean Coleman (23 catches for 436 yards and 4 TD receptions).
Archbishop Wood (4-1) will travel to St. Joseph’s Prep (4-0) for a night game. The kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. Quarterback Tom Garlick has thrown the ball well for Wood. Garlick has completed 24-of-41 passes for 360 yards and 4 TDs. Jawan McAllister, St. Joseph’s Prep wide receiver, is capable of stretching the field. McAllister has 16 receptions for 142 yards.