By Matthew De George
Amidst the pageantry and tradition of Thanksgiving morning, a significant bit of Delaware County football history will be made Thursday at Upper Darby High School.
For the first time in county history, two quarterbacks toting 2,000-yard seasons will play when Haverford High sophomore Jake Ruane and Upper Darby senior Nate Rimel take their first snaps under center.
Then, 20-some hours later, the other extreme will be expressed on the turf at North Penn, when Garnet Valley — a team that has racked up 86 points the last two weeks in dominant fashion with a grand total of one completed forward pass — plays for a District 1 Class 6A title.
It’s a perplexing dichotomy. In the midst of the most prolific season for Delaware County passers, the two teams that advanced the farthest in Class 6A, Ridley and Garnet Valley, are among the most pass-averse in the county.
“No matter what you’re doing, you have to execute,” Marple Newtown coach Chris Gicking said Monday. “In Garnet’s case, they’re executing very well at a very high level with their offense. No matter what you do, have to practice it, you have to execute it. The coaches can diagram whatever they want, but the players have to execute it.”
It may seem like a stock answer, but it rings true, though the historical weight of this season requires more digging.