North-South Game Revisited: News, Notes, Video, Photos and What’s Next?

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Boardman’s Devin Campbell races 88-ayrds for a TD in the North’s 21-16 victory.

The future looks favorable for college football. The Ohio North-South rosters were loaded with talent, size and speed. However, like the NCAA commercial, most of these student-athletes will be turning pro in something other than football. Check out JJHD’s pandemic coverage of the 67th Annual All-Star Game at the Horseshoe on Friday…


The future looks favorable for college football. The Ohio North-South rosters were loaded with talent, size and speed. However, like the NCAA commercial, most of these student-athletes will be turning pro in something other than football. Check out JJHD’s pandemic coverage of the 67th Annual All-Star Game at the Horseshoe on Friday…
 
LaTroy Lewis proved to be the prophetic one and Devin Campbell delivered the big run.
 
The North snapped a two-year skid with two fourth quarter TDs to edge the South 21-16 in an unexpected low-scoring affair. The North leads the series 39-25-3, dating back since 1945.
 
During practices Wednesday and Thursday, LaTroy Lewis (Tennessee) told JJ Huddle, “We know the South is going to throw it…but we know our defensive line is better…we are going to stop the pass before they can even get it going.”
 
Can you say soothsayer?
 
The front line of Lewis, Tom Strobel (Michigan), Willie Henry (Michigan), and Greg McMullen (Nebraska) pressured South QB Tyler O’Connor (Michigan State) all afternoon. Despite numerous hits to the turf, O’Connor managed 18-33 passes for 243 yards and two TDs. But most of his completions were relegated to short routes.
 
The South led 10-6 after three quarters. Then with 10:14 left in the game, Devin Campbell (Buffalo) romped 88 yards for the go-ahead score. His run was an all-star record. That play wiped out the bog-downs and led to a 21-point fourth quarter outburst by the two squads.
 
But this oldest running high school all-star football game in the nation, wasn’t just about bragging rights. It was a reward for 70 players who had outstanding careers. Careers that screamed gaudy stats and phenomenal performances.
 
In talking with these kids as they prepare for the next storybook chapter in their enthusiastic lives, two common themes emerged – goal setting and hard work. It was so refreshing to listen to these youngsters speak so eloquently and passionately about their craft.
 
South Offensive MVP Warren Ball (Ohio State) reports to the Buckeyes June 17th, a day after playing in the Big 33 All-Star Game in Hershey, PA. The 4-star recruit rushed for 1,232 yards and 29 TDs his senior season at Columbus DeSales. He runs a 4.5 40 and can bench 300. More impressive, he sports a 4.0 GPA.
 
“It definitely was a special event. All of these guys from throughout Ohio, who are great athletes and great players, who have come here together and to play in a great game. Quite an honor,” said Ball. “Once I report to the Buckeyes, I’ll try to do my part and work hard. I’ll be sure that I’m reading the playbook. My goal is to work my way up the depth chart.”
 
South Coach Mike Mauk was impressed with Ball, “He did a great job. He is a tremendous athlete. For him to go compromise and forget about his offense and run ours, he did outstanding. He worked hard every practice.”
 
Mentor DE Tom Strobel guided the Cardinals to an 11-2 record. He boasts career totals of 20 sacks and 149 tackles. His senior season he recorded 11 sacks and 65 tackles. The 6-6, 260-pound freak runs a 4.8 40 and owns a 3.9 GPA. He reports to Ann Arbor June 23rd and plans to major in business and marketing.
 
Strobel said, “It’s going to take lots of hard work, but I’m willing to work hard. And be able to show them I have potential. I’m gonna get it done in the weight room. I’m working with a special trainer now.”
 
South Defensive MVP Andre Jones (Cincinnati) had two picks in this game. His Colerain team finished 10-2. The 3-star recruit is a versatile secondary player. The 6-2, 195-pounder can support the run, blitz, and is a great on-ball defender who can close in a hurry. He runs a 4.4 40 and recorded seven interceptions his senior year. He added a 93-yard kick-off return to his resume. He reports to Cincinnati June 17th. Like Ball, he will be playing in the Big 33 game.
 
Jones said, “I will continue to lift weights, train hard, and stay on top of my schoolwork until the end…I like this turf better than UC’s.”
 
Ross Franklin (Findlay) had a prolific rushing career with over 6,000 yards. He guided Johnstown Monroe to a 13-1 mark with 3,472 yards and 51 TDs this season. The 6-0, 200-pound bull averaged 10.2 yards per carry. He runs a 4.5 40 and can max out at 340 on the bench. He owns the school record in the 100M dash with a 10.8 clocking.
 
“This was a great opportunity,” Franklin said. “I was just telling my mom and dad that I’m just one of 70 guys in the state of Ohio to play in a game like this. It’s a great honor being out here with all these great guys and having fun. Its been a lot of hard work and a dream come true.”
 
And then there’s Maty Mauk, Ohio’s Mr. Football. The swashbuckling QB with sheepish Huck Finn looks (ironically) is headed to Missouri June 1st. Kenton finished the year 14-1, losing in the D-IV championship thriller. Mauk amassed 22,681 total career yards and 278 TDs. He was unable to play this game due to a hamstring injury.
 
Coach Mauk said, “Too much at stake. Didn’t want to risk it…I will take him there (Missouri), stay for the weekend, and come back and start summer workouts and get ready for 7-on-7 tourney July 6th…The QB position is up for grabs since Missouri starter James Franklin recently underwent surgery.”
 
Maty is excited to play with WR Dorial Green Beckham, the most prolific receiver in schoolboy history. The two met last summer and have been in communication ever since. The 6-6 Green Beckham caught 300 passes for 6,353 yards during his four-year career.
 
Who knows, Mauk and Green Beckham might be the next electrifying college combo since the 8-Track days of USC’s QB Pat Haden and WR JJ McKay in the early 70s.
 
Take heed America, the football future looks bright.

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PHOTO GALLERY

Photos by Gary Housteau (JJHuddle.com)






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