Mike White |1:15 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 27
Notes, thoughts and anecdotes after the fifth Friday of the high school football season.
Sto-Rox junior quarterback Paul Jones has scholarship offers from Pitt, North Carolina State and Duke. After seeing him play for the first time Friday, I certainly wouldn't be going out on a limb by saying Jones will have many more scholarship offers by the time he's a senior.
Jones is good. It's hard to find something bad about him. He's big (6 feet 3, 225 pounds), he's strong, he moves fairly well and he has an excellent arm. He can stand on one hashmark and zip a pass on a line to the other sideline. Plus, he plays in a spread offense, which might also make him more attractive to colleges. He completed 16 of 18 passes for 182 yards in a 35-24 victory against Seton-LaSalle Friday.
"I think one of the big things about him is how big he is," said Seton-LaSalle coach Greg Perry. "They're not fibbing in the program when they say he's 6-3, 225. He can stand in there and take a hit."
Plus, he's productive and accurate. Over the past two seasons, he has 34 touchdown passes in 14 games. He's completed 68 percent of his passes (67 of 98).
One to watch
Montay Green. Remember the name. You might be hearing it and seeing it a lot more in the future. Green rushed for 153 yards in Fox Chapel's victory against Kiski Area, and word is that Green is a Division I prospect for the future. He's only a sophomore, and he's 6 feet 1, 220 pounds. Fox Chapel coach Bryan Deal speaks highly of Green and believes he is a definite prospect for the future. Deal should know. He used to be Pitt's recruiting coordinator and coached former Pitt running back Nick Goings at Dublin Scioto in Ohio. Goings spent a few years in the NFL.
Aliquippa had lost two games in a row for the first time since 2001. Apparently, the losses upset the Quips and they took out their frustration on Mohawk, defeating the Warriors, 61-18. It was the most points scored by Aliquippa since 1963 when the Quips defeated Masontown, W.Va., 63-0. The 61 points for Aliquippa ties for thrid-most in school history. The school record is 68, set against Avonworth in 1919.
Watching his alma mater
Former Seton-LaSalle quarterback Bruce Gradkowski was on the sideline to watch his alma mater play Sto-Rox Friday at Chartiers Valley. Gradkowski played a few seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before being released in May. His father said Bruce is working out and staying in shape, hoping to hook on with another NFL team. He has been to a few workouts with some NFL teams, but has not been signed.
Former West Allegheny and Pitt quarterback Tyler Palko is in the same position as Gradkowski. He was cut by the New Orleans Saints and is working out, hoping to possibly get signed by another team.
The other Corey Brown
Gateway's Corey Brown is one of the top seniors in the state, a receiver-defensive back who is headed to Ohio State. On the other side of the state, another Corey Brown is one of Pennsylvania's top juniors. This Corey Brown is a 6-foot-1, 180-pound running back at Cardinal O'Hara High in Philadelphia. He has many Division I colleges interested in him and had 565 yards on 56 carries heading into this weekend. West Virginia, Notre Dame and Colorado already have offered scholarships to O'Hara's Corey Brown.
Player of the year?
It's about the halfway point of the regular season. Who would be your player of the year? I might have said Seneca Valley's C.J. Brown coming into this week, but the Raiders were trounced by North Allegheny and Brown was 16 of 31 for 168 yards. Maybe Gateway's Dorian Bell is back on top as the leading candidate for player of the year. He was generally regarded as the top college prospect in the WPIAL before the season because of his talent at linebacker. But Bell rushed for 168 yards against Norwin Friday, his third 100-yard game of the year. Or what about Sto-Rox quarterback Paul Jones, who is putting up big numbers at Sto-Rox and has led the Vikings to a 5-0 record.
Check this out
* You had to feel bad for Seton-LaSalle senior running back David Cortese. At halftime of the Sto-Rox-Seton-LaSalle game, Cortese was announced as homecoming king. But he waasn't on the field to be recognized. He was at a hospital. Cortese was injured with one second left in the first half and was taken off the field on a stretcher. Seton-LaSalle coach Greg Perry said Cortese was moving his limbs, but was taken to the hospital because he had numbness in his neck.
* Mike Sivak, North Hills' leading rusher through the first four weeks, is most likely done for the season with a knee injury suffered in Week 4 vs. Baldwin. Elijah David became the feature back in North Hills' offense and rushed for 119 yards in an overtime win against Pine-Richland.
* Highlands coach Sam Albert has been saying publicly that he can't believe quarterback Jeff Sinclair doesn't have a scholarship offer from a Division I-A school. Well, Robert Morris recently offered Sinclair a scholarship. Robert Morris is I-AA.
* Clairton quarterback Andrew Currington averaged 23 yards a completion against Fort Cherry, and his average went "down." Currington was averaging 30.2 yards per completion entering the game.