Blog Posts by Lets Talk Football

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football" (10-19-18) Your thoughts about Pennsbury’s come-from-behind win over Council Rock South and the SOL National Conference race. Todd Thorpe: “You look at the Council Rock South-Pennsbury game – South obviously in first place has a lot to play for, has a lead going into the fourth quarter and it gets away. Pennsbury has been waiting for that win. They’ve been so close in the games that they’ve lost. I covered their game against Truman two weeks ago, and they were right there. They’ve been frustrated, and they’ve lost games late, but they still feel they’re a pretty good team and they’re just as good as any of these teams. That’s their feeling, but they just haven’t found a way to win these games, and low and behold, they did. “Now Pennsbury has a chance with two weeks remaining to really hold their playoff destiny in their own hands. Even at 6-4 if they win these next two games, I think they’re in the playoffs. I look at these brackets and I see the seeds 14 through 19 in a 16-team bracket, and you may see a 5-5 team make the playoffs this year. It wouldn’t surprise me if that came out of the National Conference with a Pennsbury or any of the other teams.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football" (10-11-18) Todd, you covered Truman’s come-from-behind 29-24 win over Pennsbury. Your thoughts. Todd Thorpe: “I think that was a big time statement game for Truman. That was an opponent, just like Neshaminy a couple of weeks earlier, that they hadn’t beaten in an awfully long time, and if you want to prove you’re one of the teams that’s a contender, you have to beat those teams. Especially in the second half of that game, Truman came out with a little something to prove and scored on their first two possessions and really dominated the line of scrimmage. They’re mostly a running team, but they even threw the ball a little bit. Truman got it all together in the second half of that game. It was a really good game to watch. Pennsbury, at one point, did drive down the field and retook the lead, and Truman came back and took the lead again. Pennsbury was driving and Javeer Peterson just makes a great interception on the five-yard line towards the last minute or so to seal the win for Truman.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football" (10-5-18)

Drew Markol: “We talked about this before – the SOL Continental is really close. You have the three undefeated teams with North Penn, CB South and Souderton. Souderton needed that win. They started 0-3, and one of those losses was a one-point loss to Hatboro-Horsham, which was a bit of a head scratcher, although they were without DeAndre Wakefield in that game because of an injury. “Wakefield is a huge part of their offense. In the first half, Souderton didn’t play too well offensively, but he caught a touchdown pass – his only catch of the game. It was a nice throw by Andrew Vince but an even better catch by DeAndre Wakefield that tied the game 7-7 at the half. In the second half, he broke two long runs, and once he got in the secondary, he was just gone. He had another gear that East couldn’t stop. John Donnelly had talked about him all week being the problem trying to stop Souderton. Well, they got to the game, and he was right.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football (9-28-18) Cheltenham knocked off previously undefeated Quakertown. Your thoughts about that game. Todd Thorpe: “That is crazy, and that is why they play the game. Cheltenham beat Council Rock South earlier this year, and you didn’t really know. You kind of think – ‘It’s Cheltenham,’ but maybe the Cheltenham program has turned the corner. They’re 4-1 right now, and that was a big win. Quakertown was riding high. I guess a lot of people thought they were going to cruise into that Upper Dublin game, and they kind of got the stop sign thrown up in front of them at home. It’s certainly not the end of the line for Quakertown, but it’s a hiccough. It will be interesting to see how that conference plays out. Cheltenham plays Upper Dublin this week, and the team that wins that game can be in the driver’s seat in that conference. Upper Dublin did lose to Penn Charter – I’m not sure what that will do to their power points.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football (9-21-18) Drew, you covered the Pennridge/North Penn game last week. Your thoughts. Drew Markol: “Before the season, most of us thought in the Continental Conference the challenge for North Penn would be Pennridge. Well, it turned out it wasn’t that much of a challenge. Pennridge scored early – they got a sack of the quarterback, they recovered a fumble in the end zone, and they had a lot of momentum, but North Penn just reeled off four or five straight touchdowns in a very short amount of time and made what looked like a very interesting game early not so interesting because they just put the pedal down and really did a nice job. I tell you what – this is the first time I’ve seen North Penn live, and they’ve got a lot of weapons, they’ve got a lot of speed, and there’s a lot of skill. The passing game, as coach Dick Beck has said, is not there yet, but if it gets a little better, they are going to be a really, really tough out because they’re disciplined – they don’t run that many plays. I don’t want to say their offense is bland, but it kind of reminds you of the old CB West teams.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football (9-14-18) Drew, last week you covered Quakertown’s 21-19 win over Central Bucks West. Talk about that game. Drew Markol: “At the start, Quakertown held CB West and gets the ball, and they put together an eight-minute drive where they looked tremendous. They ran it down West’s throat. For the older folks out there, it looked like a CB West drive from the old days and what they would do to teams. They ate up almost the entire first quarter, they go down and score, they hold West again, and then they put together a second drive. Their second possession wasn’t quite as many plays or as long a drive, but it was still impressive, and all of a sudden, it’s 14-0 and Quakertown is dominating. It just looks like this could be a rout, but then Quakertown committed a costly penalty, West got the ball back and they were able to move. West uses two quarterbacks - Gavin Grondahl and Jack Neri, and they have a big receiver in Luke Benson who’s going to Syracuse. I was sitting with the West assistant coaches, and at points, they’re like, ‘Just send Benson out and throw it up to him.’

2018 Intelligencer/Courier "Let's Talk Football" (9-7-18) Neshaminy defeated Pennridge 27-14 in a key non-league game. Drew, you covered that game. Your thoughts? Drew Markol: “Neshaminy was coming off the double overtime loss to North Penn and needed a win, and Pennridge was coming off a pretty good win over Delaware Valley the week before where they scored 54 points. In this one though, Pennridge again couldn’t run the ball. They couldn’t run against Del Val and they couldn’t run against Neshaminy. Ryan Garner - who is a very good back and had a very good season last year – there’s no room for him to run through, and it made Pennridge one-dimensional, and Neshaminy knew that. They were just rushing Zak Kantor, the Pennridge quarterback, with abandon because they could. There wasn’t the threat of the run.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier 'Let's Talk Football' (08-30-18) William Tennent snapped its 27-game losing streak with its win over Upper Moreland. Your thoughts. Todd Thorpe: “Everybody has been talking about William Tennent winning – to play Upper Moreland, a team that won the conference title last year. It’s a completely different looking Upper Moreland team. They have Caleb Mead, their running back, but there’s not much else back from last year’s team, including the coach, Adam Beach. Upper Moreland could be rebuilding and retooling this year, and Tennent went in with a bunch of guys that are tired of losing and have been part of that. You talk about a Kip Mooney, guys that have been on the team two years ago when they didn’t win, guys that were on the team last year when they were beaten up a lot. They come out and win – you have to feel good for those kids. Tennent is not the winningest program in the world, and I’ve said it all along that I think the perception you can never win at Tennent is false.

2018 Intelligencer/Courier 'Let's Talk Football' (08-24-18) Looking at the SOL American Conference, give your overview for the upcoming season. Drew Markol: “With the American Conference, Upper Moreland wins it last year, they’re undefeated in the conference with an obviously really good team, but they lost a ton to graduation. For a “smaller” program, it’s hard to bounce back from that. Upper Moreland historically every couple of years has a very strong class come through and they do very well. They do have running back Caleb Mead back who’s one of the area’s top runners. A lot is going to fall on his shoulders, and they need a lot to fall in the right direction to repeat what they did last year.

2017 Intelligencer/Courier 'Let's Talk Football' (11-23-17) Pennridge lost to Garnet Valley 28-20. Your thoughts about that game. Drew Markol: “When you look at Pennridge, they had to play Garnet Valley, which runs that option attack where they just run and run and run. Pennridge had to play without star linebacker Nick Tarburton because of a school suspension. Without him in the lineup, Garnet Valley just pounded the ball up the middle where – if you’ve ever seen Pennridge play - Tarburton just makes tackle after tackle. Without him in the lineup, they had to turn to a freshman linebacker, and you're asking a 14-year-old to, in some cases, tackle an 18-year-old. That's very hard to do. Pennridge not having Tarburton - that really cost them. If he had played, that would have greatly enhanced their chances of winning.