Thursday, November 10, 2011
New Jersey football playoffs to get underway
By By Brandon Parker
It's the most wonderful time of the year for New Jersey football fans: the playoffs. Many storylines abound entering this year's postseason, like:
-Will Bergen Catholic get another crack at upsetting national No. 1 Don Bosco Prep?
-Will Holy Spirit recover and take the Non-Public, Group 2 crown like most predicted to begin the year?
-Will Old Tappan get another crack at a reeling Wayne Hills squad that used a last-second kickoff return to beat the Golden Knights in last year's title game?
-Will St. Joseph (Hamm.) take its dominant season to another level in the playoffs?
As you digest those, among many other intriguing questions surrounding the postseason, here are two games to watch out for in the opening round?
Union at Elizabeth
When these two teams met in the regular season, it proved to be Jamauri Bogan's coming-out party. The Union sophomore tailback carried the ball 50 times for 376 yards and six touchdowns to upset previously undefeated Elizabeth, 43-21. Bogan hasn't slowed down much since their Oct. 14 matchup, meaning the Minutemen D will certainly have to clamp down to avoid the same outcome.
My pick: Union 28, Elizabeth 21
Immaculata at DePaul
DePaul began its season with a loss before winning eight straight. Immaculata won eight straight contests before losing its regular-season finale. In other words, that intangible factor we call "momentum" could come into play in this matchup. Tailback Joe Moreno leads a DePaul offensive attack that put up nearly 42 points per game this year.
My pick: DePaul 30, Immaculata 24
Brandon Parker covers New Jersey for ESPNHS magazine and ESPNHIGHSCHOOL.com. Follow him on Twitter @brandoncparker or email him at email@example.com.