Class AAA State Final Preview
Arch. Wood vs. Bishop McDevitt
7 p.m. Friday at Hersheypark Stadium.
Twitter. Follow @ozoneinq for updates.
TV. Live on the Pennsylvania Cable Network.
Coaches. In seven years in Warminster, Steve Devlin is 83-16; Jeff Weachter is 153-47 in 16 seasons at Bishop McDevitt of Harrisburg.
Projected starters. Go to philly.com/ozone.
Rankings. Archbishop Wood (12-2) is ranked No. 2 in the state in Class AAA by The Inquirer; McDevitt (14-1) is No. 1.
Deja vu. Wood, in trying for its second PIAA Class AAA state title in three seasons, will face a familiar foe. It's a rematch of the 2011 final, in which Wood cruised to the program's first crown by 52-0 over McDevitt. The Crusaders, with an explosive rusher and a strong-armed quarterback, are much more formidable this time.
About McDevitt. McDevitt last won a state title, in Class AA,, in 1995. . . . The Crusaders, of District 3, outlasted District 10's Erie Cathedral Prep, 47-42, in the semifinals last week. . . . Andre Robinson, a 5-foot-10, 205-pound junior tailback, has carried the ball 246 times for 2,279 yards (9.3 average) and 29 touchdowns. He is being pursued by Penn State, Pittsburgh, and Virginia Tech, among others. ... McDevitt also can turn to senior RB Rashad Lawson, who has netted 1,064 yards and 19 scores on 153 attempts. . . . Nick Marsilo, a 6-3, 185-pound junior, has completed 167 of 267 passes for 2,577 yards and 31 TDs, with 10 interceptions. . . . Sophomore WR Kobay White has 58 receptions for 1,069 yards and 15 scores.
About Wood. The Vikings are making their fourth appearance in the state final. . . . Junior tailback Jarrett McClenton has rushed 137 times for 1,470 yards (10.7 average) and 26 TDs. Seniors Josh Messina and Luke Spahits are also threats in a run-driven attack. . . . Sophomore QB Tom Garlick, a second-year starter, has hit on 78 of 143 throws for 1,314 yards and 15 scores. He attempted only four passes in last week's 42-14 romp over District 2's Berwick. . . . The leading receivers are WRs Justin Rubin and Kendall Singleton. . . . The Vikings defense has allowed only 11.6 points per game. . . . Wood has 10 juniors and two sophomores in its starting lineup, which bodes well for next season.
Analysis. McDevitt, with ample speed and a diversified offense, is the favorite on paper. But we like the Vikings, buoyed by their bullish offensive line, to win on a late McClenton TD dash.
Pick. Wood, 28-24.
- Rick O'Brien